Monday, September 13, 2010

YUM- Home Made Bread!

My mom sent me a Sunbeam breadmaker and Hodgson Mill bread mixes! I've been making bread for the last few days. My mom said it was easy, and boy was she right. I made rye bread yesterday, and today we took thick pieces of rye bread spread with unsalted organic butter and layered with bandaged cheddar. Great sandwiches! I sent the sandwiches with organic corn chips, Sharkies (not great for you, but my kids love them), little green pears, and chocolate pudding cups.

Tonight I am making barley bread mix. I can't wait to taste it!

All I have to add to the mix is warm water and my own butter. The mix even comes with its own packet of yeast!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Some easy lunches

Here are a couple of easy lunches. Those are mini bagels with cream cheese. And Trader Joes had tiny organic pears- so the pears are small. In the bottom picture you are seeing 2 lunches- the tin was my daughter's, and the plastic container with the baggies was for my son. I used a Trader Joes cheese and salami tray for that lunch (fed me as well, and there were leftovers)- with the cheese there is also a bagel, clementines, cashews, "Everything" crackers (Trader Joes), and biscotti treat. With the salad lunch I sent a chocolate dipped madeline (there might have been sea salt on that one), cashews, clementines, blueberries, and a bagel with cream cheese.

Friday, September 3, 2010

I'm rushed off my feat

So it's been a crazy week, but I still made lunches. I've bought a lot of cheese, since Costco had some amazing cheeses, so I've been sending cheese and crackers, fruit and veggies, and snacks- and that's lunch. I am eating that too- and I've found the cheese so filling, I often can't finish the rest of my meal. I guess I'm on "The Cheese Diet"- but not intentionally.

On Monday we ate goat cheese with herbs and Mc Vitie's Digestive Biscuits (the crackers that eat like a meal). Many carbs make you want to snack and snack- but I have never been able to eat more than a few Mc Vitie's- despite the fact that I love the taste. I also sent tiny pears- because I love goat cheese with pears. As snacks I sent cashews and a little home made pudding (chocolate).

On Tuesday we bought a tray of cheese and sausage from Trader Joes. We each took a few slices of jack cheese, a few cheddar slices, and some salami. I sent Mc Vities crackers, a few biscotti treats, clementines, and for my son, who had a very long day, I also sent a small container of rice with Trader Joes organic chili on top.

On Wednesday only my son needed a lunch, but he wanted to buy at school, since a salad he wanted to try was on sale.

On Thursday I sent the Middle East Feast- which I bought at Trader Joes. I meant to make sushi, but I just didn't have the energy.

Friday- TGIF. I sent more cheese and crackers. I've got a huge wheel of the goat cheese, and I didn't want it to go to waste. It's never as tasty (imo) then when you cut in to the wheel- so we're trying to eat it up. Lunch today was a repeat of Monday- though I did manage to add some home dipped chocolate madelines. I bought Costco madelines- dipped them in 80% Lindt dark chocolate, and then I sprinkled them with sea salt. The sea salt makes the chocolate taste really amazing.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Chili Quiche

Here is a picture of the chili quiche (it's the one in front- the beans give it speckles). In back you see a ham quiche cooling.

Quiche Lunch

This is two lunches- the little one in the tin is my daughter's lunch.

I used the quiche recipe I mentioned earlier in August. But I will repeat it here- since it's so easy, and lately I've been using white onion instead of green. And I am making double batches- and adding last minute ingredients so I have two flavors. I just baked two this morning, and made one ham, and one tuna.

1 cup mayo
1 cup milk
2 TBS cornstarch
1/2 chopped onion- chop fine- I use a sweet white onion
4 eggs (you can add more if you like- it changes the texture)
3 cups finely shredded cheese- I use Trader Joes Mexican blend

Mix milk, mayo, cornstarch and eggs. Add cheese and onion. Then add whatever goodies you want to put in- this is also the point where you can divide the recipe and make 2 different kinds of quiche, or you can make two the same. It's up to you. For ONE quiche, cut the recipe in 1/2.

