I’ll admit that what you will see below was more carefully assembled (to say nothing of being more psychedelic) than my lunchbox usually is, but, in the bento scheme of things, I’m not sure that it counts as being especially kawaii. (If, at this point, you are sporting a blank or quizzical stare, then I should explain that bento refers to a packed meal common in Japanese cuisine and kawaii to the cuteness thereof – and some bentos are, indeed, tremendously cute).
The call to create a bento began (as many things do these days) as a series of exchanges on Twitter, resulting in an invitation from Chef Pandita to take up the bento challenge – a mission that has been variously tagged on Twitter as #bentomadness, #bentocuteness, #badassbento and (my own particular favourite) #halfassbento.
Lunch is served, bento-style
In some ways, it was as if a country field day had come to the city.
At least that’s what I thought when I saw the kiddies crazy golf with the Mayo landmarks. A holy water bottle represented the Marian Shrine at Knock and a toy aeroplane the international airport nearby, and knocked they both were with great regularity by the junior would-be golfers.
Getting it together: rhubarb and potatoes
Rhubarb and potatoes.
Both commonly grown in Irish gardens but it would, to say the least of it, be a rare occurrence to find them cosying up together on an Irish dinner plate. Even though rhubarb is, technically, a vegetable, we’re far more likely to consign it to dessert, where copious amounts of sugar soften its natural sharpness.
But y’know what? If spuds can be used in desserts, then why not rhubarb for dinner? Certainly, if you read Mary Prior’s delightful book, Rhubarbaria, you won’t be left short of ideas for unusual rhubarb dishes, both savoury and sweet.