Bento, or the Japanese boxed meal, which makes a memory more precious and colorful
The Bento culture which lasts more than 1,000 years
The culture of boxed meal has been developed drastically in Japan compares to other countries. It would be because that Japanese like the food which is still delicious after getting cold while many non-Japanese don't care for it.
The typical bento is a single-portion home-packed meal which holds rice, fish or meat, and pickled or cooked vegetables.
Bento for enjoying scenery and atmosphere
The custom to bring meal is not only in Japan but also many countries all over the world. However, Japanese expect bento to make us enjoy in addition to just satisfying our appetite.
For example, we have “Makunouchi bento” which is eaten during the intermission of performances, makuai or makunouchi in Japanese. This is known as Various Side Dishes Bento.
Or we have “Koraku bento” which is eaten when people are gathering such as hanami, or cherry blossom viewing, and sports meeting. Of course we bring bento on a picnic and a school excursion.
Mother/wife often thinks about the items for bento in advance and carefully prepare and pack it for her family on a special day.
“Ekiben”, or railway boxed meals, which touches the heart of a traveler
“Ekiben” is a representative of bento culture which has been developed since 1886. A railway service had begun spreading across the whole extent of Japan, then many train stations started to sell it which is made from local food specialties.
It has become extremely popular because you can eat local cuisine while enjoying the scenery seen from a train window on your way to the destination.
By appealing of ekiben enthusiasts, it sells not only in train stations but in some retail stores, we can savor it at our place now.
Why is bento culture bloomed dramatically?
Japanese likes eating and drinking while enjoying nature and scenery like hanami.
A delicious bento which accompanies to trip and leisure makes a memory more precious and colorful. It could be
the origin of Japanese who is an agricultural nation.
We hope you to try ekiben on the train while enjoying scenery in Japan.
Some photos provided by Gion
photo and report by Yuki
Enjoy your trip and WASHOKU CLIP WORLD !