Thursday, January 7, 2010

When Is A Tomato A Rose?

My first tomato rose!!!

Really had to ponder whether or not to do a post about carving veggies.

Didn't seem hardly newsworthy--but it was a part of my day after a chock full morning of teaching. So if I had to do it, you have to read about it.

And besides, it was fun.

Thais are very big on carving fruits and vegetables. It is an exacting art form that we in the Western world probably lack the patience to even attempt--unless we're going for Top Chef of The Year. Food carving classes are extremely popular in Thai schools and people come here from all over the world to learn how to do it.

Actually, it's kind of a meditative experience to create art from food. (But since it's done with extremely sharp cutlery, you don't want to drift off too far.)

First, we made onion flowers. Then tomato roses. Followed by carrot leaves and a basket carved from a cucumber and filed with scallion flowers. (Did you know that if you soak a perfectly trimmed scallion in ice water, it will curl up into the cutest little curlicue flowers ever? No, I didn't think you knew that.)

If all this makes your heart beat a little faster, you need to run out and buy the sharpest little knife you can find and a great big bushel basket of fresh produce.

Be prepared to spend years getting your tomato roses perfect.

Helpless veggie victims awaiting the knife.

My first onion flowers. (Supposed to be lotus flowers.)

Jack peeling a tomato. Showing us how it's done.

Will you just look at those lovely carrot leaves?

Our masterpieces lined up to be admired.

I think I'm ready for Master Chef.


  1. I knew they would curl!!! I knew, I knew!
    Love those carrot leaves, stupendous! Its all beautiful:)

  2. We are greatly impressed! You are quite the artist! Next time we get together Eddie can cook the fish and you can teach me how to beautify the veggies and fry the bananas. Aren't you glad you didn't know how to do this when you were cooking for a house full of kids?

    And, no you aren't going to be reading this in your old age're going to write a book about it, remember? Or be off on another adventure 'bout floating the Amazon, or ...feeding penguins in the Antarctic, or.....

  3. Pam, Looks too good to eat !! Amazing what you can do with a knife. Why is Jack wearing a Dept. City of New York shirt ? That's a far way from Trang ! Also, you did a great job ! Barb

  4. What a wonderful way to eat vegetables! Thanks for all the fabulous insight of a country most of us know little about... Judy

  5. I probably won't try that... ever. :) But definitely cool to look at.

    Fried bananas are delicious!

  6. Pam, Your veggies almost look too good to eat !!! Isn't it amazing what you can do with a knife ? Why is Jack wearing a Dept. City of New York shirt ? You did a great job! Next, you can try carving fruit, I bet that would be challenging too !!! Be Safe! Barb

  7. Answer to Barb: Don't know why he wore that shirt! But there are lots of American logo-type shirts for sale here in the market stalls! Kinda funny actually!

    To S & E: Have already done the Amazon, thank you very much. My allergies went crazy there! Penguins? Well, okay, maybe...

  8. I'll be expecting these with the next salmon dinner at the Banyans! :)

    Looks like a lot of delicate people eat them when served like this?