Thursday, October 28, 2010

BB Bento

As I was preparing this I thought of a name for it; BB bento - a bit boring bento, haha. It's just rice with thinly sliced cucumber on top, cherry tomatoes, an omelet cut into quarters and broccoli. If you look closely you'll see some satay sauce on the omelet, which I know is probably not a good idea if you have to transport your bento. But since I eat all of mine at home I thought I'd get away with it. I dont have any of those neat little sauce containers. Maybe I should go shopping for some new bento accessories!

Which reminds me, I have a useful tip for storage of bento stuff. I bought a couple of plastic baskets that fit neatly on the shelf in the cupboard. One for bento boxes, lids etc, and another for all those itty bitty items; picks, molds, vege cutters and so on. Now all I have to do is pull out the required basket, find what I want, and put it all neatly back in the cupboard. Saves stuff getting lost or pushed to the darkest corner of your pantry never to see light of day again.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Baby Girls first bento!

I knew the day would come :) I just didn't know it would come so soon.... BabyGirl's first ever bento!!  The first thing she did when I gave it to her was tip it all out, but she can be excused, that's what they do at 9 months old. :) Here she is enjoying it...

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Tamarillo and rice bento

Tamarillo - This exotic fruit is locally grown (I picked some up at the Saturday Farmer's Market), and has a tangy, mildly sweet flavour. I decided to stew them with a little sugar and water, adding a few frozen blueberries for extra sweetness.

It made a delicious and unusual topping for rice with capsicum, the flavours actually went very well together. In the other dish of the bento are some crumbed chicken filet pieces, baby carrots & beans. I cut the last tamarillo in half to show what they look like when fresh. I think they taste better cooked though.

The stewed tamarillo also made a nice topping for vanilla ice cream!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Sesame fish cakes bento (+recipe)

Sesame coated fish cakes are one of my favourites, and a good way to use up leftover mashed potatoes from dinner the night before. The recipe is below, you can kind of adapt it to how much time you have got when you are making your bento, and how adventurous you want (or don't want) to be. They feature in this bento on a bed of baby lettuce leaves, with fresh tomato halves and some chopped mango.

Sesame coated fish cakes:
~1 1/2 cups leftover mashed potato (you can vary the amount if you have a bit more or less is ok)
1 can of tuna, drained
1 egg
salt and pepper to taste
and any (or all) of the following:
crushed garlic
finely chopped onion
finely chopped red pepper
small amount of grated cheese

Mix everything together, shape into flattened balls and roll in sesame seeds. Cook on both sides in a little olive oil. If you want you can place them on a paper towel before putting into your bento (I like to do this to remove any excess oil). These fish cakes are not only tasty, they look good as well!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Hello Kitty bento

Hello Kitty! My first ever cute bento in the making. I know she's not complete, I had to improvise a bit for the eyes, nose and she has no real whiskers. Baby girl was being especially fussy while I was trying to put this together so had to try and feed her at the same time. But we shared the Hello Kitty bento when all was said and done. :)

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Cute little sandwich bento

When all you have in your kitchen is fruit, veg and bread, this is an easy bento to make. I made a salad sandwich and cut it into little shapes with a sandwich cutter. Insert a cute pick such as the Hello Kitty one to help hold it together. Add some fresh strawberries, ripe plum and kiwifruit "blossoms" in a little pink box, this makes for a fruity bento lunch.

I've been a little busy with my photography course this past week, but did pick up a copy of Crystal (Pikko) and Maki's (luckysundae) book Yum-Yum Bento Box from our local library today...


It really is packed full of tips and everything you need to know for making cute Charaben bento. In fact I'm so impressed with this book that I might buy my own copy to keep. Baby girl is 9 months old today - one day soon I'd love to start making her cute bento!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Korean tea and rice cakes - a feast for your eyes

Yesterday we visited a food and cooking demonstration of international food at the local museum, this week it was Korea. I had my camera with me and took some pictures of the rice cakes - they were so pretty!

These authentic Korean rice cakes have layers made with natural colourings. They were a feast for your eyes and we all got to try some. They're only slightly sweet and probably a lot healthier than regular, European cakes made with butter, sugar and flour.

One thing I find again and again and that I love is with a lot of Asian food the emphasis is so much on presentation. From the elaborate platters of Japanese sushi and sashimi, delicately carved vegetables of a Thai banquet, and now these beautiful Korean rice cakes.

I've had the pleasure of dining at some fine restaurants from time to time and something beautifully presented always rates highly to me. And that's why I love bento so much, it's about creating something beautiful that's healthy at the same time.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Fish filet bento

A simply delicious and healthy bento dinner. Tarakihi filets cooked in a little olive oil on a bed of cos lettuce heart leaves. Slices of tomato and cuke and some sticks of carrot. I was a little hurried or I would've added a few decorative touches.