Friday, May 30, 2008

Feisty Bento #173: Mixed up repeat

Dinner last night, along with two rice bowls of miso soup & mushrooms.  Just a chicken leg/thigh, bone in, that I tossed into the oven with some salt, pepper, and sauce...

Same as yesterday, in a different order...

Top tier: curried orzo (still not the last!), sauteed button mushrooms, sauteed cabbage
Bottom tier: 5 dark chocolate covered pretzels; BBQ chicken

Yumm!  HAPPY BENTO and have a great weekend everyone!!!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Feisty Bento #172: (Relatively) Beautiful Bento

Look!!! I actually bothered with a halfway decent bento that isn't just 2 items in each box.

So I think I figured it out. It's a vicious cycle. Go to sleep late, wake up groggy and don't bother with making a decent bento, feel worse throughout the day knowing lunch is pretty crappy... So today I'm actually feeling good, so I think that's really why. Fascinating!

Top tier: sauteed button mushrooms; sauteed Napa cabbage; BBQ chicken thighs Bottom tier: 6 dark chocolate covered pretzels from Trader Joe's; marinated squid banchan; and almost the last of the curried salmon orzo

The dark chocolate covered pretzels are good, but not quite as good as the peanut butter filled chocolate covered pretzels. I like the pb ones because they're sweet and salty and creamy, ALL AT THE SAME TIME. I love salty snacks, I'm not into sweets that much, so this is perfect for me. I love those...

And yes, the curreid salmon orzo is almost all gone, thankfully. It's a good way to add some carbs to my bento, but I am getting a bit bored of it. Will whip up something else tonight. I wanted to make carbonara last night, actually, but then I felt a bit lazy and instead made just the chicken. Oh, and sauteed the mushrooms in a bit of olive oil. And... (ok I guess I wasn't THAT lazy) I made:

My dinner last night - miso soup with mushrooms. Damn tasty if you ask me. Really easy to make, too- just a couple of scoops of miso from the container, a sprinkling of hon-dashi granules, and 3 sliced up button mushrooms. Very yummy.

HAPPY BENTO!!! I can't wait for lunch!!!

Edited (7/29/08): Entering this into Bento Pet's competition!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Feisty Bento #171: Happy Bento

Dinner last night.  Yummy.  Love those Taiwanese XO frozen dumplings.  They really come in handy in a pinch for flavor and something to eat.  My only gripe is how easily they freezer burn- they're frozen, why can't I keep them in there a month or more and not have the darn things turn dry/chewy on the edges?!  (These were mostly fine, and the last of that bag.)  Udon and some cabbage I whipped up.

Yummy!  What a lovely looking lunch, the first in a long while.  I actually cooked some things with my eye towards bento the next day.  I am finally beginning to accept that now that I'm living away from Mom again, I can't just open the fridge and expect boxes of prepared veggies to appear.  Sigh.  So here we go, back to bento... for real.

Top tier: 5 dark chocolate covered mini-pretzels (Trader Joe's, and yes, I also picked up some more chocolate covered, peanut butter filled pretzels as well); sauteed cabbage & carrots
Bottom tier: 3 seafood gyoza (last of my bag of Ajinomoto; I vastly prefer the chicken & pork gyoza); marinated squid banchan; curry salmon orzo

Napa cabbage in many forms has been seen in my bento in the past.  My mom used to make a big box on Sundays and I'd just pluck from it during the week.  Well, I'm going to have to start doing that myself instead.  I concocted this recipe myself, although looking through the past pictures, there are tons of ways to do this (garlic, onions, Shiitake mushrooms, whatever).  I just randomly picked this because it's what I had in my fridge.

Heat a pot that can hold all of the cabbage you're going to make, and then some (room for stirring).  Melt some butter and drizzle some olive oil in the bottom, then add cabbage.  Stir until it's somewhat wilted, try to distribute evenly, add shredded carrots (Trader Joe's again) and a dash of salt.  Stir until it's about as cooked as you like it (I like my cabbage very gently cooked), and voila, eat up.

Yum, I had some for dinner last night and still have enough for the rest of the week in veggies!


Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Feisty Bento #170: Back from a long weekend

Super boring bento.  Had a fabulous weekend being taken care of by the BF, he booked a hotel and off we went to Ocean City, MD!  It was tons of fun and so relaxing, I'm sad to be back and really exhausted.  Thus the boring bento: I slapped some leftover into a box and called it bento.  Does this count?

Curry salmon orzo, container of yogurt partially for the orzo and partially for dessert (with honey, not shown)

Happy bento!!!

Friday, May 23, 2008

Feisty Bento #169 and 170: Seeing doubles

I forgot to post yesterday's lunch, so here it is: half sandwich from my fave sandwich place, a container of curried salmon orzo (a semi-failed experiment; semi-failed because sitting in the fridge has mellowed it out enough that it actually tastes good, but initially, not so much), and a small container of yogurt to encourage the mellowing flavor.

Today's lunch was more of the same, although different proportions (larger, unfortunately for my waistline), and since my sandwich box wasn't washed (I went to a PR event last night, and when I got home after 4 glasses of wine, wasn't inclined to wash it right away), I didn't exactly pack it the same way.  Here's a picture, taken in the cafeteria:

Another giant half sandwich, some more orzo and a container of yogurt (the curry mellowed a LOT by now, so I wound up eating the yogurt as dessert with some honey).  You can see the bottom half of my Camelbak BPA-free bottle, courtesy of my firm - they're distributing them to everyone (24 or 32 oz. sizes available) to encourage people to stop buying bottled water.  Doing our part to go green... (while still printing out tons of emails that don't need to get printed!!!  Nice.)  We also buy carbon credits to offset the paper printing, but... yeah. 

Anyway, I hope each and every one of you has a safe, happy and relaxing Memorial Day weekend!!!

Happy bento~!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Feisty Bento #168: Another easy-peasy bento!

Yum, another easy-peasy bento.

from left: takuan (pickled daikon), 5 pieces gimbap, and more Woorijip spicy chicken

Oh no, will I actually have to plan for tomorrow's bento?  Stay tuned to find out... ;)


Monday, May 19, 2008

Feisty Bento #167: All Pre-Made, Quick & Easy

Top tier: 5 pieces gimbap; a few pieces of "Woorijip spicy chicken"
Bottom tier: baby carrots (dressing to be obtained from cafeteria); spicy squid and little fishy banchans

I am exhausted and managed to slap together a bento this morning.  I am so happy that I did! 

Happy bento!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Feisty Bento #166: More yummy leftovers!

How this...

became this!

From top left: tzatziki sauce; Greek salad with olives, peppers, lettuce, etc.; rice; beef kebab and lamb souvlaki.

YUMMY leftovers!!!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Feisty Bento #165: Leftovers

I'm having an exhausting week already and it's only Tuesday.

On the bright side, I've noticed that my back hasn't been hurting when I wake up anymore.  I'm not sure what changed, but I now wake up pain-free.  It's a very unusual feeling, one that I am enjoying very much. 

Okok... so I've been blabbing away for a few weeks now about this game I've been playing.  Well, here you go: Tribal Wars.  (Yes, that's a referral link, so use it to sign up!  I referred two people who signed up and now play as obsessively as I do, but I didn't know there were referral links so I didn't get rewarded... boo...)  I'm in World 15, and one guess what my username is, seriously, sign up, send me a message, start playing, and I'll even let you join my awesome tribe.  Hopefully you'll get a village near me and I can even try to help you out initially...

Anyways, I'm really exhausted so here's some pictures of food to help you out.

What I had for lunch yesterday instead of bento: l'italien, which was fresh mozzarella, basil pesto, and San Daniele prosciutto... YUM!!!

And today's bento: red steak rice.  YUM!!!  I can't wait for lunch. 

As always, happy bento (and I'm off to Tribal Wars, see you there, I hope)!!!

Monday, May 12, 2008

MK Bento

I've been really remiss with my bento'ing... I just can't wake up lately, I'm so exhausted, so tired, so... emotionally strained.  I've been going through some ish and it's just... wreaked havoc on my desire to get out of bed, put together a lunch, and go to work...

