Time-saving tips appeal to most of us in fast-paced modern Japan. Yet we do not want to sacrifice taste or our health. Making packed lunches involves many time-saving techniques. Using just a frying pan, cooking expert Megumi Fujii whips up a colorful box lunch with pork, egg and vegetables.
“Mild-tasting vegetables are recommended,” says Fujii, who suggests such vegetables as asparagus, broccoli and common beans. After packing some rice in the box to cool, the cooking itself requires only 15 minutes. Serves one.
For mustard and soy sauce-flavored pork:
80 grams pork loin slice
Seasoning (2 tsp each of soy sauce and sake, 1 tsp of spicy mustard)
1 tsp katakuriko starch
1/2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp cooking oil
For flavored scrambled egg:
1 Tbsp water or dashi stock
1/2 Tbsp “nametake” (bottled flavored enokidake mushroom)
1/2 tsp sesame oil
For red shiso-flavored asparagus:
3 asparagus spears
1/3 tsp “yukari” (condiment of red-shiso powder)
Rice, umeboshi (picked plum), black sesame
Pack rice in lunchbox and cool. Peel bottom part of asparagus and cut into 3-cm pieces. Cut pork slices in two or three and mix with seasoning.
Break egg in bowl, add water and nametake and mix well.
Bring 1-cm of water in frying pan to a boil with salt, cook asparagus for about one minute. Drain. When somewhat cool, mix with yukari.
Dry frying pan, heat sesame oil and pour in egg mixture and cook. Mix in large motion.
Mix pork and katakuriko starch, spread in heated pan with oil. Cook both sides till golden, sprinkle with sugar, stir-fry quickly and remove from pan.
Pack them when cool. Place pickled plum on rice and sprinkle sesame on top.
From The Asahi Shimbun's Kashikoi Okazu column
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