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Bento Boxes

Last post Mon, Feb 13 2012 10:07 PM by cheapChic. 19 replies.
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  • Fri, Jan 27 2012 5:47 PM

    • Brandy
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    Bento Boxes

    BB and I were discussing bento boxes in another post recently. I like the concept but never had a real need for them so I have only admired everyone else's. My daughter and I were talking about spring changes in our home and lives today. We want to take a lunch to the park when we go for our homeschool meeting. It's a nice change of pace to be outside eating. It's certainly cheaper to pack a lunch than buy something out. So I mentioned this concept to her as one idea for taking lunch along.

    My understanding is that the traditional bento box consists of rice, fish or meat, and a vegetable. Looking at these things with my little one, I see in American sites, a focus on selecting proteins, fruits,vegetables, grains and dairy with using the containers to help with portion sizes. That's an interesting way to meal plan and pack a healthy lunch.

    How do you approach making choices for yours? What foods are you putting into them.

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • Fri, Jan 27 2012 7:34 PM In reply to

    Re: Bento Boxes

     I used to bento a *lot*, both for us and for my clients. I don't do much currently, but there was nothing I wouldn't put into them. Some things work particularly well if you're going for artistry (grapes or edamame on skewers, cheese in shapes, colored rices, hard boiled eggs pressed into shapes, etc.); but, really, it's all about how creative you can get with a small space.

    If you're really bored, you can see some of my bentos (most of these are old, I should probably have photographed some of the ones I was doing for my client:s before they moved) http://www.flickr.com/photos/falconinburgundy/tags/bento/ . I'd love to see some photos of other people's, too. There is, or once was, a livejournal community for bento that was pretty darn awesome. And, there's some spectacula stuff on flickr, too. There's one woman, who I used to have bookmarked, that does just crazy beautiful bentos, but I can't find her now. I'll link her for inspiration if I can find her again!

    "This isn't life in the fast lane, it's life in oncomming traffic." -Terry Pratchett

    Blog: www.shwankie.net
    Twitter: EclecticEdibles
  • Fri, Jan 27 2012 8:08 PM In reply to

    • grame
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    Re: Bento Boxes

     This is something that I had never heard of, so I've checked into some other sites.  I have a thing about a 'pretty' meal as I seem to be better satisfied.  Since GD is gone for the weekend, Mom and I were going to the next town which is much larger and wanted to do something a little different.  First we are going to the organic restaurant for breakfast, then a trip to the Japanese market/store in search of a bento box.  This sounds like a great way to have a visually appealing & health lunch.  Thanks for piquing my interest!   Now I am going in search of the other thread with BB's comments.

    I declare to you that woman must not depend upon the protection of man, but must be taught to protect herself, and there I take my stand. ~Susan B. Anthony
  • Fri, Jan 27 2012 8:40 PM In reply to

    • Brandy
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    Re: Bento Boxes

    Falconinburgundy:
    If you're really bored, you can see some of my bentos (most of these are old

    I don't remember which of you shared what in old discussions about this but I followed them. I did a few things here and there that I saw and liked from all the ideas shared but never got really into.

    I don't see us getting too deep into elaborate spreads. I do like the idea of compartments or containers with fresh and homecooked foods. This might be a great way for the little one and I to enjoy the different foods we like such as stir fries, roast veggies, raw fruit sides and different rice dishes without worrying what to feed our guys.

    I would like to do a few of the things I have tried before or have seen done like the egg mold designs or faces on bread. This would be a fun kitchen activity for the little one.

    The group we meet with at the park has gotten into the habit of bringing lunch there. We usually eat at home then go but the smell of their take out gets me hungry.  It was fun today to eat with them but peanut butter sandwhiches will get old. I think this may be an enjoyable solution.

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • Fri, Jan 27 2012 8:44 PM In reply to

    • grame
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    Re: Bento Boxes

     falconinburgandy - drooled over the pictures, looks sooo good.

    I declare to you that woman must not depend upon the protection of man, but must be taught to protect herself, and there I take my stand. ~Susan B. Anthony
  • Fri, Jan 27 2012 8:46 PM In reply to

    • Brandy
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    Re: Bento Boxes

    grame:
    drooled over the pictures

    LOL! The arrangement of foods is appealing, isn't it? Makes me want to eat.

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • Fri, Jan 27 2012 8:53 PM In reply to

    Re: Bento Boxes

     Thanks! It's also a really great way to use up small amounts of leftovers--a few tablesppons of rice or stir fry, those last couple crackers or grapes, etc.

    "This isn't life in the fast lane, it's life in oncomming traffic." -Terry Pratchett

    Blog: www.shwankie.net
    Twitter: EclecticEdibles
  • Fri, Jan 27 2012 9:16 PM In reply to

    • Brandy
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    Re: Bento Boxes

    Falconinburgundy:
    a few tablesppons of rice or stir fry, those last couple crackers or grapes, etc.

    That's true. Small amounts or light fare is better for my daughter before she runs off to the playground. When we get home, she has a snack. Taking a hard look at the small amounts is a great idea.

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • Fri, Jan 27 2012 9:45 PM In reply to

    • Helene
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    • Joined on Mon, Aug 24 2009
    • Posts 721

    Re: Bento Boxes

    Pictures and recipes:

    http://www.cookingcute.com/gallery.htm

    For decorating tips:

    http://justbento.com/handbook/bento-decoration-techniques

     

     I use one lunchbox with three compartments - all the parts close with the same lid. I find it easier than all the little separate bento boxes, however neatly packed they are. I fill it with leftovers, but the correct way of making bento would be to cook several bento dishes and then assemble different lunches from the pre-made items. I never come around to make the decorations but I'd love to make one or two for a kid's birthday party. 

  • Fri, Jan 27 2012 10:08 PM In reply to

    • Brandy
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    • Joined on Wed, Mar 28 2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
    • Posts 25,145

    Re: Bento Boxes

    Helene:
    http://www.cookingcute.com/gallery.htm

    The first one has a meal using a shaped cup. Now that's a great idea. That would be easier than some of the things I have seen and still make a fun lunch for my daughter.

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



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