Friday, August 20, 2010

Week O' Bento: Meals from 8/16-8/20

I am a bit behind on posting this week's bento images. It's been one crazy week (or should I say "month"). So, starting with today's bento (then moving Monday-Thurday)...


Ojinga Bokkeum (spicy squid stir-fry)
Sigeumchi namul (seasoned spinach)
white rice


The ojinga bokkeum was actually a different take on the base recipe from Maangchi. We had only a few of the vegetable ingredients, so the stir-fry had 1/2 of a huge white onion, extra carrots (though a bit old), only a few home grown scallions, and no green korean chile pepper. But one thing I love about more "rustic" dishes is that they tend to be flexible to a degree. This stir-fry turned out wonderfully, as usual.

Monday: I packed a small container of two chicken nuggest and some mac and cheese left over from my mother's Sunday dinner. I think I also had some snacks that I brought too, but I can't remember what they were.

GF eggplant parmesan (using bread crumbs from homemade GF bread) with home made tomato sauce with old aged parmesan cheese on top of white rice


Top tier
Fried eggplant with mexican mix cheese and homemade tomato sauce over white rice

Bottom tier
Lentils and rice with carmelized onions
Cherry tomatoes from my mother's garden


Top tier

Bottom tier
Cheesy corn and rice with carmelized onions
Lentils and rice with carmelized onions

Blackberry Wegmans Yogurt

All in all, each bento was made quickly and of leftover food that needed to be used up. This was also an "Eat Down the Kitchen" week, which means we were trying not to go out and buy any groceries unless necessary (milk and cream cheese and yogurt being the exception, I believe). So, everything here was pretty much from items we already had waiting to be made into something delicious. Some were waiting longer than others, but all were nummy. :-)

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Bento Meal: 8/12/10

I haven't made a bento for a week or two. I mainly stuck to quicky stuff at work, like keeping a small container of crab salad in the work refridgerator to use with some bread from my desk drawer. I also had (have) some ramen in my drawer as quicky "emergency" meals. Lovely, no? Definitely not too healthy... so I hope to get back in gear, especially now that my baby bump is becoming a boulder and I'm starting to worry that it might be me packing on unnecessary weight due to these not-so-healthy choices. :-p

Today's bento was a quick "throw together" bento of various leftovers, but is also very healthy. The cherry tomatoes were grown in my mother's garden and are delicious. :-)

Notes on the food preparations are after the meal breakdown.*

Top Section:
sweet-tangy chicken, cut bite-sized
green leaf lettuce, torn

steamed green beans
steamed carrot noodles
cherry tomato tops
white sticky rice
sprinkling of toasted black sesame seeds
monkey container of Dynasty Thai Spicy Mayonnaise

spicy scallop stuffed cherry tomatoes
salted zucchini noodles

*To make the vegetable noodles, I use a julienne peeler. (There's actually a really nifty julienne peeler available in parts of Europe that I would really love to get, but so far, it doesn't seem available in the U.S.) After using the peeler, I take the resulting vegetable strands and salt, steam, or saute them according to the vegetable. The resulting noodles are great for infants and toddlers who can chew soft to semi-soft foods. (Salted foods should be introduced at the appropriate age.) These peelers are also great for cutting veggies for sushi or kimbap.

The spicy scallops were bay scallops that my husband steamed (though a quick saute would work too). After they cooled, I chopped them up and mixed them with a few spoonfuls of the Dynasty Spicy Thai Mayonnaise (to taste). This was part of our pre-anniversary dinner (spicy scallop kimbap rolls with home-grown scallions and vegetable rolls made of the lettuce, green beans, zucchini noodles and carrot noodles also seen in this bento. Yum!). I put one of the cherry tomatoes on top of one because, well, it was just too cute not to.

I'll have to ask my mother for the chicken recipe, as this is one of the best I've tasted. It's so good, that the first time my mother made it, when the idea of chicken made me sick, I actually gobbled down a drumstick with no "ew" reaction. My youngest niece, who also didn't eat chicken, also gobbled some down (she eats chicken now). My 2 year old son practically picked his drumstick clean. If/when I get the recipe, I will try to post it. :-)