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The Just Bento Cookbook: Everyday Lunches To Go
The Just Bento Cookbook: Everyday Lunches To Go


 
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Book Description

December 9, 2011

Bento fever has recently swept across the West, fuelled not just by an interest in cute, decorative food, but by the desire for an economical, healthy approach to eating in these times of recession. A leading light in the popularization of bento has been Makiko Itoh, whose blog, Just Bento, has nearly 160,000 subscribers in the U.S. alone, all of whom love her delicious recipes and practical bento-making tips.

Now, for the first time, Itoh's expertise has been packaged in book form. The Just Bento Cookbook contains 25 attractive bento menus and more than 150 recipes, all of which have been specially created for this book and are divided into two main sections, Japanese and Not-so-Japanese. The Japanese section includes classic bento menus such as Salted Salmon Bento and Chicken Karaage Bento, while the Not-so-Japanese section shows how Western food can be adapted to the bento concept, with delicious menus such as Summer Vegetable Gratin Bento and Everyone Loves a Pie Bento.

In addition to the recipes, Itoh includes sections on bento-making equipment, bento staples to make and stock, basic cooking techniques, and a glossary. A planning-chart section is included, showing readers how they might organize their weekly bento making.

In a market full of bento books that emphasize the cute and the decorative, this book stands out for its emphasis on the health and economic benefits of the bento, and for the very practical guidelines on how to ensure that a daily bento lunch is something that can easily be incorporated into anyone's lifestyle. This is the perfect book for the bento beginner, but will also provide a wealth of new bento recipe ideas and tips for Just Bento aficionados.

Editorial Reviews

Bento fever has recently swept across the West, fueled not just by an interest in cute, decorative food, but by the desire for an economical, healthy approach to eating in these times of recession. A leading light in the popularization of bento has been Makiko Itoh, whose blog, Just Bento, boasts hundreds of thousands of subscribers, all of whom love her delicious recipes and practical bento-making tips.

Now, for the first time, Itoh's expertise has been packaged in book form. The Just Bento Cookbook contains twenty-five attractive bento menus and more than 150 recipes, all of which have been especially created for this book and are divided into two main sections, Japanese and Not-so-Japanese. The Japanese section includes classic bento menus such as Salted Salmon Bento and Chicken Karaage Bento, while the Not-so-Japanese section shows how Western food can be adapted to the bento concept, with delicious menus such as Summer Vegetable Gratin Bento and Everyone-Loves-a-Pie Bento.

In addition to the recipes, Itoh includes sections on bento-making equipment, bento staples to make and stock, basic cooking techniques, and a glossary. A planning-chart section is included, showing readers how they might organize their weekly bento making.

In a market full of bento books that emphasize the cute and the decorative, this book stands out for its emphasis on the health and economic benefits of the bento, and for the very practical guidelines on how to ensure that a daily bento lunch is something that can easily be incorporated into anyone's lifestyle. This is the perfect book for the bento beginner, but will also provide a wealth of new bento recipe ideas and tips for bento aficionados.

About the Author

Makiko Itoh
Makiko (Maki) Itoh first became aware of her deep rooted love for the cuisine of her home country, Japan, when she moved far away. Living in Europe, in a place with only limited access to Japanese ingredients, she began to improvise ways to recreate the flavors of her childhood. Her first food blog, JustHungry.com, was born as a result, to share her findings with the world. Subsequently she became obsessed with the subject of bento box lunches, those compact portable meals her mother used to make for her to bring to school back in Tokyo. Convinced that healthy, tasty more-than-a-sandwich-in-a-brown-bag meals would be popular around the world, she started a sister site for Just Hungry in 2007 called JustBento.com. A former graphic and web designer and tech writer, she approaches the subject of food and cooking instruction in much the same way as tackling a programming problem, breaking it down into manageable parts and presenting the steps methodically. Ever a nomad, after living in Japan, the U.S., the U.K. and Switzerland, she now lives in a small town in southern France with her husband, aka "The Guy".

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