May 24, 2012
Coming back and cleaning up the dust (*cough cough* look out for the allergies!) from the blog! I disappeared for a while, yes I know… too much of everything happening at the same time.
But hey! I am here and with a new bento! Wow!!!!
My 6yo had a “Spring celebration” at her pre-school today, lots of outside activities for the kids and parents. Mr Mies joined her and I stayed home to take care of little daughter who was still sick from flu she caught earlier this week from her big sister (ha! complicated stuff! Well hmm, we´ve been sick…). I prepared these bentos for us to eat when they´d get back home. You can notice the portions are quite big, to be shared properly among four not-so-hungry people :).
And… the theme: Pokémon! As for normal children, my girls keep changing what they like every now and then. They had seasons of adoring Anpanman, Kirby, My Little Pony and lately it is Pokémon… partly my fault this time… I allowed them to play my DS game “Pokémon Diamond Version” and they were introduced to the world of the pocket monsters… (blame me blame me). Their favorite ones at this moment are Pikachu, Jigglypuff and Squirtle.
So Pikachu bento, that is!
Contents of the boxes: Round onigiris (rice balls), tamagoyaki, raw carrot sticks, steamed broccoli on a lettuce bed. Nectarine slices, cucumber, green grapes, strawberries and raspberries. Pikachu made with cheese, nori details, carrot cheeks and pepperoni mouth. I also crafted a pokéball sticker to decorate the onigiri wrap ^_^, nice isn’t it?
* Gotta Catch ‘Em All!!!*
Oops, no ketchup this time! ;)
March 28, 2012
Yep, the first Spring bento that I make after a long “bento-break”! Actually… I can’t even consider we have Spring yet! *lol*
There is still plenty of snow everywhere but surprisingly it is melting relatively fast. Uh, I really hate this time of the year… everything is still so brown, dusty, slushy and all kinds of ugly stuff gets uncovered when the snow goes away. I am totally looking forward to see green, sprouts and flowers :)
Until the time comes, we need to cheer up ourselves with imaginary bunnies and chicks >_< …
Inside the boxes: Lettuce bed with a bunny onigiri (cheeks made of carrot and nose made of sausage), tamagoyaki chick with carrot beak, steamed broccoli, mini plum tomato, spinach with ponzu sauce, nitrate and msg free pan fried hot dogs. Smaller box contains sweet corn, raw carrots, broccoli, red grapes and a clementine.
Note the cute new bunny pick I got! Thanks to a special bento friend ^_^.
How´s the Spring / Autumn where you live? Hope nice!!
February 7, 2012
February has arrived! And inspired by a sweet Valentine´s card my girls received today from their great-grandparents, I made a bento with the love theme ^_^.
Contents: Iri-dofu (tofu scramble), mini plum tomato, steamed broccoli, nectarine slices, mandarine orange and a cute cup (ありがとう M!) with carrot sticks and red grapes. The brown puppy is made with rice mixed with shoyu and the white one is a plain onigiri with nori details. *SMOOOOOCH*
Pikkusiili said I should have put more ketchup on the puppy´s cheek, because it was too “pale”. Did she mean no blushing enough? XD
Ah yes… some friends have been asking how are we doing with all the news about the severe winter in Europe. We are doing fine :), there is indeed plenty of snow and some very cold days… I guess we are used, it doesn’t bother us so much.
When the girls can’t go outside to play we try to do some activities at home. They got mini baking equipment toys on Christmas from my in-laws and grandmother taught them to make salt play dough to use with the stuff.
I made the dough again, it is a very easy no-cook recipe. So simple but surely delivered a few hours of entertainment to my daughters! Our “fake bakery” was a success then ^_^.
Taikataikina / no cook salt play dough
adapted from here . Taikataikina means “magic dough” also called suolataikina in Finnish (suola=salt, taikina=dough)
- 6 dl wheat flour (about 3 cups)
- 3 dl salt (11/2 cup)
- 3 dl warm water (300ml , warm enough to dissolve the salt)
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil (I used canola)
- food coloring if desired
Combine the salt and flour in a mixing bowl. The coarser the salt, the more the granulous effect.
Make a well in the dry mixture and gradually add the water, kneading until the dough becomes smooth and elastic. Add the vegetable oil and combine everything again.
For the colored dough, I divided the neutral dough into 4 pieces and added food coloring (red, blue and yellow) to each, kneading until getting an even color. For the other colors, I just let the girls mix the basic balls and have fun with the discoveries.
While playing I recommend covering the unused dough with plastic because it tends to dry very fast.
