Friday, October 22, 2010

Asian Bao: Tiffin for one, please!

Take a Bao & have a unique lunch. At our local Asian store we can find all sorts of delicious selections for a quick healthy bite at lunch. There are several choices of Char Siu Bao(Chinese steamed buns)available here in Austin Texas. I could get carried away on the selection of the steamed buns since they seem to have sweet, savory, veggie & even tiny miniature Bao buns. Choices, choices...just one of the delicious steamed buns & a salad make a great lunch. Most Asian stores even have a selection of lunch boxes, I found this Tiffin at the same store. The housewares aisle has some great items to both inspire & make lunch making more interesting. Not close to an Asian supermarket? Try checking this site which has a wonderful selection of Tiffins. Tiffins & Bentos are a great way to carry a meal and everything is secure inside. Tiffins actually clamp down at the top.
Tiffin Factoid:
Tiffins are actually a very old method for carrying lunch. Since 1890 each day in Mumbai, India’s largest city, around 200,000 office workers receive a home cooked lunch prepared by their spouse and later hand delivered in a traditional ‘Tiffin’ lunch box by a Dabbawallah. The Tiffins filled with a home cooked meal are identified by colors, design or symbols. Somehow with 200,000 delivered meals the correct Tiffin seems to get to the hungry Tiffin recipient. The Dabbawallah is a person whose highly specialized profession it is to take the fresh food from the home to the worker each day. The word Tiffin actually means light lunch.

In truth, Tiffins can feed far more than one but you get the idea. Change up the lunch routine & make your PB&J a wee bit more exciting. Out with the mediocre brown bag & in with something new. Lunch time doesn't have to be less than exciting.

Of course if you really want to have a Tiffin with some style try one of these Thai Monk Tiffin boxes at this site.

My personal favorite Tiffin can be found here at Ten Thousand Villages, a true nod to the 2010 Eat Pray Love movie starring Julia Roberts.

You never know who will be taking lunch in a Tiffin next!


  1. I am of Sout Asian origin, so these tiffin canisters were quite normal in our home. Not only for lunches, but for holding spices. Of course, i am all grown up now, so have my own too :)

  2. I love the idea of everything having a special container! You comment means so much, especially since you are my very first on this blog! Thanks!

  3. This is so cool! You live in Austin, where I want to move so badly and your blog is about lunches for one adult human. Please keep blogging this idea is just awesome.


  4. Cooking Photographer, thanks! I just started this blog as an offshoot of my I thought of how many times I make lunch while trying to make it fun & a little bit more than PB&J. Follow me & keep an eye on things. I have much more to come!

  5. I just found your blog, welcome! I live in south Austin and work in north central Austin. I have been doing a casual version of bento lunches for about 2 years, I think. Today I ate at the newly opened Torchy's Tacos on Burnet because my office is moving. I plan to bring a good one tomorrow.

  6. Holly, glad you found my blogs. I did not know Torchy's was no on Burnet. I used to work over on Burnet, I will have to check it out. I do love Bento boxes. Mmm that lunch sounds like it will be great!