The Kakuni Bento originates from Japan and it is a kind of lunchbox set that consists of braised pork belly with tomatoes, tamagoyaki and furikake above steamed rice. The dish is a filling and nutritious dish. The term “Kakuni” is the Japanese braised pork belly but it means square simmered. The term “bento” refers to a single-portion take out meal that is common within the Japanese cuisine.
Ingredients (1 Serving):
- Furikake (Rice Seasoning)
- Japanese Short Grain Rice (Cooked)
- Tamagoyaki (Japanese Rolled Omelette)
Ingredients for Braised Pork Belly (Kakuni)
- 1 lb of Pork Belly
- 2-inch of Ginger
- 3 Pieces of Large Eggs
- 1 Piece of Japanese Long Green Onion
- 2 ½ cup of Dashi
- 3 Tbsp of Mirin (Japanese Rice Wine)
- 4 Tbsp of Sake
- 4 Tbsp of Sugar
- 2 Slices of Ginger
- 4 Tbsp of Soy Sauce
- 1 Dried Red Chili Pepper
- Shichimi Togarashi (Japanese Seven Spice)
- Start making the dish by pounding the pork meat with a meat pounder or the edge of a knife on both sides.
- Use your hands to mold the meat into its original shape before slicing it into 2-inch pieces.
- On a heavy skillet, heat oil on medium to high heat and place the meat in the skillet. Cook the meat thoroughly until they are nicely browned. Transfer the meat to a paper towel and then wipe off the excess fat.
- Proceed to slice the ginger and Negi (green part) into 2-inch pieces. Place the browned pork belly in a large pot, followed by the sliced Negi and ginger. Ensure that the meat is submerged in water.
- Bring the heat up to a boil and then reduce the heat to simmer. Leave the ingredients to cook for about 2-3 hours and then turning the ingredients, at times. Ensure that the meat is submerged in water throughout the cooking period by adding water.
- In the meantime, use the eggs to make hard-boiled eggs.
- After it is cooked, remove the meat and wipe off the excess oil with a paper towel.
- Proceed to cook the pork belly with dashi stock, sake and mirin on medium to high heat in a large pot.
- Add some soy sauce, sugar, ginger slices and red chilli pepper and then let it boil and lower the heat to simmer (covered with a drop lid). After 30 minutes, add the hard-boiled eggs and let it simmer for another 30 minutes.
- Ensure that the meat is consistently immersed with sauce. Sprinkle the pork belly with some shiraga negi as a garnish.
- Half of the bento will be filled up with steamed Japanese rice. Set it aside to be cooled in room temperature. This is to ensure that the rice does not warm up the other cool food.
- Place the braised pork belly in a silicone cup to be cooled and put the braised pork belly in a bento box.
- Proceed to put the tamagoyaki and broccoli in the bento box.
- Carry on washing my tomatoes and then pat dry before putting it nicely in the bento box.
- Enhance the flavours of the dish by sprinkling some furikake on top of the rice.
- Set it aside to be cooled down before closing the bento box to be served.