Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Oyster Sauce Yakisoba

Hi there! Lady Gaga is staying in Japan now. I'm ever so impressed with how she's trying so hard to help Japan recover from this adversity. You know she loves Japanese culture and she's been pulling for Japanese people ever since the earthquake.

Well, today's bento. I wanted to have noodles so bad for no reason today so I made oyster sauce yakisoba. I first boiled ramen noodles to al dente and rinsed, then stir fried separately the noodles and other ingredients (bok choy, shimeji mushroom, pork belly slices, scallop, shrimp, squid). And then combined all together, seasoned with oyster sauce, sesame oil, a little syoyu and salt. This was very good! There are so many variations of yakisoba. You should give them a try!

Take a look! We finally got the first pick from our teeny tiny garden yay! But I'm a bit scared to take the first bite.
first ichigo

Hey welcome Little Cuke chan!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Pasta Bento and Hot Dog Bento

Today unfortunately I don't have time to babble, bummer... Actually I'm keeping someone waiting in the kitchen. Oh well, at least I should let you know what these bentos contain... Tomato sauce pasta, veggie salad, crispy chicken tender, and fruit yogurt.



Another bento. Since I baked some buns the lunch of that day came out a hot dog bento. I'm big on hot dogs these days. One of the simple goodness I like, it needs nothing other than yummy bread and yummy sausage. So you'll probably see some ones here again next week. I put on too much ketchup by the way!

Here is the person who is waiting in the kitchen to be eaten by us. WOW!
Enjoy the rest of the weekend!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

New Bento Bako and Dekofuri

Belated Happy Father's Day to all the sweet and cute dads out there!

Today's post has lots of pictures. First, this bento is for Hubby. Look, I bought a new bentobako again ahhh! It may look featureless, but it's a bit different from the ones I've purchased so far. Doesn't it look kind of glassy? It's made out of saturated polyester. I like glass containers and have got some for bento, but Hubby goes running to work pretty much everyday so his bento stuff has to be small and light. I liked the look and texture of this one as soon as I saw it at the store. So I decided to buy it under the excuse of F'day heheh.

This is my own bento. Hubby's brother gave us a lot of salmon fillets the day before which he'd caught off so I made some marinated salmon for bento. I dredged the fillets in starch and sauteed. Then soaked them in marinade of syoyu, mirin, vinegar, onion slices, bellpeppr slices, and grapefruit slices. I wanted to add lemon, but didn't have any so I subbed grapefruit this time. I also made potato salad, and topped my rice with daikon leaf stir fry and torn umeboshi.

This one is for Yuppi. I saw the topic about colorful furikake, coming up on Facebook bento group page that I've joined. I happened to have two bags of Dekofuri on hand. So there was no way I wouldn't use them in these bentos so that I could show them in detail to the members who were so curious about it.

For those not familiar with Dekofuri, it is a kind of furikake, rice seasoning/topping made out of natural food colorings, egg, vegetable, salmon and something. You can mix it into rice or simply sprinkle it over rice.

I had enough time then so I played around with bento using Dekofuri for the first time in a while. It was so much fun, however, Yuppi said things like this... *This bento was so yummy but mama, blue food doesn't look really yummy, right?* (haa sigh, I was a bit excited to be honest because I thought I'd made a cute bento for the first time in forever lol) Oh totally! You got that right. I would use the blue dekofuri left when I need to lose some weight haha! (I don't know if she knows that blue is one of the colors that make food look bland and unappetizing...)

Lastly, for Father's day Yuppi worked so hard. She did challenge lots of newies (to her), made coffee jelly, wine gummy, nama donuts, and she did even chocolate tempering. By the way, baked donuts and nama ones are all the rage in Japan lately. *Nama* means not baked or fried. Nama donuts are the same as rare cheesecake or mousse cake in general. I consider they're actually not donuts, but just cakes shaped into ring donuts. But anyhow, it's no problem as long as they taste good! Here is Yuppi's nama donut she decorated for Hubby.
For papas day

I also decorated one because I had tons of fruit in the fridge.
Nama (unbaked) donut

Friday, June 17, 2011

Harusame Salad and Onigiri Bento

Hiiii! Now I'd like to say anew, thank you for all the support and interest, to those who come read my clumsy post each time. I've learned tons of English words and phrases writing this blog and reading everyone's. (But to be honest, still I'm not able to write even half of things I really want to communicate though haha.) Well I hope to do the giveaway in a timely fashion that I missed the timing due to the earthquake. Although Japan remains in the rough situation everyone's hanging tough.

