Cupcake Friday!

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Red velvet cupcake with cream cheese icing and little black dragees. These cupcakes are for the intermission of our school play this evening. The Theatre 10/11/12 class has been working very hard, so when they needed a concession stand on Friday night, I and a fellow cultist were only too happy to help. Cupcake on!

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Monochromatic fried rice and Gardein bento

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I made ‘fried’ rice with carrot, celery, cabbage, and yellow pepper. The colours were exploding in the pan, but once I packed the bento you can hardly tell! I love cashews, so used them to add some crunch to the bento. I have Gardein strips and a mango jelly on the other side of the leaf lettuce baran. Simple lunch for a very busy Friday.

Cupcake container snack bento

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I posted in a Cupcake Friday! a cupcake in a carrier, ready to go. Then the awesome Sushi Sushi Bento decided to see if a bento could be made in them… http://sushisushibento.wordpress.com/2013/05/29/bento-box-challenge/ for her awesome creation, and here’s mine for a less tidy, but still tasty snack bento with goat mozzarella cubes, a grape tomato in 4 slivers, some yellow pepper, and three butterfly crackers. Unfortunately, this was cheating a bit because I couldn’t get the lid on. I had to move the crackers to a new container for travel:

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Gardein, egg, rice, veggies

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I don’t like this rice, and I don’t like that my rice cooker went to the big bento box in the sky a couple of weeks ago so I had to cook it on a stove and hope it didn’t boil over. It’s sticky, and just not great. It shall be quite nice tomorrow with the seasoning and tamari fish treatment, though. I have some Gardein with UFC (hehe) sweet chili sauce, half an egg with a dab of chipotle mayo, half a roasted and peeled beet, steamed broccoli tossed with brown sugar mustard (adapted from Just Bento), and grape tomatoes to fill in the gaps.

Morning snack will be a banana, and afternoon snack will be almonds and a small square of dark chocolate.

Foodiefied Arrested Development-inspired bento

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The new season of Arrested Development is on Netflix. Hubs and I wanted to catch up and rewatch the first three seasons but didn’t find time, so we’re not quite there yet, but over the weekend I saw several posts on Tastespotting about food inspired by the TV series. It’s fascinating because the food was invariably awful – from hot ham water to chicken in chicken sauce – but I managed to whip up two dishes that sounded good for this bento.

The first is the cornballs aka corn and edamame fritters. No one really knows what’s in the cornball recipe to go with the machine George Sr. marketed, but these have corn kernels, edamame, egg, rice flour, and spices, and then are fried. I should have used way more oil to really crisp them up, but had to keep this somewhat healthy. They have a miso-agave-lemon juice dressing in the tiny cup.

The other AD-themed food is a banana with nuts. I removed the giggle factor (remembering I teach in public school, thank you very much. I do in fact have both a sense of humour and boundaries), kept the banana in its peel to prevent browning, and put some Nutella and crushed cashews in a food cup to dip.

The other dish is a fennel and halloumi salad. I want some dried cranberries with them, but left them in my car which hubs took to his meeting. They’ll go on tomorrow.

Quinoa with chard, roasted beets, pine nuts, and goat cheese

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I see two trends among the healthier blogs I read frequently right now. One is it’s race season. I am active most days of the week, but the idea of running a race fills me with the utmost dread. I realize people love to enter and run races, but it’s definitely not for me. The other trend is juice cleansing/detoxing. Don’t get me started (although if it’s something that works for you, great. I have a smoothie for breakfast about 4 days a week, and I love them!).

That being said, I was at a conference for most of the weekend and found it very difficult at times to keep my choices healthy. Perhaps going to a market full of street food for dinner wasn’t the best option, but it was certainly one of the tastiest! Breakfast was a challenge too. Two different people (not fellow delegates) stole my toast from the toaster at the breakfast buffet the two times I tried to make some, at which point I gave up and had fried diced potatoes with my now-cold eggs and fruit. On the other hand, I had steamed rice with veggies and tofu for lunch one day, and soup and sandwiches the next.

On the cleanse thing, I really believe that the excess calories and sodium will be resolved sooner rather than later if I drink lots of water, make sure I schedule exercise in, and really focus on nutrient- and fibre-rich foods again. So here we go with some quinoa cooked in water with a little low-sodium bouillon added in (far less than the package recommends), chard sautéed in a very small amount of olive oil, roasted beets:

~scrub beets well
~wrap in foil (altogether, doesn’t need to be individually)
~bake at 375′ for 45-60 minutes, depending on the size of the beets
~peel when cool using a paring knife
~appreciate newly-acquired pink hands, counter, cutting board…

1 tbsp. pine nuts toasted in a dry pan over medium-low heat (careful not to burn, those things are pricey!), and about 2 tsp. of herbed goat cheese (really only added on for flavour – you can see hubs doesn’t have it, and he’s looking forward to lunch tomorrow).

Side dish for me is sliced strawberries, and the spousal unit has some roasted tomatoes as well.

(Tagging and categorizing the post vegan, as there is a vegan bento here)

Yummy in a bento: Veggie burgers, Thug Kitchen style!

I have posted links and recipes to veggie burgers before, but my writing style is not nearly as totally awesome as Thug Kitchen’s.  Bad language alert, if that kind of thing is not your thing, but head over there for a great read and a tasty-looking recipe:

http://thugkitchen.com/post/51231911542/next-time-someone-tells-you-to-eat-more-veggies

The awesome thing about this is that it’s just in time for the US long weekend!  Happy burger season.