What is it?
Fuki no tō is a spring mountain vegetable (sansai). They are the buds of the Fuki plant and are an early spring delicacy.
How can it be eaten?
The most familiar way to serve fuki-no tō is as tempura as the oil softens the bitterness of the vegetable. The sprouts are prepared by removing the outer layer and tough part of the base; then the remaining outer layers are slowly opened up to form a 'flower' as shown. The vegetable is then dipped into the tempura batter by holding the base of the sprout in order to retain its shape, before frying.
They can also be made into fuki-miso paste. To make this, simply sautée finely chopped butterbur sprouts and then mix in some miso paste. The fuki-miso paste is then eaten thinly spread over a hot bowl of rice.
Fuki no tō may also be eaten after boiling for around five minutes as this process removes the harsh taste of the vegetable. The sprouts can then be enjoyed with soy sauce and bonito flakes or with just mayonnaise. For a more Western-style taste, the butterbur sprouts can be sautéed in olive oil and garlic before adding a sprinkle of salt.