Thursday, 30 July 2009

Picnic bento: two versions

We are experiencing a heat wave here in the Pacific Northwest. Max of 31-36(!) and min temperatures of still 20-21 degrees C at night. Coupled with high humidity and no wind = pretty hellish weather. This is set to last for this entire week. Eeks. Of course, there are folks who enjoy the high summer and make the most of it with picnics and outdoor dining, swimming and plenty of iced water and ice cream.

I much prefer last week when it was warm and sunny but at a decent temperature (around 23-26 in the day). I packed two picnics last week, one for lunch and one for dinner; both were eaten at parks. The first was much more simple than the other, since that was made a day after I returned from Hong Kong and I was all jetlagged. The second one took more time and effort and looked better. Both were delicious though and we certainly enjoyed the fresh air and fresh food.

The first picnic (at Ron Basford Park, Granville Island): blueberries, applewood smoked cheddar, Swiss cheese, cherries, honey ham and Turkish bread. Local blueberries and cherries in season are THE BEST.

The second picnic (at Trout Lake):

Onigiri, chicken nuggets, cherries

Inarizushi, cherry tomatoes

I could never fill up all 3 tiers of this jyubako box for two person. I used the third tier to hold chopsticks, soy sauce and some napkins.

I suppose my point of this post is to encourage people to pack a healthy and delicious picnic, using a variety of colours and food groups, and enjoy the summer. Even if you don't have the time to do cute cut-outs and pretty arrangements so often associated with bento, it can still be a healthy, delicious and enjoyable.

Using regular containers or your bento boxes also help reduce waste, compared to grabbing sandwiches and salads packed in disposable plastic containers or wrapping at most supermarkets. Just remember to keep perishables (e.g. cheese, ham, salads) cold in a cooler or insulated bag, and with cool packs. So go on, pack a picnic, whether simple or more elaborate, and enjoy the summer :)


diva said...

your trout lake bento is just beautiful! i could eat inarizushi all day cause they're just so yummy! x

Kjen said...

LOL I love chicken nuggets! Sundenly I'm very hungry...;)

I'm always inspired to by your lunches - taking the some of the simplest dishes and making them look worthy of a gourmet feast always encourages to return to the kitchen.

delightfullysweet said...

Thanks for some great ideas for my next picnic! I never thought of bringing bento boxes!

Cookie said...

What a creative way to use Bento boxes! We usually bring just tupperware but these are much cuter!

kokostiletto said...

this looks so good.... my mouth is watering !!!

noobcook said...

It's a great idea to picnic with bentos and inaris. Definitely tastier and more interesting than sandwiches! :)

Nilmandra said...

Thanks for the kind comments, folks! I love sandwiches for picnics too but a little presentation and planning makes a real difference and add something extra to a nice day out :)

Mrs Ergül said...

the second bento is so classy! I love how it looks!

Nilmandra said...

Mrs Ergul: Thanks! I love the second one too but it does take more effort :)

Handprint said...

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