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Bento Boxes: Japanese Meals on the Go Perfect Paperback – Jul 2001


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Product details

  • Perfect Paperback: 64 pages
  • Publisher: Japan Publications Trading Co (July 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 4889960732
  • ISBN-13: 978-4889960730
  • Product Dimensions: 24.6 x 0.5 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 475,506 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Naomi Kijima is a well known cookbook author and teacher in Japan. She has appeared on Japanese television and her recipes are regularly featured in women's magazines and newspapers there.

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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

35 of 35 people found the following review helpful By untitled no. 4 VINE VOICE on 7 Feb 2007
Format: Perfect Paperback
I love Japanese food and have been cooking a few selected dishes for some years now but recently wanted to try new things. I decided to go for this book not because I wanted to create bento boxes to take to work, but because I thought this book would have menus offered rather than individual recipes and I was intrigued. Since getting this book I have tried many of the bento menus suggested and I've been nothing but impressed as everything (no exceptions here) was delicious.

Regarding a few comments made by other reviewers:

1. The bento boxes menus in the book are not as easy to prepare as chucking a frozen pizza in the oven for 8 minutes but it is possible to use the recipes (or at least most of them) to prepare a bento box to take to work every morning -- I have done just so for a couple of weeks. The secret, I believe, is having an electric rice cooker and putting it on timer so the rice is ready in the morning when you are. The rest takes about 10 minutes to prepare if you arrange things the night before. (Tip: if you have an electric rice cooker without a timer, just get a separate timer. Works great!)

2. Indeed, some of the items are not your everyday Sainsbury's produce but I was able to find all of the items which I was looking for. Living in London does make it easier (you can find everything in China Town and the area) and the hardest to find items were actually found in Asian shops rather than the speciality Japanese delis, so do try it out. (Tip: Searching for images of the raw ingredients might help as the same thing might be under a different name. Tip2: Online shopping could get you many of the items you're looking for, if not fresh than dried or preserved, which is still better than nothing...
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36 of 36 people found the following review helpful By Samantha Flanders on 13 Jan 2005
Format: Perfect Paperback
I bought this book in the hope that I could recreate some of the mouthwatering o-bentos I had during a 3 year stay in Japan - this book did not disappoint! A good mixture of fish and meats, with also some soup recipes, and also all the little tasty, often 'mystery' side veggies and things too! It helps if you have access to an oriental grocery store for the ingredients but as long as you have mirin, soy sauce and sake you should be able to make the bulk of the recipes. Great book! Many happy lunches ahead of me.....:-)
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By K. Friedman on 8 Jun 2007
Format: Perfect Paperback
This is probably my fourth Japanese cook book. I was specifically looking for a book on bento lunches, and behold, look what I found! Many of the recipes are similar to ones in my other books, but I have found some are simplified (though JUST as tasty!) and the proportion is perfect for a lunch serving!

I don't agree with marking a book down for a lack of local ingredients. After all, it's not local cooking. You can make your own judgements about certain substitutions (like types of mushrooms) but otherwise, get yourself to a Japanese market (or use an online retailer) to get the harder to find items!

This book has really inspired me to finally get my Japanese cooking into gear. There are useful inset 'instruction' photos at various points and every dish is shown in a good color photograph. Best of all, the lunches have been fantastic!! For the amazing low price and what you get inside, I can't recommend this book highly enough.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By magdalene42 on 9 Nov 2006
Format: Perfect Paperback Verified Purchase
All the recipes I've tried from this book have been absolutely delicious, and the ingredients should all be sourceable on line or from your friendly local Asian supermarket. But please don't assume that 'on the go' means these recipes are quick to make! O-bento are eaten on the go, but the dishes are not necessarily prepared so rapidly, and if you are not a traditional Japanese housewife who routinely gets up at 5 am to boil rice and simmer gobo, you will not be preparing these foods daily for your brood, or your partner, to take to school or work. However for the keen cook who wants a taste of authentic Japanese packed lunch, this book presents the real thing, and hence comes highly recommended.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Rambling Rozie on 22 April 2010
Format: Perfect Paperback
I had high expectations of this book and it didn't disappoint. Plenty of delicious recipes and the instructions are clear and concise.

The photos give a great idea of what the food should look like and are as mouth-watering as the dishes themselves.

The only reason I didn't give this 5 stars is that I would have liked a short section on the ingredients that are not readily available in the UK. I don't have access to China Town, or any oriental stores, so have to rely on mail order for specialist ingredients. This is fine, except for fresh foods and it would be helpful to have an idea of what might be suitable substitutes or where dried versions could be used without compromising the dish completely.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By E. L. Wisty TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 9 Jan 2010
Format: Perfect Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a relatively brief book but the content is quite varied, which means for someone like me who doesn't like fish or seafood there is still a suitable range of recipes I can eat, unlike many Japanese cookbooks you find.

Some ingredients, especially certain vegetables and the like, will be hard to find if you live in the "provinces" as do I, but most recipes in here should be within the scope of the majority of people. As noted in other reviews, many national supermarkets offer many of these ingredients these days, and there are plenty of mail order companies which can provide more obscure items.

It's all quite straightforward too; nothing here is fancy or overly faffy in its construction. You see many other bento box books in which many recipes are really aimed at children's lunch boxes ('charaben'), artistic creations with smiley faces and animals.
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