I have been focusing on getting more color into the boxes, so you may see some unusual things in the next few weeks. (Are you admiring my fine mesh strainer/steam basket at left? Got it for Christmas!)
Here are a few bentos I made recently, with a little info about each.
I sliced a sweet potato into 1/4" slices, simmered them in a bit of water for about 10 minutes and then used these adorable cutters to make cute designs (thanks Mom and Dad). The scraps at the top were cut small and hidden under the rice.
This is one of my favorite containers for Pepper because it holds her chopsticks and silverware close at hand.(There's a little lid that goes over the flatware compartment.) I thought dear hubby would not like this meal since he is a meat lover but he offered no complaint!
The next bento was a huge hit. The spinach knobs with sesame sauce are always popular with the whole family. In the past I have short-cut the sauce with tahini and it was wonderful, but this time I used the crushed sesame seeds and it was dynamite! Oh my goodness, oh my goodness! Maki's recipe calls for mixing the sauce with the spinach but it's messy so if I'm in a hurry, I put it on the knobs instead.
There are a few sauteed bell peppers and carrots in between the spinach and the white rice.
Ginger Chicken (serves 5)
2 Tbsp. crushed ginger
2 Tbsp. Mirin
2 Tbsp. Sake (you can use regular wine)
1 Tbsp. Soy Sauce (I use Low Sodium)
Dice up 4 chicken breasts and put them in the marinade a few minutes. Heat a frying pan over medium high heat with 1/2 tsp. sesame oil and 1 tsp. canola oil. When the oil shimmers add half the chicken. Set a timer for 3 minutes and then flip it all. Cook 2 more minutes but make sure you don't overcook them. Repeat with new oil and the rest of the chicken, reserving marinade.
Deglaze the pan with 1/4 cup sake (or white wine) and add 1/4 cup water. Add any remaining marinade. Cook it a few minutes until it is nice and thick, then add 2 Tbsp. soy sauce. Strain and bottle.
Finally, today's bento. Since only the Mr. had to take lunch today, I made a simple meal, partially leftover. I do not cook a whole meal every day; I do use leftovers when I have them. That said, 7 people eat a lot of food and we do not have a lot of leftovers. The only thing I "cooked" for today was cabbage and crab slaw; this is a wonderful recipe from the Just Bento Cookbook that Dear Hubby really enjoys.
instant cabbage pickles with the yummy crab and a super simple vinaigrette. There is nothing to it, really, and all the calories are in the crab, of which there is only 1/4 cup per serving.
I dressed it up a bit with these pretty grape tomatoes.
It looks better if you don't chop all the curls out of the cabbage so don't use a food processor. The picture below shows the cabbage cut thinly by hand, before pickling.
neat-o tiffin I bought Dear Hubby last fall. He loves this container.it holds a lot of food but also looks really cool.
J-List and found a couple for under $5 each. They are on the way to me as we speak!