Last minute additions- I give amounts for a SINGLE quiche (plain cheese and onion is also delicious)- 6 ounces chopped ham, or 1/2 can chili, or 1 can tuna, or 1 can crab, or 1 can shrimp, or drained chopped olives- the list is endless. Play with this!!! And the quiche is nice and firm, so it will travel well in the lunchbox. My children tell me there has been no quiche breakage :-)

Remember- I'm too lazy to bake that pie crust ahead of time. I just use Trader Joes unbaked pie crust. I have found that glass pie dishes give a much crispier crust (and give it that "pot pie" taste- which we just love). I have used clear glass and corningwear, and they are far superior to my stainless steel pie pans.

Middle East Lunch- thank you Costco

Since I am back at work I'm pleased I can add a lunch item like this to my son's meal. It's by Foodology (and they also make a really good spicy egg white salad). I found this at Costco- but as with all Costco special items, we don't know how long it will be around.

I sent pretzels, dates, grapes and biscotti treat (also from Costco- biscotti with white chocolate, dark chocolate and caramel- not too good for you, but a nice little dessert.) I break it in to little sections, so it looks like a sent more than I really did.

Sushi rice and sauerkraut

Because sauerkraut tastes so darn good in sushi, I put some on top of leftover sushi rice for this easy lunch. You will also see dates (top left), cuties in sections, grapes, pretzels, madelines dipped in chocolate (sometimes I sprinkle these with sea salt- delicious!), and a few tiny chocolate chip cookies. I also sent a Pure blueberry bar, and some limeade.

I use Bubbies Sauerkraut with active bacteria. I've read it is rich in vitamin K- and supposed to be good for you. I also really love the taste.

Foods rich in vitamin K:

Monday, August 16, 2010

Quiche Quiche Quiche

I made two of these quiches this morning. We ate one for breakfast and one for lunch. At lunch we also had cauliflower with melted organic American cheese and grapes.

For each quiche:

1 unbaked pie crust (I use Trader Joes)
1 1/2 cup cheese (I used Trader Joes Mexican blend- because it is finely shredded)
5 green onions, chopped fine
1 package rosemary ham chopped (Trader Joes, 6 oz)
1 TBS corn starch (I use organic)
1/2 cup mayo (I use organic)
1/2 cup milk (I use cream top non-homogenized)
2 eggs

Line pie crust with dough. Mix eggs, mayo, milk and cornstarch- add all other ingredients. Pour in to pie crust. Bake at 350 for 40 minutes (but please watch it as it bakes- since ovens vary).

Saturday, August 14, 2010


We had salmon earlier in the week, so I used some of the leftovers to make poached salmon sushi. I also made roasted red pepper sushi, and sushi with Bubbies sauerkraut (see link)- it's my favorite sauerkraut. The sauerkraut sushi was amazing. It was so good I had an extra bowl of sushi rice topped with sauerkraut. Yummmmm. And it would make an awesome cold lunch. I'm definitely going to take sushi rice and sauerkraut this year for my school lunches. It's filling, and I love the taste.

Remember, sushi rice is super simple- it's some combination of seasoned rice vinegar (or regular rice vinegar), sugar, mirin, and soy sauce- though you can play around a lot with the recipe. If you google it you'll find a bunch of different ways to prepare it- and almost all of them are delicious.

And don't be afraid of rolling sushi. If I can do it, anyone can do it. But you really need a bamboo roller- it does all the work. Go to youtube and watch some of the videos- that's how I learned to roll sushi. And I could not believe how easy it was.


Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Lunch for the First Day of College

First day of college for my son. I sent blueberries, cuties, champagne grapes, crackers, salami, organic cheese (you can see the kind I sent in the wrapper above the lunch- it's from Costco- mushroom, plain jack, jalapeno and herb. Delicious!) In the small dish are pieces of Biscotti treats- also from Costco. And I sent some pretzels in the baggy- because today was going to be an extra long day. And yes, he can cook his own food. We sometimes cook together :-)

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

We are NOT eating bark

This is a rather odd post. I had mentioned to some friends that I was using black bark to do our entire yard (front and back), and some folks wanted to see it (and so did my mom :-) So I am posting a picture of my effort here. Our gardeners quoted a thousand dollars to do our yard, but my kids and I did it in under 2 hours and for under two hundred dollars- which I thought was pretty sweet. And we used medium/large Preen bark, and the gardeners were just going to use small stuff (the black bark that pretty much looks like dirt).

