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Akazuki offers professionals a wide selection of Japanese lunch boxes and compartimented meal boxes. Called bento bakou in Japanese, those boxes are perfect for having lunch on the go at the office or at school.
We also offer compartimented bento trays designed specifically for restaurants called Shokado. Those lunch boxes with lids and compartments will allow you to present your dishes elegantly.
Our plastic boxes and all our products are certified BPA free and we offer different types of size and patterns, but always in the spirit of Japanese culture.
Bento lunch boxes originated and are commonly used in Asian countries. Bento boxes are home-packed meals where rice is usually the staple idea of the meal. Other traditional staples include fish, ramen noodles, and vegetables. While Bentos are usually packed at home to be taken out, there are convenience stores that also sell ready-made bento boxes that can be picked up on the go.
The History of Bento Boxes
Bentos have been around for a long time, in fact, their origins can be traced all the way back to the Kamakura period, which was during (1185 to 1333). During this time period, there was something called hoshi-ii (糒 or 干し飯) which was cooked and then dried rice that was created for workers to take with them to work. During this time, however, hoshi-ii was placed in a small bag. It wasn’t until the Azuchi-Momoyama period (1568–1600) that small boxes like the bentos used today would be used for packing food.
Since that time, the culture of bentos would spread and become more defined. During the Edo period (1603–1867) travelers would begin to use bento lunch boxes and even a few cookbooks would be published on how to make meals for bento boxes and how to store them. During the Taishō period (1912–1926) lunch boxes had become a sign of luxury and were primarily used by wealthy families and children. It wasn’t until the 1980s that Japanese lunch boxes would resurface as an item that was used by all.
Types of lunch Boxes
Based on the location, you can use lunch boxes in vastly different ways. A Chūka bentō (中華弁当) includes Chinese food and is moreso used for snacking. A Makunouchi bentō (幕の内弁当) is more of a traditionally styled bento, it’s typically filled with rice, pickled fruit, meat (usually fish), and an egg either boiled or rolled.
There are many other types of Bentos out there however the best are the ones you create for yourself.