Friday, September 3, 2010

September Bento Week 1

Day 1
Miss E is off to 1st Grade today. The first thing I did was congratulated Curry and myself for having gone through all these past 6 years raising our first born to be the girl she is today. Our expectations are always high and of course, we hope for the best education option for our girl and always hopeful that she will excel in everything she does. To see her carrying her own backpack with a lunch tote and  finally sitting on a school desk with anticipation of a new teacher and new peers, makes me feel happy. Compared to last year, I was more in control of my emotions this year and did everything to appear strong for my daughter who was a bit jittery this year. And luckily, the first day went by without any glitch and she seemed to be very happy with her new surroundings.

First Grade is a very important milestone. It is the period when a kid goes through different emotions all the time, trying to keep up with everyone around them, learning at a faster and more structure environment, trying to understand what is right from wrong and last but not least, to be independent on their own thoughts and actions. It took me some time to understand this transition and finally I realized it is not that my daughter is being difficult when she turned 6 , but it was me who didn't adapt to the emotional development that every normal kid her age will go through. In the growing up period, parents can never outright win with the kid, so patience and flexibility in different situations are the new parenthood lessons I am going through now.

For her first day Bento lunch and snack, I made something fun. For her snack time, I packed 2 mini sausage rolls which I made with mini sausages and my simple bread dough. For lunch, it was stir fried Udon noodles in soy sauce with turkey ham cut outs together with fruits and cucumber. I managed to find the mini grapes (known as Champagne Black Corinth) that I always see in some cheese platters in my cooking magazines and gave it a try. Their sizes are slightly bigger than fish roe and they come in huge clusters bunch. They are very sweet and juicy and just right for kids Bento boxes. My kids love them!

Day 2
More on a simple theme today, I used carrot to decorate this Bento. To indent and create the cavities on the quail eggs requires very small and sharp cutters and I managed to find some at the soap making section at my local craft store. Yes, sometimes you just have to look to other options when you can't find a tool at the kitchen section. I boiled the carrot slices together with the broccoli florets and let it cool before cutting out various shapes from the carrot slices. For the quail eggs, I firstly indented the cutter shape onto them gently without puncturing too deep to keep the shape intact. With a toothpick, I digged out the indentation and cut out the egg white and then insert the similar carrot shape into the egg cavity. The rice was pan fried with turkey ham and flavored lightly with soy sauce.

Glad that I was able to come up with these neat and cute lunches and I am sure they in a way helped my daughter ease into the routine of school life!

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