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Yum-Yum Bentos on Sunrise

As I mentioned yesterday, I was scheduled for a brief appearance on Sunrise on Hawaii News Now to promote Yum-Yum Bento Box and the book signings I have coming up this weekend. The video is available online now at the Hawaii News Now website. Thank you very much to Terri and the Sunrise crew for having me on!

Miss Octopus Bento

I took photos of the bentos I made while I was back in the newsroom waiting for my turn on air. This one is Miss Octopus, my personal fave of my own bentos in the book. I originally made her back in April 2009. LiveJournal eventually contacted me to have her put into their Anthology! That was awesome. 😀

I have to admit I was surprised that I was able to do these bentos on time. I completed the assembly for all three in a total of 45 minutes. The fried chicken took some time to fry, but I’d had it marinating since last night. I also had to cook the broccoli (45 seconds in microwave steamer) and make the Potato Tuna Salad (boiled the potato last night), but after that, I put the whole thing together in 15 minutes.

Sandwich Cuties Bento

This one was very easy to make. I think I did this one in less than 10 minutes. My former bento class students will remember that I taught them how to make this one.


This last one is the one shown on the back of the book. I actually had to make modifications to it since I was in a hurry and I replaced the kabocha with carrot sticks, the quail eggs with cherry tomatoes, the Sesame Chicken Nuggets with leftover meat jun, and the pear with apple. This cut down on prep time considerably, but in my hurry I didn’t realize that the lettuce was showing so much. Eep!

In the book, Maki fries her spaghetti noodle antennae, which I tried to do, but failed at. I put the oil back on the burner and for some ridiculous reason I put it on high. Then I went to go get dressed. I came back and the kitchen was completely smoky and the oil was black. Boy am I an idiot sometimes. I had to open windows and doors and fan the smoke out.

Tomorrow I will have book signings at Marukai Dillingham at 10 AM and Marukai Ward at 1 PM. If I don’t burn my house down making sample bentos, hopefully I’ll see some of you there. Maybe I’ll bring my hoodlums…

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  • SIG

    Hi Pikko, just wanna tell you that I enjoyed your book very much. 🙂 You girls did a great job.

  • leslie

    Congratulations to Kristin and J-lyn! You are sooo lucky! 😀

    I love the bentos from the book! I’m sure I couldn’t put them together that quickly! Especially the Octopus in the first one. Another TV appearance certainly is fabulous! I wish I lived in Hawaii so that I could have you sign my book. Good luck, and don’t get carpal tunnel, lol

  • You were born to bento! Great work!

  • LadySaotome

    Those are great! And you’re very lucky about that oil – my sister did the exact same thing last Thursday and ended up setting our kitchen on fire! The damage was minimal but we still have to replace cabinets and our stove – and we’ve been scrubbing soot of the walls for days!

  • Wow, you managed to put them all together in such a sort time and yet they look so nice! I love the Miss Octopus especially!

    Congrats on your book signing! How I wish I’m in Hawaii too!

  • Kelly Bolduc

    Awww your caterpillar is so freaking cute! You could make Absolem the blue caterpillar from Alice in Wonderland, I vote you should!

  • Great job! The interview was quite entertaining, and the host seemed to really love the bentos you made. It is funny how often people think that there is not enough food in a bento box. We are so used to eating massive portions, no wonder Americans have a problem with obesity!

  • Destiny

    If I may ask when packing fried chicken in a bento does it retain it’s crispness or does it get kinda ..rubbery?

  • Thanks SIG! I’m happy to hear that!

  • Thanks for being such a dedicated reader, Leslie! <3

  • Aww, thank you Asfora!

  • Yikes!!! I’m so glad I didn’t do that, I’d have been in such deep doodoo!

  • I know, I was shocked, haha!

  • Ohh, neat idea! I should have a bitten mushroom too. lol

  • I know, omg. I go to places now to buy a plate lunch and it’s like 8 or 9 bucks and can feed me and the three kids and I’ll still have leftovers!

  • Chicken karaage isn’t really crispy or at least, this recipe isn’t that crispy. I ate it later in the day and it wasn’t rubbery. That probably happens when something is overfried.

  • Delicia Jackson

    I am new to bento making- and i just ordered your book! I wish i had found this earlier in my daughters lives- they are teenagers now- but they have enjoyed what we have done so far. I look forward to learning new recipes 🙂