Friday, July 30, 2010

A week in bentos

I've never been a morning person, but right now I'm having enough fun making bentos for lunch that I haven't minded getting up between 5:00 and 5:30 every morning to shower and prepare. (I'm still not used to making bentos, so I give myself way more time than I actually need for preparation.)

This week I was diligent and brought a bento for lunch every day!

Monday, July 26th:
This was the bento that required the least work. I just cut up the eggplant and heated the leftover (tomato &) meat sauce from Sunday's dinner, threw it on top of some rice and topped it off with cheese.

Tuesday, July 27th:
My "Shinya Shokudo" (深夜食堂) themed bento. The amai (sweet) tamagoyaki and tako-shaped wieners are from the first story in the first volume: 赤いウィンナー ("Akai Wiener" or "Red Wieners").ポテトサラダ ("Potato Sarada" or "Potato Salad") is the eleventh story in the same volume. And the egg salad sandwich is from the third story (seventeenth overall) in the second volume: タマゴサンド ("Tamago Sando" or "Egg Sandwich"). The fruit was just because. ^_^ (It's pretty much the same as my Chuutairen bento, just with potato salad instead of broccoli, and minus the strawberries--which apparently aren't a summer fruit in Aomori/Japan...).)

Wednesday, July 28th:
An おばちゃん ("obachan" or "old lady") bento. Technically it should probably be more brown and flavoured with soy sauce, but I figure it still qualifies. =P I was out on Tuesday night so I didn't have leftovers or much time to prepare for the bento. So I went simple with a 日の丸弁当 ("hinomaru bento" = white rice + umeboshi; "hinomaru" is what people call the Japanese flag, literally "day's circle") and 油揚げとなすの甘辛煮 (simmered sweet and salty eggplant and abura age) and store-bought fried squid.

Thursday, July 29th:
Back to a "proper" green, yellow and red bento! Along with the leftover eggplant, I had さばのひと口ピカタ ("saba no hitokuchi pikata" or "bite-sized mackerel piccata") and microwave steamed broccoli with mini tomatoes sauteed in olive oil as side dishes. Unfortunately the fish was WAY too salty--which I probably should have figured would happen since I could only find 塩さば ("shio saba" or "salted mackerel") and not plain old saba in the grocery store. ^^;;

Friday, July 30th:
Another green, yellow and red bento! For sides I had leftover broccoli plus mini tomatoes (raw this time!), amai tamagoyaki, tako-shaped red wieners PLUS a penguin shaped イチゴミルク ("ichigo miruku" or "strawberry milk") wiener!!! When I saw it in the grocery store I thought it was so bizarre of course I had to buy it! It actually didn't taste as strange as I thought it would. For the "main" I had one umeboshi and one tuna (with mayonnaise, of course!) onigiri (rice ball).

By the way, the link has been in the sidebar for a while now, but I forgot to point it out before: Just Bento ( is a great website in English all about making bentos (with recipes and useful tips)! If you're interested in bentos, you should definitely check it out! ^_^