Friday, February 14, 2020

Valentine Snack Bento

Happy Valentine's Day!
Cute lil' bear buns, berries and blood oranges in TinySprite's Ecolunchbox square stainless steel box. I love this box; it's indestructible and very practical.

And I made strawberry muffins too!
Hope you all have a wonderful day of love and long holiday weekend on top of that!

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Spaghetti (Squash) Bento

This one is so cheery it almost makes me forget we're in the middle of winter. I always used to roast my spaghetti squash but this time I used the microwave for 8 minutes per half and it seemed to work just as well. I noticed the strands were more fragile though, and they were soft and broke easily. Anyone else notice the same? Otherwise, the kids didn't seem to mind there weren't any actual spaghetti noodles.

This box is called Saladbook (I don't know if it's still available as I didn't see it on Amazon) and it's shallow but the diameter is quite large, so you can fit a lot of food in here, and not just salads. The lid snaps tight and is leakproof; a plus with kids who jam their lunch totes into their backpacks on the regular.

Inside MisterMan's Saladbook: spaghetti squash, meat sauce, avocado, romaine and tomato salad, pickled red onion and radish, steamed Okinawan sweet potatoes, strawberries, blood orange slices.


Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Hummus Snack Bento

Just a quick one today. Lots of running back and forth between afterschool activities means they need to keep their energy stores up. My favorite sourdough has always been the one from Tartine in San Francisco, but since As Kneaded Bakery opened a storefront in my town recently, I have found a new replacement favorite. SO good. Especially since I can pick it up anytime and eat it fresh out of the oven. I prefer whole and ancient grain sourdough with a chewy texture but the rest of the family likes olive bread. So they get theirs at Crispian.

In TinySprite's Hello Kitty snack box: Crispian Bakery Olive Sourdough bread, homemade hummus (with paprika), grape tomatoes. 

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Yakitori Bento

He may be a big kid but when he saw this bento he said "yesterday's was hers so this one is mine, right?"
Yup, this one is yours if you want it, MisterMan.

In this Ecolunchbox: multigrain rice with sesame seeds, yakitori (pan fried chicken), broccoli, pickled radish and red onion (the red onion dyed the radish pink), mushroom, grape tomatoes, Okinawan sweet potato, kiwifruit.

Monday, February 10, 2020

Egg Salad Sandwich Snack Bento

While I was going through my extensive bento stash recently, I found a ton of super cute bento boxes that my kids probably think they're too grown-up to use now. That's not what I think. Even though these boxes hold only 350 and 250 ml, I can still fill them with snack bento. And I know they are always excited (hungry) for snack bento between school and afterschool activities!

In TinySprite's big snack box: egg salad on whole wheat bread with pickled cukes and a little romaine for crunch.

In small snack box: grape tomatoes, edamame and mandarins.

Friday, February 7, 2020

Breakfast (Buddha) Bowl

I've always wanted to make a Buddha Bowl. You've seen the pictures: beautifully photogenic bowls of exotic ingredients painstakingly prepared with complicated dressings and perfectly scattered nibbles on top. Here's how Wiki defines Buddha Bowl:

A Buddha bowl is a vegetarian meal, served on a single bowl or high-rimmed plate, which consists of small portions of several foods, served cold. These may include whole grains such as quinoa or brown rice, plant proteins such as chickpeas or tofu, and vegetables.

Huh. Turns out I've been making Buddha Bowls for years. In fact, since my kids were little, they've always eaten their meals in bowls. And a good number of those have been vegetarian. Maybe because they watch me? I almost always eat my meals in bowls. Or maybe because it's quicker for them to pile the food in a deep vessel for efficiency.

Anyway, I digress. I'm happy to post my first Buddha Bowl here. It was delish. 😊

In bowl: I mixed beet juice with plain Greek yogurt. It sounds weird but it's tasty! Try it. I also sometimes toss in sunflower seeds, other types of nuts, even nut butters.

Thursday, February 6, 2020

Furikake Salmon Lunchbots Bento

Two in a row! I'm on a roll now.