Saturday, August 7, 2010

So we had my daughter's 21st birthday party today, and I made cherry tomato tart (you will find the recipe a few posts back), and tiny sandwiches (tuna, cucumber) and dates with pecans, and two chocolate cakes, and brownies, and madelines from Costco I dipped in dark chocolate, grapes and watermelon, salad, and more- so much more. But several of the things I made would work great for lunches.

Dates with pecans and cream cheese- I use medjool dates, take out the pit, put in a small amount of cream cheese, and press the cheese in to chopped pecans. Wonderful!

Celery with Rondele cheese and pecans- spread celery with Rondele cheese (I get it at Costco), and then press cheese in to pecans. Yum

Cucumber salad- slice peeled hot house cucumbers very thin. Spread thin slices of bread with a mixture of cream cheese, pepper, finely chopped chives, and salt to taste. You can add a drop of green food coloring, but I don't feel the need. Layer one slice of bread with cucumbers, and close the sandwich up.

Costco Madelines- perfect for dipping! Try melting some of the exotic chocolate bars- like Chocolate with chile, or chocolate with sea salt- then dip 1/2 the Madeline on the upper side in to the chocolate. It's really pretty, and it's SO delicious. I often make these for lunches. I put the cookies in the fridge to make the chocolate extra firm, and then wrap them individually in plastic wrap.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Veggies Tonight

Fennel was only 99cents a bulb at Trader Joes today. What a treat. So I bought 3. I sliced them thinly and sauteed them in butter until slightly caramelized. Then I turned off the heat, deglazed with about 1/4 cup lemon juice, and tossed the fennel with 1 cup of shaved parmesan cheese (I could have used less, to be honest- but it was super cheesy delicious).

Also on the menu (I was mixing cultures tonight) was cauliflower cooked in the microwave and topped with whole milk yogurt (about a cup) mixed with 2 tablespoons of ras el hanout.

Not familiar with ras el hanout?

I also served some mac n cheese to placate my daughters- but my son, husband and I thought the veggies were fantastic, and we all had seconds. In fact, I'm pretty darn stuffed right now. In a good way :-)

Friday, July 23, 2010

Still Can't Find my Camera

So this week my daughter had her wisdom teeth out, and there was much call for pudding at our house. I made these two lovely puddings, that made her very happy. I hope you enjoy them, and wish I could show them to you:

This is a wine custard I made up myself, since most other wine custard recipes call for double boiler:

2 cups milk (I use whole non-homogenized "cream top" milk- or half and half)
3 tbs cornstarch (organic is what I use)
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup sugar
3 Tbs sweet wine (I used some Yalumba Muscat- a dessert wine from Australia)

Cook milk till bubbles form around the edge. Add sugar/salt/cornstarch mixture. Stir constantly over low heat until mixture thickens. When thick, add wine, keep stirring. I keep cooking about another 3-5 minutes. Then turn off heat and keep stirring until mixture is somewhat cooled (and no bubbles would form if you stopped stirring.) Mixture must NOT boil.

We eat this warm over berries, and cooled as a pudding. It's also good warm just by itself. It's a great compliment to a glass of Yalumba Muscat- an obvious pairing that is simply fabulous.


1/2 c. sugar
3 tbsp. cornstarch
2 1/2 c. half and half
1/3 c. cocoa (I use Starbucks cocoa)
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla

Mix sugar, cornstarch, cocoa and salt. Slowly heat milk; cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until bubbles form around the edge (I use a whisk for stirring). Add dry ingredients and cook until thick, stirring constantly. Add vanilla. Cook 3-5 minutes longer- keep stirring until cool enough not to bubble. Chill. Makes 6 servings- unless you have teens. Then it might make one serving (two if you are lucky).

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Tomato Tart and Feta Pastries

In the April issue of Food and Wine there was a great, easy recipe for a tomato tart. All you had to do was toss tomatoes with olive oil and salt, and put them in a pie crust. I decided to make it even easier by buying the pie crust at Trader Joes- I also bought my organic cherry tomatoes there, too.

I tossed the tomatoes with olive oil and salt, and sprinkled pepper on the top, then baked until the crust was browned- about 35 minutes in my oven.

