Tag Archives: Blackberries

Monday Tuesday – quick and easy

15 May

Mother’s Day (in the US) was this past Sunday, and I had the rare opportunity to have both my mother, and my mother-in-law together, live (not SKYPE-D), this year.

The earlier portion of the day was my mother-in-law’s “day,” and we spent a few hours at the local petting/animal zoo, feeding lambs, llamas, goats, and parakeets. 

The latter portion was spent at my house, where my brother and his family joined in celebrating my mother’s birthday and mother’s day.

We had a lovely evening, barbecuing, chatting, and watching the kids run through the yard, enjoying the visiting uncle/Aunt and cousin, and racing back to Nana and Baba for hugs and kisses.

I benefitted from Mother’s Day dinner – as the leftovers were perfect for bento!

Monday bento included:

Grilled chicken drumstick with poultry seasoning and a sprinkle of lemon juice

Sliced yellow peppers, grape tomatoes and blueberries

Multi-grain onigiri in tawara shape, no filling, sprinkled with black sesame seeds, wrapped in nori


Tuesday, similarly, a quick and easy lunch:

Grilled chicken drumstick (poultry, lemon juice seasoning)

Sliced peppers, cucumbers, blanched asparagus


Multi-grain onigiri with okaka filling with nori belt – a tiny tiny onigiri



A little greens here, a little gomashio there…

2 Feb

It’s hard to believe January is over, and February has hopped on board.

My daughter’s bento box broke, so we are now substituting with a tupperware with silicone cups for sections.

I lived in Atlanta, GA during my high school years, and I enjoyed a little dabbling in Southern culture.  I fell in love with collard greens, as well as boiled peanuts.  Sometimes, I have business associates who come across canned boiled peanuts and they ship them up to NY with a chuckle… but they are never the real deal.

I was happy to come across some collards at my beloved farm – and decided to take on the greens challenge for this week.

Monday lunch included:

Baked turkey-grated onion-garlic-carrot-celery-ginger meatballie

Collard greens seasoned with a little vegetable stock, and pancetta.  I carefully washed a bunch of collard greens from the farm, cut off the tough stalk end, and carefully shaved the main “vein” of the green down the center.  I then rolled the leaves, and cut them into 1/8 strips.  Into a medium pan, 2 cups vegetable stock, a tbs of pancetta (I keep pre-cut pancetta in the freezer) and the carefully rinsed greens over medium heat.  The leaves turned brilliant green, and then a darker olive color.  I cooked until the liquid was cooked away on medium-low heat – about 45 minutes.  Not truly an authentic “Greens” recipe using smoked ham hocks or smoked turkey wings – but satisfactory!  A delicious balance of the sweetness of the greens, and of the salty and savory bits of pancetta in this home-y dish.

Multi-grain onigiri with grilled and flaked shiozake (salted salmon) filling, wrapped with nori



Tuesday lunch was:

Baked chicken wingette and drumette seasoned with soy sauce, lemon juice, poultry seasoning

Roasted beets in heart shapes

Zucchini slices sautéed in canola oil, seasoned with white pepper and soy sauce

Blanched sugar snap peas and grape tomatoes

Steamed multi-grain rice


Wednesday lunch included:

Turkey meatballie

Carrot sticks

Grape tomatoes


Steamed multi-grain rice topped with a little gomashio, or ground black sesame seeds and salt seasoning

Thursday lunch included:

Baked chicken wingette and drumette seasoned with soy sauce, lemon juice, black pepper

Sliced zucchini sautéed in canola oil, drizzled with soy sauce

Roasted beet hearts

A little homemade celery and turnip pickle mix, the vegetables sliced into 1/8 inch pieces – the celery cut on angles, the turnips peeled, and thinly cut by hand into thin slices, sprinkled with a little sea salt, a tbs of rice vinegar, a tbs or soy sauce, a tsp of black sesame seeds added and mixed well.  It’s a refreshing, tangy mix of vegetables, still crunchy, but lively.  The little one kept asking for “More! More!” as I was mixing the vegetables with the seasoning in a bowl.  I had come across Cathy Barrow’s article in the New York Times earlier this week- and this must have gotten me thinking about the tangy mix.

Whole wheat linguine with a little (Trader Joe’s jarred, I cheated…) marinara sauce

Tomorrow is pizza day.  It’s almost Friday… this week has been quite busy!

Thursday bento for a chilly day

26 Jan

My daughter’s lunch schedule has been a bit off, with Pizza on Tuesday, and a hot lunch co-sponsored and hosted by my girlfriend (whose son also attends the same school) filling in the past two days.

