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Manga / The Secret Recipe

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That sweet taste of yuri

Horikawa Yuuko, newly appointed president of her school's cooking club, but referred to by both Wakatsuki and the narrator as President, is rather thrown when the club's newest recruit, Wakatsuki, comes to her with a request: a kiss. Wakatsuki suspects she might be gay and wishes to test the theory, and since she only joined the cooking club to attract a good husband, she plans to quit the club if her theory proves correct. Desperate to keep the club numbers up, since Wakatsuki is the only first year to join, Horikawa agrees to the odd request, and much wacky Les Yay ensues.

The Secret Recipe is a Girls' Love manga by Morinaga Milk that began as a one-shot but has since expanded into a serial.


The Secret Recipe contains examples of:

  • Almost Kiss: In chapter 13, Wakatsuki finally managed to convince Yuuko to kiss her, by bullshitting that 'vital spirits' will scare away ghosts, however after a bit, she changed her mind as the kiss meant a lot more to her than it does to Yuuko and decides against having a meaningless kiss. Yuuko was a bit disappointed, surprisingly.
  • Angry Fist-Shake: Yuuko does this at a thought that Wakatsuki would consider leaving the cooking club because she no longer wants to land a guy.
  • Body Sushi: In chapter 4, Wakatsuki subconsciously suggested that she wants to eat off Yuuko's body before quickly changing the subject when Yuuko gave her a Death Glare.
  • Book Dumb: Wakatsuki herself says she doesn't have much going on in her head, probably explains why even when following a specific recipe she is incapable of making edible food.
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  • Cannot Spit It Out: While averted for the first 4 chapters, once the main couple's feelings for each other got upgraded, both sides were guilty of this trope. Wakatsuki can't kiss Yuuko willy-nilly because she never experienced love this strong and vice versa because Yuuko thought that Wakatsuki already has her eye on another girl, she's quick to squash or even deny her own feelings towards Wakatsuki.
  • Can't Act Perverted Toward a Love Interest: Wakatsuki quite frequently harasses Yuuko, even going so far as to strip her down to her underwear, but as her feelings for Yuuko grow she is increasingly unable to be perverted with her, wanting Yuuko to return her feelings rather than succumbing to her lust.
  • Caught in the Rain: In chapter 13, Wakatsuki and Yuuko got caught in a light rain after they got lost in the woods and have to take shelter under a nearby tree.
  • Cell Phones Are Useless: In chapter 13, after Yuuko and Wakatsuki got lost in the woods, they try to contact the Inn and Kanbe, only to find that their phone can't find a signal.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: Wakatsuki whenever Kanbe was around. During Kanbe's suprise visit in chapter 6, Wakatsuki tried to shoo Kanbe away by hinting that the club was not doing well at all, then insulting her vocational school, then putting salt in her tea.
  • Cosplay Café: Of a classic french maid variant in chapter 15, suggested by Wakatsuki, of course.
  • The Ditz: Wakatsuki
  • Demonic Possession: Discussed and played for laughs in chapter 13, Wakatsuki tried to justify the fact she got the fireworks soaked and the fact that they got lost in the woods in the rain by saying that it was all tricks by a ghost, to which Yuuko leapt to a conclusion that Wakatsuki was possessed.
  • Dude Magnet: Wakatsuki is actually proud of the fact that she has never had to try to get a boyfriend, of course this comes back to bite her since she has no experience as the pursuer.
  • Everyone calls her the President: Wakatsuki never calls the President by her real name, and didn't even know her first name until Kanbe, Yuuko's predecessor, called Yuuko by name.
  • Even the Girls Want Her: Kanbe is very popular among the cooking club members.
  • Expy: Like many Morinaga Milk works Yuuko and Wakatsuki look a lot like the protagonists from other works. Yuuko looks like Mari and Nana but with glasses. Wakatsuki looks like Akko and Hitomi but with curly hair. Kanbe looks like Tachiba and Naru-Chan-Sensei.
  • Fainting: When Yuuko see how grasshoppers are cooked. While still standing.
  • Fan Service With A Smile: Wakatsuki naturally got into this for the Cooking Club's cultural festival maid cafe in chapter 15. Even other memebers commented that she was too good at it.
  • Foreign Queasine:
    • The cooking club was treated to a local cuisine of seasoned preserved grasshoppers and bee larvae by the innkeeper in chapter 11. Subverted when Yuuko and Kanbe tried out the dish and commented that it's not bad, though the others were still hesitant to try it. Then Yuuko see how they are cooked... After she faints, she dreams of "grasshopper dessert''.
    • Then, in chapter 12, GRASSHOPPER ROLLS. Fortunately, for Wakatsuki, it's only in her dream.
  • Gayngst: Averted at first, Wakatsuki spends all of one speech bubble being upset about her sexuality. Played straight later, when Wakatsuki has a lot of trouble because she has no idea how to court a woman.
  • Genki Girl: Wakatsuki
  • Girls' Love: Given the author, it should be no surprise.
  • Girlish Pigtails: When Wakatsuki was told to tie her hair back for cooking days in chapter 6, she tried to tie her hair up in the trope's manner in chapter 8 but failed every attempt. Eventually Yuuko came in and did her hair into braids but Wakatsuki still cant do it herself so Yuuko does it every cooking day, neither of them seem to mind that though.
  • I Have This Friend...: Wakatsuki have been using this trope as a placeholder for Yuuko as a confession of her true feelings for quite a while whenever Yuuko ask who's the girl that she'd been meaning to confess her feelings to.
  • Imagine Spot: In chapter 15, right after Wakatsuki had a brief daydream of Yuuko in a Naked Apron, one of the Cooking Club members bring up the upcoming cultural festival and asked what should their aprons be like. Cue immense blushing from Wakatsuki.