I used the other Trader Joes crust (there were two) to make little pastries with feta and kalamata olives (thank you Real Simple). I used a small biscuit cutter, cutting out two shapes per pastry, and then filling each pastry with feta and chopped olives. Close the pastries around the edge with the tines of a fork. I baked the pastries until browned

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

goat cheese, yogurt and bread

Easy lunch today. Trader Joes has small goat cheeses that come in a bag. I took one of the little rounds to work with some sourdough bread, a small salad and a plum. I also poured some Strauss family creamery (see link) organic European yogurt (whole milk) in to a small container and topped it with some wildflower honey. I try to eat only whole milk products. If you start using low fat milk products you are upping the sugar in your milk product, and you are also less likely to get the signal that you are full. Fats (at least it seems to me) make you feel full very quickly, thus rapidly reducing your appetite. Studies have shown for both women and children (see link to children's study) that whole milk drinkers, and people who eat whole milk cheeses, tend to have lower body mass indexes. Good to know- right? Especially since whole milk products taste so darn good.

At our house we drink only whole milk that is NOT homogenized (I find this "cream top" milk only at Trader Joes). My kids drink far less milk than they did when we used to buy lowfat. I know it's anecdotal- but take it for what you will.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Chicken Salad Scones

So I moved- I think I mentioned that. My camera is still somewhere in our new garage in one of the many boxes out there. And on top of the moving I caught pneumonia :-) It's been an interesting summer (and did I mention I started an internship right after school let out?). We HAVE been eating even though our lives have been insane, but we haven't always been eating things I've made. I came to rely rather heavily on Trader Joes premade salads, sandwiches and frozen food.

Chicken Salad Scones

I used Garvey's Scone mix (find it at Amazon) with cheddar cheese and black pepper added. I probably add 1/3 cup- I just take a handful of shredded cheddar. I don't measure.

The chicken salad began as Foster Farms Costco thighs- 99 cents a pound- and I take the skin off before baking. Then I sprinkle the thighs with herbs de provence and French gardeners' salt (just salt with herbs- you can find it on Amazon, or just use any old salt you like.) I bake at 350 until the chicken is done.

The chicken makes dinner the first night, and then the next day I chop up what's left, add mayonnaise, parseley, onions, celery, pepper and salt, and a little mustard powder.

I slice the scones and fill with the chicken salad. Delicious. And these are pretty enough to serve to guests, but easy enough to make for a family lunch. I served them with a fruit salad of watermelon, plums, mango, grapes and nectarines.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

I can't believe how long I've been away

So the moving odyssey now seems never ending. We were supposed to move in on April 21st, had the moving guys booked, and had changed the gas, water, cable, etc- and the man in our house would not move. So now he is supposed to be out on May 7th- and maybe, maybe, I'll be able to cook again. Most of my pans and almost all my tools are boxed up- since we thought we'd be moved by April 21st, they've been boxed up for a while- and were either in a POD, or were driven away in a Zippy Shell (and I can recommend both systems- though I think I prefer the POD, since it is bigger, and doesn't have a ramp that can bite you in the shins.)

I have a few pitiful bits of cooking trivia to add to my blog- I got this cutting board (for my gorgeous new granite counters):

and I got some trivets by the same company some time ago:

I think these products are amazing! When I read the reviews for all the boards (obsessive that I am) I did note that people with dull knives had some problems with gouging. Now none of you, I'm sure, would have a dull knife, so not to worry- but if you have any dull knifed friends, don't tell them to get this board. It's not for them.

I hope to see you all again very soon, and be able to share lots and lots of food pictures! But for right now, please send happy thoughts, as we need them. I'm tired of being in limbo- house wise.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

We have not quit eating, nor have I quit making lunches, but we are in the middle of moving, and all bets are off when it comes to estimating when I can get pictures of meals up here again.

I'm hoping I can start making and photographing meals again soon, but I had forgotten just what a pain moving is.

At the moment the meals we are having are strange amalgams of what is left in the cupboards. Tuna and baked beans? Anchovies and split pea soup? How about tomato salmon bisque?

