Tuesday bento includes:
Baked Turkey-oat-flaxseed-carrots-celery-onion-broccoli rabe meatballs *these sound more intimidating than how they actually taste. Meatballs (Meat-o-ballies per the girls) are a favorite in our house, since they are portable, easy to eat, and I can make dozens of them and freeze them for consumption at a later date. The oats and flax seeds add crunch to the meatballs, and I put all the vegetables through the food processor. I like knowing they are a pretty complete mini package of nutrients.
Roasted beets – cat shapes
Boiled quail eggs
Onigiri with shiso (perilla) seasoning – my daughter had asked for purple rice – we get this often at the Korean restaurant we lunch at on Saturdays – but since I’m not sure how to make it, I figured the shiso rice would have to do. I’ve been searching for recipes and more information on this rice, but the only things I’ve come across so far, is that it most likely is called ogokbap. The ingredients sound very similar to the usual multi-grain mix I make; however, I haven’t figured out what makes the rice purple. I’ve eaten it at Cho Dang Gol in New York City (YUM) as well as Hahm Ji Bach. I have a gripe for each of these places. At Cho Dang Gol, unless I physically hold back my rice bowl in which the rice is served from, the wait staff try to whisk it away without offering me any nurungji. Granted, I understand it’s an acquired taste, and many non-Koreans may not like the toasty, comforting “tea” made with the crispy browned bottom bits of rice mixed with hot tea – HEY! I like it. Leave my bowl! At Hahm Ji Bach, it appears unless you are 1) Korean, 2) order a certain amount or 3) your four-year old daughter gives “pllleeeease” eyes, the waitstaff will tell you they don’t have “purple” rice. I ran into this the last time I went for lunch, and was a bit annoyed. Granted, my daughter and I only order a haemul pajun (seafood savory pancake) and some jigae (hotpot) dish to split, there’s no need to discriminate our rice choice based on our order size!! I can’t handle a full barbecue session at lunch! Oh well. I’ll have to find out the correct Korean name for “purple” rice and try to negotiate for it…