Kabocha salad, a bento lunch box classic

A colorful alternative to potato salad. This version is very crunchy and the taste of Summer kabocha is incredibly fruity and sweet.

The base is kabocha pumpkin, steamed and mashed.

With a sour seasoning.

Cucumber and nagaimo (raw yam) as garnish. I cut cubes and added to the mix. Let half a day in the fridge.

Serve chilled. It can be stored 2 or 3 days in the fridge, so you get the carotene loaded side dish for a few meals or as a lunch box item.

Joyeux Noël !!! Already opening boxes…

Whatever you do or don’t, I hope you will all enjoy the Réveillon Xmas Eve of the longest night of the year…

I’ve got new layer lacquered boxes (jubako) for the traditional Japanese New year food, or other occasions. I have not cleaned them yet, just back from the store.

Tadada… 2 wide trays.

Fans and flower. Peonies ?

Oh, that’s a garden.

Well, very classic. You can see many in this style.

This is more interesting. I was not sure there was not a mistake on the price tag… I got both, the 2 boxes for the price of coffee in a papercup at Crapbuck. It’s a recycle shop where everything still new in the box is super-cheap, and without the box that’s like that, given for one coin. 500 yen. It’s somewhere between 1/10th and 1/100th of new boxes in the nearby shops.

There is still the quality check ticket and indication it’s urushi (lacquerware). It seems to be of quality ? I can’t tell, I am a Beotian. I find it very stylish.

It’s not black but full of sparkles.
Cherry blossoms !

Home-bento du jour. No fuss.

There are simple days. And days of little sun, which is expected in this season. That’s a bento (lunch box), eaten at home.

Tamago-yaki, Japanese rollomelet. With nira.

photo-recipe of idiot-proof tamago-yaki(click here)

Steamed hakusai (napa cabbage).

Natto and wasabi.


Kabocha miso soup. I had skins of kabocha pumpkin as I took only the orange puree for another recipe. The skin is good too. Reheated in hot water, just added miso paste. It’s sweet and pumpkinesque.

Garden lunch : bento chirashi

The rose sushi goes to the park for lunch….

making the chirashi

Steamed : Okra, leek whites and a shiitake.

Raw sliced Japanse turnip.

Grilled : miso sawara mackerel , with kinome.
seikyozuke sawara

Ready to go under the Sun.

Midori okowa bento for flower time – Green tea rice lunchbox

Bento today. It’s a leisure lunch, a picnic for a park bench. I do it for the fun. For the pleasure of using nice boxes too.

I don’t live the lunchbox at work lifestyle. I don’t need to as most days, either I work at home or I can arrange my schedule to be back to eat.

Then, it’s inconvenient in a Japanese big city. There is no place to eat in business areas. No parks, you don’t have your own desk anywhere. In small towns, I have visited friends at their job, and all the staff stopped working for lunch break, so the office was turned into a dining room. No such thing in Osaka. That never stops, people take their break in turn, if they take it. You can eat in from of customers, not very professional. So if your only option is to eat your packed lunch standing in the company’s closet or in emergency staircase, it’s better to have a sandwich. It’s good for the mood to get out of the workplace for a few minutes, and there are countless delicious shokudo (small restaurants).

Green rice. The idea comes from the Shizuoka Gourmet’s eki-ben cha meshi.Okowa means it’s sticky rice, mochigome. It’s 50% sticky and 50 % brown rice here. I added a few used tea leaves and macha green tea powder diluted in water at the end.

Veggie side. Steamed carrot and green peppers, white beans with sweet chili sauce.

Protein side. A ball of ikanago (eel fish bait) with curry spices, rolled in bread crumbs and black sesame. Dices of konnyaku

The whole lunch with a crisp apple as a dessert.

Don’t forget to put the flower in the box. That will be nice to see it at lunch time.