bento for the little one (tricolor bento with chicken mince crumble 10/feb/16)

menu: san-shoku (tricolor) bento with tori-soboro (chicken mince crumble), scrambled egg & sliced snow pea, tomato & cucumber salad, mashed sweet potato & spinach

apple mousse & diced banana for dessert


today’s main dish is, in my family, called “san-shoku” bento. the literal translation of “san-shoku” is tricolor, and in this bento, the three colours are represented by tori-soboro (cooked chicken mince) in brown, scrambled egg in bright yellow & sliced snow peas in spring green. the three ingredients are placed separately on top of white rice, next to each other. in order to give a little feeling of spring, I put a small slice of steamed carrot (cut out with a flower-shaped cutter), which makes the bento look like a flower field…. i remember having been very happy to open this bento box in particular, not only for its taste but also for its colourfulness, cheerfulness and this care that my mum put into on  its presentation. i was always proud of having such a pretty looking bento, which may sound silly but did matter quite a lot growing up…

san-shoku bento recipe


(chicken mince)

  • 200g minced chicken
  • 1 table spoon of sake (if not available, white wine)
  • 1 table spoon of dashi-soy sauce (if not available, normal soy sauce)
  • 1+ table spoon of mirin (if not available, a sprinkle of brown sugar with a table spoon of water)

(scrambled egg)

  • 1 egg
  • a pinch of salt
  • 1 tea spoon of oil

(snow peas)

  • a few snow peas
  • a pinch of salt


  1. chicken mince – in a frying pan stir-fry minced chicken in medium heat. make sure to constantly stir the chicken so that it doesn’t get burnt, and try to make chicken as crumbled as possible
  2. once the chicken is browned, add sake, and stir further
  3. add soy sauce and mirin, stir further until the sauce is reduced but still keeping the chicken moist
  4. scrambled egg – beat the egg and add salt while heating up a small frying pan
  5. when the pan is hot, add oil, and then the egg
  6. immediately start scrambling, and make egg as crumbled as possible (tip: hold a few pairs of chopsticks in your fist and stiiiiiirrrrr)
  7. snow peas – in a small pan, bring water to boil
  8. add a pinch of salt and snow peas (make sure to remove any strings beforehand. salt is added to keep the bright green colour of the peas), boil for 2-3 minutes until tender but not soggy
  9. once cooked, rinse the peas in running cold water for its bright green colour
  10. slice the cooked peas into small pieces
  11. decoration – on white rice (with its surface flat), place the 3 ingredients above separately, next to each other to make 3 wide stripes (or any other shapes you like)

that’s it, enjoy!


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  3. […] recipe among children for packed lunches. in one of my earlier posts, it was introduced as “tricolor bento (recipe attached for tori-soboro)“. it can be frozen after being prepared and kept for a few weeks, which becomes especially […]

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  13. […] Steamed pumpkin & chicken soboro, Omelet, Tomato, Boiled okura, Wakana rice with shirasu (baby sardine) on too Grapes & […]

  14. […] in the fridge and some stocked up food in the freezer. Menu: Roasted sweet potato with chicken soboro, Steamed broccoli, Baba hamu kyuri, Jako (dried baby sardine) & wakame sprinkle mixed in […]

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  17. […] overslept this morning. In such a panicky morning, frozen chicken soboro, sautéed minced chicken, comes in […]

  18. […] Soboro (chicken mince crumble) I used today was the last bit of what I made a few weeks ago that had […]

  19. […] I made an attempt to go for a Soboro (chicken crumble) variation. I mixed the Soboro into freshly cooked rice along with wakana […]

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