With a well-planned menu by Chef Tateno and enthusiastic efforts by participants, the Hanami Bentō Class was a great success. Our thanks to everyone for a wonderful day!

Delicious, nutritious, and, best of all, fun!


Two Kinds of Onigirazu

Onigirazu are popular among people who don’t have the well-seasoned hands that can make perfectly shaped onigiri, more or less on their own. Think of them as “non-nigiri” or “onigiri-it’s-not” – something more like a rice sandwich than onigiri.


nanohana bacon rolls
Nano-hana Bacon Rolls

Nano-hana is one of the vegetables that signals the coming of spring in Japan. That makes it an excellent choice for a Hanami Bentō!


katsuobushi bamboo shoot
Katsuobushi Bamboo Shoots

Just coming into the season for these spring delicacies. Won’t be long before markets are full of them.

class room
Who would have known bentō-making could give rise to such passionate discussion!

Making onigirazu.

This turned out to be easy for people not practiced in making onigiri, but curiously challenging for onigiri masters.


Kitchen Nippon classes are usually boisterous affairs and the Hanami Bentō class was no exception… until it came time to make the Smile Berries. Requiring the utmost attention, this part of the class became uncharacteristically quiet as participants concentrated on making the perfect cuts and dabbing on just the right amounts of chocolate in just the right shapes to give individual strawberries an identity.

Too cute to eat? ichigo
Too cute to eat?

Unfortunately for these Smile Berries, NO! They were delicious!

heart ichigo
Avoiding the path to the eating of something smiling back at them, some participants chose to create cuteness without a face.


We thank all of the participants – from Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, and the U.S. – and Chef Tateno for making the class a great success!

Recipes will be posted soon!

Text by  Kitchen Nippon