Apr 6

Sakura Spark Plug — n.

in Uncategorized

Sakura Spark Plug
An unusual species of the Prunus genus of trees and shrubs, the Sakura Spark Plug only blooms for a period of one to two weeks in late March/early April in Japan. When exposed repeatedly to this flower, humans tend to experience a spark of creative energy.

In light of the activities of this past week I think it only natural that I have sakura on the brain. I thought I’d share a few more sakura finds with you.

First, some fun sakura arare. Arare are little rice crackers which can be sweet or savory. These are sweet, with a little bit of a cinnamon and sugar taste to them.

Second, some sakura kasutera, aka Castella cake. This is a sponge cake, made of flour, eggs and sugar. This cake was introduced to Japan by the Portuguese in the 16th century. Traditionally the Japanese do not have ovens, so the improvised oven gives the cake the texture of a steamed cake. It is often given as a gift here in Japan.

Finally, some little sakura sugar cookies from 3分クッキング(3-minute Cooking) magazine.

As a result of all this hanami, I have been doing a bit of sketching, but not in the traditional pen & paper sense of the word. I’ve been “sketching” with other mediums like clay and cotton string. These sakura will soon become hair clips for some little girls I know:
As soon as I get the ends woven in on these babies, they will also become hair clips:
This item was created when I was trying to design a new flower, but it didn’t quite turn out how I had been seeing it in my head. I liked it, so rather than rip it out and start over, I just kept adding on to it and it became . . . something. Maybe a super fancy hoighty-toighty coaster?

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

billywest April 7, 2008 at 3:57 am

Love the Sakura bombardment. Did two hanamis in the last week, myself.


Bobbi April 7, 2008 at 7:13 am

Thanks for all of the details…adds new meaning to the five cherry blossoms inked on my foot. Need to see if I can find a cookie cutter…they would be adorable treats!


gleek April 7, 2008 at 7:25 am

oooh, i love all of your sakura crafting! and mmmmm, those goodies look really tasty :)


Melissa Hodgen April 7, 2008 at 12:00 pm

It’s all so beautiful! It must take so much effort to craft those little hair bows!
Once again, mmm, I love rice crackers but have never found sweet ones.


Heatherly April 7, 2008 at 3:44 pm

it all looks so fun! thanks so much for sharing all the pink!


Jean April 7, 2008 at 5:53 pm

Oooh, it’s all so pretty! Great job!


Arkerchi April 8, 2008 at 1:03 am

Blog hopped onto ur lovely blog to be greeted with such lovely blooms. Coincidentally, my second daughter is born on the same day and year as yours. And your gal is such a cutie pie too.


Cindy/Snid April 8, 2008 at 5:54 am

Everything in Japan seems really “cute”! Maybe this is why my teenaged daughter wants to live there so much…

Thanks for sharing the Sakura with us!


My Inner French Girl April 8, 2008 at 11:40 am

Dear LFM, you know, I love sakura, but perhaps because there weren’t that many in my old village in Kyushu so I’m not a huge fan. I do love the ume trees, though! We had tons of those around our valley and even had a huge Ume Matsuri every year.

Sigh. Good times.



Jackie April 9, 2008 at 7:00 am

So with all of these food items made w/sakura flavor, I am starting to wonder what it tastes like. Have you eaten a sakura blossom yet? :)
I saw your comment on my post – I forgot how expensive you said fruit were over there. Such a shame as I am sure you get some good tasting stuff in Japan.


Jess - The Domestic Vegan April 10, 2008 at 6:09 am

Sakura is beautiful! I’ve never even heard of those, but so glad you introducted them here! Gorgeous.

I LOVE those little [soon-to-be] hair clips, as well. Everything looks great! :)


Meria April 12, 2008 at 4:24 pm

its so cute!


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