Bento no. 24: Rustic bread, vegetables and fruit

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Bento contents:

  • 2 slices of whole wheat bread with dried cranberries and walnuts (approx. 240cal)
  • Brebis cheese, about 60 g / 2 oz (approx. 100cal)
  • Sweet pepper and onion confit, 3/4 cup (approx. 90 cal)
  • Cut up mango and orange, 3/4 cup (approx. 50 cal)

Total calories (approx): 470 (how calories are calculated)

Time needed: 5-10 minutes in the morning

Type: Bread based, vegetarian (uses cheese) continue reading...

Bento boxes of the week: Lube Sheep and Bay Asuka

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If you’ve ever bought an inexpensive small bento box at a 100 yen shop or via eBay, the chances are pretty high that it was made by one company, Nakano Co.. They are the ones responsible for the bento boxes carrying the mysterious Lube Sheep logo. After visiting their company web site, I still have no idea what it actually means, and it probably doesnt mean anything at all - it’s just a cute piece of Japanglish that someone in the company thought sounded good. (Yes, I know it sounds a bit dirty, but let’s try not to go there.) continue reading...

Bento no. 23: Parsley lemon sushi with salmon

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Bento contents:

  • Parsley and shiso leaves in lemon-flavored sushi with 1 cup white rice cooked with white zakkoku mix (approx: 200cal)
  • Lotus root slices (approx. 20 cal)
  • Salted salmon, about 50 g / 1 3/4 oz (approx. 80 cal)
  • Usuyaki tamago (thin egg omelette) (approx. 80 cal)

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

Time needed: 20 minutes in the morning, 10-15 the night before

continue reading...

Bento no. 22: Vegan bento with lotus root mini-cakes

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Bento contents:

  • Savory lotus root mini-cakes (approx. 150 cal)
  • Pan-roasted red pepper and leek with peanut sauce (approx: 200 cal)
  • Sweet chili jam (30 cal)
  • Cucumber wedges (5 cal)
  • Naval orange wedge (30 cal)

Total calories (approx): 415 (how calories are calculated)

Time needed: 20-30 minutes total

Type: Asian-fusion, vegan, gluten-free continue reading...

Bento boxes of the week: Lacquered with bitter persimmon juice

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The last couple of featured bento boxes have been strictly practical. This week I’m returning to the realm of the sublime, with these handcrafted wooden and lacquered bento boxes from Akita prefecture in northern Japan. continue reading...

Improved bento archive list

I’ve boosted the information on the bento archive list - the completed bento how-tos are the heart of the site after all. Instead of just a simple listing of thumbnails, each bento now has the Time needed, Calories, Type and Protein sources (which indicate whether a bento is vegan, vegetarian, or omnivore) indicated. So, now you can scan the page for the bento that suits your time, calorie, or eating preferences.

Bento no. 21: Chicken teriyaki bento

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Bento contents:

  • Bite size chicken kijiyaki (or teriyaki) made with 90g of thigh meat with the skin (210 cal)
  • Blanched bean sprouts with umeboshi (5 cal)
  • Blanched spinach (10 cal)
  • Haiga-mai, or germ rice 150g or about 1 cup (170 cal)
  • 1/2 of a tamagoyaki made from 1 egg (50 cal)

Total calories (approx): 445 (how calories are calculated)

Time needed: 15 minutes in the morning, 20 the night before

Type: Japanese

This is the ‘skinny bento’ featured in Skinny Bento vs. Not So Skinny Bento. continue reading...

Bite-size chicken teriyaki for bento boxes

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Usually chicken teriyaki (or chikiteri as it’s abbreviated sometimes) is made from whole chicken thigh pieces, but I prefer to cut the meat up in advance for bento use - the smaller pieces cook faster, and I don’t have to deal with slicing hot cooked meat early in the morning.

The chicken can be marinated from the night before or just briefly in the morning. You can also make this in some quantity and freeze the cooked pieces - since you are using thigh meat, the pieces won’t dry out so easily after defrosting like white meat can. continue reading...