A traditional Japanese bento usually contains fish, meat or rice; pickled veggies on the side. In Japan, they are available just about everywhere: train stations, convenience stores, department stores and Bento shops.
Japanese 7-11 Bento offerings
In fact, Japanese homemakers have raised Bento-making to an art, called kyaraben, by preparing elaborate lunch feasts, complete with food made to look like cute characters or animals.
Yes, little kids in Japan really eat this at lunch!
There’s plenty of good bento info on the web; from recipes to videos http://parenting.ivillage.com/slideshow/parenting/the_rules_of_bento/.
Start with Biggie’s site (see above) or simply Google “bento”.
We are actually in love with the boxes themselves. There’s something so cute about these compact little containers, with a place for everything and everything in its place. There are online bento stores and there are plenty of them on eBay. Of course, we’d love it if you’d check out the picks on our store (to the right); click on “Cute EVERYTHING!”
(from our aStore)