Bento cooking contest 2015 – Part 2 Sandwich in a bento box

No.167

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There are so many kinds of bento boxes available and probably you have quite a selection of them in your kitchen. Have you chosen “the box” for the contest yet? When I take part in a bento contest, I usually start by choosing “the box” that inspires me to make a creative creation in the given theme of the contest. The more bento boxes you have, the tougher it will be to choose only one box. The grass is always greener on the other side, they say. Every bento box has pros and cons, I think.

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When we talk about a sandwich bento in particular, I think the choice of container should come after the choice of bread. In this contest I imagine there will be many different kinds of breads presented in different ways. I am so looking forward to seeing your creations! Many may choose regular white bread, some may like to use french baguettes, there are butter rolls, English muffins, bagels, flat bread and many more types of bread than I can name.  I am sure they all can make delicious sandwiches and they will look great if they are put in a right bento box and they together make a good balance.  I think the shape and the size of your sandwich will help you choose “the box” and I hope you can let it inspire you further to make a great creation. If you a bread baker like I am, it is very fun to tailor-bake bread for the contest. I will make a sandwich bento next week when I come back to Norway with the bread I bake!

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It seems I often choose this Nagabako bento box for my finger sandwich bento but I probably do not recommend a long and slim bento box like this for an English muffin or a bagel sandwich bento because I think round or oval shaped rolls not only do not fit well in a slim box they will look most scrumptious when they are cut in half and placed on a plate and we are looking at the layers of bread and savory filling from the side.

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Yeah, don’t put too much filling. You can of course cut the sandwich in half and put it in a bento box the cut face up but I guess the round bottom may not sit still in the box. Maybe you can then wrap it with a sheet of pretty wax paper before you put it in a bento box. The wax paper will hold the sandwich together and will help stand straight. It will look very pretty!

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This is a bad balanced example of sandwiches, I think I was very hungry when I made it. As you see, the box is too small and it looks so cramped. There is no space for your fingers to go in and grab and take out the sandwich of the box, it will be very difficult to eat this bento. As I often say to you, bento is love, you need to think about the person who is going to eat your bento, be nice and considerate, that should be also an important part of a good bento.

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I lined the inside of this round bento box with lace paper as the box was made of natural bamboo and I did not want to stain it with the mayonnaise in the egg filling in the sandwich. Firm and hard type bread like baguettes or ciabatta will probably stand up better than white sandwich bread and you do not need to line or wrap with paper.

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Use the box well, try to find a good balance between your sandwich and your box. I repeat it here again:

Bento&co says :
The sandwich packed in your box has to be the main dish and serve as the focus point of your contribution

If you are using 2-tier bento box, make sure the 2nd box does not take the focus away from your sandwich. Last but not least it is my tips for you!

xxx Rie

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