It seems that lots of bento makers in the world are making rabbit theme bento to celebrate the Chinese New Year. I really don’t know why but somehow I don’t have the right mood to join the bandwagon although I still want to make something special to celebrate this coming Chinese New Year.
While looking for an inspiration I stumbled upon some images of Chinese opera figures and they immediately caught my interest. I don’t know much about Chinese opera. I’ve watched it on many different occasions but could not understand them at all but I really appreciate the art form, the intricacies of the costume and their facial makeup, and the discipline of all the actors to perform such elaborate tasks.
To honor the art form it’s fitting for me to make an elaborate character of the Chinese opera costume to match the actual intricacies of the real costume. The hardest part was to figure out how to cut all the parts and layering them together. After it’d figured out then came the cutting. With lots of parts we could not cut all the parts first and then assembled them one by one. The right thing to do was cutting the base first and then we go up each layer and immediately putting them together and after all the big parts been cut it’s time to finish up the small parts which was easy since most of them were circles.
In total we have 65 (sixty-five) parts to make this character. I’m quite pleased with the overall result, definitely the hardest character I’ve ever done, maybe next time I came up with something more in the future.
The bento filling was like the usual mine; strawberry, corn, broccoli chunks, mandarin orange on the left side and fried chicken tulips, beef sausage, tofu sandwich, and rabbit quail egg (for the Chinese New Year 2011 theme) on the right side.
The rabbit quail egg was made with quail egg and roasted almond slices for its ears, very easy to make.
If anyone wants to check more about the Chinese opera, there’ve been many Chinese or HK movies that tell the story of people in Chinese opera troupe but one particular movie that really stands out is Farewell My Concubine, starring the late Leslie Cheung. The only Chinese language film to ever win the prestigious Palm d’Or and voted as the most favorite Chinese movie of the century (in 2005 by Hong Kong cineastes), it’s one of my favorite movie of all time, I really recommend everyone to watch this movie.