Thursday, April 30, 2009

Chicken rice bento (#60)

I love this Hello Kitty bento. Love the size of it, which is a good portion for an adult, as well as the divider between them. I bought chicken rice for dinner last evening and put them in this bento for dear princess. The main compartment holds the chicken rice and I sprinkled furikake using a Cinnamoroll mould and didn't have much time to do up the face, so just dotted some mayo for eyes n mouth. In the smaller compartment, there is roasted chicken, cucumber, and strawberries. This HK bento is the same size as the Doraemon one here.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Hokkaido yummies

Dad brought along more goodies this morning. I guess he needed to sort out the stuff he bought from Hokkaido, and he had come on Friday right after arriving on Thursday night, so was too rushed to properly sort out his luggage. Hehe. Anyway, he brought us lots of goodies today and princess had a field day in the car munching on goodies. The two little green packs in the front of picture were very delicious but we only got a handful of each. He also won a cow soft toy from some bingo game at the onsen. He said when he was carrying the soft toy around, some Japanese men were pulling at the nose string n the tail, how funny. They probably found it cute.

This was cocoa-covered tiramisu chocolate with almonds. Delicious!

And these triangular packets actually hold pistachios within. We usually get them with peanuts over here. Very lovely too and fragrant.

I love the packaging of these biscuits which come in three flavours - chocolate, seaweed, and plain butter. Isn't it cute, the tudor-style shop?

This is a famous brand from Hokkaido, if I'm not wrong, and I believe Peony has ever blogged about it. In fact, all the goodies pictured came from the same brand. What a nice touch with the flowers on the box which they got from the shop. He gave a second box which he bought from the wholesaler which does not come with the floral bouquet.

There's another box of strawberry chocolate biscuits which he got for his darling granddaughter.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Bento #58 & 59

Sorry IM, I know you are very excited to see the bentos, but was caught up yesterday and couldn't update blog. Apologies. Well, anyway, had to make sure I do it this morning without fail. :P This bento below is for my girl comprising rice with furikake in the middle, so as not to spoil Cinnamoroll's face. I cut out two carrot flowers for the hairpiece, and attached them with vermicelli. In the boxes, I included sugar beans, kamaboko, fish sausage, sweet potato, cherry tomatoes, strawberries, rabbit apples and persimmon. As my girl's bento is smaller, I put her fruits in a separate container. She finished everything in her Cinnamoroll bento and I thought wow, that's great, she ate the sweet potato too, and the sugar beans. But this morning she told me the sweet potato was yucky and she threw out the sugar beans. Lol. She doesn't like mashed potatoes or mushy food of any kind. Hmm... I wanted to try it out anyway, since she recently started liking lotus paste buns. Cinnamoroll's eyes and mouth are cut from crabsticks. It was really tough cutting out the mouth and one is uglier. Hehe. But princess was really sweet and said that it's ok, she'd have the ugly mouth, and to give the nicer one to J. :) To round off the meal, a marshmallow for each girl.

This second box was for princess' classmate as she is a great Cinnamoroll fan. Both girls had exactly the same food, but J's came back only half eaten. Was asking my girl if J doesn't like cherry tomatoes and her reply was that J said she's never eaten them before. Haha. In any case, am glad that J enjoyed her bento, but I guess it was too much food for her to finish in a short time. :)

Fruits for the princess.

Grandpa is back from Hokkaido and brought this for princess just before school yesterday. Apparently it's only available in Hokkaido, as the box says?

Have a great weekend!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Dinner - Chinese Sausage Omelette & Spinach with tofu fishcake

Was chatting with HK over msn and talking about what we were going to have for dinner. I mentioned lap cheong omelette and she thought it was rather interesting. Therefore decided to share it with her here. This is what it looks like... :) Such a simple dish, just slice up the chinese sausage (in this case I used chicken sausages, which are the only ones I ever buy), since I am partial towards chicken, not so much pork. Fry them in a little oil, then add a beaten egg or two.

I was visiting a friend the day before, and her mum cooked this spinach dish & I enjoyed it, so here, I made my version with tofu fishcake which I had to clear from the fridge. I also made a pot of bak kut teh using the instant stock which Al gave. Was surprised hubby loved it, but little princess thought it was too peppery.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Teriyaki Chicken Pasta

Met with KY for lunch and spent a couple of hours window-shopping & just enjoying each other's company. :) My intention was to cook teriyaki chicken pasta for dinner, and since I have the sauce at home, just needed to get some chicken fillet. But as we neared the cashier, my eyes caught this on offer! This CP glazed teriyaki mini steak is superb for those days when you run short of time. A real convenient dish, and all you need is a pot of hot boiling water & a pair of scissors. Even my hubby can prepare this. Now, I only need to teach him how to cook rice. Hehe.

