Introduction: Bento Buddies

A while back my friend and I were feeling both artistic and hungry, so we had a night full of bento fun! We never planned on making an Instructable out of our creations, so sadly all there is to offer here is the materials we used and the final products. Which is actually A-OK because the fun of bentos is making your own unique creations. :)
Anyway, this is how we did ours, and how they turned out.

Step 1: What We Used

We didn't want to make bento boxes exactly, so what we did is went to the local Goodwill and bought a few exciting bowls and places that we saw, to build our creations on.

To decide what we wanted to use for our bentos we basically went to the grocery store and just grabbed anything and everything that was colorful, inspired us, or had promise.

Some of the needs:
-Rice (more detail on this in step 3)
-Awesome bowl

Other stuff:
-split peas
-bag of sliced mixed veggies
-boiled eggs
-mixed nuts
-food coloring
-whatever your heart desires

Step 2: How to Make Your Sticky Rice

When we made ours we had to go the difficult route and make our own sticky rice. We just  bought a cheap bag of rice from the store and followed the following directions from on how-to:

* 1 cup medium grain rice
* 1 cup water
* 1 tablespoon water


1.Wash rice several times (until the water is clear).
2.Let soak for a few minutes in colander.
3.Put rice in pan with tight fitting lid and add the water.
4.Cover and bring to a boil.
5.Simmer over low heat for 15 minutes.
6.Remove pan from heat and quickly stretch clean tea towel over the pot, cover with lid.
7.Let sit off heat for another 15 minutes.
Read more:

Or, you could just go to a local Chinese or Japanese food restaurant and just order a box of plain white rice. Around where I live it's only $1 for a small, but they may look at you like you're insane.

Step 3: Play With Your Food!

Here's the fun part!
Get yourself a nice handful of rice and start molding it (just like you would clay) into an awesome animal or whatever you want.
**To keep the rice from sticking to your hands, keep a bowl of water handy to keep your hands moist**

Unfortunately I don't have any photos of this step, but that's alright because this is the part where you use your own imagination anyway :)

Once you get the shape of your buddy down, you can start adding the details with the other food.
The way I did it with walrus is that I formed him in my plate, and once he was how I wanted him I filled around him with the split peas.
His eyes are cut out circles of seaweed
His cheeks are the ends of strawberries
The spots on his nose are the little "tree leaves" of broccoli
His tusks are walnuts
The pink fish are molded rice colored with food coloring

Step 4: Eat Em' Up!

....actually we ended up not eating ours because we didn't want to part with them.

I've specified on some of the pictures what we ended up using for different parts of the bentos.

Hope you all have as much fun making them as we did!

Play With Your Food Challenge

Finalist in the
Play With Your Food Challenge