Have you felt it yet? A pleasant, fresh breeze is blowing. One that stimulates your senses and marries the new with the old. Throw open the doors to the outside and invite loved ones round for an easy hanami brunch to welcome the arrival of spring. We celebrate the start of this new season with centuries-old Asian traditions and new rituals.
The new Asia
In the past, people look mainly to the West, but nowadays we like to look at Asia, because that’s where it’s all happening. Although actually it always did. Ramen, summer rolls and kimchi: the latest food trends here, but in Japan, Vietnam and Korea every day features a trendy meal like that. We can’t get enough of kimonos and bamboo accessories, and we’re all looking for lovingly handcrafted items. With centuries of expertise and refinement, Asia is gaining ground again from the sober minimalism of our Scandinavian neighbours.
A hanami brunch
In Japan there’s an ancient custom whereby people enjoy the beauty of flowers - particularly cherry blossom, known as sakura - during an open-air picnic under a blossom-covered tree. They call it hanami and it takes place when spring begins. Because the cherry blossom announces the arrival of spring.
We’re going to create a Western version: an indoor/outdoor brunch with the doors wide open, and let’s pray for warming rays of sunshine. We place the cherry blossom, chrysanthemum, magnolias and other Asian beauties on the table and around us in beautiful wicker baskets.
Choice of cuisine
Luckily you don’t have to choose between the Old and New World today. Lay the table in Kinfolk style and combine it with a local and Asian pick and mix. You wake up with a satiny latte in which not cocoa, but real flower petals provide the sweet kick. Healthy sandwiches with fresh ingredients and edible flowers are not only a feast for the eye, but also very tasty. Scattered across the table you can find delectable (Asian) brunch snacks. Has the door into summer opened yet?
The second course, and the third, and the fourth…
Brunches can linger, so take your time and when you get peckish again enjoy a salad inspired by a poké bowl bursting with vitamins and colour. If you can’t handle the tricky wooden chopsticks, just relax and use your favourite cutlery. The dumplings are the hit of the day. These pastry-wrapped surprises with a hint of Asia will still any hunger pangs until well into the evening. Or wait, is there one left to fill a little gap? All this delicious food is naturally accompanied by a blossom cocktail - which can be virgin if you insist. Because you need to drink a toast during a spring brunch, don’t you?
The feeling of blossom on your body
How do you imagine a bath full of blossom would feel? It might feel like a sweet cloud, or a delicate caress. You want to hang on to that feeling today. Wrap yourself in a flowy outfit with a nude-coloured dress (or is it secretly a negligee?) and a (vintage) kimono. You’re completely part of the mood of the day. And don’t forget, it’s officially spring, so let your hair down and let your winter toes enjoy the fresh air. Isn’t that a relief after a season under layers of wool?
Spring feels like a holiday. No worries, complete enjoyment, a tidied home, a clear mind, and no worrying about the time. Here's an idea ... Let’s do it all again next week!