Lunch T/Th: Intro to Bento Boxes

September 11, 2010

I have a 45 minute break between classes on Tuesday and Thursday. It’s not long enough to go somewhere and eat and get back to the 6th floor of a building, one trip up is enough per day for me. So I started checking out bento box blogs and it seemed like a great thing to do. Just a little prep in the morning with most of the work done the night before, with everything in a box that fits no problem in my tote bag.

I tried several of the Asian supermarkets for a bento box…for some reason this didn’t work. I think the best thing I saw was a Hello Kitty one, but it was rather small for an adult. I ended up just getting a plastic box at Super H Mart that was WAY too big for a bento. Boxes are usually measured in mL…this one comes in at 1200. The one I ended up buying is 780 I think. There was no way I was filling it all.

The first box I made in the massive box: I marinated chicken in something similar to this recipe, with sake instead of that wine and chili paste. I made a bit more to toss over the green peppers too. I filled in the empty spaces with tomatoes and carrots, and then because I wanted fruit, put a cup of frozen fruit in the last compartment, with a paper towel folded down to keep that in place.
It was awesome. I went into my classroom instead of just eating in the hallway, and a girl said it looked so good. And it was.

Except the box really was a pain in the ass, so I ended up waiting to eat until after class until my bento box came in the mail.

This time I went with these chicken meatballs I found refrigerated at Trader Joe’s. I think I heated them in the microwave too long in the morning because the texture was meh. Or it could be that because there is cheese in them too that it just doesn’t work to have them cold. Or maybe I just shouldn’t heat them up again, who knows. I sauteed zucchini and bell peppers, added soba noodles, and tossed everything in black bean sauce. That was good, although I could not eat it well with my little box chopsticks.
The top layer got a fruit section, plus hummus and carrots. Sadly even though I thawed the fruit out overnight, it still had a ton of liquid, so I should have covered it with plastic wrap too like the hummus. I couldn’t eat some of the carrots because they tasted like strawberry, and that didn’t really go with chipotle pepper hummus.

I shall make more posts of these things, as I need to find a bit more things to make.