My family will be so relieved when the cupboards are bare. I think they'd almost rather starve than deal with the fear surrounding what monstrous alchemy will be served up next.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Starting the week off right

This salad is made of baby lettuce, sausage, cheddar cheese, radishes, black olives and parmesan- with dots of mustard inside the olives. I am sending Drew's Caesar dressing in a packet with the salad.

I also sent organic apple sauce, an organic nut bar, some cheese crackers, orange slices, and a couple of cookies.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Quicky Lunch

I sent the cheese scones I made yesterday with some cheddar cheese, apple sauce, dried fruit, cookies and chocolate soy milk. It looked like a pretty tasty lunch to me.

Sunday, March 21, 2010


So today I had the impulse to make a bunch of scones. I made blueberry - with Costco dried blueberries, glaze and blueberry sugar. I made cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, raisin and walnut scones, with glaze. And I made Mexican 3 cheese scones.

They were all delicious. The blueberry and the cheese scones I made with Garvey's organic mix. The cinnamon scones I made with Dassant vanilla scone mix.

The glaze was milk, real vanilla and powdered sugar.

Lunches 3/15-3/19

I was making lunches this week, but I was so busy I forgot to take pictures, or, rather, I thought about it, and realized I didn't have time.

I bought some Maranatha dark chocolate almond spread, and is it good! (see link at bottom of blog) I made sandwiches with it, and sprinkled on some sweet dark dried cherries- I was going for a black forest cake vibe. We all thought the sandwiches were very good. We thought they were so good we ate them two days in a row (Monday and Tuesday).

On Thursday I used Maranatha sesame tahini (see link) on flat bread with green onions and lettuce, and rolled that up.

On Friday I threw some granola bars and snacks in a bag and called it lunch.

Mama Africa's Papaya and Apple Salad

I'm trying to work more papaya in to our diet, since I've read it is very, very good for us, so
I bought a large maradol papaya, and made papaya salad. Since I love Thai green papaya salad, I've been experimenting with other salads- and I don't worry about how ripe the papaya is. I just use it when I buy it. It's all good. Turns out papaya is good with just about any dressing, and it blends with sweet and savory. What a great fruit! Don't forget that the seeds are edible!

I used baby lettuce as my base, then covered that with thin slices of papaya- about 1 1/2" long, and 3/4" wide. On top of the arranged shaved papaya, I sprinkled green onions and matchstick pieces of pink lady apples. Then I topped it with a dressing I made out of Mama Africa's Jabula sauce (sweet red pepper, apricot and rosemary), and O olive oil infused with grapefruit- about 1/3 sauce and 2/3's oil.

I found the sauce at Whole Foods, and I only bought it because it was 1/2off- but it's really delicious. I'm going to try it on chicken, for my next experiment.

chocolate cherry scones

Very simple. Just scone mix with 1/2 cup or sweet dark dried cherries, and 1/2 of a chocolate candy bar chopped up.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Chocolate Dassant Scones

I used Dassant vanilla scone baking mix for these. I had a Rainforest milk chocolate and cherry bar sitting around, so I chopped it up and added it to the Dassant mix. I also sprinkled a little sugar on top of each scone. When making the mix I use butter for the oil, and whole, unhomogenized milk. I think quality milk and oil make all the difference when you are using a mix.

Could I make these from scratch? Absolutely. But since Amazon sells the mixes in packs of 6 for a great price, why should I? My time is limited, and I think a lot of the time, the mixes are better- if you buy the top quality ones. What matters is adding inventive or fun ingredients to accent the mix. Then you get the convenience of a mix, but the great taste, and fanciful ingredients, of a great bakery.

Egg Tacos

I had some organic blue corn taco shells to use up, so I made egg tacos. I melted a pat of butter in my non-stick skillet, and cooked 1/2 a white onion, finely chopped. Then I added 3 well beaten eggs, and cooked the mixture well. While the eggs were cooking, I finely sliced some purple baby lettuce, and heated some Trader Joe's organic refried beans. I turned the heat off on the eggs, and sprinkled them with cheese. Then I put some hot refried beans at the bottom of the shell, sprinkled this with a pinch of grated Mexican blend cheese, and put on the eggs and lettuce. I served this with guacamole and salsa on the side.

