The children are finally back to school after the winter break. One of the first thing that came to my mind was I need to start stocking up my freezer with bento menu items, like these Chicken Katsu.
It would be much easier for me if my son is willing to eat sandwiches everyday, but he’s used to my cooking and prefers Japanese food for his lunch (although I occasionally take a break and make sandwiches).
Sure it takes a little bit more time to make Japanese style bento in the morning, but most of food packed in the lunch box I make were already cooked in advance. All I need to do in the morning is to reheat and pack other ingredients (Why do I reheat? Read here.). It’s pretty simple, so let’s get started!
Previous Dinner was Chicken Katsu:
For the small bento box my son has, I cut chicken into small pieces so that I can make mini Chicken Katsu. After I deep fry and let it cool down completely, I pack these mini ones into small individual airtight containers like these (You can purchase at your local Daiso store).
Or wrap individual portion with plastic wrap and put them in a Ziploc bag. You can keep these Chicken Katsu in the freezer for 3 weeks at most. When you want to pack Chicken Katsu for bento during those 3 weeks, you take out the individual portion from the freezer and reheat in the morning.
If you know that you will be using Chicken Katsu for bento the following day, you can keep it in the refrigerator. The direction to make Chicken Katsu Bento is below.
Lunch Next Day:
- Chicken Katsu Bento
- Water bottle
- Fill up half of bento box with Japanese rice. Let it cool so that hot/warm rice will not warm up other cool food.
- Take leftover Chicken Katsu out of fridge or freezer and bake at 400F degree for a few minutes in a toaster oven (or oven) until it's warm.
- Place Chicken Katsu on top of rice and drizzle Tonkatsu Sauce on top (or put it in a different sauce container).
- Wash strawberries, blackberries, and tomatoes, and pat dry. Cut if necessary. Place nicely in the bento box along with broccoli and Tamagoyaki.
- Cool down completely before closing the bento box.
If you are using a thermal bento box like Thermos, you do not need to cool down before closing lunch box.
This lunch is for my 6-year-old son.
* Cook broccoli florets in microwave: Put 1-2 broccoli florets in a small microwave-safe bowl/container. Fill with water and cover with plastic wrap. Microwave for a minute or so until it's a little bit soft (or you can blanch it as well). Drain well and let it cool.
Enjoy making bento!