I first browned some onions, and added garlic, yellow capsicum, mushrooms & when they were cooked, just tossed in the pasta & the heated chicken with sauce. I then garnished with some shredded nori. Princess gave me 100 marks for dinner! Woohoo! Very delicious.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Bento #56 & 57

Made the above bento for dinner last evening. Another day of not needing to cook for the family as hubby had to attend a workshop at school, so only made a bento for the little one. As was out in the afternoon with P & baby, I wanted to prepare something simple. Bought a packet of fresh soba & boiled that together with the chikuwa, carrots, fish sausage, kamaboko & baby corn. I then cut up some strawberries & yellow watermelon. Princess saw lady's fingers in a friend's bento & was curious about it, so fried those with some ready seasoned flour from Daiso. In the bento, there is a portion of mayonnaise & the bottle contains the sauce for the soba. I simply garnished the soba with some shredded nori & sesame seeds.

Came across a very cute caterpillar bun at four leaves bakery. Couldn't resist getting it for breakfast, so put it together with some animal biscuits, crab crisps & some apple for her breakfast today. She also had a bottle of Meiji chocolate milk which I diluted with fresh milk as I find the chocolate too rich for her.

Mum gave the little cutlery below. Isn't that cute? And most perfect for bento.

These silicon food dividers are new at Daiso. I love their size as they are bigger than the normal ones that we have. Great discovery. The big orange one is a single one, whereas the green one comes in a pack of 3.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Bento #55 & product review - char kuay teow

Hubby had an outing with his mates last evening which I totally forgot about. The pain in my joints were quite severe yesterday and I really had no mood at all to do anything, much less cook. So when I was reminded of his not coming home for dinner, I was filled with joy. It meant that I only needed to prepare a simple dinner for the child. For myself, there was a portion of lor mai kai in the fridge which I had bought from the pau shop two days before. :D I boiled some pasta which I then made a sauce with instant soup from the pouch, boiled some crabsticks, made a flower ham (first time doing it and it turned out very pretty), washed some cherry tomatoes & strawberries and voila, dinner was ready!

For my lunch, I tried out this instant char kuey teow which piqued my interest when I spotted it at the Korean shop. It looks nice & all, but really, was pretty disappointed with the taste. It tasted nothing like it looked. Guess I won't be getting more packets.

The interior was pretty impressive with everything in individual packets.

The seasonings which included fried garlic bits (too much of those).

I added a few fishballs & a poached egg to the dish. Apologies for the very gross-looking end product. :P

Thursday, April 16, 2009

CATS (Bento #53 - hubby's & 54 - girl's)

We attended the musical 'CATS' last evening with KY & JG. Timing was very tight as we both had to wait for the kids to come home from school before rushing out the door. KY lives like 45mins away from the Esplanade and she's really lucky to have arrived before the doors of the theatre closed. For me, we are lucky we live less than 10mins away. However, I prepared bentos for princess, hubby and myself which we needed to consume before the start of the show. We made it in good time!

However, I spent at least 2hrs on the bentos and seriously can't imagine myself doing this on a daily basis. But, I am really happy that I fulfilled what I started out to do. And am proud that the CATS logo turned out pretty well on hubby's bento. In his bento, I have placed the rice at the bottom after seasoning it with sukiyaki beef furikake (picture down at the bottom), which is super yummy, if I had put more of it in. Was afraid that it'd turn out too salty, but for future ref, will be generous with it because it really is super delicious! :P I have also placed some blanched broccoli & a piece of luncheon meat at the base.

In this layer of his bento (using the hamburger bento, which is a perfect portion for him), there are strawberries, dragonfruit & a salad I made with potatoes, corn kernels, cut-up sausages & Japanese cucumber and seasoned with mayo, garlic powder & black pepper.

For the girl, I made two little kitties to depict the characters in the musical. For the fishball cat, I cut two tiny triangular ears out from the luncheon meat & secured them with vermicelli strands. I didn't have time to beautify it further as it was time to get ready to pick her up from the bus, a quick shower & change then rush out the door. Love the metal Cinnamoroll bento.

Her dessert bento held dragonfruit & blueberry marshmallows.

The bento below is for myself. I had onigiri & a salad just like hubby's, However, I only ate the onigiri & the salad is still sitting in the fridge. I think I was too tired after the preparation of the bentos that I wasn't hungry by dinnertime.

I made some extras, for JG & for my mum, which they ate during interval.

This below is the very yummy sukiyaki beef furikake.

