Black Star Pastry’s Ari-Gateaux

Sat 18th June, 2022
Black Star Pastry stores in The Galeries and Chadstone
Price: $15
The innovative dessert shop has created a dainty sushi platter for National Sushi Day – but not everything is as it seems. Is this a savoury seafood affair, or another sweet in disguise?

Say arigatou to the Ari-Gateaux, the latest limited edition creation by Black Star Pastry – the name is a play on the Japanese word for hello, and gateaux, French for cake.

"This sushi cake was developed for the Melbourne Food & Wine Festival as an exclusive for their Japanese-inspired convenience store at the Queen Vic Market," Black Star's group head pastry chef Arnaud Vodounou tells Broadsheet. "We wanted to create something that was playful, unexpected, and fun; given the theme we challenged ourselves to recreate a sushi platter, made from cake."

It’s a simple platter of two large maki roll slices, a torched nigiri and some classic condiments (pickled ginger, wasabi and soy sauce in the plastic fish container). If it seems like a very random offering for a dessert shop, you’re right.

Because when it comes to Black Star, everything is cake. Even sushi. The Ari-Gateaux is made with separate dessert elements: the pear roll is French sponge, chestnut cream, a butterscotch biscuit base and pears poached in red wine and Choya plum wine liqueur; the other roll is grapefruit-flavoured, with lemongrass cream, grapefruit jelly, julienned rockmelon, pomegranate jelly and dragonfruit.

Instead of aburi nigiri, you get torched rockmelon on a sponge roll filled with coconut cream and pomegranate jelly, while the soy sauce pipette is actually filled with dark pomegranate molasses and yuzu sauce. The wasabi is really matcha white chocolate, while pickled apple slices play the role of pickled ginger.

"As sushi is a roll, we decided to adapt a Swiss Roll, which is made using sponge cake. So, each of the cakes has that sponge foundation," says Vodounou. "The next step was to mimic the colour of savoury sushi ingredients, so to do that we had to find and use visually similar cake ingredients. Diced tuna was substituted with pomegranate; for the salmon nigiri we used julienned, torched rockmelon on top; cucumber was substituted with apple and so on.

"The real fun was with the condiments. The soy sauce is pomegranate molasses with yuzu, which is a dark brown colour, while the wasabi is matcha and white chocolate. It really toys with your senses to bite into something visually familiar and get an entirely different flavour to what you’re expecting."

Pre-orders have already sold out, but don’t worry – there’ll be 20 available at The Galeries in Sydney and 25 available at Chadstone in Melbourne on Saturday June 18 for walk-ins. It costs $15 per serve.