Sunday, January 28, 2007

My Bento Boxes

A bento box for every occaison! Really, this is necessary, really! Actually, it sort of is, since you have meals of different sizes and different needs, particularly if you stay at work long enough such that all three meals of the day are eaten there.


Left: One of my favorite and most convenient lunch bentos. And it's extremely popular to boot, in all sorts of styles and promotions and icons. (I do want a Totoro bento, but there's another style I want for that, also popular and more rectangular.)

The double tiers are nice for separating out foods if you have a lot of variety, plus sealable lids for both tiers which is rare, and I really like bentos that come with chopsticks conveniently packed inside.

Right: Another favorite of mine, and a manly bento to boot (few bentos come in manly varieties, alas). Large capacity, single tier, but nice when you have a lot of one kind of dish plus a little variety on the side, like yakisoba and a shrimp tempura side. Also comes with chopsticks in the top, and the lid has a tight seal inside. The only downside is that the lid is not a latched one, but something you press down until it clicks on both sides, which makes one worry about breaking the little nubs on the side.... I'm sure it eventually will.

(Reminder to self: take Flickr photo when this finally arrives.) Links: This is another manly bento in the same style as "Dear Label" above, but now labeled "West Point", for some reason, but does have a latch-down lid.

Rechts: The perfect bento for hot foods, and for including soup. With four circular tiers, you usually don't need dividers inside to separate food. The bottom tier holds soup with a water-tight seal, the middle tier holds rice/noodles and has enough room if you want dumplings instead, and the top tiers... anything you want. Just don't store cold desert/fruit if you're storing hot stuff (duh). The bag can be used to tote it around vertically. This is a pricy bento, however, though many people swear by it, and for the right person this could be the last bento you ever need. I am not that right person. But I bought it anyways.

Sinistra: A good breakfast bento, this little blue bento has a lid with a good seal, although the lid is too domed to keep the contents of the removable dividers from spilling into each other, if they're small like cereal/grains, or juicy like strawberries. You need some Glad Press-and-Seal to deal with these cases. The dividers are cups but not as useable in other bentos.

Destra: Medium-sized Lockables containers make good bento boxes. (In fact, they do sell some containers that are specifically labeled for bento in Japan.) The seal is water-right when you lock down all four latches, and the lid is close enough so that non-juicy/liquid foods will stay apart from each other. Plus the dividers are square enough to be used in other bentos, like "Dear Label" and "West Point". If you are wise, you chose this for breakfast before you chose the happy blue melanine one. I am not wise.

(Reminder to self: take Flickr photo when this finally arrives.) Gauche: I believe this is a knock-off rectangular two-tier bento. It's all bright orange and is a kit, basically, and comes with matching containers that might fit inside, or at least will be nice side containers, and has a nice bag. If it wasn't all bright orange I might be able to use it with the cool-colored bento boxes I have, but it will work with a bright yellow box. Hmmmmm. Yet this is not the best orange bento you can buy, although it is a convenient "starter" kit. Shop around some more.

(Reminder to self: take Flickr photo when this finally arrives.) Droite: Now, this is worth having. it's a side dish bento, perfect for deserts, that has a sealable upper tier that fits nicely into the lower tier to semi-seal it, very rare for side bentos. Plus it's blue and it's got a penguin on it, which goes with the blue. How can you not like this bento? Well, I like this little bento. You might be able to use it for cereal.

Bento Box Summary

Marie Claire: Lunch, blue.
Dear Label, West Point: Lunch, manly, black.
Mr. Bento: Lunch or dinner, thermo, manly, own carrying bag, gray.
Little Blue: Breakfast/fruit, Glad press-and-seal, blue.
Lockable: Breakfast/fruit, clear (goes with anything).
Orange Knockoff: Lunch, desert side dishes, kit, bag.
Club Penguins: Desert, light blue.

(Gosh, I'm starting to use my blog as my main website for the storage of stuff. Probably because this is up all the time and my personal website is not reliable when I go on vacations and thus is difficult to load pictures up to, natürlich. Quite a shame, because I like the design of my own website... perhaps I'll just import it over here. It does involve a lot of brown.

Anyways, currently I'm being a magpie with bento items, and so this entry is a reminder of what I have and am going to have.)