Saturday, February 15, 2014

Bento Beginnings

Lesson: If you look you may find what you are looking for!

As we prepare for Zilla to enter elementary school there are many things to prepare and think about. One of the big ones will be having to make a bento lunch every day. These meals are far from the traditional brown bag with PB&J or bologna sandwhich. Bentos are often said to be well balanced, colorful, fresh and handmade as a way to show a Mother's love. While I don't need to make a bento to show my love my kids do need to eat lunch so I hope to make the best of the situation. To that end I've been searching for helpful resources.
A recent search on Amazon turned up this set of bento recipe cards. They are great as they can be laid out to help you see how the foods will look once they are in the bento box. On the back of each card is the recipe for the food item pictured as well as the food category it fits into to help with planning a balanced meal. The set also includes a detailed nutritional information list.
The recipes are in Japanese but for the most part they look pretty straight forward. Even if you can't read the recipes just looking at the picture cards can be inspiring. One of the greatest challenges I see in daily bento making is trying to figure out what to make so inspiration will be key!
Another part of preparation is trying to figure out what he rest of the family will each for lunch. Perhaps on some days we'll make bentos for everyone so we don't have to think about making lunch?

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