shikai maki bento

23 05 2010

thank you all for sharing so many wonderful links in your contest entries!  i had a wonderful time this weekend browsing through them — some took me to blogs i already know and love, and some took me to totally new sites i had never even heard of.

tomorrow’s bento has a few sources of inspiration:  one is the luxirare shikai maki bento that brenda posted in the comments, and another is the beautiful work of my good bento pal jenn (bentobird).  i tried to echo the natural elegance that her boxes epitomize, and it seemed fitting to incorporate her style into this meal, since her boxes often include sushi.  for the sushi component, i tried my hand at this interesting square-format sushi (using a handy how-to video on youtube!).  my roll contains shiso rice, kiwi strips, cucumber, and fried tofu… i need some more practice (the kiwi layer, in particular, didn’t hold its structure because the kiwi was so slippery), but i have the general idea and am sure i can improve!

another source of inspiration this week was a long-postponed first trip to minamoto kitchoan, the fine purveyor of gorgeous wagashi (japanese sweets) located on manhattan’s chi-chi 5th avenue.  here is a photo from their display case (these are plastic, but do look just like some of the items they are selling):

alongside tomorrow’s box i have a shobumochi packaged to look like a beautiful iris.  this will cap off my dessert fruit section (kiwi slices, pomegranate seeds, two juicy blackberries and one ripe cherry), which will in turn balance my veggie section (peppery arugula, a tiny sweet red pepper, two asparagus tips, two carved takuwan flowers, and a quail egg). to fill up the empty space in the box, i placed a bottle of soy dressing and a pair of disposable chopsticks (both decorated with washi tape in complementary colors).  the box is packed in a pretty red-patterned furoshiki that i received from another sweet bento friend.

— ♥ —

getting back to the contest… i edited the entry comments in order to number them, and then used the random.org website to generate a random integer from 1 to 95:

the winning entry, number 79, is abby of totoro bento!  congratulations!  please get in touch with your mailing information and i’ll mail your prize package right away.


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27 responses

23 05 2010
sheri

Wow, just stunning! Speechless. I am so envious of your bento…wish I could sneak over there and snatch it away🙂
Congrats to abby too!

23 05 2010
sheri

And Minamoto Kitchoan? Drool!

23 05 2010
gamene

ha, i can’t believe i lived in manhattan for five years and never checked it out until today! it’s beautiful there, and the ladies are so nice.

thanks for your comment, so sweet and supportive as always… i wish i could share this box with you, too! sigh, when are they inventing the thingy like on star trek where we can just beam each other food?! (the “replicator” – i’m a dork! http://memory-alpha.org/wiki/Replicator)

23 05 2010
Laura @ PARING DOWN

You always inspire me. Such beautiful bento!!!
🙂 Laura

23 05 2010
gamene

thanks laura, that is so nice of you to say!

24 05 2010
kevin

wooo, abby is gonna be so happy! X)

sudden craving for sushiiiiii! n the golden egg….

24 05 2010
KidsDreamWork

Wow, I love this bento! Especially the purple and green square sushi, the colours & patterns are so nicely done!🙂

24 05 2010
gamene

thanks kidsdreamwork, the pattern still needs some work, but this is definitely one of my favorite color combos!

24 05 2010
Debra

Hi Megan,

Your bentos are on another level! Spectacular presentation and…WAGASHI! Um, yes please!

Congrats to Abby!

That’s all I got…. I’m speechless and stunned at this beautiful lunch! (in a good way)

24 05 2010
gamene

thanks debra, that is so flattering… you know you are one of my bento “mentors,” i don’t think i could ever surpass your teachings (not that i would want to)! sending you a virtual wagashi bite…

24 05 2010
Pipaw

This bento is a piece of art, seriously!

24 05 2010
gamene

thanks pipaw😀

24 05 2010
Bentobird/Jenn

I am in awe of this bento, megan! these sushi rolls are truly edible art, just incredible! Thank you so much for your lovely comments and link…how nice! You inspire me always with your great talent and creativity, the sunny spirit that shines through each bento and your ever-expanding culinary range and skills!

Congrats Abby and enjoy the amazing assortment of bento gifts🙂

24 05 2010
gamene

thanks jenn, my pleasure to link to your amazing work… you are a constant source of inspiration for me too, and our styles are different enough that trying to incorporate some more natural and flowing elements was a challenge for me and gave me even MORE respect for what you do! isn’t this community — and the exchange of ideas and support — wonderful?!

24 05 2010
Lia Chen

Excellent bento! Megan, once again you show us how talented you are. You give us so much inspiration. So lucky that we can see your perfect creations. You are always so details in everything, perfectionist if I can say🙂

24 05 2010
gamene

haha lia, i am definitely a perfectionist, which is why i’m not 100% satisfied with these sushi pieces!! but it’s important to keep track of one’s progress, and if you don’t document where you started then you can’t see how far you’ve come.

as far as inspiration, you know that’s a two-way street dear, and bentolicious is one of the sites i absolutely *rely* on for ideas and to get my bento juices flowing!!

24 05 2010
Susan Yuen

Wow, where do I start!? What a gorgeous sushi bento! I am always amazed at how talented you are not only making the food but your artful arrangement as well. Absolutely stunning!

24 05 2010
gamene

thanks susan, what a nice comment, i’m blushing!

25 05 2010
mook

oh! this bento is so elegant. I love the color combination. It’s delicate and elaborate.
I love it!

25 05 2010
gamene

thank you so much mook! this one was definitely trying to be more adult and sophisticated than i usually go for…

25 05 2010
tatabonita

Pinch me Megan! Those are the most beautiful sushi I’ve ever seen. And I love your photo’s background😀. Congrats for the giveaway winner😀

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