Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Japanese Meals on the Go Bento Boxes By

I first got fascinated with Bento when I was once in Japan 10 years ago. O-bento as known to the locals is boxed meal, literally. As with any other lifestyle practices of the Japanese which emphasizes alot on presentation and practicality at the same time, preparing Bento involves the appreciation for aesthetic and presentation skills together with balanced proportions of the ingredients involved.

The Bento culture has evolved and expanded vastly outside Japan these past few years and I am seeing more and more enthusiasts of this form of food art through blogs, websites and recent published English language books. Although it is evident that the Bento culture appeals mostly to mothers of school kids, the idea is also adaptable to adults who packs lunch to work and for those who are watching their diets as well as those who are healthy and fascinated by the idea of a lunch meal complete and compacted in one container box.

I bought this Bento Book a year after I started making lunch boxes for my hubby. Previously, my lunch boxes were comprised simply of things that I thought colorful, yummy and were a total experimental ground for my novice cooking skills then. After a while, I realized that my lunch boxes were messy looking and I never understand why I can never fill up the gaps in the containers and the food inside sloshed around with rice balls falling apart and wet and saucy food soaking up stir fried vegetables. As there were limited books on Bento then in my local bookstore, this book caught my eye and I bought it hoping that I will learn more Bento like recipe to fill up my hubby's lunches to work rather than mindlessly cooking up and making something non appealing despite being good to eat or the other way round!

One thing I like about this book is the various recipes inside it and how the recipes for all the different ingredients that makes up one bento Box content are written out and categorized separately in one page. In one page, I can read on how the rice is prepared, the recipe of the accompanying main dish of meat and vegetable and additional photos showing how to

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