Japanese Twitter falls in love with both the clever before and disastrous after of this boxed lunch.

Bento aren’t just boxed lunches, but also a culinary canvas on which to make an edible work of art. There’s something aesthetically pleasing about the everything-in-its place arrangement of each component of the meal, and if you want to get really creative you can even create character portraits or beautiful landscapes out of the food, which will greet you once you open up the lid.

Hoping to give herself a little pick-me-up at lunch time, Japanese Twitter user Annko (@hanae1210) came up with the clever idea of making a “flower field” bento. After filling the bottom of her bento box with rice, she next laid down a layer of ground meat, using the brown granular foodstuff to represent a patch of soil. For the stems of her “flowers” she used, well, stems, from the Japanese herb called mitsuba. Finally, to stand in for the blossoms themselves, she used a flower-shaped cookie cutter on some brightly colored vegetable slices (carrot and daikon radish) and gave each a little dollop of ketchup in the center.

Pretty cute stuff, isn’t it? Even if you had a hectic morning, it’d be hard not to smile a little at that cheery, hopeful site when your lunch break rolls around, right?

Except, unfortunately for Annko, when she sat down to eat…

…her flowers were gone!

Thankfully, this wasn’t a case of a coworker helping themselves to Annko’s lunch. And actually, it turned out the flowers weren’t so much gone as simply…

relocated from the bento box’s box to its lid.

▼ “My flower field bento turned into a stem bento…”

The problem Annko ran into was with the ketchup. While it added some fun color, it’s also sticky, and at some time after she closed the lid in the morning, the vegetables had gotten stuck to the inside surface. When she took the lid off in order to eat, it took all of the flowers with it, and it looks like they ended up pulling most of the leaves with them, turning Annko’s beautiful flower field into a patch of largely barren dirt.

Other Twitter users, impressed by her flower bento concept and sympathetic towards the results, reacted with:

“It’s like a storm came through.”
“I think the second picture looks fun. It reminds me of daffodils being carried on the wind.”
“The first photo is early autumn, and the second one is late autumn. Both of them have a sense of season.”
“I was feeling bummed out today, but this made me laugh and really cheered me up.”

Some helpful commenters also pointed out that the problem could have been avoided by putting some saran wrap or baking paper on the lid’s inner surface, which some bento cook do to keep saucy foods from sticking to it even if they’re not trying to make a picture out of their lunch. And even if Annko wasn’t quite able to give herself the exact sort of mid-day boost she’d been aiming too, her flower bento sure is giving a lot of people smiles now.

Source: Twitter/@hanae1210 via Jin
Images: Twitter/@hanae1210
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