The salt dough can be stored in a sealed container in the refrigerator for a couple of days.
Happy week friends!
January 23, 2012
After a long break I am back :).
I hope you all had a great beginning of new year ^_^. As for myself, I was sick again… it feels much better this week, I am done with the flu for now. YAY!
Today for the first time during winter, LV went to pre school with her pulk (sled). We usually don’t allow her to because the most of the time, the snowy sidewalks are covered with a layer of sand, which damages pretty much the bottom of her sled. It has been snowing constantly lately in Helsinki and for some reason, the snowplow didn’t clear up the sidewalks this morning.
In the afternoon, big sister was so enthusiastic about playing with the sled, she convinced Pikkusiili to go out to play too. The result was having two hungry little girls coming home :). I prepared two bentos, my attempt to celebrate the Lunar New Year (Chinese New Year). It is the Year of the Dragon!!
(Lau! Feliz Ano do Dragao ;)
Contents: Farfalle pasta with spinach, feta cheese, sun dried tomatoes, red onions, walnuts and pecans, mini plum tomato, lettuce, red grapes, cucumber and a tiny mandarin orange. The dragon girl is a dessert-sandwich made with whole grain bread, nutella, green soy wrap, details made with cucumber, cheese, nori, wakame seaweed and jam for the cheeks :).
Ok… it is embarrassing, the girl should have looked like this (my earlier sketch-fooling around):
Hmm.. does the bento-girl look like a dragon at all?
Hmm.. ok… maybe a frog… Ahahahahah!
Happy Lunar New Year for my friends who celebrate it!
May 12, 2011
Yea… I know… I haven’t posted for a while. So much has happened… all I can say is changes are (perhaps) coming in our lives (and for good I hope! *fingers crossed*)
Blogging, friends and readers are still very important to me, *big hug*. It´s just that right now I don’t have much time for the internets :( … for cooking… or crafting… time to myself and the girls. Weeee… sounds like busy huh?
Anyhow, I don’t know when I’ll be capable to write here again… please bare with my inconstant appearance online :P. I will try hard to keep doing something!
I made these bentos to my daughters couple of days ago ;).
Contents of the boxes: mini raw carrots, cherry tomato, tamagoyaki with spring onions (under the tomato), turkey hot dogs wrapped in egg sheets, cucumber slices, lettuce and juicy cherries. Little dogs made with zakkoku mai (mixed grains) rice, nori details and ketchup for the cheeks.
Those cherries were the first ones I spotted this year. Actually, Luonnonvoima spotted them first and asked me to purchase them. She really loves cherries… (can someone eat too much of them and get belly ache? Omigosh, that little girl can eat big amounts every time! >_<)
February 10, 2011
Not exactly a Valentine´s day bento, but I think it fits the theme :P. In Finland there is what we call “Ystävänpäivä” (translated to “Friend´s day”), celebrated on Feb 14th. According to Wikipedia, it seems to be the second most important reason to send cards and postcards (Christmas is the 1st) in Finland, but to tell you the truth… I didn’t get much since I moved here.
Well… I remember making Valentine´s cards at my English school when I was a kid and that was it… XD
I prepared the bentos in the morning so the girls could eat them after coming home, at lunch time. (And I just noticed I don´t have heart decorative picks! How non-romantic I am…)
Contents of the boxes: whole wheat bread sandwich with sun-dried tomato cream-cheese, turkey ham and cheese. Bear made out of rye bread (taikaruis-leipä), cheese and nori, “bird” made with cheddar, a tiny carrot piece and nori. Lettuce, steamed carrots and edamame pods, cherry tomatoes, clementines and apple slices.
Ehehe, yep I noticed the bear on the left has weird eyes ^_^. It is the love ♡♥ ! :D
November 25, 2010
When I was a child I loved to eat fried minced meat on japanese rice. I could eat tons of it. Another combo that I enjoyed was Japanese rice, Brazilian cooked beans and fried minced meat on top. ^_^ So good!
Today´s bento features fried minced meat. Not exactly a meat “soboro”, but quite close. Hubs said that it was almost the filling of “lihapiirakka” (a sort of Finnish meat doughnut) that he loves =). Lihapiirakka looks like a rissole but the pastry is made of bread dough, deep fried. Insides, a mixture of cooked porridge rice and fried minced meat with spices.
Hmm, “mmmkay” … should I get back to the subject :P..?
Contents of the boxes: fried minced meat with spices, on top of cooked rice with mixed grains, cucumbers, pan fried tofu cubes with sesame seeds, turkey roll with steamed green beans, cherry tomato, carrots, lettuce and green apple slices. Little puppy made with cheese, nori and steamed carrot.
