In my ongoing effort to get Orson excited about silly lunches, I decided to make a bento based on something he really likes. Even at 3 his favorite thing in the world is video games, and I realized it would be really easy to make the Pikmin from a game he's been playing a lot lately (Pikmin 3). Even better, I could make all of the shapes with one set of cutters, so they are easy to create without a ton of tools.
Bento #7: Pikmin
First I laid out a base of rice and squeezed some blanched broccoli along the bottom for bushes. In the game the Pikmin help you carry over-sized fruits, so I pushed in half a kiwi and a strawberry and then leveled out the rice around them. (I had planned on using three different fruit, but there was no room!)
To create the Pikmin I used a fat and a long teardrop shape. I rounded the point of the fat teardrop to create the head. Then I cut the long teardrop in half and used the wider side for the body. I cut the tip in half again (lengthwise) and used half for the point on their head, then rounded off the corners on the other half to create the arms.
I didn't have a good circle for the eyes, so I dabbed on some ranch dressing and dotted each with nori punched with a mini hole punch. The yellow Pikmin all have ears (circle cut in half), the blue ones have a mouth (trimmed from a scrap), and I ignored the red Pikmin's pointy nose.
The red Pikmin and the flowers along the bottom were made from an unrolled imitation crab stick. I also cut two white flowers from the crab for the top of their heads. The blue and yellow Pikmin were cut from egg sheets that I made from these directions. (I think I used 3 egg whites for the blue one, 2 yolks and 1 whole egg for the yellow.) My egg sheets looked nothing like hers, but they work OK!
The flowers were all dotted with tiny circles from the yellow egg sheet, held in place with a dot of ranch. I also used a green egg sheet for the leaf on top of the blue Pikmin's head and added a few leaves on the sides. Then I filled in the rest of the open space with some strips cut from snow peas for grass.
When I unveiled Orson's special lunch he of course had no interest in eating it. My husband ended up with this one, though Orson did ask for the fruit.
Bento #9: Pikmin
A little over a week later I asked Orson what he wanted for lunch. He said he wanted a "special lunch! Like the Pikmin lunch!". Since I had made this before, it was pretty quick to throw together with rice from the freezer. This time we only had grapes on hand so I filled up a cupcake liner and had each Pikmin carry one grape. I made the bushes with edamame but was too rushed to add as many details as before. This time Orson ate every bit, making 'yummy' noises the whole time!