bentoriffic

Posts Tagged ‘mango

Leftovers.  It’s what’s for lunch.  It’s not exciting sometimes, but it sure is a timesaver for whoever is packing lunch!

Bentoriffic- Hato Mugi and Cannellini bean dinnerI have gotten in the habit in the past few weeks of doubling my dinner recipes.  I am always grabbing lunch on the go, and it’s nice to have something I can just reheat.  Plus it makes for simple lunches the next day.  In this case, I had been browsing through Christy Morgan’s Blissful Bites cookbook while meal planning.  She suggested a grain called hato mugi.  In all my years of cooking I hadn’t ever heard of it.  It’s also called Job’s tears.  It’s a barley like grain that is actually the seed of an Asian grass that has a higher quantity of protein, fat, calcium, iron,  B vitamins and more amino acids than most grains.  It also helps with the stomach and cleansing the blood.  I decided to order some for fun.  It’s a wonderful, gluten-free grain.  My best description of it would be a heavy, more textured barley and with a more distinct taste.  I cooked  the hato mugi first.  While it was simmering, I cooked cannellini and pinto beans separately with lemon juice, garlic rosemary, salt and a bit of tahini.  When it was done, I arranged it over the grain.

Bentoriffic- Hato mugi and bean heart leftover lunchAnd above is the same dish packed in an Easy LunchBoxes container for lunch the next day.  The beans got a bit smooshed when I stored it overnight, but I just added fresh fruit in the morning (honeydew melon balls and mango slices).  Lunch is served.

Bentoriffic- bear bento lunchMiss G wanted bears today so I obliged.  She has mini sandwiches in the bottom left with bear faces stamped on them.  Above are cashews, a date, almond and raisin ball rolled in coconut and grape tomatoes on bear picks. In the top right are fresh mango slices with more little bears, and in the bottom right are strawberry hearts and a silicone bear cup with honeydew melon balls packed in her Planetbox stainless lunchbox.

I am also in the running again this year for the Circle of Moms.  This time I’m trying to make it to the Top 25 Vegetarian and Vegan blogs in the country.  You can vote once a day from each IP address.  All you do it click vote.  I appreciate your support!  Click here to vote for me!

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Is everyone getting in gear for the holidays?  I’m still planning our Thanksgiving meal.  It will be just the 4 of us this year so the pressure’s off.  I am starting to get a bit jittery about the holidays.   So much to do!  It’s all good, family fun though.

Miss A doesn’t have school this week so I’m just packing for Miss G, 4, and her preschool lunch.   I made some almond butter mini pocket sandwiches with Rudi’s brand Honey Sweet Whole Wheat bread.  It helps to flatten the bread a bit before making these pockets so the filling is less likely to pop through the bread.  To the right of her mini sandwiches are watermelon hearts surrounded by steamed edamame and dried apricot tulips.  In the bottom tier from the left are black seedless grapes, a piece of cauliflower, 2 Hail Merry macaroons in between the cups, and a silicone flower cup of grape tomatoes on the right.

Miss G’s snack is 2 Crimson Gold organic apples, sliced plums, mango hearts and a dried apricot shape on a ring pop holder.

I will be posting my Thankful Giveaway on Wednesday of this week.  Stay tuned and come back to enter to win some fun goodies!  It will be a good one!

Things I used to make this lunch:

Mom’s had her hands in the Play Doh collection again.  I found a mini Cinderella crown cutter in the Play Doh stash so I’ve scoured it off and I’m using it for lunches now.  Miss G has a princess sandwich today cut with a LunchPunch sandwich cutter.  She has yellow and red grape tomatoes surrounding the sandwich.  At the top left are crown shaped cantaloupe pieces with a princess wand pick and at the top right are kiwi slices with a tiara on top packed in her Easy LunchBoxes container.

For her snack today, my 4 year old has a Happy Tiffin stainless bento filled with sliced mangos, a peeled clementine, 2 Crimson Gold tiny apples and whole cashews.

My 2 year old had leftovers from last night.  She had plums, carambola (star fruit) spaghetti squash with marinara sauce topped with dairy free parmesan and pineapple chunks packed in her LunchBots Quad stainless lunch container.

Happy lunch packing!