Anyway, a friend of mine - cutest story EVER - told me a few months ago that her brother showed her this website that showcased some crazy girl's bento every day... and she was browsing around it when she suddenly realized... the crazy girl was ME!  I was really excited cuz, well, it's so cool to kind of think, oh hey... my friends found my site without me directing them to it!  (Plus it made me realize that I don't really talk about my food blogs, nearly all the friends in that group of friends didn't know I had food blogs, oops.) 

So this same friend mentioned that she was starting to get into bento...

... and then she took a few pictures...

... then she sent them to me...

... and she said I could post them!  So, even though I can't offer you my bento, here are pictures of MK Bento, for the first time ever!  (Sorry I don't really have details on what's in them!  Speak up if you're reading, though, MK, if I get anything wrong!)

Whole wheat pancakes and syrup

Dumplings & broccoli

Looks like... dim sum?, fried rice onigiri, and some greens in the lower left hand corner

Noodles... with some bok choi on the right

More noodles, and I think inari sushi?

Meatballs with cute picks, over rice and some green beans

Broccoli, sausages, noodles, and look!  Little ocotopus hot dog/sausages!

Creamed spinach, orange segments, and I believe those are soba nests with soba dipping sauce!  Yum!

Creamed spinach, lo mein, and fried dumplings.  Yum!!!

MK actually goes to school and commutes, so I can understand why it might be hard for her to blog about her lunches, and I'm only too happy to help her out by doing it for her!  But encouraging comments are welcome so that she might continue bentoing... hopefully she'll be able to even after she starts working.  Yay for MK!

Always, happy bento!!!

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Feisty Bento #164: Quickie Bento

Top tier: grape tomatoes; seaweed salad; marinated squid
Bottom tier: chocolate covered peanut butter filled pretzels; bulgogi from the Korean market (marinated shave rib eye)

Happy bento!!!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Feisty Bento #163: Lunchtime!

Wow, I ingested so much fat last night.  The majority of the above was my dinner last night.  I didn't quite eat it all, but I ate most of that bowl with tortilla chips.  Two avocadoes... mixed with my homemade salsa (I was feeling lazy to chop, and it's all the same ingredients anyway!).  YUM.

Here's the squid I was talking about.  It's so good!  The other containers had slightly different ingredients but looked similar, or different ingredients and looked the same.  It's salty-sweet-and a touch of spicy at the end, which I love.  I was cramming this in my mouth hahahaha.  Anyway, that's why I was confused.  Some were super red, some were dryer looking, some were just... I don't know.  I'm glad I picked this container... so good and not too spicy.

And here's today's bento!

Top tier: spicy marinated squid; seaweed salad; grape tomatoes
Bottom tier: pre-mixed curry rice; two creamed corn croquettes with tonkatsu sauce in the mini bottle

So good, so yum, and it's time for lunch!


Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Feisty Bento #162: Fifteen Whole Grains

Yummm... dinner last night.  I ate kind of late - 9:30 - actually it was closer to 10, because the game was coming on as I started eating - but I went to yoga last night.  Gasp!!!  The gym two days in a row!  Will this last?  We'll see... and yoga was murder.  I didn't realize this was like cardio yoga, jumping up and into poses and not holding any of the poses, just going through them quickly... arghhh... and some of the poses are so hard for me, but easy for other people... and then some poses were super easy for me but I saw other people struggling!  Weird!

Anyway, that's rice, Trader Joe's bulgogi (leftover from last week), some bok choi I steamed in a microwave steamer (was hungry and in a hurry!), and some spicy marinated squid/cuttlefish I got at the Korean supermarket the other day.  YUMMY!!!

Yummy bento.  Another question for anyone who might know - especially the Korean readers - the reddish stuff on the bottom is marinated squid.  This I know.  But I LOVE this kind!  It's ever so slightly spicy and sweet, juicy (in fact, it kind of reminds me of the chicken that I liked, the saucy/marinade part of it anyway).  But... well, at H-Mart in K-town, there's this whole wall of small plastic containers filled with banchan.  And a LOT of the banchan is the same thing but not.  Like there were 3-4 different kinds of this squid.  How am I supposed to tell which is the GOOD one or the one I like???  They all say nearly the same thing on the container!!!  Help?!

