My good friend Naomi is the poster mom for bento baons in my book. She makes the most amaaaaahzing bento baons for her twins. Check out her IG account, @ma2xbento to see what I mean.
While I enjoy looking through her bento baons, I have never even dared try to do one for my kids. I fear that I do not have enough time, and well uhm, I am not super creative when it comes to making characters out of food.
Plus, Naomi has invested a small fortune on her bento making supplies and seeing what choices are out there, as collated by the Bento Mommas (who facilitated our workshop), I am not yet prepared to make the jump into bento baon territory.
That is until I took baby bento steps, thanks to the OREO Bento Together Workshop that I attended with my mommy friends, thanks of course, to OREO!!!
I realized, I can actually make do with the supplies I have at home. All that we basically need is a container, some cupcake liners, scissors, knives, surgical tongs and such.
Of course, I would suggest that we have dedicated tools for food, and we don't use the same scissors and punchers for our kids' craft projects ahihi.
That said, it turns out it's easy to do bento baons as long as you've got everything laid out for you.
Naomi usually gets her helper to prepare everything so that all she has to do is layout and make something out of the food. The Bento Mommas did the same for us, so that all we have to do is focus on the bento part.
I was surprised at how easy it was, Berry actually took the lead in shaping and putting everything together, that I just helped her refine her work. For the session, we made a bento rice bear and it really was just like that "big circle, small circle, big circle" song we would sing on how to draw a bear.
2 small circles for the ears...
Another big circle for the nose...
Et Voila! A rice bear! Eyes and nose were made out of nori.
We then just added fried chicken, corn, and broccoli to complete the lunch set, plus a slice of apple and OREO cookies for dessert.
The Bento Mommas then proceeded to teach us how to make animal theme bento sandwiches, made more special because they're put together using OREO cookies! After their demo, we were then tasked to make our own.
Berry and I were challenged to make a bento bear sandwich! This was made out of a chocolate chip loaf bread from Gardenia, chocolate cream filled OREOs, milky Chiz Whiz, white chocolate chips for the eyes, and good 'ol nori to fashion into the eyes and nose.
Making four of these OREO Bear sandwiches took Berry and I an hour to make though. I realized, it took longer to make the baon than have it eaten for recess!
I laughingly told the Bento Mommas how labor intensive bento-ing is, but they assured me it just takes some practice and getting used to.