The other day a coworker and I ventured out to our International District, we call it “The I.D.”, formerly known as “Chinatown”, for a banh mi lunch. We stopped in a few shops along the way to pick up various salty plums, preserved ginger, taro buns and “what not”. Our path took us near the center of “The I.D.” where a ginkgo tree partially shades a paved park. It’s here in the mornings that you would normally find groups of people practicing the beautiful art of tai chi. But it was now the lunch hour, high noon, and the previous early risers were now replaced with a few women combing the grounds for berries…ginkgo berries! It was a cute sight as they held out their clasped hands to each other and showed off their ginkgo treasure. After watching this, I too looked down to the ground to see if I would catch a glimpse of any berries. In doing so, I noticed the abundant ginkgo leaves on the ground and I immediately thought of my ginkgo cutter that’s stashed away in the back of my bento tool box. I’ve never used it before and I don’t know why. I alway grab the habitual sakura or sharp looking star shapes. So I took a better look at a lone, single ginkgo leaf pressed flat on the sidewalk… “it’s kind of pretty”…not an icon like a maple or oak leaf and it has a softer shape. A beauty in it’s own unique way.
So after that long story… today’s featured bento box contains leftover garlic chicken, mushrooms and peppers along with satsumaimo, broccolini and a tomato slice. And of course I introduced a new embellishment, the ginkgo leaf cutter for decorating Saba Man’s bento box.
When I asked Saba Man about his lunch, he said he liked the “birds”! :)