In the meantime, since it's getting warmer here each day, I thought I should consider summertime bento. I think I'm probably going to make onigiris and salad for bento very often because they are easy to eat and tasty even on a hot day, and hard to go bad yea? This morning I made harusame (thin starch noodles) salad. You can't see boiled harusame in the bento at all, but it's hiding underneath the vegetable, egg, and chicken. I also made dressing for the salad using mentsuyu (Japanese noodle sauce) that I mentioned earlier. With it, you can eat Japanese noodles such as soba, udon, somen, hiyamugi, and so on. Also you can make easily nimono, salad dressing, hiyashi-chuka sauce because it contains syoyu, mirin, sugar and dashi all in one. There are so many kinds of mentsuyu at stores, but I always pick up *Kikkoman Hon Tsuyu*. It's not too sweet and its dashi taste isn't that strong either. That's why I like it best.


=== Harusame salad dressing ingredients  (serves about 4) ===
Adjust the amounts according to your taste and mentsuyu. You can use this sauce for fresh veggie salad and hiyashi chuka (hiyashi ramen) as well.

6 tablespoons hontsuyu or mentsuyu
1 to 2 tablespoons mirin
1 to 2 tablespoons vinegar
A little sesame oil
A little rayu (chili oil) or doubanjiang or red pepper powder or mustard, whichever you like

For these onigiri I used medium polished rice, shiokombu, shirasu, and sesame seeds. Whoaaa one of them looks sour. I should've given him one more eye....I guess?

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Chili Shrimp Bento

2011.06.14, originally uploaded by babykins.

Seafood bentos in Magewappa are continuing. Yesterday I made ebi chili (chili shrimp). So this one is yesterday's bento. For chili shrimp, scrambled egg is perfect. You could relish the yumminess dressing scrambled egg with excess sauce of chili shrimp. When you make chili shrimp you should definitely make scrambled egg too. Chili shrimp goes great with noodles as well by the way. So I usually make a little extra sauce purposely. Since chili shrimp is really good for bento, I hope to share my easy recipe sometime. The rest of this bento contains aspara bacon stir fry and hijiki (a kind of seaweeds) bell pepper salad.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Maguro Steak Bento

2011.06.13, originally uploaded by babykins..

Good morning OHAYOOO!!! lol. Today's quick post is featuring maguro (tuna) steak. It looks like teriyaki because I dredged it in starch before sauteing. But it's not sweet and I gave it a bit of a garlic flavor. So I want to call today's bento a maguro steak (domburi) bento. This came out so good, really! I sliced a tuna fillet for sashimi into bite-size pieces, then dredged in starch. Sauteed in a pan, then seasoned with some syoyu and sake, a bit of mirin and garlic powder. I thought this bento would need something mouth-refreshing so I made bell pepper marinade. I boiled some cut bell pepper, then soaked in a mixture of mentsuyu, sugar and vinegar for a while. Mentsuyu is so useful for quick-making bento dishes in the busy morning. By the way, my favorite is *Kikkoman Hon Tsuyu*. I'll mention about this item in detail next time.

Have a fabulous one!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Hire Katsu Bento and Early Summer Flowers

Helloooo! I just want to give a yell to the world. Having quite a pleasant afternoon all by myself at home for the first time in forever woo! The rest of the family went out for errands. I'm so relaxed now.


