Red for Food—A Work of Art

Art for the eyes at Miyashin, Wajima (Also see post Miyashin—A Feast for the Eyes 11/02/2016).
Burning bright
This is an iconic example of how red true lacquer can set off food.  Is it red, is it vermillion or scarlet?  It is not really a red that can be found in other cultures, except perhaps in China.

The delicacy and colour of the bowl turns a piece of tofu, some shreds of crab, shrimps, a mushroom and a twist of a boiled strip of a green stem, which I cannot identify, into a work of art, helped a good deal by an artful chef.

The black lacquer table on which the bowls stands, is flecked with mother-of-pearl providing a universe for this culinary masterpiece to inhabit.  A real feast for the eyes.

A fishmonger’s stall in a market in Valeta, Malta, 1975
The only other place in the world I have seen the colour red associated with food is in Malta, a small cluster of jewel-like islands in the Mediterranean.  But it was not cooked food.  Nevertheless, I can only suppose that the red bowls and counter were used to make the fish look more appetising.  The art of cooking comes later.

Bill Tingey Photo © Copyright

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