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Kindergarten bento – Another busy but short week (31/Oct, 1 & 2/Nov/17)

It’s been another busy but short week for us. Monday was a school holiday since our daughter’s school was open on last Saturday for an art event. Tomorrow, 3rd of November is a public holiday in Japan called Culture Day. As such, there’s only 3 days of school, but since I took up this translation assignment for 9000 words of text, which is due tonight, I’ve been working non-stop since Tuesday. 

Anyway I thought I’d take a break and post our daughter’s bento images because the bento making happens every day no matter what as long as her school is open!

Tuesday 31/Oct – Soboro bento


Wednesday 1/Nov – Macaroni in  tomato sauce with aubergene & bacon


Thursday 2/Nov – Picnic tortilla wrap bento 


Our daughter & her friends are on their way to the sweet potato farm for potato digging today. It’s their first time to take a chartered bus on their own, without being accompanied by their parents. Hope they’ll have fun.

OK, back to my assignment, 2000 more words to go!

Kindergarten bento – Variety (23-26/Oct/17)

Since the start of this week, I’ve been working on my translation assignments and didn’t have a chance to post my daughter’s bento. No matter how tied up I can be, the bento making happens everyday. When you are busy, time passes in an incredible speed. I can’t believe it’s already Thursday, and I hadn’t posted any of these bento pictures. 

23/Oct/17 – Tori-don


24/Oct/17 – Chinese stir-fried beef & green pepper 


25/Oct/17 – Sandwiches


26/Oct/17 – Onigiri


Looking back, I’m pleasantly surprised how versatile my daughter’s bento’s are from one day to the other. I wonder if this makes any difference in my daughter’s perception to food. I hope this means something to her, and that she’ll one day realise how much variety of food she is exposed to on a daily basis.

Kindergarten bento – Tortilla wrap (11/Oct/17)

Following the precious advice by a fellow blogger Antonio, I heated up tortillas directly on top of the gas burner. As a result, they stayed soft after being heated, and I was able to roll them all up very easily. Thank you again for such a spot-on advice!

Menu: Tortilla wraps (Cheese, ham & cucumber with appelstroop, Broccoli omelet, Strawberry jam & peanut butter, Apricot jam & butter, Nutella), Boiled okra, Steamed broccoli, Cherry tomato

Kiwi & banana for dessert

Kindergarten bento – Onigiri for the field trip (10/Oct/17)

After being postponed on last Friday due to forecasted rain, the field trip to the Ueno Zoo was finally on today. This means I need to prepare another field trip bento, and this time, our daughter requested onigiri balls.

Actually there was a specific instruction from her school for what kind of bento we should prepare for the field trip. Onigiri, sandwich and the like, something that the kids can easily pick up and eat, rather than using chopsticks or cutlery. They told us to make sure the kids bring a water bottle with a strap so they will be hands free at all times. On top of that, they advised us to pack “oshibori“, the wet hand towel, so the kids don’t have to look for a water fountain to wash their hands at lunchtime, and no waste will be produced at the same time. Despite the fact I occasionally feel a little annoyed to be instructed in such great detail, I highly respect their teachings. With years and years of experience spending time with small children, these teachers know what they are talking about.

Oh and just FYI, our daughter and her friends (around 60 of them) went to the zoo without being accompanied by their mum or dad, which means they walked from school to the nearest metro station on foot (10 minute walk), took a metro to the nearest station to the zoo (10 metro stops), walked around the zoo (quite large), took the metro back (another 10 metro stops), and walked all the way back to school (another 10 minute walk), solely with the handful of teachers (7 – 8 of them).

They all came back safe and sound.

Menu: Onigiri balls (grilled salmon & goma-konbu), Spinach omelet, Steamed broccoli, Cherry tomato

Japanese Nashi pear for desser

Kindergarten bento – Field trip (6/Oct/17)


Today I made sandwiches for our daughter, to bring to the school trip to the zoo. 

Unfortunately, the field trip has been postponed due to the forecasted rain… Well, I’ll just have to replicate something similar next week.

The problem is that I’ll have to wake up earlier than usual, maybe by 20 minutes, again next week. I’m not a morning person, so that 20 minutes is a huge difference… And of course it didn’t rain today. They could’ve gone to the zoo!

Anyway… hope our little big girl enjoyed her bento today.

Kindergarten bento – Sukiyaki-esque Gyudon beef donburi (29/Sep/17)

Occasionally, there are days I cannot pick up my daughter from the kindergarten at 2:00PM due to my work or other engagements. When that happens, my kind parents who live an hour away in Saitama, a prefecture north of Tokyo, come for the rescue. Of course they happily come all the way to Tokyo to spend time with their dearest granddaughter, but it’s still a huge favour they do for me. As a sign of gratitude, I cooked Sukiyaki-esque lunch for them in the morning, along with my daughter’s bento.

It’s a quick & easy one-pan dish, but  is tasty and fulfilling thanks to thin slices of Japanese beef that’s a little fattier than lean beef that is common elsewhere.

This is how I make it:

1) In a medium frying pan on a medium heat, stir-fry a half onion, thinly sliced, with a table spoon of cooking oil, until translucent

2) Add 200g of thinly sliced beef and stir fry a bit more

3) When the beef starts to brown, still reddish on the edges, add the Sukiyaki sauce mixture (1 table spoon each of sake & soy sauce, 3+ table spoons of mirin) and bring it to boil

4) Once it starts to boil, pour a beaten egg evenly on the beef
5) Put the lid on, lower the heat, and cook until the egg is cooked (for bento, heat the egg completely, but if you eat right after, a half cooked egg is also quite tasty)
6) Turn off the heat, and sprinkle chopped spring onion on the beef
Place it on top of freshly cooked rice – it makes a nice Sukiyaki-esque Gyudon (beef donburi) dish.
Menu for bento:

Sukiyaki-esque Gyudon (with steamed carrot slices), Spinach goma-ae, Boiled green beans, Cherry tomatoes

Kaki persimmon & Kyoho grapes for dessert

 

For other donburi recipes, here are the popular ones:

Mum’s nikudon

Tori don

Oyakodon 

Kindergarten bento – Tortilla rolls (27/Sep/17)

Following my disastrous sandwich attempt last week, I made tortilla rolls this morning. This time, it was a big success!

I lightly heated the tortillas in the frying pan, but it seems I may have overdone it. The tortillas got a bit hard and didn’t roll smoothly. Next time im sure I’ll do better.

Menu: Tortilla rolls (with cheese & appelstroop, ham & cucumber, and strawberry jam & butter), Mashed pumpkin with chicken soboro, Steamed broccoli, Cherry tomato

Kyoho grapes & banana for dessert