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Chicken Tofu Bento (286)

This has been one fantastically exciting week for me. First of all, I finally got a call to do some background work for LOST. All I can really say is that I loved it, I’d do it again in a heartbeat, and that the other extras I met there were great fun to hang around with. Last night I watched a bit of the pilot episode again (since it’s the only season I have on DVD) and it was so funny how different it looks to me now. And it’s different in a good way, I totally appreciate the show more! It’ll be 10x more exciting to actually see Season 6 when it airs next year!!

This is my lunch for today, which I purposely made non-cutesy for all my new visitors arriving as a result of my name and blog being mentioned in an article by Samantha Storey of the New York Times, Bento Boxes Win Lunch Fans! Woohoo! It’s so exciting! It’s definitely one of the biggest pieces I’ve seen on the online bento community outside of Japan. My hope is that my lunch today will help draw new people into the wonderful world of bento by showing that with just a bit of creative arranging, your lunch can take on a whole new light.

This bento is made from leftovers and some things I just have in my fridge. It took me about 10 minutes to put together, not counting lazy time where I checked email, stared at fridge contents for breakfast, etc. Grandma J made chicken tofu last night and I simply took some with a bit of hapa rice (white/brown blend) in a Tupperware. This morning I moved it to a bento box, using chopsticks to arrange everything neatly together in the main compartment.

As you can see, I used one of the little side dish sections to add green beans, baby carrot sticks, and a grape tomato. The bottom of this section is lined with the bottoms of the green beans to give everything a bit more height, then the green bean tips were placed into the back corner. The grape tomato is simply placed next to them and the baby carrot sticks are made from just two baby carrots. What I do for these is I cut the rounded tips off, then slice it in half, then cut the halves into sticks. They add a nice, bright splash of color and are so easy to make.

The other side contains three types of pickled veggies that I purchase ready-made at the market. The yellow is takuan, or pickled daikon. The purple stuff is pickled eggplant and cucumbers. The green pickles are sliced, pickled cucumbers.

Since I’m still doing the KUT kickboxing program, I brought a big peach and some dried marlin my aunty gave me. I’ll half the peach and the marlin and eat it as snacks in the morning and afternoon.

After I left the Lost set yesterday, I headed to Pearlridge Borders to find out if they sold the New York Times. It turned out that they didn’t, but Starbucks had three copies left so I bought all of them. I’d have gone to another Starbucks to buy more, except I couldn’t think of another nearby Starbucks and the darned things cost 2 bucks each.

Woo, yay, celebration, cheers! I have to admit I was a bit sad that I wasn’t asked for photos, but the blog mention cheered me right back up. Big mahalos to Samantha Storey for that! <3

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  • The Times article was great. But I admit I’m more excited for the last season of Lost, and for you to tell us where to look for you!

  • Yay! Well done on the coverage in the Times. I read the article on line earlier today. I felt really proud as I read all the blogs by you, Maki and Biggie. Kinda made me feel like I know you all personally :0)

  • OMG, I’m a huge Lost fan too! Can you give us some details on what you did on the set? Or did you sign one of those confidential agreements? I can’t wait until the last season starts.

  • Let’s just say I’m being particularly vague on purpose. Even with that though, I’d so do it again. And again, and again!

  • Yay! Congrats! How are you doing with the KUT? I’m doing great with pole and zumba… I can fit into pants that I haven’t fit into in a year! Love it!

  • congratulations!
    is there an online version of the story available anywhere? i would dearly love to read it, but living in India buying the paper is a tad (understatement) difficult.

  • Medusa: Simply click the title of the article, it’s a link! πŸ™‚

  • BB

    Congratulations on two amazing pieces of news!

  • I found your site because of the Times article! You have a great site — very inspiring to a “bento newbie” like myself!

  • Aimee S.

    I think the article is already working its magic! Friends that see mine on my FB page are suddenly inspired to perhaps make them themselves. We all had a big discussion about it when the article came out. It was great seeing you mentioned in there girl. You really are one of the best in the biz and a pretty great gal too!

  • so yummy chicken bento!!

  • Misty Crihfield

    About a week before the NYT article I was trying to figure out what to pack for lunches for my child – and after surfing on Google, I found your site. It was very inspiring! I happened to find the post where you talked about how you got into Bento (and linked to all sorts of other Bento sites . . . for which I thank you!) That night I ordered all sorts of Bento stuff, and three days before the NYT article, I did my first Bento. So far, I’m loving it. Everyone might think I’m “trendy” and discovered it through the NYT – but the truth is – I sort of discovered it through YOU!

  • That’s so cool Misty, I hope you keep reading! πŸ˜€

  • Kim

    My husband emailed me the NYT article. I posted a link on Facebook, and got all these comments from far-flung friends who were getting into bento, too. I didn’t realize this about them…it’s taking off!!

  • Judith

    The second I spotted the title among all the “most e-mailed articles” on my phone I zipped in and skimmed through super fast hoping to see a mention of you/your blog. Within seconds (I don’t think I ever skimmed an article that fast), I saw it! yaaaaaaaaaaaaaay!

  • Although I love seeing the bentos you and many other people post for their kids, they have so much eye appeal. I do like these more grown up versions. I have a hard time coming up with the little extras once I’ve decided on the main ingredient. So thanks for these kinds of bentos and congratulations on you contribution to the article.

  • Congratulations on both accounts!! I recently convinced my parents to start taking bento to work…we have plenty of bento stuff sitting around the house after having lived in Asia for 6 years…so its an easy way to keep a balanced, healthy meal.

  • I loved the article and felt like I was reading about friends with all the mentions of the blogs I follow!!! Congratulations!

  • Congratulations to you, Pikko, you’ve earned it!

  • Pattie
  • Kudos to you! I need to take a break from writing about blah! and politics and I want to mention your blog when I write about what has inspired me today… May I use the photo of the egg salad sandwich with the pink bears?

  • Hi Tiff, sure!

  • You really did a good job with your bento! It looks great and very yummy!

  • Jessica M

    where did you get that bento?