how-to

Bento 101 (Getting Into the Bento Making Habit) Part 5: Keeping it going

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Welcome to the last lesson of Bento 101: Getting Into The Bento Habit. In this lesson we’ll talk about the best reasons to get into the bento making lifestyle, and some tips for keeping it going. continue reading...

Bento 101 (Getting into the Bento Making Habit) Part 4:The Power Of the Bento Stash

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Welcome to Part 4 (which is actually the 5th lesson) of Bento 101! If you have been following along on schedule, by now you should have packed a bento and brought it along to work or school. How was the experience for you? Was it too much work or doable? Did you run into any problems during transit (such as your box leaking) or during lunch (such as your co-workers trying to steal your lunch or making comments)? Above all, is it something you see yourself doing regularly? If the answer to the last question is yes, then you’re well on your way to becoming a bento convert.

The theme of this lesson is about something that will enhance your bentos in many ways… continue reading...

Pinning bento ideas on Pinterest, and a social media roundup

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About my new Pinterest board dedicated to bento ideas, plus a social media roundup. continue reading...

Bento 101 mid-term summary and upcoming lessons

Catching up on what we’ve covered so far, and looking ahead to the rest of the course. continue reading...

Bento 101 (Getting Into the Bento Making Habit): Part 2b: The right kind of bento box for you

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Welcome back to the 3rd lesson in Bento 101: Getting Into the Bento Making Habit. If you’ve been following along, by now you should have a list of foods you like to eat that you consider to be packable for lunch, as well as experimented with putting a meal in a box. If you’re just joining us, there’s still plenty of time to catch up!

In Part 2b we’re going to continue thinking about the all important question of the container or containers we want to bring our lunches in. The type of container that is ideal for you depends primarily on the types of foods you want to bring for lunch. This is one of the main reasons why I had you make a list of foods that you’d like to pack for lunch in Assignment 1. The food you want to pack should dictate the type and size of container you need, not the other way around. continue reading...

Bento 101 (Getting Into the Bento Making Habit) Part 2a: What do I put it in?

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Hi Bento 101 followers! Hopefully you have at least gotten a start on the list of your favorite, bento/packed lunch-friendly foods as described in the first lesson. You may want to keep the list lying around and add to it as inspiration strikes. This approach works pretty well for me, and it’s actually how I think up up the bento-friendly recipes I add to this site.

Let’s move on to the next topic: what to put your bento lunch in. We will get into more detail about this next week, since many people in my experience get stuck on this point. Some people go out and get a bento box and find it too small, or too big, or just not usable for some reason. Others look at the tiny looking boxes pictured online and think, “no way am I going to be full eating just that”. Then there are people who want to lose or maintain their weights with bento lunches and think that getting a tiny one is the answer. In other words, there’s quite a bit of confusion. continue reading...

A quick note for vegetarians and vegans regarding the first assignment (Bento101)

I’ve seen some discussion in the comments and elsewhere about whether the bento-friendly foods form posted with the first lesson can be used by vegans or vegetarians. I’m not a vegetarian myself, but I eat like one about 70% of the time, and I certainly think that the form is usable.

For lacto- or lacto-ovo vegetarians it’s pretty straightforward. You’d put things like cheese and other dairy products in the Protein column. continue reading...