Menu For Hope IV: Donate for a chance to win a bento maker's dream package

Just Bento is happy to announce that we’re donating a prize for Menu For Hope, now in its 4th year. Menu for Hope is an annual charity event contributed to by food bloggers around the world. It was instigated by Pim of Chez Pim, and this year’s regional European host is Fanny of foodbeam.

Menu For Hope IV will benefit the United Nations World Food Programme; this year’s donations have been earmarked for the school lunch programme in Lesotho, Africa.

We’re calling our prize: The Bento Maker’s Dream Package! continue reading...

About rice cookers

A heads up just in case you read Just Bento but not Just Hungry, you may be interested in the new post up there, Answering some rice cooker questions.

Bento no. 11: Gyuudon (beef bowl) bento with konnyaku

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Bento contents:

  • Gyuudon with konnyaku: Beef, onions and konnyaku on simmered in a sweet-savory sauce (220cal)
  • on 1 cup brown rice (220 cal)
  • Blanched greens (10 cal)
  • Pickled radish (5 cal)

Total calories (approx): 455 (how calories are calculated)

Time needed: 25 minutes total (15 the night before, 10 in the morning)

Type: Japanese

The top trick used here is setting aside some ingredients for a dinner dish to make the main part of this bento at the same time. continue reading...

Bento box of the week: Hand carved and lacquered Japanese elm

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Hey, a new series! Every week on or around Wednesday, I’ll be featuring a bento box or bento accessory that has caught my eye for some reason. I’ll try to stick to items that can be ordered online as much as possible, unless it’s something truly exceptional.

Important notice: This bento box can be selected as your prize in the Menu for Hope drawing! continue reading...

Bento archive list (1)

A list of bentos no. 1 to 30 featured so far on Just Bento. continue reading...

Bento no. 10: Vegan bento featuring kiriboshi daikon and chickpea fritters

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Bento contents:

  • Kiriboshi Daikon (dried daikon radish) fritters
  • Carrot and lemon salad
  • Boiled edamame

Total calories (approx): 380-400 (how calories are calculated)

Time needed: 25 minutes total (10 the night before, 15 in the morning)

Type: Fusion-vegan-gluten-free continue reading...

Bento tips via Twitter

onigirikorokoro.gifIf you are a Twitter user, I’ve started to post site updates and short bento or food related things there. I’ll try to update, er I mean tweet, at least several times a week, or whenever an idea strikes me that’s too short perhaps for a full post.

Update: I’ve divided my Twittering to two accounts. The @justbento has site updates for both Just Bento and Just Hungry, plus bento-related tweets occasionally, while @makiwi is where I tweet about whatever is on my mind, at random. So, follow one, or both if you dare!

continue reading...

The best Japanese bento books if you don't read Japanese

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There are lots of bento-related books published every year in Japan. While most of them have plenty of colorful pictures, some are too wordy to be really useful for people who don’t read Japanese. Here is a list of books that I have in my collection that I think would be very useful even if you don’t read the text. Most of these books reflect my preference for books about healthy, vegetable-centric bento, mainly aimed at adults.

I’ll be updating this page from time to time, so please check back occasionally. You can also see other, less annotated book recommendations in the Amazon Japan aStore. continue reading...