For the past long weekend, we took a short trip to Hong Kong to attend one of our best friend’s’ 50th birthday party. It was a ravishing, spectacular soirée, with more than a hundred people attending to celebrate her special day. All the guests were dressed in their beautiful chic attire including our daughter, with live music and endless flow of champagne and chatter. I wonder when I had a holiday this much fun last, and that made me feel heavy and hesitant for going back to reality.
As cruel as it can be, it was time to go home to my normal humble life. Our flight back to Tokyo got delayed by an hour, which means arriving home even later than what we thought was already late for a school night. And this means no stop over at a grocery store to replenish our empty fridge.
In the car back from the airport, I quickly assessed in my head what was left in our fridge/freezer for our daughter’s bento the next morning. I remembered about the pesto sauce in the freezer I had made a couple of weeks ago, as well as the frozen steamed carrot slices, blueberries and apple mousse. I also remembered the eggs & ham in the fridge hadn’t gone expired yet. And the outcome was a not so bad pasta bento for our little girl.
Monday morning after a busy, eventful weekend.
There’s nothing else more useful than the frozen “torisoboro“, the chicken crumble, to prepare a quick bento for your little one.
For recipe, click here.
What makes me happy about making bento is making my daughter happy. This morning she came up to the kitchen counter, stretched herself up and looked over at what was prepared for her for the day, and said “Wow!” with a huge smile on her face in the most genuine manner.
This – is worth more than anything.
I felt lazy in the morning and just defrosted the hamburg steak I made the other day. I usually eat the same thing for lunch at home as my daughter to see how it tastes like. It worked just fine.
Menu: Hamburg steak (defrosted), Spinach omelet, Boiled green beans, Rice with furikake sprinkle, Steamed carrot
Apple bunnies & kiwi fruit for dessert
I forgot to take the photo of my daughter’s bento at the kitchen this morning. Just for the sake of continuing to upload this to this site everyday, I got the bento out of my daughter’s school backpack, and took this photo at the entrance hall while my husband was being grumpy to be in a rush to bring her to school on his way to work.
Menu: Soboro tricolour bento, Steamed broccoli, Steamed carrot and daikon with dash of sea salt & extra virgin olive oil
Mikan for dessert
These cute cookie cutters, bought at 100 yen shop, are very useful… not really for cookies but for carrots.
After steaming sliced carrots using my Le Creuset steamer, this is what I do:
Cut out the shapes and put the outer part aside
I usually freeze these nicely shaped carrot slices in a container and use a piece or two in LO’s bento box from time to time. It not only gives bright colour in her packed lunch but of course additional nutrition (carrots are full in carotene and vitamin A).
I chop the outer part of the cutout slices and pack them away for later use, too (e.g. for miso soup, soboro variation, etc.)
This is the tori-soboro (chicken crumble) variation; with tofu, spinach and chopped carrots
It may seem a little troublesome at first, but I assure you this will actually make your life easier especially for your bento making. It will give more versatility to your recipes also.
Great purchase for a few hundred yen!