My girlfriend has a holistic nutritionist background – therefore, I was confident her lunch would be delicious and nutritious.  She served a lovely minestrone soup with grilled cheese – my daughter told me her soup was delicious, and that she was happy to see Auntie J_____  helping with lunch.

Today’s lunch was quickly assembled as I had  few morning items that needed to be taken care of, last minute. 

Baked chicken drumstick (soy sauce, lemon juice, poultry seasoning)

Grape tomatoes


Purple beet hears

Steamed sugar snap peas

The weather was chilly, with the occasional flurry passing through.  Just another routine day in the chaos of the week.

Happy Monday, and a Happy Lunar New Year!

23 Jan

The weekend was a blur – the snowfall resulted in school being cancelled, and we spent a lovely weekend with a few hours of outdoor snow time.  The little one ran around outside, both hands throwing fistfuls of the fluffy, powdery snow into the air, as she looked upwards, her mouth open to catch snowflakes as she shouted, “Snow!! Snow!! Snow!!”

The older one flopped down every couple of feet to make snow angels.

The outdoor activity was capped off with homemade hot cocoa (Trader Joe’s Organic Cocoa) with mini marshmallows

We also managed a few runs at a local park on the inner tube – Papa spun them around as they slid down the hill with the other neighborhood children, their giggling and laughing heard all the way down.

A Happy Lunar New Year to all!

Today’s lunch included:

Grilled shiozake, or salted salmon, flaked

Steamed multi-grain rice with gomashio or sesame salt

Roasted golden beet stars

Baby Carrots




Colorful Wednesday lunch

11 Jan

Last night, Papa surprised me with a lovely dinner, including a deliciously grilled steak, steamed asparagus, roasted purple potatoes, baked tomato, stuffed peppers with crusty French bread.  What a nice surprise after a long day of work.  Thanks Papa!

My daughter’s lunch benefitted from last night’s leftovers – mainly the purple potatoes and asparagus.  We’re still on a blackberry kick, so a couple of those, baked chicken drumette and wingette, and the last of the roasted chioggi beets cut into stars.

It was wonderful to watch the girls enjoy a family dinner – normally, we are so pressed with time, I’m simply racing against bedtime to get everyone fed, washed, and chores and lessons completed before they start rubbing their sleepy eyes.

“Mama, I picked the potatoes!” my older daughter proudly announced as she took her drinking glass to the sink.

“Mama, I like steak!” the little one added, bobbing her head.

If only dinner time was always like this!




December 2011 bentos ~ first week through the 8th

3 Jan

My daughter’s new favorite are blackberries.  She enjoys them immensely – so I try to include them whenever I can pick them up.

Boiled egg, pressed into teddy bear

Baked chicken leg with salt, pepper, thyme, oregano and soy sauce, de-boned

Carrot sticks

Steamed multi-grain rice, with black sesame seeds


Baked turkey meatballs with ground turkey, grated ginger, minced onions, minced carrots, black sesame seeds, mixed well by hand, and baked at 325 degrees until browned and done throughout.   The meatballs accompanied by beet greens, sautéed with a little olive oil, and dressed with a drop of soy sauce and lemon juice.

Steamed multi-grain rice, with black sesame seeds sprinkled on top

Carrot sticks


Ground turkey mabo-dofu this version including chopped watercress, served over multi-grain rice

Roasted beets in heart shapes


Carrot sticks

Baked turkey meatballs

Cucumber slices and carrot sticks

Blanched broccoli

Roasted beets in heart shapes

Multi-grain onigiri with yukari seasoning, wrapped in nori

Baked turkey meatballs

Left over vegetable lo mein – I cheated today….


Blanched broccoli

Turkey tacos – Bearitos taco shell

Trader Joe’s salsa (well draine) and grated four cheese

Chopped romaine lettuce

Ground turkey, with seasoning – I used Simply Organic Southwest Taco packet, which my kids and husband enjoy.

Friday continues to be, pizza day!

A beet-type of bento

6 Apr

The past two days were soup lunches for my daughter.   Yesterday, she gave me a serious look, and said, “Mama.  I want beets and gohan (rice).”  I replied, with an equally serious look, “OK.  We’ll be back to beets and gohan then.”

Today’s lunch included:

Steamed multi-grain rice (brown rice, barley, quinoa, millet, wheat berries) with kuro-gomashio or black sesame seed and’ salt

Roasted beets in heart shapes

Baked chicken drumsticks, seasoned with salt, pepper and a little squeeze of lemon

Blanched broccoli with katsuobushi and a drop of soy sauce

In a separate tupperware container, some blackberries were included to finish off the meal.  Hopefully she enjoys her routine bento again!