Sunday, November 15, 2009

A Little Bit of Bento

I had to laugh when Sheri at Happy Little Bento tagged me to post about what I do with the little bits and pieces leftover from making Bento.

Truth be told, I most often make lunch fairly late at night, when I'm tired. For some reason I think eating helps me stay awake, so the Bento Scraps usually end up in my tummy. That's not to say I don't have "plans" on what I think I should do with all the scraps, so I guess that's what I'll post about.

Depending on what I'm packing, and how decorative it is, the bits and pieces can vary a lot. This is a pictures I took of what my kitchen counter looked like one night after making Little K's Bento.

I called it "Bento Remains" - or as my Flickr friend gamene calls it "Bento Carnage".

But not all days are like that. When I'm packing leftovers, and whole pieces of fruit and vegetables, the leftovers are pretty minimal.

This is today's lunch. Leftover Potstickers with strawberries, blackberries, tangerine, tomatoes and cucumber flowers. The box I used is just a sandwich box found at the grocery store. I love the peek a boo heart.

And this is the only mess that remained.

So if you are thinking about getting started with a Bento Lunch (you know who you are) - give it a try. They don't always take a long time to assemble - my husband even said last night how fast this one came together. You don't have to have any special Bento boxes, and if you don't want to re-use or re-cycle your scraps - feel better knowing that mine often end up in the trash.

No pressure - go ahead - give it a whirl.

Since this all started with a tag - here are my thoughts on making use of Bento Leftovers:

1) Bread - I love feeding the birds outside my kitchen window, and it seems the bird feeders are always empty, so I break up the crusts into bits and toss them into a dish that gets put out for the birds in the morning. I don't throw it directly on the ground (gets too mushy and attracts ants).

2) Nori Seaweed - I keep 2 bags in the fridge. One for full sheets that I use for cut outs and punches, and the Other for smaller bits (or cutting mistakes). I love the peppery flavor of Nori and the little bits can be sprinkled on rice or veggies for a little contrast.

3) Cheese - This is one thing I don't usually eat up on the spot, probably because little K likes Swiss, which is not my favorite. I love the idea of keeping the bits in the fridge to use on eggs, or grilled sandwiches. We have a Hermit Crab that loves cheese, so he usually gets a treat from what's left.

4) Cold Cuts/Lunch Meat - Chop up into small pieces and keep in the freezer. Add to eggs, fried rice or Soup Stock.

5) Fruits - If I don't use the entire fruit (plum, apple etc), I usually make up a snack box (nothing fancy, just sliced or chunked). It either gets eaten after school, or in the car on the way to an activity. I'll add some cheese or crackers to the snack box just before we leave.

6) Vegetable or fruit peels - Veggie peels can also be kept in the freezer to be used in Soup Stock. I wish I had a compost pile, but it's still on the "to do" list, so these usually get tossed, or given to our pet crab or parrot.

I'm going to tag
MandLmom at Pigs do Fly next and ask her to share what she does with her bento leftovers!

Once you accept the tag, the rules are simple:

1) Please link back to the person who tagged you and add your name to the "tagged list" below.

2) When you have answered the question (which can be in any style/format you like), nominate another (one will do) fellow blogger (who is not already on the list) and pass the tag to your nominee.

If you (the selected nominee) has already answered this question in an earlier post (well done), then your job is very easy - just link the tag to your earlier post and pass the tag on as per item nos. 1 and 2 above. Alternatively you can update it (if you wish). Have fun :)



[Ps. No cute picture with this tag unless someone can generously suggest one which would be most appreciated! Hint, hint…anyone wanna sponsor or is just creative? All credits will be given.]


  1. Thanks for the post, and the informative visuals! Loved your take on it!

  2. hi, good idea about feeding breadcrumbs to birds. Over here, it'll probably attract the rats or cats first!! enjoyed your sharing :)

  3. Beautiful bento!!! It's fun reading what others do with leftovers. So many great ideas. BTW your butternut squash curry soup loves divine!

  4. Hi Karina! I love your blog and have a fun award for you... please stop by to pick it up!

    Thanks, Sheri

    Happy Little Bento

  5. I have an award for you, please stop by to collect it