Kung Hei Fat Choi! A Chinese New Year Bento

Good fortune, good health and a happy Chinese New Year to all! Here’s a Chinese-themed bento to usher in the Year of the COW Ox.

CNY Bento

22 January 2009

My dumpling haired girl has literal dumplings for her hair buns. Shrimp and veggie stuffed Hakao. I find it appropriate since I always thought hair buns like Chun Li’s were made from siopao (meat buns). The rest of her is made of rice, nori hair and accents and sakura denbu on her cheeks for blush. The strawberry-shaped container beside her contains a soy-calamansi (Philippine Lemon) dipping sauce.

Of course, I can’t live on rice alone, no matter how cute it is, so I have some fish fillet (sans the lemon butter) and Ashinaga broccoli stir-fried in olive oil and garlic.

Ashinaga Broccoli is a local “long-legged” broccoli variety that’s grown in Benguet. After being successfully marketed by Dole as Ashinaga Broccoli in Japan, it’s now been made locally available at groceries. Initially, I thought it was a Japanese variety, but some googling revealed otherwise. Silly I know, but it sort of made me proud, hehehe.

Garlicky Ashinaga Broccoli in Olive Oil v. 26 January 2009
A couple of stalks Ashinaga Broccoli
Olive oil
Finely minced garlic

1. Boil broccoli in water for a couple of minutes, until bright green in color. Drain.
2. Heat olive oil in a shallow frying pan.
3. Add garlic. Saute until fragrant but not yet browned.
4. Add broccoli. Saute until nicely coated.

Note: I tried this same recipe for asparagus spears and it turned out lovely as well.

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11 Responses to Kung Hei Fat Choi! A Chinese New Year Bento

  1. Mimi says:

    Cute as ever! Happy Year of the Ox!

  2. Tara says:

    Still the best bento maker I ever met (alright, online). :) Happy Year of the Ox.

  3. Gaye says:

    Any advice on how to make those cute nori faces or hair?
    i adore them so much~

  4. entrepgirl says:

    oh this is sooo cute! you’re really creative! :)

  5. Suzanne says:

    Though late, Happy Chinese New Year of the Ox!

    And cute bento, by the way. Where do you buy hakao?

  6. kaoko says:

    Thanks! Happy Year of the Ox to you too!

    Awww. You flatter me too much! *blushes* Happy Year of the Ox too!

    You can use a pair of clean, disinfected scissors or craft punchers. I used special punchers for these but you shouldn’t let not having punchers stop you. I used to use scissors and it worked fine, although it does take more effort. Oh, and I usually fold the nori before cutting, so I can have symmetrical parts.

    Thanks so much!

    The hakao here, I bought frozen from S & R. It’s not the world’s best hakao but for something frozen, it’s pretty satisfying. Sure hits the spot when you’re craving in the middle of the night.

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  10. Faith says:

    oooh! that onigiri’s blushing! ^^

  11. kaoko says:

    Shy onigiri is shy 😛

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