Things I used to make this lunch:

Double, double toil and trouble
Fire burn, and cauldron bubble.

Happy Halloween, everyone!

Hoping that you have all the craziness behind you by now (except for tonight, of course).  I stayed up late making homemade Stitch ears for my 2 year old’s alien costume and planning the last of the Halloween food until next year.

Ahh, the last of the Halloween lunches!  Miss G, the 4 year old, has a LunchBots Quad with raspberries and an RIP headstone pick, a seckel pear with sticker, dragonfruit pieces with a skeleton pick and at the bottom left are mango pieces with a dragonfruit witch.

I found these little wooden coffins in Michael’s, and I finally put them to use.  I decorated the lids with Halloween stickers for fun.

I hand cut the sandwich to fit inside, and added a Wilton googly eye pick and a fruit leather mouth.

I also found these paper boxes for crafting at Michael’s, and I used them for snack bentos today.  Miss G’s is a jack-o-lantern face.  I filled it with cashews, dried cranberries and moon shaped dried apricots for her morning snack.

My 2 year old has a smaller wooden coffin for her sandwich.  Hers is a light activated box.  It cackles loudly when it opens which she loves.

She also has an almond butter & jam sandwich with a Wilton eye pick and Stretch Island fruit leather mouth, eyebrows and fangs.

Miss A has a pumpkin cup with mango pieces and a dracula pick with cashews above.  On the right are a seckel pear, raspberries, dried apricot crosses and a skeleton hand.

For her morning snack is a small coffin with dried cranberries and a handful of bone shaped candies.

Need quick & healthy last minute Halloween snack ideas?  Here are a few that your store won’t be out of if you need something fast.

Raisins-They’re like nature’s sugar, you can use them to make eyes on just about anything.  Raisins are full of vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients.  Eating raisins can help your energy levels.  They’re high in the best kind of natural sugars.  They also promote healthy bones since they contain high levels of calcium.

Clementine oranges or mandarin cuties-Mother Nature’s fast food.  Grab a box or bag and a few Sharpie markers or a pack of fun Halloween stickers & get creative.   A basket of these are more appealing to little ones than you may think.  For some reason stickers and fun faces make it enticing.  The best part is that they’re packed with nutrients like calcium, potassium and vitamin C.

Popcorn– NOT the microwave kind, the real no additive kind.  Pop up some corn in an air popper or a paper bag.  Here are the paper bag instructions:

Microwaving popcorn in a paper bag

We like to sprinkle a light dusting of sea salt or sometimes a bit of cinnamon on top for an afternoon snack.  For my kiddo party later today, my neighbor and I are putting popcorn in witch hand shaped bags as a snack.  Popcorn has more antioxidants than some fruits and vegetables so skip the heavy butter & oil and dig in!

Pumpkin Seeds-Roast a few lightly salted seeds at home, and you’ll be snacking on these minerals: phosphorus, magnesium, manganese, iron, copper and zinc as well as vitamin K and B.

Wishing everyone a fun, safe & happy Halloween!

Thanks to a recommendation from a few blogging friends a few months ago, my kids watched the Disney movie Lilo and Stitch for the first time.  They are officially hooked.  In fact, even though the original movie was in 2003, the girls decided they had to be Lilo and Stitch for Halloween.

Scrump (Lilo’s doll) and Stitch

Miss A is loves her little alien Stitch.   I made her this little Stitch bento for school this week.  I received the Stitch bento from one of my generous blogger friends and found the cookie cutters, picks and small containers through eBay.  All the Stitch baran are available at All Things For Sale.  The links and photos are listed at the end of this post.

The mini Stitch sandwiches are made from Rudi’s Whole Grain bread with SunButter.  Underneath the sandwiches are apple slices.  To the left are red seedless grapes, mango slices, raspberries and a piece of kiwi.

A project I volunteer for is a Pack A Sack food program at my church.  The program feeds kids at a local elementary school each weekend that would otherwise go hungry.  Last year I helped bring fresh fruits and vegetables to be added to their packed meals.  For Halloween I did a decorated clementine for each child in their meal before Halloween.  They were a huge hit with the kids.

