the-south-asian Life & Times                     April - June 2010




 Editor's Note


'Raja Ravi Varma'
 - by Rupika Chawla

 The Indian Portrait

 Antarctic - 100 years
 ago - and today


 The Golden Chariot
 - a unique train thru
 south India


 Women & Politics
 Sheila Dikshit

 Celebrating Women

 Fast food gets chic


 Maj HPS Ahluwalia




 Future Predictions

 Tarot readings

 Mukhtar Mai









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The Japanese have probably provided a much required lead in the movement for healthy fast food. The introduction of Bento-boxes in UK, and some cities in the US has not only revolutionized the way people eat on the go – but brought in a 'wow factor' to fast food. Bento boxes are fast approaching a cult status. Simply explained – it is a Japanese thali – an assortment of healthy, freshly-made, and artistically presented food – pre-packed in ‘takeaway’ boxes.
Bento box – or obento as the Japanese call it — is a compartmented box traditionally filled with rice, pickled vegetables and fish or meat. Japanese women take pride in preparing and outdoing others in the obentos for their spouses and children. The presentation of food is perhaps emphasized more in Japanese cuisine and culture than in other cuisines. Attractively presented food looks more appetising. The Japanese believe that each meal should have five colours – with different flavours and textures.

 A Bento meal, often served in elaborate boxes the size of a book, with foods chosen for their colours and shapes, goes back to at least the 14th century. Of late, its growing cult status has given the traditional Bento Box an international makeover by some of the trendiest bars and restaurants.

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