And it's yet another donburi-type bento in the ever-favorite panda bowl; this time ma po tofu (adapted from Lovelylanvin's fantastic recipe here). This batch contains chopped pickled mustard greens (because I love 'em), along with scallions and even some choy sum. As usual, there is no hint of chili sauce at all in the kid version, which is why it looks so drab and dull (sigh). You may (or may not) have noticed that ma po tofu had been absent from our menu of late. This is due to the fact that TinySprite had tested positive for both wheat and soy in a blood IgE test. We assumed she was allergic to these foods and I had therefore been diligently trying to remove and replace them in our family diet. Well, recently she was retested via the more accurate skin prick test and we discovered that she is not allergic to wheat or soy at all. In fact, she was negative for all the common food allergens. So here we are eating wheat and soy again! I learned a lot about soy- and gluten-free cooking and eating during those months, and when I shared what I learned on this blog [you can search "gluten free" in the search bar up top and see how much I did!], I discovered that a whole lot of you are allergy-conscious as well. I have a new respect for folks who must live with food allergies; it can be tough and frustrating. I'm not abandoning soy- and gluten-free eating -- I actually like the taste of non-wheat flours, and I still have a lot of soy-free soy sauce (yes, it does exist!). The upper tier doesn't add much in the way of color, with blackberries, black grapes, and orange-fleshed plums, but I hope the sakura-shaped carrots brightened up this ho-hum bento for my girl. ^_^
I am a former research scientist turned stay-at-home-mom of 2 who got started with bento in an effort to help my kids learn that eating healthy and nutritious foods can be fun and cute. I make a bento lunch for my 13yo (8th grader) son & my 9yo (4th grader) daughter every school day, and post the pictures on my sherimiya ♥ flickr photostream. Here in this blog is where I describe each bento, and you'll also get a peek inside our family adventures. Thanks for taking a look, and please let me know what you think ^-^!