These are a small sample of the clementines I did this week.  My husband even helped draw them and enjoyed the project with me.    Each one is different.  I used a non-toxic Sharpie marker.  The oils from the fruit dry them out quickly, but it’s worth the fun.  It’s even a great, healthy idea for your trick or treaters.  Hope everyone has a relaxing weekend ahead!

Stitch items available at All Things For Sale:

EYE love pasta!  I really do, and so do my kids.  What’s even better is that this stuff is homemade.  Not by me, but my local pasta place here in Sarasota, Florida, Peperonata Pasta.

They make all their pasta here in town, and it’s sold at Whole Foods stores all over the state.  I usually pick some up from the owners themselves at the local Sarasota or San Marco Plaza farmer’s markets on the weekend.  They make Vegan pasta that is incredible and loaded with healthy grains like quinoa, flax seed and millet.  There are never leftovers in our house!

Above is Peperonata’s tagliatelle vegan pasta topped with 2 eyeball rings and grape tomatoes.  Underneath the sliced  strawberries at the top are golden grapes packed in her Easy LunchBoxes.

For her snack this afternoon, Miss G had sliced apples and ants on a log (celery with SunButter and raisins on top).

So I spotted this glow-in-the-dark container at the store.  It was filled with Skittles.  Of course, I dumped the Skittles and filled it with trail mix.  The mouth twists open and shut.  I love this for raisins, seeds, etc to make healthy snacks fun.

My husband had a container of soup (not shown) and this fruity bento to go along with it.  At the top left are mango chunks, the top right is a clementine with Jack Skellington drawn on it.  My kids are still to young for movie “The Nightmare Before Christmas”, but I love it.   Who doesn’t love a good Tim Burton movie?  In the bottom compartment are green grapes, sliced dapple dandy pluots, and d’anjou pear sections packed in an Easy LunchBoxes container.

Some of my bento blogging friends also did Jack Skellington lunches.  Click on each one to find more Halloween ideas!

*BentoMonsters

*What’s In Our Lunch Bags?

*Bent On Better Lunches

*Lunch, Snack and “Sninner”

*What’s For Lunch At Our House?

*What The Girls Are Having

*Family Fresh Meals

Things I used to make this lunch:

It’s finally cooling off here at night in Florida.  And by cooling off, I mean that it drops below 70 at night.  I grew up in the Midwest in Minnesota so I do have weeks where I really miss the cool weather, crunching of leaves under foot and the smell of fall in the air.   Hope you’re enjoying the fleeting cool weather and changing leaves wherever you are today.

Miss G, my 4 year old, has a Halloween lunch again today.  She wanted a plain hummus wrap but I snuck in some julienned cucumber strips in the middle.  I have these neat silicone bands that keep the wraps from coming unraveled while she’s eating.  I wouldn’t recommend these for any kids under 4 ,but she manages them well.   Another trick is to put the wrap in the freezer or fridge for about an hour before sending it off.  It will stay put longer this way.  In the main compartment with the wrap is a seckel pear, a couple of grape tomatoes and a date coconut ball on a skeleton pick.  At the top left are pumpkin shaped mango pieces with a spider ring and poison bottle pick.  At the top right of her Easy LunchBoxes container are some tiny golden grapes with a jack-o-lantern face of Stretch Island fruit leather on top of the silicone pumpkin cup.

For her snack today, Miss G, the 4 year old, had sliced strawberries and below is a mixture of dried cranberries, pistachios, caramel apple coated almonds and cashews.

One of my favorite things to draw on and create food art with this time of year are the mandarin oranges and clementines.  They’re perfect for little fingers and fun!  I just grab a Sharpie marker (they’re non-toxic) and color away.  You can also just put stickers on them if you’re not inclined to draw.  This one is in honor or my new bento friend Erin over at Feeling A Little Lunchy. She’s just a tad moustache obsessed, and who doesn’t love a cute handlebar moustache?  Bonjour! and Happy Halloween to you too!

Little Miss Picky Eater, the 2 year old, has a LunchBots Quad full of Halloween fun today.  This is the perfect bento box for wee ones, in my opinion.  Just enough space for variety, keeps foods separate and hopefully less food wasted.  From the top left are a clementine peeled, jack-o-lantern sandwiches with pumpkin butter, sliced strawberries, and golden grapes with a pumpkin shaped mango on top.

Things I used to make this lunch:


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