And while we're at it...what are your favorite bento staples?

instant tsukemono mixI mentioned a few bento-oriented staples to keep around in my previous post about maintaining variety in your bentos. I’ve just done a quick look around my kitchen, and here are the things I have stocked as staples that I bought or made with future bentos in mind, besides the things I’ve mentioned already.

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Getting started with bento making: Variety and saving money

A main reason many people like to, or want to, make bento lunches is for more variety, to save money, and to have some fun too. In my mind these aspects are quite interconnected.

There are three sources for filling your bento box. One is food that you make specifically for it, usually in the morning or perhaps the night before. The second is leftovers from other meals. The third is with stock or staple items (aka johbisai). The key to keeping a good variety in your bento meals is to use all three sources in in a smart way. continue reading...

Menu For Hope raffle results

The raffle results for Menu For Hope have been announced on Chez Pim. This year, $91,188.00 was raised. Wow. Thank you to everyone who bought raffle tickets, and to my fellow food bloggers who offered such a great variety of prizes!

The winner of the Just Bento prize of a bento maker’s dream package is Jennifer. (Check the list on Chez Pim to see if you are that Jennifer.) Jennifer, please get in touch with me at maki at makikoitoh dot com so we can discuss the where, how and what-goes-ins of your prize. My mom in Yokohama and I are poised and ready to fulfil your wishes.

Bento boxes of the week: Showa Retro vintage aluminum bento boxes

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Vintage/retro aluminum bento boxes from the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s are popular as room accessories as well as for bento. continue reading...

Getting started with bento making: Easy diet bento rules

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Bento box lunches are a great tool to use within an overall weight loss program. Just the fact that the box is quite compact makes portion control a lot easier. However, just packing your lunch in a cute box doesn’t automatically make it ‘diet food’ either. Here are some simple rules to follow to maximise the weight-loss benefits of your bento lunches. continue reading...

Getting started with bento making: Aim for balance

To ease into the whole concept of bento lunches, try practicing your balancing skills. continue reading...

Getting started with bento making

This is the start page for the Getting Started With Making Bento series for bento beginners.