I am a BUSY girl – and my version of ‘Bento’

I am back in school… To get my degree in the profession that I already work… I know, I know- Silly, you say.  BUT- it’s not :).  I have experience – I need the paper to back it up.

So, between Work Monday-Friday and Class Monday-Thursday, I do not have a lot of time to post.  Or do much else, for that matter.

I am going to make myself find time.  Over lunch- on days that I don’t have some last minute studying to do; or on weekends- in between homework, visiting with family or friends, and spending some much needed time with the fiance and pets.

Now- your first question to all of this might be: “but, when do you find time to cook?”

– I cook on the weekends- usually making enough food for us to eat the whole week through

How about: “How do you possibly make enough food to last that long- and not get sick of it?”

– We’ve got a new system- you’ll see below

I have been inspired by the ‘Bento‘ lunches that have been a big thing recently.  Beautiful, delicious, with a wide variety of food (eh em- and the RIGHT AMOUNT of food)- brought to us from Asian cultures.  Love it.  Although- being as we have to be a bit more conscious of what goes into our bodies (being vegan and all) – and that Rick is a growing boy who needs a lot of food to keep moving – I’m doing my own spin on bento.

I’m still going to call it bento- because it’s just fun :).  This is our first week at it- and I will post some recipes separately later, but here is the menu of our day:

  • Breakfast – Fruit protein smoothie (fresh- made with the GE version of the ‘Magic Bullet’ and sent to work in a reusable to-go cup)
  • Mid-Morning – 1/2 apple, peanut butter, grapes, home-made granola bar
  • Lunch – Hummus & Veggie Spinach Wrap, spiced potato fries, cold pasta salad
  • Mid-Afternoon – Mango spring rolls with spicy soy sauce, carrots, tomatoes
  • Dinner- leftovers (this week we have some gumbo, black bean burgers, and stuffed shells left over) & side salad

It’s a bit different from even the American bento- and really, I don’t care if the rice is squeezed into shapes (although I might try this on a slow cooking day) – I just care that we get a variety of delicious & nutritious foods throughout the day.  Tonight we will bring home our empty containers and fill them up again for tomorrow.  It is a near perfect system- meant to cut back on us not getting enough food, wasting left-overs, wasting some food in the fridge (I have to find meals to make out of the fridge full of food first), cutting back on wanting to pig out when I get home (hungry) at 9:30pm, and I’m hoping it will all work wonderfully.  So far- all of the food is wonderful- so that’s a good sign!

Plus in one day like today- my intake is: 1/2 apple, 1/2 banana, 1/2 grapefruit, acai berry, 1/2 cup strawberries, 1 cup grapes, 1/2 potato, 1/2 cup mushrooms, 1/8 mango, 1/8 cucumber, a lot of spinach (it’s a spinach wrap, plus it’s in the wrap, part of my salad, and in the gumbo), 1/2 cup tomatoes, 1 cup carrots, 1/2 cup onions, 1/4 cup broccoli, 1/4 cup olives, granola bar (choc protein powder, granola, applesauce, agave nectar, choc chips), 1/2 cup whole wheat pasta, hummus, 1/8 cup rice noodles, ground peanuts (in both summer roll & the spicy peanut sauce), 1/2 cup rice, 1/8 cup kidney beans, 1/8 cup black beans, 1/8 cup peanut butter – and a ton of spices.

Ah- a wonderful life!