When living in Hawaii I've always seen bento boxes everywhere. From the gas station, to the airport shops or the food trucks (aka manapua truck) that would be parked down the street from my bus stop & school. I was guilty for getting their garlic fries every time I could.
At first glance of a bento box your curiosity of these mini colorful creations have you questioning what they may be. Some have little sushi slices of assorted fish, crab, chicken, or vegetables mix. Let's not forget all the little veggies cut into cute mini bite size art. Everything in it's little compartments to keep them neat and separated.
Now where do these little bento boxes originate from and how did it get it's name. Well I did a little research on the subject & this is what I found out.
Bento or obento is a Japanese cookery that is divide into it own little pockets or compartments. The bento has been long used by Japan to pack a lunch box or meal for workers or men at war. These little compartments are fill with foods like vegetables, fruit, pickled salads or cooked meat, of your choice. Very popular in Japan. Hawaiian bento box sometimes have the famous spam musubi, which I would replace with teriyaki chicken, pork, beef, or turkey. (thanksgiving leftover maybe!)
Okay so why not make a great sushi roll that everyone would love. My favorite one is the tuna sushi with cucumbers and crab sushi with carrots or cucumbers. Why not make a great after school snack or an appetizer while waiting for dinner. The best thing is that you know what is in it & can stored it in your refrigerator until your ready to eat them. Really let your imagination take you to that next level. Here are examples of fun bento boxes you can make with a few cookies cutters, molds, and a little love.
Check out this cute bento creation from susanyuan's blog. She has lots of ideas so try them out and get the kids to help out too. Until next time live, love and learn.