Have you heard of BENTO?
Bento is a single-portion takeout or home-packed meal common in Japanese cuisine. A traditional bento holds rice, fish or meat, with pickled or cooked vegetables, usually in a box-shaped container. I love this idea!
I started looking into Bento and talked to a few people about the things they loved about it. Everything was cute and compact and I loved the idea of compartments. I very quickly found myself at the ‘Little Bento Shop’ where I bought some egg shapers and found some great ideas over at the ‘Little Bento Blog.’ I emailled Yvette, the mastermind behind ‘Little Bento Blog & Shop‘ and asked if she would like to help me out with my project. I was very pleased when she said ‘Yes’ and sent me some very cute things to play with!
At the end of each month, I like to have a little celebration to celebrate all the cool things I have learnt through the month. My ‘If Project’ is all about sharing my life with people and experiencing new things, it is all about living HERE as if I were THERE. So, a celebration was planned!
We invited Miss Z’s best little friend from school over for afternoon tea, and then asked them to stay on for dinner too. I thought I would show you what I put together for afternoon tea… Bento – B Style!
You do need a few cute little cutters and bits and peices to make Bento… (you don’t REALLY, but, it sure makes things cuter!) Here are some of the things I had on hand.
These egg moulds are super cute, super easy and were super popular! BabyCool gobbled down two eggs at afternoon tea. *Simply hard boil large eggs, peel them while still hot then pop them into these egg shapers and put them in the fridge until cool. So cute, I will be using these babies again and again!
These sandwiches disappeared really quickly. These cutters and stampers can be purchased from ‘The Little Bento Shop.’ The round sandwiches had jam, the flower sandwiches had vegemite and the star sandwiches were fairy bread. No crusts meant that Miss Z happily ate lots of them! (The chickens enjoyed the crusts!)
I used the sandwich cutters to cut some watermelon and also some cucumber which I popped into little paper dishes that I picked up at Daiso in Brisbane.
I found some great little treats in the Asian food aisle in my local Woolworths, some rice crackers, Panda biscuits, snow pea crisps and these gorgeous little jellies.
I loved these little waterproof (plastic on the inside) food dividers – VERY Bento. I started laying them out on a tray I had, but, before long, I realised that this was the PERFECT way to present these little bento treats…
This is how the table looked when everything was laid out… I am pretty chuffed with how pretty it was!
The children loved being able to pick and choose what they ate. The tray full of goodies was a big hit – the eggs and the Panda biscuits disappeared quickly. The kids also loved the little picks in the cheese.
Before I knew it, the kids had eaten and ran off to play.
It was terribly fun to make all of these cute bento things. The children loved it, and it was really easy! All the preparation was done before hand and the clean up was a cinch. The girls have asked if we can do this again, and the answer from me was, ‘Absolutely!’
A big thank you to Yvette for sending me goodies to play with! Please, go and visit her:
Oh, and for a special treat, Yvette is sharing a Bento recipe on the blog tomorrow! Stay tuned for rice balls!
*When I say ‘simply’ I mean, for you, it may be simple. For me… I cannot boil eggs. Of all the things I can cook – boiling eggs drives me nuts! It took two tries to get hard boiled eggs – grrrrrrr.