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Pink Hearts Bento (445)

As you can see, I’ve officially changed the skin of the site to pink. The beauty of the theme that I’m using is that it takes maybe 5 minutes to change it all once I’ve picked the color codes. I went crazy trying to figure out how to do everything at first, but now that I have, it seems to be smooth sailing. Now that I’ve said that, watch the blog die a fiery death within a couple of hours.

Pink Hearts Bento

With the love theme going on, I have the first of my Valentine’s Day themed bento. The box I’m using is one of the stacking onigiri boxes that Susan Yuen gave to me when we did our tv appearance for the Haiti Fundraiser. She gave me a piggie one and a tiger one and this is the piggie one. The covers are pink, but the bottoms are red, making them the perfect case for a small love bento.

I started off making the onigiri by heating up leftover rice in the microwave and then adding pink vinegar powder to color the rice pink and give it a nice ume flavor. I used an onigiri mold to make them into hearts and then used a new set of punches that Maki of Cute Obento gave to me.

Pink Heart Onigiri

Here’s a closer look at the onigiri. I wasn’t very original and made them all the same, but I think it turned out nicely anyway. I lined the boxes with green leaf lettuce to eat as a side salad. In the medium size box, there’s some fried eggplant, Grandma Mu style, a cherry tomato, and a duck sauce bottle filled with shoyu. In the smallest box there’s some cut up orange slices.

I used to stay with my grandma a lot, as our house was 25 miles from town and she lived conveniently closer, so I’d go and sleep over if I was going out on the weekend or something. As a result, I’d eat her cooking a lot. Although she doesn’t really cook at all anymore, her food still sticks in my brain and she totally instilled in me the importance of simple foods with her motto: “Simple food is the best.” Her fried eggplant is one of my favorites.

Grandma Mu’s Fried Eggplant

Ingredients:

  • 1 round eggplant
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • flour
  • olive oil
  • soy sauce

Instructions:

  1. Slice the eggplant into 1/2″ thick slices, then cut them in half to make half circles.
  2. Soak the slices in a bowl of water, placing a plate or bowl on top to push the slices into the water. Check back once in a while. When the water begins to turn brown, drain and refill with fresh water. Repeat 1-2 times. This helps to take out some of the bitterness.
  3. Dry the slices with a towel. (paper towels are used up rather quickly)
  4. Dust the slices in flour, then coat in egg, then in flour again.
  5. Heat about 1-2 tablespoons of oil in a frying pan on medium heat. Fry eggplant slices on both sides until golden brown and crispy. Remove to drain oil.
  6. Serve and eat with soy sauce.

I could only fit 3/4 of a slice into this box, so I fried up one more slice and brought that along on the side so that I’d have more food.

Yesterday, Wanda Adams from the Honolulu Advertiser came over to interview me for an article about bento. The story will probably run the week after next, so if you’re local, keep an eye out on the food section! I’ll update everyone once I know a specific date. During the photo shoot, they asked me to take out and display my freakish bento box collection. They took incriminating photographs, which will surely cause my whole family to start calling and emailing and asking, “Is that for real? Do you really have that many?” I’m thinking of answering this with an awkward silence because the answer is: “No, I actually have more than that.”

Anyhoo… with my collection just out and about, I decided to start up a project wherein I document all of my bento boxes and photograph them. I’ll be using Flickr to sort my images into sets so that you can all see the lunches I’ve made with a particular box. Each day, I’ll hopefully have new sets to post and eventually, maybe in 2 months… (lol!) I’ll be done. I’ve got a Google Doc of my list and will update that as I work. This ordeal will be called Pikko’s Docubentory.

I got through 27 boxes last night, but will start with two for today. Box #001 is a pink piggies box.

Box 001

View the set for Box #001.

Box-002

View the set for Box #002. This set won’t actually have anything, as I still haven’t used it. You can find this Pikachu Bento Box on J-List.

Let the madness begin!!

Related posts:

  • I love the pink and hearts! These are such cute bento boxes. I am going to try Grandma Muโ€™s Fried Eggplant, thanks for sharing the recipe!! My husband loves eggplant!

  • Aunty C

    Wanda Adams interviewed you???? Oh I can’t wait for the article and photo(s) to come out! You make us all proud!

  • The bento boxes are so adorable. I have lots of boxes here at home but I seldom use it because I am not really good in making bentos. The pink bentos are great for Valentines.

  • SO pretty! I keep forgetting to take pictures of my lunches and post them. I should do what you do and take them when I MAKE the food ๐Ÿ˜›

    Great job!

  • mi

    oooohhh … I love that pink hearts .. so adorable … I won’t dare to eat them … (^.^)

  • Julie

    That is so cute! Who wouldn’t get a smile on their face when opening this? ๐Ÿ˜€

    Oh, and cute layout by the way, the pink one… ๐Ÿ™‚ Nice use of pink… Not too much, not too little either! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • This looks so lovely! The smiles on the onigri are too cute. Liking the new theme too – and looking forward to seeing those boxes!

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  • sheila

    Definitely going to try Grandma’s eggplant recipe, it’s one of the few veggies my girls will eat!

  • Sweet, I hope you like it! It’s very simple, but I love it. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • I’ll let you know, Aunty!

  • You really should put them to use. They start getting angry if you don’t. D:

  • Yes! Take photos and post them to Bento Central. ๐Ÿ˜€

  • The pink powder smells so good I can’t help but eat them. I <3 ume!

  • Glad you like it Julie! I’m probably eye-jabbing everyone on IE6 tho. lol

  • lol It’s going to take me forever to get to them all! D:

  • Haha, funny. That’s one one that my son refuses to eat.

  • Haha, well, IE6 people should upgrade their browser, so it’s their loss if they don’t ๐Ÿ˜›

  • Oh ! C’est trop joli ! Jโ€™organise justement un jeu sur le thรจme de la Saint-Valentin. Tu es la bienvenue si tu veux y participer : http://www.odelices.com/avc_reglement_24.php

  • HI…I’ve just started reading about making Bento boxes. How does the nori, or any other food stick to the rice? I’ve seen so many adoarable displays, but if this is in my children’s lunch box, how does it stay in place?

  • Pikko

    Hi Julie,

    Nori is very crisp and dry. Once it touches moisture it sticks like glue, so once it touches the rice, it’s basically stuck on.