Bento is the Japanese word for a meal served in a box (or “boxed lunch”). There are loads of different types of Bento, some elaborate ones served in fancy restaurants (Makunouchi), Take away style sold in stores and at train stations (Ekiben) and the “cute bento” or Kyaraben which is mainly aimed at children (little pictures made out of food). Apparently there are big contests in Japan for Kyraben and lots of ladies take it very seriously! (Thanks JustBento for that info!)
Both of us have been really inspired by some of the Cute Bento we have seen around and have been trying it out (in all forms!) at home for our kidlets. We thought we would share a few of our latest with you…
From Danni’s house:
Miss N is not the world’s biggest eater. Many a day her lunches come home unfinished as she’s too excited to get out and play. She loves what we call “Bits & Pieces” as its (duh) only bits and pieces of anything and everything. I find that letting her eat like this means she picks a variety of healthy things with her actually realising it. I purchased a great little lunchbox called a Dyno Dips from Neat2Eat (along with a few other bits & peices) and did my first attempt at homemade Bento:
- Cold leftover Chicken slices
- Cherry Tomatoes
- Rice Crackers
- Served with Taramousalata and Cream Cheese
Her lunches at school are normally split into two seperate lunchboxes, (One for lunch and one for recess) for the ease of her grabbing one or the other. This photo is of the other half of the Bento lunch. You can see I need a bit more practice at this!!!
- Mini smoked hot dogs rolled up in bread (with food picks to fasten);
- Bone shaped savoury bikkies (Hot Dogs and Bones – get it?!)
From Mel’s house:
Miss E is all still so excited about school and play time at lunch that her lunchboxes end up barely touched and she eats most of the remains on the car trip home. I consider it afternoon tea!
Still, I’m feeling pretty happy with Miss E’s lunch offerings after her teacher commented on how lovely they were – that put a big smile on my face!
The following was the first of Miss E’s to come back home almost fully eaten. Success!
It had a bit of a flower theme…
- Choc-fruit museli bar bite; mini sultanas & mini pretzels.
- Halved mini Roma tomatoes & Village Sausage.
- Organic corn chips; boconcini (with a cute little ladybug pick); & an olive and ham flower (the ham wasn’t the best type for the job!)
- Blueberries, blackberries & strawberries arranged into a flower shape.
If you haven’t seen yesterday’s Road Test Tuesday post, check it out for a funky bite sized cutter and a few more of Miss E’s lunchboxes…