Bento contents: one 15 grain sandwich with cilantro mayo and honey maple turkey; grape tomatoes; spicy marinated cuttlefish

As always - happy bento!!!

Monday, May 5, 2008

Feisty Bento #161: Cinco de Mayo!

I had a fun-filled, packed packed packed but still productive weekend...

Friday: Started off with a really crappy work day, so C & I headed over to the happiest place on earth, I mean, midtown for some dollar store shopping and then K-town for banchan shopping... (yes, we love grocery shopping, shut up!) then finally ended up at Mandoo Bar!  I've never been and dude, my mandoo was sooOOooOOooOOoo good!  I've never really had mandoo like this before.  I also never really had mandoo before.

Afterwards, we headed over to Pinkberry for my first ever cup of Pinkberry.

Saturday: I'd bought some goodies at Woorijip while we were in K-town and to my delight, I think I finally found the spicy chicken wings that I've been looking for since forEVER...

In the package... (oh, this is on Saturday because I ate them on Saturday!)

Not really spicy, but you can see on the package it says it's spicy! 

I also picked up...

gim bap.  YUM... though this didn't have burdock or whatever the brown stuff is that's usually in it... still pretty darn tasty.  $3 for a tray, not bad!

Went to donate my hair, then it was off to the game!

... the Yankees/Mariners game, that is!  Can you spot the guy whose hat was annoying us!  Oh well.  What a terrible game.  Even if I weren't a fan of the Mariners, the playing by them was just horrible and sloppy.  So many times a Yankee would line it up the center right through a giant hole - if that happens so much, someone needs to cover the hole!  Shit!  It was a depressing huge loss by the Mariners... and this is probably the last time I'll ever go to Yankees Stadium (well, this one, since they named the new one the same thing). 

Afterwards, off to Elvie's for authentic Phillipine cuisine!

Ended the night on a high note, hanging with friends, chatting, screaming, joking, etc. at Veniero's for pastries and coffee...

Sunday: Super productive day.  I woke up after decent amount of sleep, went to Pilates class (gasp! yes, I went, and will be back at the gym tonight, I'm so proud of myself, tear!), headed back home, cleaned up a little bit, played my game, got a noble, started attacking the neighboring village, went to my mother's and washed my blankets and bath rug, cleaned out the first floor bathroom in anticipation of some work she's having done, went back to my place and brought some more stuff with me, attacked the neighboring village again, went out on a dinner date to the "latest hot spot" with my boo...

His veal chop.

Afterwards, we went home and I "helped" him assemble my bed... finally!  My bed is off the floor!  WHEE!!  Then I attacked the neighboring village one more time, effectively causing it to become mine!!!  WOOHOO! 

Like I said, very productive weekend.

Last but oh-so-not-least!  Bento in honor of Cinco de Mayo.  (Guacamole for dinner tonight...)

Same thing as Friday's bento, I CAN'T WAIT TO DIG IN!!!

Oh happy Cinco de Mayo to y'all, even if you're not Mexican!  It's a great day for drinking, and the weather has become really nice here in sunny ol' NYC!


Friday, May 2, 2008

Feisty Bento #160: Copycat, copycat!

How this became....


After Not Exactly Bento posted about nachos earlier this week, well... monkey see, monkey want!  I used my brother-in-law's recipe, though I'm sure hers is equally tasty!  Check it out... and here's the link for my salsa.  Perfect... guacamole as well... since Cinco de Mayo is coming up!

In the pre-heated jar is the chili mixture with cheese sprinkled on top; in the cup is a bear cup of homemade salsa, sitting atop a cloud of sour cream, yum.  I mixed that stuff in with the chili and spooned it liberally on the little baggie of tortilla chips I brought with me... was GOOD!  The chili was still hot!  The only crap part was, in the interest of food safety, I added a small ice pack (cut from an ice blanket) to the insulated bag, but it melted quickly and didn't keep my sour cream and salsa cold AT ALL... think the heat from the thermal jar made it melt more quickly.  Boo.  But I am not sick, so I think it's okay!

***Links to be added at a later ime for key words: food safety, ice blanket, insulated bag, thermal jar... I am just in a hurry right now, swamped with work, sorry! 

As always, HAPPY BENTO!!!