Today we are making a bento based on the ridiculously famous (in Japan) mascot character of Kumamoto Prefecture, Kumamon!
It’s pretty popular in Japan for a town or prefecture to have a mascot, but Kumamon’s popularity extends well beyond Kyushu. Kumamon can be found in any merchandise form you have ever imagined.
Maybe after making this bento you will feel inspired to travel out to Kumamoto to meet him?
- sauteed pork with onions (Hitomi sauteed onions in soy sauce, sake, sugar, and ginger and then added pork. You can use anything you’d like instead of this)
- a Japanese omelette (http://www.japanesecooking101.com/tamagoyaki-recipe/ …Or just a bit of scrambled eggs will do. The important this is to have different elements to your bento)
- hot dog (Cut the hot dog into 5 cm chunks and make 2 cm deep cuts on one side of each chunk, slicing it like you would a pie, if you were trying to cut 6 pieces from it, then boiled the hot-dog to make the flower shape above)
- potato salad- or any little salad thing you have
- sliced carrot- slice it about 1 cm thick and boil it to make it soft. (you can boil it when you boil the hot dog)
- imitation crab
- cherry tomato
- slice cheese
Things you will need:
- A bento box - tupper ware also works
- A knife
- chopping board
- scissors (that you can use for food)
- food picks
- paper cupcake wrappers
- tooth picks
- saran wrap
- a straw
Get out your ingredients and make sure nothing is still moving.
Make a big rice ball by putting rice into a saran wrap and squeezing it into shape. Make smaller balls for the ears of your Kumamon.
After you have made your balls, take seaweed and carefully wrap it around. Use the saran wrap to stick it on more firmly.
Take the imitation crab meat and try and unroll it so it is flat.
Try and find something that you can use to stamp out circles for the checks.
Hitomi used the top to a bottle of dressing to cut out rosy cheeks.
Cut out the pieces of your face with a toothpick. Use a straw to make a little circle, and then use the straw on that circle to cut out a crescent shape for the eyebrows of your Kumamon.
Use scissors to cut out the seaweed for the face.
Take the rice balls and use put them in in the shape of the face. Take your other elements and place them around your bear. Use the paper cupcake holders to put in each side dish. Skewering the edamame onto plastic picks makes things look cuter.
You can also cut shelled edamame diagonally like below.
Take a dab of mayonnaise and use it to affix the pieces of cheese to your Kumamon head.
And there you have it! You have created the Kumamon bento!
Bring it to work or school and people might be intrigued!