Fiction-Food Café

November 1, 2017

Mary & The Witch's Flower Garden Sand Café Replica Sandwich Plate

          "Mary and the Witch's Flower" is a beautiful animated film that opened in Japan on July 8, 2017 from the new Japanese animation studio Studio Ponoc. "Ponoc" is a Serbo-Croatian word that means "midnight", chosen to symbolize the beginning of a new day. Because of Studio Ghibli's hiatus/decrease in operations in recent years, and because of a need/desire for animation work, many of the studio's employees have found a place at Studio Ponoc, founded by Ghibli producer Yoshiaki Nishimura. "Mary and the Witch's Flower" is Ponoc's first feature film and was directed by Hiromasa Yonebayashi ("The Secret World of Arrietty", "When Marnie Was There") with a screenplay by Riko Sakaguchi ("The Tale of Princess Kaguya") and music composed by Takatsugu Muramatsu ("When Marnie Was There"). The film is an adaptation of a British children' fantasy novel published in 1971 titled The Little Broomstick by Mary Stewart.

♥ Hurrah! hurray! GKids has announced that they have acquired the US distribution rights to the film and have a projected release for Winter 2018!
You can actually get tickets now for a special January 18, 2018 screening! ♥

(Sandwich from the Garden Sand Café. Official photo.)
          On August 4, 2017 a special limited-time café opened in Japan themed around "Mary and the Witch's Flower" called "Garden Sand Café". It features salads, sandwiches, special drinks, and more food inspired by the film. This sandwich I've created here is a replica based on photos shared by the café online. I wish to goodness that I could go to Japan and experience this beautiful little café for myself (I want to experience ALL of the amazing short-time themed cafés in Japan!), but I know for myself, and for many of you, that's just not possible because we live all over the world! So this recreation is my celebration of the film and this wonderful little café that I can only see photos of and daydream about. :)

Note: Because I'm only going off of pictures, the dish below (sandwiches, salad, cookie, & broom) is composed of my guess at the ingredients. In a few of the photos online one of the sandwiches is shown with slightly different ingredients, such as the meat. Those differences are mentioned below.
Also, since you only need one cookie (the black cat) I simply used a segment of pre-made sugar cookie dough and added a little bit of flour, and then a couple drops of black food color gel. I talk about this below.

Mary & The Witch's Flower Garden Sand Café Sandwich Plate (Replica)

Serve the sandwiches cut, wrapped in deli or wax paper, in the center of the salad. Place the broom next to the sandwiches, & the cat cookie behind.

Black Cat Cookie
2 Tbsp. Pre-made Sugar Cookie Dough (or 2 Segments of Pull-Apart Pillsbury Sugar Cookie Dough)
~1/2 Tbsp. Flour
Black Gel Food Coloring

Heat oven to 350ºF. Line a tray with Silpat or parchment. Work the flour evenly into the dough, and then work in enough gel coloring to get a nice dark grey (it doesn't have to be uber black. Try 2 drops to start off).

Roll the dough on a lightly floured surface to about 1/8" thick. Place a pre-drawn, sitting cat template on top (about 3 1/2" tall). Using a small sharp knife or clean x-acto, cut around the template & remove the excess dough.

Gently place the cutout on the tray* & bake for about 5 minutes. Remove & let sit for a minute or two to cool & stiffen before transferring to a cooling rack.

*If the dough has gotten very soft, chill the unbaked cat cutout in the freezer for about 10 minutes before putting it in the oven to bake.

Edible Broom
Several Thin Spaghetti Noodles
1/2 Tbsp Butter
1/2 tsp. Sugar
Biscuit Stick (such as Pringles Stix or Pretz)

Melt the butter in a small pan on medium-low heat. Break the noodles into about 3" long pieces & place in the pan. Add the sugar & toss to coat. Cook until the noodles are just beginning to golden.

Remove from heat & place the noodles on a plate. Line them up into a bundle (like the brush of a broom) & let cool for a minute.

Cut a strip of wax paper about 1/2" wide & 3" long. Place the noodle bundle over the biscuit stick. Wrap the paper strip around it & secure with a circling of clear tape.

Sandwich w/ Red Cabbage & Chicken Spread or Turkey
Pumpernickel Bread Slices
Thick Tomato Slices
Shredded Red Cabbage (you can use raw, or the slaw recipe below)
Chicken Spread (store bought or homemade) OR Thick Sliced Deli Turkey (about 1/2" thick)

Red Cabbage Slaw
1 Packed Cup of Thinly Sliced Red Cabbage
1/4 Cup Olive Oil
1/2 tsp. Fine Sea Salt
1 Tbsp. Lemon Juice
1 tsp. Minced Garlic

Combine the oil, salt, lemon juice, & garlic in a small jar. Close the lid & shake vigorously to combine.
Put the sliced cabbage into an airtight container & pour the liquid over it. Close the container & shake to coat. Chill in the fridge for a few hours.

Chicken Spread
1 Cup Cooked Chicken
2 Tbsp. Cream Cheese
1 Tbsp. Mayonnaise

Chop the chicken into fine shreds. Combine with the other ingredients & mash with a fork until thoroughly mixed.

Egg & Carrot Sandwich
Pumpernickel Bread Slices
Egg Salad (below)
Shredded Carrots

Egg Salad
3 Hardboiled Eggs
2 tsp. Mayonnaise
1 tsp. Miracle Whip
Salt & Pepper to taste

Peel & chop the eggs & then put them in a bowl with the other ingredients. Mash all together with a fork until combined but still a bit chunky.

Mixed Leafy Greens
Fresh Dill Sprigs
Cherry Tomatoes
Small Edible Flowers (such as pansies, violets, zucchini blossoms. I didn't have any at the time I made this though.)
Salad Dressing of your choice

Toss the greens & dill & lay on a platter in a ring (room in the center for the sandwiches, or stand the cut sandwiches up first). Place cherry tomatoes & blueberries, & edible flowers if you can find them, all around the salad. Serve the dressing on the side.

1 comment:

  1. Hurrah! hurray! Marie and the witch's flower!!... I saw it's trailer a while back but got so caught up that I almost forgot about it!! BTW lovely sandwich!!


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