Editor’s Note: Our roving food writer, Paul Young, reports from his spring break excursion to Bali. Watch for a new column every morning this week.

One of the privileges of teaching is being able to take off during spring break.

This year, we decided to go to Bali for some fun and good eats. Since Bali is halfway around the world (literally), we decided to break up the trip with a stopover in San Francisco. Armed with a rental car and the Bay Area Guardian’s Best of Guide, we zeroed in on a little neighborhood Japanese joint near the renowned Castro district called Eiji (317 Sanchez, San Francisco). We chose Eiji because we’ve never had oboro (handmade tofu) before.

Eiji’s house specialty turned out to be a very delicate custard that’s topped with sweetened soy sauce. Stir in some scallions and shredded daikon and you can slurp your way to heaven. Talk about melt-in-your-mouth delight. To accompany our precious bowl of tender tofu, we also ordered our favorite Japanese vegetable – oshi tashi (steamed spinach, served cold).

To round off our late night snack, we chose sea urchin sashimi from the list of specials posted. It’s been a long time since we’ve had fresh sea urchin, and on this particular night, the essence of the Pacific Ocean was somehow embedded into every bite of this tender delicacy. Feeling completely satisfied, we headed back to the airport for our red-eye flight to Bali with a layover in Taipei.

To be continued…