We did have a good evening & princess enjoyed the musical, because it is after all, about cats, which she loves. However, it was too long for her and by 10.20pm, she was complaining that she was sleepy and bugging to go home. She got a t-shirt from the merchandise shop and couldn't wait to put it on. She even wore it to sleep. ;) Thanks AG & KY for the tickets. :D

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Bento #51 & 52

I wasn't feeling too good physically yesterday, so had no energy to cook, thus decided to da bao some packet rice. Decided to put them nicely like a bento so Princess would be more willing to eat her dinner. In the bento there is cabbage, tofu, sweet & sour pork, and a piece of prawn paste chicken. The rice is flavoured with the black sauce from the tofu and she loves that, and finished the entire bowl. She had some tofu, and a bit of chicken but left everything else. %(

This is her breakfast bento this morning. In it there are dinosaur sandwiches with strawberry cream cheese spread, a little apple, a bottle of yakult and some chocolate/fresh milk mix.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Good Friday (Bento #50)

Wow, my #50th bento! Today's bento comprises the fruits & jelly from last evening, a hot cross bun, a bottle of yakult and a carton of yoghurt. She finished everything except the yoghurt. It's a rather big portion of breakfast I have to say.

Good Friday is a day of fasting and abstinence. The abstinence part is easy, but I'll do my best with the fasting. It's not because I am greedy or anything. It's just that I am on steroids for my arthritis and that makes me hungry a lot of the time. Just need a lot of prayers to see me through today, and also a prayer that my tummy won't rumble in church lol. The Catholic Church has primarily two compulsory fasting days in its calendar. The first one is on Ash Wednesday, and the second one is on Good Friday. Of course, for personal reasons, some people give up meat entirely during Lent, or fast on the Fridays of Lent. I personally do not take meat on Fridays, and my girl is starting to do the same. But for her, it's more a happy thing because she doesn't like to consume meat. Haha. However, that is not the rule now in the Catholic Church. You are allowed to consume meat on Fridays but you need to replace it with a penance, such as saying the rosary, or giving up something else. For me, it's just a habit from my teens so I find it easier to do the abstinence. To me, it just doesn't feel right to be eating meat on that day. To learn more about Catholic fasting, check here. In our case, fasting refers only to solid food which doesn't include water or any liquid, thus is not as strict as the Muslims during Ramadan who are not even allowed to drink.

Do check out Susan's blog for Easter bentos and all the teachings about Easter that she is sharing. I found them very interesting and inspirational.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Bento #49

I'm quite pleased with today's bento. While flipping through one of my bento books, I decided to do the onigiri with an origami hat. I thought it was very cute, a great idea. The rice was seasoned with furikake, then had some corn kernels added to it, and shaped into a ball. I lightly panfried two pieces of bunny luncheon meat, and two pieces of fish fillet, to go with the rice. After cutting out the bunnies, the odds and ends of the luncheon meat were fried and then compressed within the chick-shaped rice. The core of the carrot flower is made with cucumber. I thought the bone would look cute in the fish fillet, therefore I stuck them in at the last minute.

For dessert, there were slices of Chinese pear, and some jelly made from soy. It's still sitting in the fridge because I had intended to give it to her after we got home from church tonight. However, after mass, she said she wanted to go eat sushi. Gosh! So I guess it'll have to wait till tomorrow.

This is the packaging of the jelly which I cut into bunny shapes. I had a hard time hunting this down. At last, I found it at NTUC on one of the rare occasions when I did my grocery shopping there. Miz Young introduced them to me ages ago, but I just never came across them. It comes in a pack of three with three different flavours. There's a grape, and I think a mango. I can't recall the last flavour, but it might have been lychee.

Top of the World (+ bento #48)

My girl woke up this morning, gave me a very big, tight hug and said, 'the person I love most in the whole wide world is Mummy!'. What a way to start off the day. :D

Poor child came home after school yesterday feeling totally miserable. She didn't have much of an appetite the past two nights, but I made her eat her dinner. I guess it should have been a sign that she wasn't feeling too well. So last evening, I thought in order to cheer her up and entice her to eat, I'd make her a bento. I spent a great deal of time on it (not that it looks fantastic or anything), and guess what? She came home with a running nose, and didn't want to eat much. She only had the salmon sausages, the young corn, and the tomatoes. That's it! I was livid because of all the time spent on the preparation, but yet I couldn't blame her. I gave her a dosage of Dimetapp and by 8.30pm she was asleep. She had a great rest and woke up much better this morning. Her running nose seems to have stopped for now, but I can't risk her getting sick, as the next few days is a busy time for us. School lets them off at 5pm today so we're off to church, followed by Stations of the Cross tomorrow. The weekend is also chock-a-block full with ballet, parties, Easter, etc. Just hope she'll recover enough to enjoy it.

