Sesame flavoured beef bento
I have been browsing the JustBento website quite a lot lately and I came across so many recipes that I'd like to try, I hardly know where to start. These bentos are a step towards my "try them all" goal, because I already tried 3 (three!) of them on one night :o)
The pictured bento holds gomashio rice with sesame flavored beef in the top tier and in the bottom tier, I put ham negimayaki, carrot kinpira, cucumber dividers and yellow bell pepper sticks, cherry tomatoes, olives and beemster cheese.
All the recipes can be found on the JustBento website but for convenience sake I'm putting these on here as well.
How-to sesame flavoured beef :
For 2 portions
- 200g / about 7-8 oz. thinly cut beef
- 2 tsp. soy sauce
- 2 tsp. mirin
- 1 tsp. brown sugar
- 2 tsp. + 1 tsp. sesame oil
Slice the beef across the grain into thin strips. Put into a bowl, and add all the other ingredients except for the 1 tsp. of sesame oil. Massage the meat with your hands to rub in the marinade.
You can cook this right away, or leave it for a little while or even overnight. I didn't have time to leave it a whole night to marinate so I left it for half an hour and the meat had already absorbed the flavour.
Heat up a frying pan and add the remaining 1 tsp. of sesame oil. Add the beef to the hot pan and stir-fry for a couple of minutes until done. It should be just a bit syrupy, and an appetizing dark brown.
How-to carrot kinpira :
- 2 medium carrots
- 1 Tbs. dark sesame oil
- a pinch of cayenne pepper
- 1 Tbs. soy sauce
- 1 tsp. sesame seeds
Cut the carrots into matchstick size.
Heat up a frying pan or wok with the sesame oil. Add the carrots and toss around until crisp-tender, about 4 to 5 minutes depending on how skinny the matchsticks are. Add the cayenne pepper (the recipe calleed for red pepper flakes, but I'm not a fan of them) and toss some more. Add soy sauce, toss toss. Add the sesame seeds near the end.
How-to Ham Negimayaki :
- Spring onions
- Thinly sliced ham or cured meat of your choice. (I used a cooked honey sweetened ham.)
Cut the green parts of scallions or spring onions into pieces about 5cm / 2 inches long. Put on a plate, cover with plastic wrap and microwave on HIGH for about 2 minutes. (I was sceptical about this, but it worked)
Cut the ham into pieces that are just a bit narrower than the length of the green onion pieces. Take small bundles of the onion and wrap the ham tightly around them.
Heat up a non-stick frying pan and add a tiny bit of oil. Put the ham-and-onion rolls with the roll ends down in the hot pan. Leave until the bottom is a golden brown (this also seals the ends). Turn over 2-3 times more to brown the ham all over.
You shouldn’t need any more salt, but if you like you can sprinkle on some allspice, or Chinese 5 spice powder, or chili powder, for a little extra oomph. I didn't add anything at all and they were just fine.
My bento contained the same items so I can be short on that one : brown rice with ham negimayaki, sesame flavored beef, carrot kinpira, cucumber dividers and bell pepper flowers.