japanese

Bento no. 53: Sesame beef and vegetable bento

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Bento contents:

  • Approx. 1 cup of brown rice - 240 cal
  • 60 g / 2 oz. (about 3 heaping tablespoons) Sesame flavored beef made with lean beef, 130 cal
  • About 1/3 cup carrot kinpira, 50 cal
  • Blanched greens flavored with oyster sauce and bean sprouts flavored with salt and sansho pepper, 20 cal

Total calories (approx): 440 (how calories are calculated)

Time needed: 10-15 minutes in the morning continue reading...

Sesame flavored beef

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I don’t have a lot of red meat recipes here, especially not beef. The biggest reason for this is that beef is the most expensive cut of meat usually, and I’m all about making bentos that are economical. But I do use beef sometimes, and one of my favorite ways is to treat it as I do in this recipe - quickly stir-fried, salty-sweet and tender strips of beef flavored with sesame oil. continue reading...

Bento no. 52: Special Occasion Omuraisu (Omurice) Bento

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Bento contents:

  • Fried rice made with 2/3 cup brown rice and assorted chopped vegetables, 250 cal
  • 1 1/2 wiener sausages, 200 cal
  • Omelette made with 2 eggs, 230 cal
  • Broccoli, 20 cal

Total calories (approx): 700 (how calories are calculated)

Time needed: 20-30 minutes

Type: Japanese, kyaraben-ish, special occasion bento! continue reading...

Shrimp and tofu mini-burgers (tsukune) with red pepper sauce

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There are already several mini-burger or tsukune dumpling type of recipes here, but here’s another one. What can I say - mini-burgers are just perfect for bentos: they taste good when they are cold, can be made in quantity, and usually freeze very well.

This time it’s a shrimp and tofu version, adapted quite a bit from a recipe in a recent issue of Kyou no ryouri: Beginners (Today’s Cooking: Beginners) magazine. It’s best when made with fresh shrimp, but uncooked frozen shrimp is fine. You probably don’t want to be messing around with shrimp paste in the morning, so it can made it the night before (have some for dinner too - it’s great hot) or freeze a batch. The sweet-hot red pepper jam I’ve used as a sauce goes very well with it, but if you don’t want to go to the trouble of making the jam, use a sweet or hot bottled chili sauce. continue reading...

Two also-ran quick bentos made in under 15 minutes

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While I do try to keep a good stash of pre-made food to quickly assemble bentos in the morning, sometimes I’ve just run out, or am not in the mood to use whatever I have in the freezer, or leftovers in the fridge. That doesn’t mean it’s not possible to assemble a bento quickly using fresh ingredients and pantry items. Here are a couple that I made last week. The only premade ‘stash’ I used was frozen brown rice. continue reading...

Quick tip: Using tofu in bento-friendly recipes

Tofu is a great protein, especially useful for vegan or vegetarian, but also useful for lightening up meat based recipes. I use tofu in a number of recipes here, but I thought it would be useful to address how to deal with tofu when you’re using it for bento recipes.

Types of tofu

If you go to an Asian/Chinese or Japanese store, you might be confused by the variety of tofus on sale. continue reading...

The Onigiri (Omusubi) FAQ

smileyonigiri.pngI have written quite exhaustively about onigiri, or rice balls, here on Just Bento as well as on Just Hungry. Many people have asked similar questions about onigiri, which seem to just be gaining and gaining in popularity these days.

So I’ve assembled a list of Onigiri FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions). I’ll update this list when I see (or remember) other questions periodically. Hopefully your questions are answered here - if not, you know what to do! (ask in the comments!)

continue reading...

Bento no. 47: Panfried chicken mini-burger bento

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Bento contents:

Total calories (approx): 400 (how calories are calculated) continue reading...