We finally watched “Ponyo on the Cliff.” I’m not going to review the movie, but I didn’t feel the same excitement as when I watched Totoro or Laputa or Nausicaa.
Since I make a lot of Studio Ghibli themed bento, I actually received a couple of emails requesting me to make Ponyo bento. But I can’t make something that I haven’t watched. So after watching Ponyo, I finally got to make one.
Bento #62: Ponyo bento
Created and eaten on: 9/14/2009
When we were watching the movie, it seemed like my boyfriend especially liked the parts when Ponyo’s sisters gather around. So I decided to make Ponyo and her sisters.
First I put sauteed renkon (lotus root) at the bottom of the bento box. I mixed rice with black sesame seed and a little bit of salt, then put it in the bento box to represent the water. I cooked snowpeas, cut them using the tip of a diamond shaped cookie cutter and put them around the edge of rice. Then I boiled broccoli (stems as well), sprinkled salt and sesame seeds on and put it at the lower part of bento. I sliced and cut the stems into circles to create water bubbles. I cooked some asparagus and put it in the bento, hiding the bottom part of it with broccoli.
For meat, I cooked thinly sliced pork I got at a Japanese super market and seasoned with yakiniku (yakiniku means Japanese BBQ) sauce on lettuce. The meat was for shabu shabu, so it was cut very very thin. The meat is sooooo thin, it’s great for a quick meal. I believe they use a special slicer at Japanese butcher, so I’m not sure if you can have it cut so thinly at a regular butcher. You can thaw it and cook it really fast. Then I put renkon over the meat so it’d be easier to put “Ponyo’s sisters” later. I wasn’t sure if the pork was enough meat for my boyfriend so I also made fish and anemone-ish thing with sausage.
When I was drawing a sketch, I knew I wanted to make Ponyo’s sisters with cherry tomatos. To make sure the ham would stay on the cherry tomatoes, I sliced the tips off. For Ponyo’s body, I peeled the outer skin of fake crab meat (the red part) and cut it to the shape of her body, and I cut ham for Ponyo and her sisters’ face. For their hair, I mixed an egg with soy sauce and made an egg sheet. (see “how to make an egg sheet”) I was hoping the color would be more brown/red, but it came out light brown… I didn’t have the time to make another egg sheet, so I just trimmed it with pair of scissors. I so regret not making an egg sheet the night before. For Ponyo’s eyes I sliced kamaboko (fish cake) and cut it out with a cutter I got at Otakon. I used a very small seaweed cutter to cut out Ponyo’s pupils, nose and mouth. For Ponyo’s sisters’ eyes I just put black sesame seeds.
To finish it off, I cut out cheese with a star shaped cutter for starfish, and a couple of circles and added to the bubbles. I originally wanted to add enoki and carrot but I ran out of time.
As you can see, this Ponyo is flat. I usually don’t make a 2-D bento, but I think this one came out okay. I also like how Ponyo’s sisters turned out. It was pretty easy to make too. But I really wish I could’ve re-made the hair though… argh.
- ham, egg sheet, fake crab meat, fish cake and seaweed
- cherry tomato, ham and egg sheet
Fish and anemone: