Translated into English as a Japanese salt plum, umeboshi is basically dried pickled plumbs most commonly eaten in Japan. Originally eaten by the samurai to combat battle fatigue and a remedy for colds and flues. They are extremely sour and salty; however, they also have a sweet version pickled with honey. Umeboshi is normally served with rice in small quantities to add flavour and presentation to the meal.
Umeboshi were also widely used after World War 2 by the Japanese for their Hinomaru Bento Box which translates to Japanese Flag Bento. The circle symbolising the sun was a small piece of Umeboshi placed in the middle of a one-piece bento box with white rice.
Salads are used in bento boxes to balance the meal out, re-freshen the palate, ad some crisp flavours, and add colour to the meal. Japanese salads would include Natto salad which includes natto, green onion, green salad and sesame oil. Wakame seaweed salad included dried wakame seaweed, rice vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil, sugar, grated ginger, grated garlic and sesame seeds. Bonito Salad included frozen sweet Peas, bonito flakes, tuna, egg noodles, large eggs, water, salt and chopped parsley flakes. Broccolini Gomaae was another variation of gomaae but with broccoli.