Food

Salad cakes with tofu frosting are the latest Japanese food craze

A strange new food trend has emerged in Japan. This is not news in itself from a place that has been known to dabble in whale meat, horse and fish sperm for culinary enjoyment. Vegetarians will be pleased to know, however, that this one is on the menu for them as well.

Food stylist Misuki Moriyasu has been rolling out “vegedeco salads” or salad cakes since 2016 in Nagoya and so far they have been selling like hot salady cakes. Made completely from vegetables and soy and tofu products, the aesthetic and feel of eating a cake can now be enjoyed alongside the health benefits of, well, not eating a cake.

The concept has clicked with patrons in their 30s who are looking for healthier dietary choices. The cakes have also been popular with families looking for nourishing food choices that also keep the kids interested.

Coming in at around 55 percent of the calories as an un-iced slice of chocolate cake, a slice of salad cake can remove the ‘guilty’ from a guilty pleasure.

The cakes come in a variety of flavours that are not conventionally seen on the dessert menu. For example, the ‘Mint Green’ comes with “four kinds of fresh vegetables on a mille-feuille of a Daizu flour sponge cake with basil tofu cream and topped with olives and juniper berries”

Moriyasu creates features such as icing and sponge using soy flour and tofu to create the cake resemblance and hold the vegetables together. The colour is added using natural vegetable dyes.

You can purchase a bit of cake on its own or combo your meal and get the cake with a slice of gluten free bread and a cup of tea.

Vegedeco is also rolling out cooking classes for wannabe salad cake bakers, a delivery service and an upcoming line of salad cookies.

Hopefully, Moriyasu is ready for the painful avalanche of “have your cake and eat it too” banter that she will no doubt receive as her operation moves forward.