Wednesday, May 15, 2013

New Series: Everyday People, Everyday Bentos!

Really excited in introducing a new series tonight about documenting bentos made and had by the people I know around me.(!) The packed lunches may not be the fanciest, but as you might guess 'keep'n it real' is sort of the point of it all. My personal hobby interest of surveying the everyday packed lunches that otherwise would go unnoticed, and the small stories they tell.

My series' willingful Part One volunteer is none other than my hairstylist S-san. Yay (and thank you!). She was also totally cool about taking a full photo as long as I kept the name initialed. (Each person will be different about these things.)

As with me, Miss S. is a big Japanese Spaghetti Naporitan fan (as well as most B-kyu Gurume) and we'd always have fun conversing about our favorites. Like how her hometown Nagoya has a distinctive regional style of Napo being served on a hot iron plate with a thin layer of omelet underneath. Since I've been hearing about some she'd make and pack for lunch I admit in semi-requesting one for this day.

If you're new to the concept of Naporitan, it's basically a Japan invented pan-fried spaghetti dish maybe most known for its humble key seasoning of tomato ketchup. Was explained this version further uses some Demi Glace for a more 'adult flavor' as well as a little Japanese Usutaa Sauce and Shoyu.

After some searing in a standard household frying pan, the resulting umami alchemy is a surprisingly rounded flavor, helped fortified with a little butter and (in this case also) fat from spicy sausages (S-san said she used Farmer John brand this time). Otherwise the sliced bell peppers and onions make it a classic version that is finally topped with a luxurious looking fried egg. The broccoli side is made with some mayo, tuna and white sesame seeds.

Quickly asked a few basic questions for the post...

Q: What are your favorite food/s?
A: Edamame

Q: Favorite restaurant in San Diego?

Q: Do you have any favorite guilty/junk foods?
A: Chili Cheese Fries!

Q: If you were in Japan right now, what would you want to eat?
A: Umeno Hana's - Umeno Hana Zen

Q: Where do you like to shop for groceries in San Diego?
A: H-Mart

Q: Do you enjoy cooking?
A: Yes and No...

Q: When you cook, what are areas you take particular care in?
A: Iro-ai (色合い, or color harmony / color interest).

Q: What other things do you tend to pack in your bentos?
A: Onigiri (rice balls), Donburi-mono, or Sandwiches.

Thanks again S-san for your time, and thanks for sharing your bento with us!!


kirbie said...

I love this idea for a new series. I love bentos and it's great to see everyday ones.

caninecologne said...

great idea dennis! i liked how she wrapped her bento too!

Keena said...

Love this series!!

Dennis K. said...

Thanks Kirbie! It's something I've been wanting to do and my blog has always been more in the vein for documenting so it was natural. :)

Thanks CC, I did too! There was a television show in Japan called Sala-Meshi (salarymen food) that also inspired me for the series.

Thanks Keena! I have a few lined up.

K and S said...

cool series, I was gonna suggest you watch "sara-meshi" too, but see that you're already watching it! :)

Mary said...

How fun! This is totally cool to see.

Faye said...

Who doesn't smile when they get a bento :)

Have you tried the Davanti in Del Mar?

Jenne said...

ooh this is super cool. Looking forward to more!!

Cathy Doe said...

Really really good idea. Can't wait for more.

Dennis K. said...

Hi Kat! Yup one of my many food shows in Japan. I pretty much watch them all. :)

Thanks Mary, it's been fun!

Hi Faye, I agree! No I don't think I have been to Davanti in Del Mar.. Have you posted?

Thanks Jenne! Hope you're doing well!

Thanks Cathy! I'm really enjoying working the series.