Bento and Kyaraben

Bento is a boxed lunch available in Japan, originally a home packed lunch in a neatly packed box and containing rice, meat, vegetable, egg, fish pickles etc..The box is partitioned and actually the food arrangement is always pleasing to look at.
You can buy Bento everywhere in Japan, any train station has a variety available and I often buy one for lunch when I am getting on the Shinkansen for a longer ride.
You can also get them in restaurants and as takeaway from some restaurants.   There are some really great lunch boxes to be bought here, complete with small compartments to make your own Bento box to take to work each day..  Every shape, size and design you can think of.

Then we come to Kyaraben or Character Bento – a whole new world of making lunch… with food arranged as cartoon characters, animals, and plants.  I am 100% certain I don’t have the patience to do this, but it is pretty cool..
Initially invented to get kids to eat their food, but now there is whole industry here making tools to make cute Kyaraben. You can get animal rice ball makers, Nori punches, bread cutters , vegetable animals. and much more.IMG_3882

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