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Ume Angelhair Pasta Bento (312)

The folks over at Second Life Lost (SL-LOST.com) saw my bento the other day and have asked me to be a contibuting author for their blog when I do Lost bentos. Seeing as how it’s devoted to MMO gamer Losties, I couldn’t say no! ^_^

I’ve been getting a lot of great traffic from BoingBoing after they wrote up a little article linking to An Online Bento Evolution. Hopefully all this exposure to bentos will inspire people to start bentoing themselves. If you’re one of those people and just starting out, I’d like to encourage you to register for my message forum and post your bento images for people to see. I started out doing the same thing and look where I am now.

And yes, I realize that forum is riddled with crickets. That’s why I’m plugging it! Another thing to mention is that I’ve started a new group on Flickr called Bento Goodies for people to share their bento toys. Join up if you’re interested!

Today I have some ume flavored angelhair pasta along with three side dishes in my Mr. Bentolunch jar. One of the great things about this lunch jar is the fact that there are 4 little jars for you to put soup, a main dish, veggies, and fruits. It’s a great way to eat healthy, maintain good portions, and keep them all separate. It’s definitely pricey, but you can’t deny it’s convenience and practicality.

To make the noodles, I used a ready-made flavor packet.

I’ll admit, it probably wasn’t that great of an idea to buy it without knowing what it’s called in English or how to cook it, but the picture on the front looked really good and the photos on the back were pretty obvious. Cook noodles. Mix packet. Easy!

This didn’t come out like the picture in that there were no little pieces of red ume that I could see. I thought I’d add more ume paste but that didn’t seem to do anything. Afterward, I realized that I probably could have just made the exact same thing with just the ume paste. But hey, it tasted awesome. I added an ume into the middle for good measure and then topped it with fresh green onion picked from my flowerpot in the yard. I think the little flaky things are ground up shiso leaf, as that’s used to pickle ume. That’s me just pulling stuff out of my ass though, so don’t quote me or anything.

This here be my Kim Chee Crab and Avocado salad, which I made up in 2007 when I was looking for a way to eat salad without using dressing. The spiciness of the crab leaves out any need for dressing.

This last bowl is the smallest one, but I was still able to fit in a lot of my favorite fruits and a new one. I’ve been seeing this beautiful type of Fuji apple called Aomori in the markets for a while now but each time, after picking up my eyeballs from the floor, I decided that I didn’t really need to spend $3-4 on one measly apple. Really, how good could it be? Anyway, they were on sale for 2 for $5 at Foodland, so I figured I better try it while it’s “cheap” and so I bought one. After finally eating one, I’ve determined that it’s good and crispy and sweet, but I still don’t think it’s worth the cost. I’ll take my 75 cent regular Fujis, please.

For the special occasion of buying these apples, I made them into apple bunnies. I’ve seen people do this since I first got into bentoing but have never tried it. Usually you see them with pointy ears, but I wanted to give mine rounded ears. Now they look like the bunnies from the beginning of Watership Down, during the tale of El-ahrairah! They eating my lady apple!!! Tucked in next to the apple are quarters of a strawberry.

In the back is something new. While at Foodland last week I saw some kumquats. I’d heard of them before by name, but had never seen one. They’re so tiny! I bought a few and took them home, excited to try a new fruit. When I got back and peeled it and ate it though, my face imploded. I couldn’t believe how sour it was!! After some bried internet research, I found out that I was supposed to eat it whole because the sweet rind counters the sour flesh. I tried it again and I totally loved it. They make my mouth feel so fresh!

I am happy to announce the closing of my 200k Bento Contest voting! I took a screenshot of the poll results and can now announce my three winners!

Congratulations to Stefanie of Germany for winning first place and first pick of the three prizes!

Congratulations to Anne of the USA for winning second place and second pick of the three prizes!

Congratulations to Claire in the USA for winning third place and third pick of the three prizes!

I’d like to thank everyone for voting and participating! As you can see, I’m already very close to 300k… It’s a bit soon to do another contest though, so we’ll see. If there’s interest, I can do another.

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  • yes! do another contest!

  • nice website! I want to get back to obento making!

  • lostpacket

    I love my Mr. Bento!!!! I have had it for 3 years now and use it every day for lunch.
    I did see a black one with red lids in Thailand. The only difference is it came with some sort of grease skimmer.

  • Erika

    Lol, Pikko. My sister eats the kumquat skin and tosses the inside. I’ll eat it all only because I feel like it’s a waste to not eat the inside as well.
    Kumquat tree in the backyard at my house. http://www.flickr.com/photos/kappachan/399548406/

    And the specks on the ume spaghetti is shiso leaf. ^^ The kind that I buy has a packet of nori fine nori strips. So guuuud. I love umeboshi… So…so…guuud….

  • Claire

    yay! Thanks to everyone who voted for me! I’ll be happy with any of those prizes, and be sure to include pics of whichever one I get once it is put to use! 🙂

    thanks again!

  • mcogdill

    Where did you get this blue Bento box? Can I get one online. Some of them too cutesy for a 12 yo boy!

  • It’s actually gray and you can find it by clicking my link to Mr. Bento in the blog post. 🙂