Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Mushroom Orzo "Risotto" Bento

Haven't used this cute box in awhile, and I forgot how nice it is to pack. You have to think about four different food groups in four different colors. You can't avoid it. It's an easy way to make sure you have a balanced bento. Today he gets whole wheat orzo with crimini mushrooms in a lettuce cup, sprinkled with fresh grated parmesan. This dish is vegetarian, with no dairy used (except the cheese on top). It is made like a risotto, but with vegetable broth. It's pretty good! I got the recipe from a book called 10 Things You Need To Eat, by Dave Lieberman and Anahad O'Connor.

Here it is:
Cook 10oz roughly chopped crimini (or other) mushrooms and 1 finely chopped onion in olive oil.
After mushrooms have "liquified", about 10 minutes, stir in 1t ground allspice and fresh ground black pepper. Add 2C whole wheat orzo and mix together.
Add 3C vegetable broth and bring to simmer, stirring often, until absorbed and risotto-like, about 20 min.
Top with grated Parmesan and crushed toasted pecans.

He also gets a sprig of steamed broccoli, some purple carrot discs, and baby carrots. I put a bunch of red grapes in, and the red section contains cottage cheese topped with sliced strawberry + kumquat, and a blackberry. I tossed some chopped almonds over that. Finally, I steamed a purple Okinawan sweet potato and cut it into a flower shape, poking a few holes with a straw. The leaves were cut from cucumber. Luckily this box has a convex top, so the flower will not be smushed. I should really use this box more often; it's so pretty. :)


  1. The orzo risotto sounds delish! That's such a great bento box, everything looks so pretty in it! :O)

  2. I love this box it looks like it is so much fun to pack lunch in! Everything looks delicious! :D

  3. ooh, thanks for the recipe, that looks SO yummy! i love your elegant line of kumquat slices, and all the deep shades of purple in this one... and that large central flower is a great focal point (loving the triple-holed center)!

  4. Your M4SB bento are always so beautifully prepared! Love to see all the colors, very fresh and bento itself is so delicious. You should give us a tips on M4SB 101 soon (^.^)

  5. Thanks a lot Susan, Jenn, megan, and Lia!
    You guys are always so supportive and I really appreciate it :D :D

  6. I'm loving the colors! M4SB never looked so good!

  7. You did a great job in grouping food according to your multicolor boxes Sheri... And I love that popping out bear soooo much - it's a fun idea! :D

  8. I always like M4SB bento box. You've done a real good job packing the food which made the bento so colourful! I like the cucumber leaves too, such a creative idea! :)

  9. It looks REALLY good! Thanks for disclosing how you made those perfect holes in the pruple potato: I did wonder about that!

    Now I wish even more I could buy those 'tatoes' over here ;)

  10. I like that box too. The colors of the box and then all the colors of the food make it jump out! Love the sweet potato flower on top too!

  11. Bright and lovely, so healthful and infused with that special sherimiya sweetness (and clever details!) As I mentioned on flickr, am dazzled by the purple carrot skewer...you work magic with the M4SB!

  12. Thanks Debra! M4SB FTW! Woox4!

    tatabonita, I've had those bear picks so long, I nearly forgot about them. Thought they would be cute in the "tree", hehe. Thanks!

    KidsDreamWork, thanks! I actually used a leaf cutter for the leaves, but the cucumber was so thick I had a hard time cutting through! I'll have to use a thinner piece next time.

    gnoegnoe, thanks! I have straws of all different diameters :) Hope you can find them soon, or try growing them?

    Thanks Lyndsey!

    Hi bentobird, thank you for your sweet comments, so glad you were dazzled, hehe ^_^