In last evening's bento, there was fried bee hoon, siew mai bunnies (quite ugly... haha), salmon sausages, young corn umbrella, a basket of greens (broccoli) in a tomato base with spots of flowers (carrots), 2 cherry tomato ladybugs, and a basket handle made from a strip of carrot. For fruits, she had mangoes. Needless to say, she polished off those mangoes no problem. Oops, anyone spotted the mistake I made with the leaf picks? I put them on upside down in a rush. No wonder they were too short and didn't stick in properly haha. I love my hamburger bento box which I'm using for the first time. :)

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Lunch - 7.4.09

There is no significance to the date above. It's just that I have no inspiration to think of a title and that's how I came up with that. :) Had planned to go to PP for a nice, steaming hot, bowl of ban mian. Unfortunately, dear princess wasn't in the mood to go out. Thought it'd be nice to eat out since hubby is working from home today. But on the other hand, thank goodness we didn't, as a thunderstorm arrived soon after I came back from market with the fishball noodles.

Seeing that the menu for today is only ham bun, I decided to feed princess well before she left for school. Bought her bee tai mak which she likes, and added some dried seaweed to the soup. Also got two little pieces of fried fish wanton as a side dish. Yesterday's menu mentioned that they were having nasi lemak, but when she came home, she said they were only given brownie & fruits. :(

For hubby's lunch, I made him a sandwich with the panini bread given by AG. I still have 2 pieces in the fridge to finish up. Didn't realize how big they were, so, greedy me had asked for 6 pieces, but thank goodness they only packed 4. :P

For the filling, I boiled some prawns which I then sliced into half, and together with a boiled egg, lettuce, tomatoes, and mayo, I made up the sandwich. In the background are slices of Chinese pear to complete the meal.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Bento #47

I made this yesterday to take with us to ballet class. Class is very late now and ends after 1pm. We usually have lunch around 2pm on Saturdays. I know that princess loves to watch the older grades having their classes so decided to pack her this sandwich bento with panini given by her godpa. I made her a ham and cheese sandwich using shaved apple ham & sliced cheddar. That way she can eat them in class after her lesson. I chanced upon the little anpan choco, the little snack on the left of the cherry tomatoes and strawberries, while out at the supermarket with KY. I love them as they are like little buns with a soft texture. I've never come across a snack in a box that is not crispy in nature. Unfortunately I threw out the box. Will take a pic of it next time. They taste pretty nice. Again using my cherry pink bento. :)

Friday, April 3, 2009

Bentos, etc... (comprising bento #45, 46)

Hello there, I'm back again with some updates. I haven't been doing bentos much lately so haven't been in the mood to post. The good news is that the princess is enjoying her catered food in school, but she says she'll be back to bento in July after the term break. So meanwhile, I do them on and off but not the full meal like those I make for her to take to school. For the set below, I think it was given to her for lunch as the school snack for that day was only a chocolate muffin. Actually, the truth was that I couldn't wait to use the pink cherry bento box. :P I tried out the penguin sausage cutters sent over by friend, and maybe because I used the mini sausages, the imprint came out really weird-looking. The tulip one turned out better as shown in bento #46.

Bento #45 -

Bento #46 -

I tend to pack her a little bun for her to eat on the way home. As we are not allowed into the school, I really have no idea what she eats each day. However, she mentioned the other day, that they are allowed seconds and thirds with their food, so at least I know she's eating ok. She also said she had 5 slices of honeydew one day, haha, my little fruit bat.

I thought this plate was very cute and just had to take a photo of it. We had lunch at Hooked at Rail Mall last Sunday and this was what she ordered. I think the only reason she ordered this dish was because in the menu, there was a caption that said... 'the parents don't get it', much like the UOB Lady's card slogan, get it?!

Oh yes! Was with the girls at Sanrio Harbourfront outlet and there happened to be some lucky dip happening. We decided to try our luck and look what I won?? Couldn't be more pleased. :D

I made some onigiri for princess' lunch today, together with some crabsticks which I lightly fried in some batter. Actually the intention was to prepare a bento for myself since I was going to the hospital for my regular check-up. I tend to go early and do my blood test, then have lunch and wait to see the doctor.

This is princess' lunch which she had before she left for school. I also gave her some mangoes and strawberries after.

This is my portion. :) One of the onigiri contained salmon flakes and the other had ground black sesame powder and a piece of batter-fried crabstick within. Below is my fruit portion.

All contained within this very beautiful Hello Kitty cooler bag.

I picked up this pair of dinosaur cutters from Daiso. Aren't they cute?