Fruit Sandwich is literally a sandwich with an assortment of fruits. Thinly sliced Japanese soft white bread goes very well with the filling of fresh fruit and whipped cream. This is not an everyday Japanese food, but people like to eat it from time to time.
Fruit is relatively cheap in the US and available year round in any grocery store, but a lot of the time the quality is hit and miss. In Japan, in addition to grocery stores, there are specialty fruit shops where they sell high quality and very expensive fruits, mostly for gifts (I want to think). You may have heard about watermelon or cherries that cost hundreds of dollars. The fruits from those shops in Japan are top notch quality and taste, you just have to pay for it. For example, there was a TV program showing how some Japanese apple farmers were turning apples growing on the orchard trees one by one, by hand, so that every apple gets enough sunlight all the way around. That is the kind of fruits that make it to these shops. Some of those fruit stores also have fruit parlors where people can enjoy fruit dishes in which their fancy produce is used, and the fruit sandwich is the one of the most loved items there. It is not a meal type of food, more like a dessert, but not exactly. It is a decadent snack of its own category.
If there are not fancy fruit stores near you (they tend to be only in the big cities in Japan) or you are outside Japan, you can of course make a Fruit Sandwich at home. It is not hard to make, but you just have to choose your bread and kinds of fruit a little carefully. For the bread, Shoku Pan bread (Japanese white square bread) works the best. Harder artisan-type bread isn’t right because of its texture. A lot of fruits are good to use for this dish, but the ones that are softer are more suitable than crunchy ones when sandwiching with whipped cream. Also fruit that is too wet such as citrus may not work well because it may make the bread too soggy. We used strawberries, peaches and kiwis, but also bananas and melons are good. The presentation of the dish is important too. You have to place the fruit on the bread thinking how the fruit will appear when the sandwich is cut. You want to show all the colorful fruit. If you have never had a Japanese Fruit Sandwich, try it. It is not an Anko or Matcha kind of Japanese flavor but still interestingly Japanese.
- 1 cup (240ml) heavy cream
- 3 Tbsp sugar
- 4 thin slices Shokupan Bread
- Put heavy cream and sugar in a bowl of an electric mixer and whip until forming hard peaks.
- Slice Shokupan Bread thinly (less than 1/2"). Slice all the fruits into 1/2" thick pieces.
- Spread some whipped cream on one side of two slices of bread (not too thin, but not too thick). Place fruits on the two slices of bread. Put one layer of sliced fruits over cream on the bread. Spread some more cream over fruits. Place another slice of bread on top of the cream.
- Wrap the sandwiches with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1-2 hours.
- Remove the plastic. Cut crusts out and cut the sandwich into 4 pieces diagonally to make triangle shapes.