I love to spend my free time in the evenings making cute Japanese bento box lunches which I keep in the fridge for lunch the next day. Bento lunches are hugely popular in Japan. They are home packed lunches that consist typically of rice, meat or fish and vegetables but it’s really up to you what you want to put in it. There are so many different varieties and possible food combinations that you can use.
Making bento lunches has become somewhat of an art with the food being used to create many different designs including cartoon characters such as Southpark and The Simpsons
People have even made bento lunches in honour of their idols. Check out the Bill Gates and Tiger Woods bento lunch designs below!
Bento boxes come in a huge array of colours, patterns and sizes and although typically rectangular shaped, they can also be found in the shape of animals, food, popular Japanese characters, etc. They are usually both microwave and dishwasher safe so it is easy to heat up your lunch and clean in the dishwasher afterwards. That’s assuming that you aren’t having dishwasher problems like the ones that I’m experiencing! I recently got a new dishwasher installed in my kitchen after months of deciding on what dishwasher to get but every time I’ve attempted to use it, my dishes aren’t clean! So if anyone has any good dishwasher troubleshooting pointers that they would like to share, please let me know!
There are many different bento accessories available such as picks, cups (to separate food), sauce bottles, rice moulds, vegetable cutters, seaweed punches, egg moulds, etc so that you can make cute and beautifully presented lunches. I just bought a simple white bento box from the Japanese homeware shop Muji on Oxford Street so I decided to use it to make a pig themed bento lunch. I used some cute pig shaped bento cups and pig bento picks and sauce bottle to decorate the bento. The bento contains kanpyo (sweet gourd) rolls, edamame, tomato slices, a hard boiled egg (shaped into a heart using a Japanese egg mould), curry potato croquette, chicken siu mai and a mochi filled with matcha green tea chocolate.
I also made another bento lunch consisting of mostly Japanese food. It contains boiled vegetables with spicy miso sauce, salmon furikake rice ball, fish cake balls with edamame, gyoza dumplings, kimchee fried rice, seaweed with sesame, cream corn croquette with Kewpie mayonaise and rambutan with pineapple for dessert. I used some cute flower bento picks that I got in Japan to accessorise the lunch.
Bento lunches are fairly simple to make although more time consuming than making sandwiches but hopefully this post has inspired you to try and make cute and tasty bento lunches for your loved ones!
If you liked this post, buy me a latte :-)