Spice Up Your Life With a Taste of Japan

*Fun Bento Box**Cute and Natural Food From California*


Ramen Rice Balls

I finally had a chance to try ramen burger last weekend!
We went to Asian Night Market in Costa Mesa and tried a couple of different food there.
My husband had a lobster roll ( nothing to do with asian food...) and it was super yummy!
And ramen burger.....I know it's been popular for a while, but I was so excited when I saw their booth! There was a line, but it wasn't too bad. Ramen burger was really good too.

Today, I made Ramen Rice Balls. Yes, these are rice balls!
I saw Japanese moms making this and wanted to try:)

I didn't have naruto (fish cake with a pink swirl) at home so made with a slice of cheese and cut hum.
You just need to carve the cheese with a toothpick as shown.

One of the popular toppings of ramen is chashu (braised pork). 
I made chashu with chicken breast for this rice balls.
It's very easy! 

Chicken Chashu ( braised chicken breast)

1 Chicken breast
50ml  Soy sauce
50ml Sake
50ml Mirin (If you don't have mirin, you can substitute with sake and sugar. Sake3 : Sugar1 ratio)  
1/2tbs Sugar
1tbs Vinegar
1tsp Grated ginger

1. Tie chicken with string. Heat oil in a pan and brown both sides.
2. Mix all the seasonings and pour over the chicken. Simmer for about 30mins over low heat.
3. Let cook and slice. Marinate in the mixture over night.

How to assemble ramen rice balls: 

 Line a rice bowl with plastic wrap.
 Place a piece of nori seaweed, chopped green onion, chicken chashu and the cut cheese.
Make a thin egg sheet ( see this post). Roll up and cut to create the "noodle". Put over the toppings.

 Add rice and gather up the ends of plastic wrap.


Ice Cream Ghost

Made an apple pie with apples that we picked from trees yesterday!
I tried this recipe. http://allrecipes.com/recipe/apple-pie-by-grandma-ople/

I made the crust from scratch. I used only 80g butter for 200g flour.
It's much less butter compared to the amount in regular pie crust.
It wasn't as flaky as my husband likes, but it wan't heavy and I liked it!


Halloween Picnic Bento

Went to apple pick in Oak Glen yesterday.
It was crazy hot but we had a great time!
Made chicken bento for our picnic lunch.
I cooked rice, chicken, tomato cup salad in the morning, but it took me only 1 hour to finish this Halloween lunch box, including the decoration.
I marinated and froze chicken last week. Thawed the night before and just put them in a oven in the morning. I wanted to make Japanese fried chicken, karaage..HoweverI have to keep an eye on them while frying, so it's not great choice for the busy morning!
For the side dished, I packed tomato cup salad and edamame.
Since it was really hot yesterday, I didn't defrost edamame completely to keep the bento cool.
I also packed a lot of ice packs in the cooler box.