Hanami Bento and Giveaway

For more easy and delicious recipes visit: momgateway.blogspot.com

 

I’m thrilled that my Foodbuzz 24x24 proposal was chosen for this month.  I am featuring the Hanami Bento. Hanami is a traditional flower-viewing festival in Japan also known as cherryblossom festival. It is said that the Japanese elite celebrated the first Hanami in the 700s but Hanami is so popular now that almost everyone in Japan celebrates it. The tradition has changed little over time. Friends, families and colleagues gather to enjoy food and drink under plum (ume) blossoms or cherry blossoms. Since Japan's fiscal year and school year starts in April coinciding with the end of winter, Hanami symbolizes new beginnings so many welcome parties start with Hanami, a chance to get bond with each other and to renew their spirits.

 

 

This is what I made for our Hanami bento: Inarizushi (seasoned rice in seasoned soybean curd), karaage (japanese fried chicken), simmered spinach with sesame seeds, kabocha simmered in soy sauce, Harumaki (spring rolls), and for dessert we had dango (pink, white and green dumplings skewered on bamboo sticks) and mochi (rice dumplings filled with bean paste).  The recipes are at the bottom of this post. 


I bought pink and white fish cakes (kamaboko), quail eggs, and seasoned tuna cakes and some mochi (rice dumplings with red bean filling and matcha/ green tea mochi).  Since JShinobi was under 18 we had Ramune (Japanese lemonade), Calpico and soy milk for our drinks.

 

 

The delicate sakura blossom is the symbol of the samurai.  It embodies the spirit of “bushido” or the way of the samurai that combines bravery, valor and stoicism. Hanami is a reminder of the fleeting nature of life and this brings out a peculiar Japanese strength, stoicism and willingness to rebuild and rise above tragedy.  

Giveaway

Most of the recipes I used are from The Just Bento Cookbook so I am also doing a giveaway of this must have cookbook by Makiko Itoh.Please comment to enter the giveaway.  Random.org will be used to choose a winner and this will be announced on April 22, 2011.

RECIPES:

 Inarizushi 

Chicken kara-gae 

Green onion sauce for karaage

Simmered kabocha squash 

Blanched spinach with sesame sauce 

Hanami Dango

Harumaki spring rolls

Thanh you for reading my blog. For these recipes please visit http://momgateway.blogspot.com/2011/03/foodbuzz-24x24-hanami-bento-and.html

 

Hugs,

Ann

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