  • I Warned You: Kanbe paraphrased after the club freaked out at how grasshoppers are cooked.
  • The Klutz: Wakatsuki, especially egregious in chapter 12, in an attempt to woo Yuuko, she constantly make various mistakes with a huge one being soaking an entire box of fireworks, thus leading to a cancellation of fireworks display, to the disappointment of everybody.
  • Last-Name Basis: Wakatsuki is only ever addressed by her family name even by her friends, her given, Chihiro, only appears twice in two volumes.
  • Lethal Chef: Wakatsuki, despite being in a club that teaches cooking. For one, she did neither measure the amount of lemon juice nor mix properly. Then there is an abomination of a cake that Wakatsuki baked to express her feelings to Yuuko.
  • The Load: Ever since Yuuko added a new romance/popularity angle on the Cooking Club, the club has gotten new members by a dozens, she does not need to worry about Wakatsuki leaving the club and causing a downgrade of the club. In fact, several of the new members requested that Wakatsuki should be kicked since she does not follow as well as the others. Of course, since Yuuko developed enough feelings for Wakatsuki, she vouch for her(though she still disciplined her) while Wakatsuki loved the President enough to stay anyways.
  • Love Epiphany: Wakatsuki had one before the start of the series and tricks The President into letting Wakatsuki kiss her to confirm it. The President has one in chapter 15 when she realizes she's fallen for Wakatsuki after kissing her in chapter 14, though she has no idea when she actually fell.
  • Loveable Sex Maniac: Wakatsuki, she has absolutely no qualms kissing the President and touching places where it shouldn't be touched at. at least until she developed more serious feelings for her.
  • Meganekko: Yuuko
  • Meido: The main theme of the Cooking Club's cafe in the cultural festival in chapter 15.
  • The Millstone: Wakatsuki, see The Klutz entry above.
  • Naked Apron: In chapter 15, after Yuuko kissed Wakatsuki in the latter's own apartment, Wakatsuki wondered if Yuuko actually loves her, then she wondered if Yuuko in nothing but an apron waiting just for Wakatsuki. She does not.
  • No Respect Guy: Horikawa Yuuko, seeing how Wakatsuki being able to teased her all she wants, even if she gets whacked by a ladle later and barely anyone else came to meetings. Yuuko even think herself as this since no one seems to respect her authority as the President, she was even thinking about stepping down as president in chapter 6 after the final straw Wakatsuki pulled. It gets better after Yuuko introduced a romance/popularity angle on the club though.
  • The Pollyanna: Kanbe. In chapter 6, even if Wakatsuki does what she does in the Clingy Jealous Girl entry above, she still all smiles and even offered to teach Wakatsuki a simple candy recipe so that she can cheer the president up.
  • Practice Kiss: The main reason why Wakatsuki kiss The President is because she wanted to test her sexuality.
  • Sacred First Kiss: Yuuko gives hers to Wakatsuki.
  • Sempai Kouhai: Yuuko's Sempai to Wakatsuki's Kouhai.
  • Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness: Downplayed. Wakatsuki and Yuuko think 'sufficient quantity' is a bit too technical of a term for them to understand.
  • Single-Target Sexuality: When Wakatsuki finds herself unable to act perverted to Yuuko, she decides to grope fellow cooking club member, Inoue-san, in an attempt to figure out whats wrong. But not only does she not feel the weird tension preventing her from kissing Yuuko, but it doesn't even excite her like groping Yuuko does. Said revelation does not stop her from continuing to grope the freaked out second year until Yuuko shows up.
  • Skinship Grope: Wakatsuki has difficulty keeping her hands to herself. In fact, in chapter 9 she groped a random 2nd year student just to see if she felt weird doing that. She does not.
  • Slapstick Knows No Gender: Yuuko clonking Wakatsuki on the head with a ladle became a running gag.
  • That Came Out Wrong: In chapter 9, after Yuuko scolded Wakatsuki for groping another student:
    Yuuko: I already know that you like girls so, from now on, you shouldn't do those things with people other than me...
    Wakatsuki: What things?
  • Through His Stomach: The only reason Wakatsuki joined the cooking club was to attract a very successful man but when she realized she has lost interest in men she considered dropping out of the club.
  • Those two fat twins: Starting from chapter 7, the manga introduced these two recurring characters, with no name even given to them.
  • UST: Once Wakatsuki really starts falling for the President she is unable to continue her normal skinship gropes or practice kisses, because them being meaningless hurts too much.
  • One Head Taller: Yuuko is short compared to Wakatsuki, which the latter noticed when they first met in the volume one special one-shot prequel chapter and even mistook her as a first year.
  • Unknown Rival: Wakatsuki considers Kanbe to be her rival for Yuuko, but Kanbe either doesn't notice or ignores the massive amount of hate Wakatsuki throws her way.
  • Weapon of Choice: For Yuuko, it's the ladle, for the slapsticks mention above.
  • What Do You Mean It's Not Heinous?: The cooking of grasshoppers is shown to be a truly terrible act, since they are still alive when you cook them. Note  The poping sound doesn't help either.
  • What Is This Thing You Call "Love"?: Downplayed. While Wakatsuki has had boyfriends before, none of them were as serious as Yuuko, which was the main reason why Wakatuski was having trouble kissing her once she realized her serious feelings towards her.
  • Will They or Won't They?: While averted at first, from chapter 5 onwards, Wakatsuki gets nervous when she try to tease Yuuko as before, as Wakatsuki realized her serious feelings towards Yuuko and she can't admit her true feelings towards Yuuko and vice versa.
  • You're Cute When You're Angry: Wakatsuki thinks Yuuko is this whenever the latter is mad at the former.


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