One of the magnificent shrubs that has a brilliant colour and scent in early spring is Lilac. I made a sweet in a shape of Lilac flowers a little earlier, however, could not manage to write and edit it until now. Its flower comes out around at the beginning of May, so this post is basically one month late. I am sorry about that. Once the spring season starts everything in a garden grows so quickly. When you have some events and engagements it is very difficult to catch up and that is my excuse for delaying to publish this article.
Anyway, it’s the exactly same case as my recent post of Choisya that I wanted to make a sweet of Lilac every spring. It produces such a wonderful scent at the front of my garden and I really had to create it into a sweet. I have two types of Lilac in my garden. The one near my back door has white flowers and the other shrub gets purple flowers so it took a while to decide how I was going to produce the design of Lilac flowers and which colour I should use. I probably love white flower shrub more. Thit is because white flowers have the sweeter smell and the purple one (Syringa vulgaris) is quite vigorous. However, when one says ‘Lilac colour’ it means light purple colour so I had to go for the purple one this time.
Here is my Lilac sweet in Lilac colour.
The Food Market that I had suddenly decided to have a stall has ended three days ago. In the last three years since I started making Japanese sweet for Kimono shop I have heard that so many people saying ‘I looove Mochi!’. As I said in my posts in the past I had believed that Western people didn’t like Mochi and I was wondering ‘is it really true that these people love Mochi?’ So, my mission was finding out ‘How much do people looove Mochi’!
It is always hard work to prepare food for selling but Making Japanese sweets is very time consuming work and I wasn’t sure I how could be ready until the actual Market day. When I have a stall in a food market I normally prepare all kinds of Japanese sweets but this time I could concentrate on creating different flavours for Mochi and that was a good thing for me.
‘Mochi Heaven’ Stall in a Food Market
These sweets in the photo were the main line-ups on my stall.
Choisya ternata is the shrub which flowers the earliest every spring in my garden. It gets numerous number of tiny white flowers which have marvellous orange blossom like scent. No wonder it’s called Mexican Orange Blossom as the common name. Every spring when I see and smell the flowers I wanted to make ‘Wagashi’ Japanese Sweet of Choisya as the design, however, the timing of their flowering season is somehow always wrong for me and before I decided what kind of design I should make, the flowers were. This spring, I finally managed making one design before all the flowers’ disappeared, however, the problem this year was that I did not have time to write my article about the sweet until now.
So, this is the Choisya sweet I finally managed to make.
It is so great that my ‘Wagashi’ Japanese Sweet Making Workshop is becoming almost a monthly event. This time it was at a new venue that was in an interior shop with a beautifully setting located in a quiet courtyard in North London.
Wagashi Making Workshop (May/19)
I had five participants who were willing to join me for this workshop. They are three female and two male, two of which were Japanese. I was very pleased to have this wonderfully mixed group of people.
When you make a Japanese sweet in a flower shape or some decorative pattern ‘Nerikiri’ sweet is the most suitable material. It has a soft marzipan like texture and you can colour or flavour it into anything you like. On the other hand ‘Mochi’ type sweet is more for wrapping up a filling so it’s used for something like a ‘Daifuku’ kind of sweet.
That is why I wanted to try making a flower with Mochi type sweet. It was just a quick experiment so this is not meant to be a finalised precise work but as the spring season is coming I tried making a flower with a Mochi kind of sweet.
So this is the result of my little experiment. I don’t know whether it is clearly seen but it’s supposed to be a Tulip flower made with a Mochi type sweet. I had the image of a pure white colour Tulip with a big green leaf. I wanted to create it as a Japanese sweet.
How was your Easter? It was very nice that we had great weather for this Bank Holiday weekend. About one week before Easter time six people gathered in a Tea shop in Soho London and my Workshop in April finished successfully. It’s great the daytime is becoming longer now and when we started the Workshop at 7pm the outside is still bright.
Wagashi Making Workshop (April/19)
This time all the participants had tasted my sweets before and we had two workshop repeaters amongst them.
Look how smiley everybody in the workshop is. Of course they looked very serious when they had to concentrate on making the shape of the sweet but quite often we all went in bursting a laughter! It was such a relaxed great atmosphere. It’s great to see everyone was enjoying the time being there.
I am so pleased that although the season started a little earlier this year Sakura Cherry blossom is still flowering well. I can see one Cherry tree in my garden in full bloom right at the moment. Some petals started falling down with a breeze but it is creating a beautiful ‘Fuzei’ (pleasantly aesthetic) moment to your mind too. On top of the privilege of enjoying the view of next door’s Cherry blossom, this tree also produces tasty cherry fruit. I hope it will be a great summer for cherries.
So we are in Cherry blossom time. As a Japanese sweet creator I have made several Sakura sweets this spring and this one is the first one I created.
I made this design for a Tea specialty shop in London.
Two weeks ago I hold a ‘Wagashi’ Japanese Sweet Making Workshop. It was at a Tea specialty shop in Soho London and the workshop was combined with a Japanese Tea tasting session. This time we had six participants and they were composed of two friends with a daughter, a couple and a French lady. They all had been to Japan or lived there before so everyone knew what we were going to create so I could start the class very smoothly.
Wagashi Making Workshop (03/2018)
These are the Wagashi sweets I planned to make together with the participants.
Summertime has started in the UK. We lost one hour last sunday but we have longer daylight now. That is great!
When I was searching for a good design for ‘Wagashi’ Making Workshop in Springtime, this sweet was born. What I needed was something easy to make, visually pretty and also something represents this season well.
Spring Field – Full of Spring
I was imagining a vast field which was covered with lots of wild plants bursting out their flowers. In that kind of pretty field we surely have butterflies too. Yes, it’s true I might have topped it up with a little too many pieces. Maybe it’s not that suitable for a workshop but I believe that it certainly looks very spring-like.
Have a wonderful spring moment of yours!🌺🌸🌷🌼
Today, the 17th of March is St. Patrick’s Day. Saint Patrick was the foremost patron saint of Ireland and his death on this date is traditionally a festival day for the Irish community.
The famous symbol of Ireland is a Shamrock so lots of people wear something green on them. I have seen places where people even coloured the river green for this day (which I’m a little against the idea). However, do you really know what a shamrock looks like? I made two types of Japanese sweets for this St. Patrick’s Day that look quite similar but slightly different. So, tell me which one you think is a Shamrock.