I recently learned that to ensure a crispy salmon skin you need to remove all the moisture from the fish first. I patted the filet with paper towels and let it air dry for a while before pan frying. Came out good! I love salmon and cook it once a week. I eat mine very simply with a bowl of 🍚 or on a salad🥗. So ono😋

In TinySprite's Lunchbots Trio: furikake salmon on soba noodles, assorted vegetables (broccoli, asparagus, tomato, carrots, edamame, Okinawan sweet potato), kiwifruit, pickled radish and red onion.

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

First Bento of 2020!

Hello bento peeps; anyone out there?
It's been almost a year since my last post (!) but one of my goals for 2020 is to revisit the blog, revive the inspiration, reinvent the passion, rearrange the way I'm preparing lunch, snacks and meals.
MisterMan is 16 now, and TinySprite is 12 (and taller than me so not so tiny any more) and they are well on their way to developing their own bentomaking skills. But today they both happened to be on school field trips and as I looked at their boxes sitting here at home I thought: I wonder if I still remember how? 🤔

Surprise! I can still put out a couple of good bento lunches. I threw these together in a half hour, using leftovers and stuff already in the fridge. It took way longer for me to remember how to upload the pics and insert the codes😑
But I am determined. I'm bringing bento back😊

Top: TinySprite's bento in stainless steel box, similar to this one.
Bottom: MisterMan's glass Pure Bento from Smart Planet Home.

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Happy Boys' Day Bento!

Happy Boys' Day!

This day is also known as Children's Day, Kodomo No Hi. In Hawaii when I was growing up we celebrated Girls' Day on March 3, and Boys' Day on May 5th. I made TinySprite a Pucca bento on Girls' Day and today I made a little boy with origami kabuto (samurai helmet) and koinobori (carp streamers) to signify strength. Do you know how to fold origami kabuto? It's a fun activity to do with your kids! May all the boy(s) in your life grow up to enjoy a good, happy and healthy childhood!

In our Ecolunchbox Solo Cube: roast pork, polenta, rotini pasta, carrots, tomatoes, Okinawan sweet potato, hard boiled egg, radish, strawberries.

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Salmon and Veggie Yumbox Bento

This bento might not look that pretty, but it's full of good stuff. The compartmentalized box is practical for those times when you happen to have a bunch of this and that to pack for lunch. You ever have days like those?

Furikake salmon pasta, veggie hash with celery, bell pepper, and butternut squash, cucumber tomato salad with pickled red onions, strawberries and cottage cheese with granola. A few chocolate raisins finish out this Yumbox. Have a yummy day!

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Spring Roll Bento🌸🍱

Here's one to herald spring. Spring rolls! So fun for bento, and delicious at room temperature.

Today's one of those typically unsettled days with a little of everything. Warm and sunny when we woke up, followed by the sudden disappearance of the sun and subsequent black clouds and freezing wind. I'm expecting a downpour at any second. 😂

Luckily it's a fine day for fresh spring rolls. I put rice vermicelli in mine, with lettuce, napa cabbage, shredded carrots, red bell pepper, peapods, and shrimp. I sliced one open to show you, but I'll wrap it back up to keep it from drying out. I made peanut sauce for dipping (made with sun butter instead of peanut to abide by TinySprite's nut-free school rules).

Monday, April 2, 2018

Bento Break: Etsy Shop {All My Dreams}

Hi friends! After a hiatus of a few years, I reopened my etsy shop: All My Dreams. []

If you've been reading this blog for a while, you might remember I crafted and sold origami crane earrings a few years back as part of a benefit for victims of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami in Japan. It was a great way to do a little bit towards bringing attention to the disaster relief as a part of a larger effort by the bento community.

Afterwards, I let the shop lapse while I worked on other things, and I only recently remembered about it. I enjoyed my crafty side projects so much I thought I might start up again. Feel free to take a look if you are interested. Oh, and use coupon code 25OFF for 25% off the entire store! Thank you friends! 😊❤