Will had "game day" with some of his friends, and asked me if I would make something for him to take. But since he has been itching to do more in the kitchen, I offered instead to help him make something. We decided on these sushi stacks because they are easy, attractive, hearty, sturdy, unique, and of course, delicious! Plus, he'd just watched me make them the week before, so already had a bit of an idea how it would all come together.
When it came time for the garnish of nori, I said "this part is up to you." He held the crispy sheet of seaweed for a few moments, gently waving it back and forth to get a sense of it's texture. He examined the sheet of rice cake, sizing up its shape and dimensions. Then, he set it down and wandered off to his computer in the office, in what I unfairly characterized as his "typical start-a-project-then-leave-it-for-Lamb-to-clean-up" fashion.
When I next heard him clomp down the basement stairs, followed by the whirr of his laser powering on, I should not have been surprised. We have frequently experimented with - shall we say "non-traditional substrates" - in the 30-watt CO2 laser he uses for his beer tap and slate sign engraving business. We take "playing with your food" to an entirely new realm, cutting out pumpkin shapes from slices of cheddar cheese, engraving secret messages into pecans, and decorating egg shells for Easter.
When I made the sushi stacks, I took a rectangle of nori and used kitchen shears to snip it into 1/4" wide strips. In handing that garnishing task over to aesthetically-minded Will, I expected him to get creative by cutting triangles. Instead, he cleverly incorporated the game-day theme into the snack with to-scale seaweed dice, cut from nori by the laser.
A couple of weeks later, Will decided to make some more activity-specific nori, for "movie night"...