I remember at the start of the year I wrote a blog about my New Year’s Resolutions. Sadly, most of the things on that list have passed by with me missing out. However one of them was to make more bento lunch boxes, I have slowly been working at that. Here though is the journey of my bento lunch progression thus far!
We’ll start off with how I got into making bento lunch boxes in the first place. In japan bento lunch boxes are what people take for lunch. Often mother’s for the children. It’s not just Japan though that take warm food in containers, when I lived in Cambodia and Vietnam I would carry a metal lunch box often filled with rice and meat stews. I have a little sister, she’s 7 yeas younger than me though, and I don’t see her very often. I often worry that because we live far away I don’t get to be as good a big sister to her as I should. Whenever I get time off, I’ll go stay with her and I’ll wake up early in the morning to make a great lunch box for her. She normally buys her lunch at school, and so I thought it would be a better idea because then I could give her something healthy and home-made and she can show it off to her friends as well. Here are some photos from the last batch I made (terrible photo quality) along with my own diary entry I made at the time.
I actually made vertical layers but you can’t really tell. Rice, ham and eggs. Also seaweed and fish floss. A whole egg is in there, and the half with the yolk has a smiley face on it. Tomatoes and cucumber and she also takes with her a pot of teriyaki sauce (which is requested). Finally mini-cheddars, plum and a yoghurt. I think she also plans on buying strawberry milk…
Too tired this morning to really do anything. Blehehehe. So for Thursday Baby gets coconut and ham rice inside an omelette. Which has a ketchup heart on it. Because i heart her. Tomatoes because she hearts them. Some seafood sticks at the bottom, and the teriyaki sauce because she reaaaaallllyyy wanted it today. And asked for it to be put in the box because she forgets otherwise. Bah. Mini cheddars, kitkat, plum and yoghurt. As always. Now I’m going back to sleep because I’m in a bad mood because I woke up at 6am to cook this in time for her to take to school.
Now we progress to when I didn’t have to wake up really early and fit lunch into a tiny box. This following box is a picnic I made for my best friend’s birthday. Mahogany devilled eggs. Boiled Rice. Salad with hazelnut vinaigrette. Vietnamese beef skewers. Soft-shelled crab in breadcrumbs. Stir Fried mushrooms. Cherry tomatoes wrapped in bacon. DungPo Pork. Chicken dumplings.
Home made meatballs, tamago slices (rolled egg omelettes) , pineapple pieces and rice balls.
This was my go at Japanese curry. I used curry from a packet you can get at Japanese food stores, and the curry itself has eggplant, sweet potato and mushroom. It was a rare veggie meal! Served with rice and cucumbers!
My go at a deluxe sushi and sashimi bento lunch box set! I went a bit crazy on the fish, with salmon, tuna, seabass, scallop and yellow tail. The rolls have tobiki roe and avocado and some have cucumber. There’s more tamgo which I got much better at making and there’s rice with more tobiko on top!
Finally we have my latest creation which was made for someone who really loves retro gaming. Special fried rice with pomegranate and vietnamese pulled pork. The Mario inspired flowers are made from sweet corn, spring onion and cheese, the pipes are made from green beans wrapped in cured ham. Bomber man is made from blue berries, mozzarella cheese, normal cheese and honey smoked ham.
I think you can really see my improvement, not only with the visuals but also the recipes. I hope that I’ll be able to make many more bento lunch boxes this year and I’m trying to think up of a halloween inspired one right now!