...with Bento boxes. Not only are these Japanese lunch boxes practical...but they satisfy my hunger for beauty. Each one is a study in creativity and simplicity.
Our family spends quite a deal of time at our local swimming pool. My husband coaches while my little salamander joins the others in swimming around nine kilometres a week. After each session he clambers from the pool and while dripping water over everything, immediately goes on a search and destroy mission in my bag for nourishment. Getting sick of seeing him eat the same old things, I started searching for different ideas to make for him and came across Bento boxes.
I was entranced.
In fact I was so entranced that I set about making my first one the next day. My husband’s initial amusement faded and before long joined me in the kitchen. Soon the enticing aroma of Japanese cooking filled the air.
As we worked together transforming slices of cheese into stars, and eating more than we made, I realised creating this bounty for my son was just like writing a novel. Okay, it doesn’t take quite as long or result in wanting to throw a computer across the room…but you get the idea.
First I layered steamed rice into the chosen receptacle. Just like our initial ideas this forms the base of our dish. It needs to have substance and be easy to manipulate if needed. At this stage nothing is set in stone.
Next we added Teriyaki beef for the sky and scrambled eggs for the ground. These layers added depth and allowed the ‘story’ to come together. Using different seasonings we created something that was not only had our tastebuds asking for more, but was also filling.
Finally we assembled sliced meat, cheese, carrots and tomato on the top. By arranging these finishing touches, we completed the picture into our ideal. It’s those little touches that appeal to our senses that take the dish, or book, from being ordinary-everyday-fare to being a creation worthy of The Master Chef.
That's mine in the picture above. It may not be the most creative thing you've ever seen, but can you imagine the 'ooh's and 'aahs' from a very hungry swimmer? Needless to say it didn't last long. :)
What is it that you’ve discovered recently that has your juices flowing?