Thursday, March 19, 2009

Bento there, done that

Bento boxes almost define the Japanese lunch. Long before sushi took hold of the American scene, a couple of pieces found their way onto the bento box, along with a variety of three to six other foods. This was in keeping with the philosophy of all things in moderation while providing something for each of the tastes and senses. It's a wonderful way to discover new foods, a little bit at a time.

But I still was surprised by my friend and former co-worker Gina Kim's video on box lunches.

For one thing, she interviewed a Caucasian mom (Deborah Hamilton, creator of the excellent Web site, who got into the bento box for lunch when her husband was diagnosed with celiac disease. Hamilton stressed how the food doesn't have to be Japanese, it just has to be as pretty to look at as it is good to eat.

Another revelation was Hamilton's use of molds to turn hardboiled eggs into fun shapes for her little kid. I had no idea you could do that. What fun!

And there was this great tip: Use silicone baking cups as dividers in the storage containers. Not only do they keep the food flavors from blending together, they add a lot of color as well.

Great work, Gina!

1 comment:

  1. As part of our plan to be financially ready when it's time to close on our house, Danny and I have been very successful with packing lunches instead of eating out during the workweek. I have to admit, though, that I'm starting to get sick of sandwiches. This post is _the_ creative idea I needed! I don't often enjoy cooking, but I think I could get really into Bento boxes, especially since I usually do the cleanup after Danny cooks dinner. Thanks for sharing, Lori!!!