The first time my best friend, Heather Ho, and I drove past Keo's Thai Cuisine in our hometown of Honolulu, I asked her, "What is thigh cuisine?" We were 16 then, but she still loves to embarrass me with this story.
Heather has always known more about food than I have. She started reading cookbooks at age eight and graduated from the Culinary Institute of America at 24. I'm a food writer; she's the pastry chef at Boulevard restaurant in San Francisco. Reviewers swoon over her updated American classics: lemon icebox cake with huckleberries, banana-bread-and-butter pudding, butterscotch crème brûlée served with devil's food cake.
Recently, the two of us returned to Oahu; it is the first time we've been home together since we were in college, nearly a decade ago. Heather needed a breather from her 12-hour days, and she wanted to sample the desserts we grew up on to see if they might inspire her. I'm here because I couldn't imagine anything more fun than driving around Oahu eating nothing but sweets with my best friend.