Girls liked the dog´s “bone” but they commented on the fact it was “fake” :D ahahahha. They pulled it out from the “ground” and added “hey mom, this is wrong, there´s no other edge! This is NOT a bone!” . All that remained me to say was “oh, SO sorry!” ^_^
November 17, 2010
Oh gosh… It has been more than a week since my last post. Yes, I am cooking and doing stuff but I am not taking pictures at all. I am having problems on making good photographs because of the winter darkness (we celebrated Father´s day in Finland last Sunday, I baked a cake and everything… but hey, sorry guys, no pictures ^_^)
Anyways… it is already middle November and I tend to get very busy (and desperate! ahaahha) in the end of the year. Craft projects, baking and cooking ideas… I hope I can cope with everything and share something in the blog.
Today I made a bento for the girls, mostly because Luonnonvoima was not eating much lately and I was a bit concerned about her behavior. When I showed the boxes to them they yelled “Kirahvi!!” (kirahvi is the Finnish word for giraffe) =).
To shorten the history, Luonnonvoima ate everything! I was so glad….
Contents of the boxes: rice, furikake, steamed broccoli, cooked carrots, tamagoyaki (omelet) with spinach, braised tofu in tonkatsu sauce, MSG-free sausage, cherry tomato, clementine wedges, red grapes. Giraffe made with cheese, carrot and nori; her horns with dried somen noodle and cooked carrot cut with a straw.
A tip about the spinach. I don´t know from where they’ve heard “spinach is a no no” but when they asked what was the green thing inside the omelet, instead of saying “it is spinach”, I said “it is a nice leaf”. They replied “just like basil?”… I said “yep” and they ate everything nicely. Uh… kids are so tricky! :D
October 29, 2010
I remember watching Japanese animations with my sister when I was small. They weren’t normally broadcasted on tv but we watched recorded tapes my dad borrowed from a friend that could have access to Japanese tv programs.
At that time, satellite and cable Tvs were way out of reality and my parents couldn’t watch any Japanese tv show if not in that way.
So, my sister and I would put the (Sony) Betamax on (wow! Does anyone remember that?) and watch Doraemon, Obake no Q-tarō, Gegege no kitaro (ゲゲゲの鬼太郎) and Sazae-san, among others.
Obake no Q-tarō is originally a manga, made by same creators of Doraemon (Fujiko Fujio). Obake means some sort of “apparition”, can take any form, like a ghost for example.
This bento was actually made in the same day of the “Boos” bentos I posted yesterday. I was thinking about Halloween, boos, ghosts and Q-tarō came to my mind. I think he is so cute and thought he deserved a bento form and a separate post ^_^.
Contents of the bento (originally made to me but eaten by hubs!): rice, tamagoyaki, cherry tomatoes, edamame, steamed romaine broccoli with sesame oil dressing, pan fried MSG free sausages and a cup of cucumber and carrots asazuke. Q-tarō made with rice, turkey ham, nori and cooked carrot.
October 28, 2010
I couldn’t resist to make a Halloween theme bento. I’ve been having so much fun seeing many of my bento friends making them I also decided to give it a go. ^_^
We don’t celebrate Halloween in Finland. At least not officially. The habit came some years ago (maybe because of some “trend”) and it is possible to see some Halloween decorations and costumes being sold at shops.
Anyways, kids asking candies on Oct. 31 is rare. There is an equivalent celebration on the Sunday before Easter, when girls dress like witches and go, door to door, offering their “spell” using decorated flowering shoots of pussy willow. They wish health and prosperity and we shall pay them back with money or candies.
My girls, for some reason, know the existence of Halloween. Every time they see a Jack o´Lantern they inform me it is for the “Haalow weeen” (<trying to write the way they pronounce it ^_^). “And what else we have in Halloween?” “scary things. BOO”
:D. I hope not totally out of the theme, there are “Boos” from the Super Mario game series and Jack o´lanterns.
Contents of the boxes: rice, tamagoyaki, lettuce, steamed romanesco broccoli with sesame oil dressing, MSG-free small sausages (it supposed to look like a candle..), edamame, grapes, cherry tomatoes and a carrot Jack o´. Boo made from rice, nori and turkey ham.
I was so happy when I found the Romanesco broccoli at the market last time! Very lucky .. the same day we watched the TED video of Mr. Benoit Mandelbrot about fractals, in his homage. (Oh yes, we are nerds)