We're not sure if this is ridiculous or amazing: an edible bouquet made of sushi.
This alternative to a bunch of flowers – which, let's face it, you can't eat – has been devised by Japanese food brand Yutaka for Mother's Day (March 26th) but we can think of a number of occasions where it would work in place of a bouquet (with, perhaps, the exception of a funeral).
Fill at least three sushi cones – called temaki in Japanese – with avocado, wasabi, red pepper or whatever you like and decorate with lettuce, spiralised vegetables and flowers pressed from tofu or carrots using pretty food cutters.
Yutaka notes that the nori gets a bit flimsy if made too far in advance, so prepare to arrange it just before handing it to the lucky recipient.
500g Yutaka Sushi Rice
6tbs Yutaka Rice Vinegar
7-9 Yutaka Nori sheets
Cocktail sticks for the flowers
1 large carrot
1 large beetroot
1 large courgette
Rosso or salad bowl lettuce leaves
Choose your favourite sushi fillings e.g. avocado, cucumber, smoked salmon, crab sticks as well as a dab of Yutaka Wasabi.
Rinse 500g sushi rice in a bowl of water, drain and repeat at least 4 times then drain rice with a sieve. Put 660ml water and the washed rice into a saucepan. Bring to the boil and simmer for 10 minutes with the lid on. Turn off the heat and leave to stand for 25-30 mins without opening the lid.
Mix the rice vinegar, sugar and salt together and fold into the cooked sushi rice after it has cooled down.
Spiralise 1/2 carrot and thinly slice the other half – using flower cookie cutters, cut out shapes in various sizes and repeat same with the beetroot and the courgette.
Using Yutaka Tofu, slice off about 3 thin pieces and repeat flower cutter process.
To make up the bouquet
Roll a nori sheet into the shape of a cone and fill with the sushi rice. Make a well in the centre with your finger and add your fillings, then cover over with rice so they are hidden.
Top with one of the spiralized vegetables and place a flower of your choice on top (secured with a cocktail stick). Repeat process with a new cone and with another vegetable until you have three cones featuring spiralized veggies.
With the remaining nori sheets, make additional cones, add rice plus fillings and tuck in a small lettuce leaf or three depending on their size and top with 3 flowers (again secured with a cocktail stick).
The bouquet can then be wrapped in tissue paper and cellophane and tied up with ribbon.