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!
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.
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. I peeled carrots with a peeler and sauteed them with sesame seed oil and placed it on the bonfire for the fire.
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.
I made mini-Totoro with a quail egg and put it next to the tree. (see “how to make mini-Totoro with quail egg“)
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.
I didn’t really do a sketch or plan for this bento, and I think it shows. 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. 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!