I got a good pork tenderloin at my supermarket the day before. So today's bentos have hire katsu (panko-fried pork tender with tonkatsu sauce). Fresh fried hire katsu is delicious, I swear, but I found this time, chicken tender is better than pork for bento because it's tender and yummy even cold. Well the rest of the bentos are scallion tamagoyaki slices, ninjin shirishiri and cherries. Good thing I didn't forget to put cherries in Hubby's bento this time haha. And that bitsy thing in the picture below is a portable misoshiru (miso soup), which I added cut scallion, dried wakame, and a little dashi powder to miso so that Hubby could pour some hot water over it and eat at work. I think misoshiru is a must for a perfect katsu lunch any day. Ninjin shirishiri is an Okinawan popular carrot dish stir fried with egg and spam or canned tuna. But I only used some chikuwa instead for this one because I didn't have spam or tuna and had already made tamagoyaki. I shredded carrot then stir fried with thinly sliced chikuwa and sesame oil. Then flavored with a little salt, black pepper and sesame seed. Guess what, this dish tastes pretty good and doesn't really smell carrot so even carrot haters like me can eat it!


The strawberry in our petite garden is growing steadily. I just can't wait to relish them!







Friday, June 10, 2011

Mini Loaf Bread Bento and Purple Sweet Potato Tarts

Happy Friday! already!? incredibly fast!! I've been lazy this week, but today I managed to prepare bento. Today's bento has leftover tofu kima curry, egg salad, some tomatoes and a couple of kiyomi orange wedges. And I also sent Hubby a mini loaf I baked early in the morning, though it isn't in the picture.

This one is for myself, which contains a few slices of mini loaf, ham slices, curry, egg salad that's too little compared to the curry because somebody ate most of it before I packed lol, and some fruit. I had cherries instead of tomatoes because I don't eat any tomatoes... But I like tomato sauce and ketchup! Yeah that's pretty weird, I know hehe. I have trauma about tomato since my childhood, actuallyyy. Oh it's a pity I forgot to put cherries and ham in Hubby's bento! Well it's okay, he should never notice that heehee.
bread lunch bento

Here are the mini loaf breads I baked. I used both whole wheat flour and normal one this time. They are a bit cute, right?
mini loaves

I made purple sweet potato tarts the other day so let me share this picture. I was kind of happy with how they'd turned out. They didn't turn out as pretty purple as I expected though. I added some of heavy cream and sugar and butter and brandy to boiled purple sweet potato, then mixed it in the food processor. I should've steamed the purple sweet potato instead of boiling. It may have kept deeper color.
Purple Sweet Potato Tarts

Have a fabulous weekend all!

Friday, June 03, 2011

Salmon Chahan Bento

Yay! I'm posting today also. I was going to try to reduce posting, but I realized that it's easier to do a quick post everyday than to post many bentos and articles in bulk at a time lol! So I thought I should try to short-post as often as possible, hopefully in the morning, instead of letting my bento pictures pile up.

These bentos are the ones I made a couple of days ago. I forgot to up them. By the way I didn't prepare bento today because I overslept in the morning, stinks! That's how I do every now and again though haha! Well today's main is salmon chahan, which I used chunks of broiled salted sockeye, egg, and daikon leaf in. I also made shrimp salad and red spinach/bacon stir-fry for this one.
Salmon Chahan Bento

Salmon Chahan Bento -1

Now tulips were over, then snowflakes and suzuran (lily of the valleys) are coming out around my house. Are you ready for the summer?

Lily of the Valley

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Okonomi Omelet and Salmon Onigiri Rools

Okonomi Omelet and Salmon Onigiri Rools
Heehhh it's already June?!? About half the year?... Can you believe it?
Well today's bento contains two rolled onigiri and omelet style okonomiyaki. No no *okonomi style omelet* is right. Its taste is just like okonomiyaki, but it's much easier to make than okomomiyaki. I used egg, pork, cabbage, and moyashi (bean spout). This one is nice as a sandwich filling as well.

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Salad-udon Bento

Salad-udon Bento
It feels like the cold noodle season is coming here soon. So this bento has cold udon, braised chicken tender, and fresh vegetables.
Sauce: mentsuyu (Japanese noodle sauce), minced onion, lemon juice and vinegar. This sauce is so perfect for cold noodles and veggies that I hope everybody gives it a try!
Have a delicious and fun fun lunch y'all!