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The Bento Cookbook: The Artful Japanese Lunch Box

The Bento Cookbook: The Artful Japanese Lunch Box

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The Bento Cookbook: The Artful Japanese Lunch Box

ratings:
2.5/5 (3 ratings)
Length:
103 pages
32 minutes
Publisher:
Released:
Aug 12, 2014
ISBN:
9781310384738
Format:
Book

Description

Japanese food is definitely delicious and healthy to boot. Their bento box dishes are also artistic and epitomize eye candy. With this bento box book recipe, you will get to learn how to pack, mix and match Japanese recipes for your hubby's, kids or your lunch box!

Publisher:
Released:
Aug 12, 2014
ISBN:
9781310384738
Format:
Book

About the author

Martha Stone is a chef and also cookbook writer. She was born and raised in Idaho where she spent most of her life growing up. Growing up in the country taught her how to appreciate and also use fresh ingredients in her cooking. This love for using the freshest ingredients turned into a passion for cooking. Martha loves to teach others how to cook and she loves every aspect of cooking from preparing the dish to smelling it cooking and sharing it with friends. Martha eventually moved to California and met the love of her life. She settled down and has two children. She is a stay at home mom and involves her children in her cooking as much as possible. Martha decided to start writing cookbooks so that she could share her love for food and cooking with everyone else.


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The Bento Cookbook - Martha Stone

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Introduction

The Japanese lunch box is famed for its detailed ministration to create artful edible masterpieces. Also called bento, the term refers to a single-portion take out which holds rice, meat or fish and vegetables. Bento boxes are usually contained in box-shaped containers. They are readily available in convenience stores and railway stations as people can just grab them and go to eat their lunch. However, many Japanese homemakers spend a lot of time as well as energy in preparing bento for their family members and this gave rise to the elaborately designed styling of bento called the Kyaraben. The kyaraben is a lunchbox unlike any other because they are typically decorated to look from ordinary everyday items, animals and popular characters from Japanese anime, manga as well as video games. Although some people think that bento is geared to young people, they are widely received among Japanese adults and have already been an important part of the traditional and popular Japanese culture.

The History of Bento Boxes

Bento did not really originate from Japan. It was first recorded during the Song Dynasty in China and was carried to Japan by Chinese travelers. On the other hand, other Asian countries also have their own version of bento boxes. For instance, Taiwan also has its own version of bento which is termed as bendong which means convenient.

Bento has a very long origin and it can be traced back to the Kamakura Period (1185 to 1333) when cooked rice is stored in a small bag and taken conveniently by people wherever they go. It was only during the Azuchi-Momoyama Period (1568 to 1600) when lacquered boxes were used to contain bento. However, it was during the Edo Period when bento boxes became more widespread and refined. Many travelers during the Edo Period carry a koshibento (waist bento) that consists of onigiri (rice balls). Bento boxes are basically sold in restaurants and served during the intermissions of their traditional stage plays Kabuki and Noh as well as during festivals like Hanami (cherry blossom viewing party) and Hinamatsuri (Doll's Day).

During the late 1800s, the first ekiben (train station bento) was sold to meet the demands of train passengers during the time. Moreover, employees and students also carry bento with them as school lunches are not yet provided during this time.  However, there was a decline in the preparation of bento during the Taisho Period (1912 to 1926) and after World War II but it was only in the 1980s when the movement of carrying bento boxes became popular once again.

Characteristics of Bento

Today, bento is stored in all types of containers and although there is an immense change of the type of containers used in bento, the components of bento still remained the same all throughout the centuries. Bento contains bite-sized pieces of food items that can be easily eaten using chopsticks. In most cases, bento boxes contain a cup of cooked white rice or rolls; noodles flavored with different spices, meat and fish; vegetable side dishes; and slices of fruits.

Bento boxes are famous for their presentation. The food items are usually arranged intricately and the food items are usually designed to

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