Bento #80: Santa Totoro!

December 31, 2010

in bento,studio ghibli

It’s a little late but with all the blizzard stuff going on, and going up to Boston for a couple of days to hang out with Derek’s sister’s family, I finally found the time to post this.

Bento #80: Santa Totoro!

Bento #80: Santa Totoro!
Created and eaten on: 12/25/2010

I can’t believe it’s been a year since I made Bento #31: Totoro snowman last year but it was that time of year again! I was going to make some Christmasy dinner on the 24th but ended up making sushi instead. (It’s just so easy and yummy!) So I decided to make a Christmas themed bento the next day.

I made beef soboro (see “how to make soboro“) and sauteed renkon (lotus root) first, then put it on the bottom of the bento box. And I put acorns made with hot dog and meat balls pinned together with uncooked pasta.

Bento #80: Santa Totoro

These acorns are so easy and delicious!

I was going to make the usual “asparagus wrapped with bacon” but I was out of asparagus, so I wrapped lettuce and enoki mushroom with bacon and cooked it on a pan. I couldn’t really think of anything wintery, so I wanted to use the bacon veggie rolls as a bonfire. Now that I think about it, maybe bonfire wasn’t so wintery… but it was easier than making a fire place. :P I peeled carrots with a peeler and sauteed them with sesame seed oil and placed it on the bonfire for the fire.

Bento #80: Santa Totoro

Peeled carrot can be easily cooked and add color to your bento.

For the Christmas tree, I molded mashed potato into a cone shape, and stuck cooked broccoli on it. Then I decorated with loose corn and carrot bits. After I sprinkled the tree with Parmesan cheese, I layered a cheese single, cut out a star shape, put uncooked pasta on the star and stuck it on the top of the tree.

Bento #80: Santa Totoro!

It was so much fun to make this Christmas tree.

Bento #80: Santa Totoro

Tiny little cheese star

I made mini-Totoro with a quail egg and put it next to the tree. (see “how to make mini-Totoro with quail egg“)

Bento #80: Santa Totoro

Mini-Totoro looks surprised to see the huge tree

After everything was in the place, I made Totoro with rice (see “how to make Totoro with rice“). I wanted to make him stand up, so I modified it and shaped the rice into an egg shape. I made his ears and put them on his head securing them with uncooked pasta. Then I made a Santa hat using half of a grape tomato, wrapped cut cheese, and put a round piece of cheese on the top of tomato, pinning it with uncooked pasta.

Bento #80: Santa Totoro

The cheese on the hat kept uncurling. It's hard to make a bento that works from 360 degrees.

I didn’t really do a sketch or plan for this bento, and I think it shows. :P  I liked the broccoli / mashed potato Christmas tree though. It was really easy to make. If I had radishes, I would’ve made snow flakes (see “how to make snow flakes“) to dress the bento up.

Today is the 31st of December 2010, and looking back the year, a LOT happened this year. Bento workshop, PAX East, 3 days of Ghibli feast, Noby Noby Boy miracle happened in Canada, PAX Prime (Day 1, Day 2, Day 3), etc…  And the most memorable event was definitely the two week trip to Japan with Derek! We’ve done things we never thought we would. We went to the Ghibli Museum and watched “Mei and Kitten Bus” together. We ate the real Totoro cream puffs! In Yakushima, we got into the outdoor hot spring completely naked, did a 10-hour hike to Joumonsugi, stood on Taiko-iwa in Yakushima. In Nara, Derek got swarmed by hungry deer and bitten by one of them. But the MOST memorable moment for me and Derek this year was definitely our engagement. Derek proposed to me in front of Laputa robot at the Ghibli museum. It was just so perfect for us. We know we’ll be happy together for a very long time and the Laputa robot will make sure we will. And we were so grateful for everyone’s kind words to our engagement.

I haven’t thought of a New Year’s resolution yet… but “making bento” is definitely one of them. :D And I’d love to make more plush next year.

I’d like to thank my blog readers for your support in 2010! I wish everyone a wonderful & delicious year!

For more pictures of my bento, visit Bento! set and Bento details! set on my flickr page. And for other food related photo, check out Food Stuff collection!

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

MichelleNo Gravatar December 31, 2010 at 5:41 pm

The bento is too adorable! I especially loved the egg Chu-totoro. Too cute! Your blog is fabulous and I’m sure you’ll have many more wonderful bentos for next year! Happy New Years!


NinaZer0No Gravatar December 31, 2010 at 6:21 pm

I just wanted to say a huge Thank You for sharing so many wonderful things with us. With the fabulous bento’s, excellent lessons and wonderful news (Congratulations, by the way!!!), here’s wishing you an even more fabulous 2011!!!!


Jessi @ Quirky CookeryNo Gravatar December 31, 2010 at 8:49 pm

Oh my! I’m in absolute love with that Christmas tree! Christmas is over but I can guarantee I’ll be adapting that idea to make it work for something else long before the holiday shows up again. I have to. It’s too good not to. :D


anonNo Gravatar December 31, 2010 at 10:31 pm

amazing bento, as usual *_*
how creative!

oh and,
happy new years!!


ShaunanigunsNo Gravatar January 1, 2011 at 6:07 pm

Zomg. I Love it!
You finally watched The Secret of Kells, I’m hoping for a bento inspired by it. My two year old son is not a tv person, but is obsessed with that movie…and anything by Miyazaki of course!
Especially Ponyo.
We gave him a little green bucket and a red wind up goldfish for the holidays, he plays with it more than the bike my dad got him!
Happy New Year!


SkammieNo Gravatar January 2, 2011 at 4:36 am

Thanks for always keeping us entertained and teaching us lots! Happy New Year!~


boboNo Gravatar January 6, 2011 at 3:12 am

Wow, Totoro! thats the word i can think of now..
its a brilliant idea to use mashed potato and broccoli to make the xmas tree…

I made a simple bread Totoro bento too.. I loved Totoro too..

Happy New Year and Congrats too!


BentoNo Gravatar January 12, 2011 at 8:39 am

so kawaii totoro bento!! These bentos are too cute to eat!!


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