not japanese

A modern French garden bento

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A guest post by Fossettes of Bentolunchbox, one of the most popular French bento blogs! continue reading...

Bento Sized Mini Quiches

This is a guest post by jokergirl, who blogs about vegetarian and pescetarian bentos at WereRabbits.

“Go ahead, bake my quiche.”
Queen Magrat, Lords and Ladies

As a pescetarian leaning heavily towards full-time vegetarianism, finding the right protein for my bento is often a strain. I’m not a fan of soy meat replacements to boot, so often I look to eggs as a handy protein packet to put in my bento. Luckily, scientists now say that eggs are good for you again, so I’m not worried about cholesterol.

These mini-quiches are a tasty and healthy freezer staple for those times when boiling an egg or making tamagoyaki seems like too much effort. Each one of them contains about 1-2 tablespoons of egg-vegetable mixture, equivalent to about half an egg (plus a bit of milk).

Here are a few bentos I have used them in:

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Healthy Egg Sandwich Breakfast Bento

This is a guest post by Diana, who blogs about her healthy eating ideas at Soap and Chocolate.

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Not everyone eats breakfast as well as lunch at the office, but for those of us who begin work at 9am after a whirlwhind of exercise, showering and primping, it’s convenient to be able to pack a bento-style breakfast the night before in order to cut down on the morning rush time. We all want to preserve those precious minutes of sleep before the alarm goes off!   One of my favorite homemade to-go breakfasts is an omelette sandwich and fruit. This can be done with a myriad of mix-ins and spreads, but for the purposes of this post, I’ve gone with a Mexican theme, just to step out of the bento box a bit. continue reading...

Bento no. 62: Meatloaf and Tortelloni Bento

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Bento Contents:

  • About 100g / 3.5 oz Bento sized mini-meatloaf (1/2 a loaf) with ketchup, 200 calories
  • 1/4 package (60g / 2 oz) Barilla Cheese and Garlic tortelloni or similar, browned in 1 tsp. olive oil, 270 calories
  • 1/2 cup Fennel Salad, 10 cal
  • Broccoli florets, 5 cal

Total calories (approx): 490 (how calories are calculated)

Time needed: 10-15 minutes in the morning

Type: Meat and pasta! continue reading...

A Not-Traditionally-Japanese bento idea

Monday - Wednesday for the hubs

(Photo courtesy of juanknowsspanish)

In keeping with this week’s Challenge topic, here is a great idea for a bento-that-is-not-a-bento from the flickr pool. continue reading...

Vegetarian Cake Provençal With Kinako

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Throughout Provence, especially in the colder months, you often encounter stalls at the markets selling golden loaves of goodness called Cake Provençal. They look just like pound cakes or what we might call in the U.S. ‘quickbreads’, but they are made with savory ingredients. They usually contain cheese, olives, sautéed vegetables, ham, sausage, herbs and so on. They are great at dinnertime,for picnics and of course (since it’s on this site) for not-Japanese bento lunches. Here are some that were on sale at a market in Nyons (in the Drôme Provençal) last December.

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They are made exactly like sweet cakes, but this being the land of olive oil they use that instead of butter. My version here is a bit light on the olive oil (some cakes that I’ve tried are almost dripping with oil). I’ve added a very non-Provencal ingredient, kinako (toasted soy bean flour), to add nuttiness as well as protein. You could use chickpea flour instead of the kinako. A piece or two, or three or four, of this cake makes a great vegetarian bento, on its own or with a salad or raw vegetables packed along. You can also make very interesting sandwiches with it. (Try Boursin cream cheese with watercress.)

I made mine in a square baking or brownie pan instead of the traditional loaf pan, since I like to cut it into little squares, but you could make it in a loaf pan too. It freezes very well, which makes it a great ‘freezer stash’ item. continue reading...

Bento no. 60: Breakfast and Lunch Combo Bento With Lentil Snacks

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Bento Contents:

Breakfast:

  • 1/2 cup muesli, 150 cal
  • About 2 Tbs. dried cranberries, 60 cal
  • 1/2 container (90g) Greek yogurt, 75 cal

Total calories for breakfast (approx): 285

Lunch:

  • 6 Spicy Lentil Snacks, 270 cal
  • Carrot sticks from 1 medium carrot, 30 cal
  • 1/2 container (90g) Greek yogurt with spices, 75 cal
  • Some greens, 5 cal

Total calories for lunch (approx): 380 (how calories are calculated)

Time needed: 5-10 minutes in the morning - mainly just packing things up (You could pack the whole bento the night before; this bento will not suffer much in quality.)

Type: Vegetarian, not Japanese, 2-in-1 continue reading...