As you can see this is a pretty entree. I would have added chopped tomatoes and avocado, for even more color, but I didn't have any.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Almond butter, dark chocolate and walnut sandwich

This sandwich is on organic wheat bread. The first layer is almond butter, then that was sprinkled with walnuts, and finally I drizzled melted dark chocolate over it. It's very tasty. I put a piece of bread on top- I only left them open so you could see how I make them.

I sent hot organic WestSoy chocolate peppermint drink in my son's thermos, and also sent apple sauce, a blueberry stick, a piece of birthday cake (see the Peace of Cake from 2 posts back) and some nuts.

Monday, March 8, 2010

More About my Lupini

Back on Sunday, Feb. 21st, I posted about my lupini. Now, weeks later, the lupini are ready.

I have memorialized them in a picture. They are kind of bland- though the way I dressed them was delicious. I put some lemon olive oil and balsamic vinegar on them, and then sprinkled them with French gardener's salt (see link at bottom). I don't think I would make them again. I'd rather just buy bread and put vinegar and olive oil on that- because they are just a carrier for whatever sauce you put on them.

I have a lot of them, so I'm going to try them in salads and soups. It takes very little effort to pop the skins off, so I think I'll use them unskinned (deskinned?) in my recipes.

It's my daughter's birthday

Today is a teacher workday (no school- although I have to go put in grades and grade notebooks)- and it's also my daughter's 16th birthday.

She loves peace signs- so I used the Fred "Peace of Cake" pan to make this cake. The cake is made with Naturally Nora Cookie Cake Mix, which is amazingly tasty, and I made the chocolate buttercream frosting from scratch (butter, whip cream, melted chocolate, cocoa, powdered sugar (organic- so it didn't have cornstarch) bourbon extract.

Naturally Nora:

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Finals Week

Finals week was last week, so the kids didn't need lunches on Thurs and Fri. I, however, took a field trip to Galt, California, as part of a Project Lead the Way field trip. Lunch was provided, but I guessed there would be little I could eat, so I packed myself a nice little lunch.

I took Moroccan Mint tea (Stash) with honey and lemon added, in my trusty thermos (the Spider, by Alfi). I took a big hunk of goat cheese (Bucherondin) and some Urban Oven grackers (Asiago Cheese flavor). I also packed myself some Sharkies (because I'm now a Sharkies addict), some orange slices and some torta de aceite (seville orange flavor).

I was right about the lunch provided. It was Mexican food :-) Everything had corn or modified food starch in it- so if I had not brought my own lunch, I would have been very very hungry.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Early Day- my kids don't take lunch- so just a snack

Using my scone mix (see URL below), I added about 3 TBS sugar, 3 TBS of cinnamon, 1/4 tsp cloves and 1/2 tsp nutmeg, 1/2 cup chopped walnuts, 1/2 cup raisins and 1 tsp bourbon flavoring. This was fabulous! This was so fabulous they didn't last very long.

It's really more like a giant cookie than a scone- but am I going to complain about that? Is anyone going to complain about that? Not around my house they aren't.

scone mix:

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Soup Tuesday

Ham and pasta soup from Whole Foods, with homemade Parmesan and walnut scone, lemon cake and an organic apple sauce.

No Picture- slacker day

So this weekend, when I was at Whole Foods, I noticed the soups were buy one get one free, so I bought a bunch of them for lunches. I DID make scones to go with them- yesterday (3/1) I sent Parmesan walnut scones with chicken and red rice soup. I also sent applesauce, and an organic blueberry fruit leather.

I have a busy week, as this is the last week of our trimester as well as being finals week, and I have several meetings, and other things cropping up, so I will be cutting some corners this week- but at least I will take pictures of my slacker lunches :-) Or try to.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Just for fun- this little lady watches while I make lunch

Playing Catch Up

I forgot to post Thursday's and Friday's lunches- so here they are. On Thursday I sent ham-melts. I heated the ham in a nonstick skillet, and put a piece of cheddar on the ham, until the cheese melted. Then I slapped it on the croissant. This makes a really nice sandwich- hot or cold. I sent that with apple sauce, Sharkies, raisins, and some celery slices

On Friday I made goat cheese sandwiches on toast, with quince jam sandwiches (the flowers). I sent this with oranges, sharkies and cookies.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

2 Lunches

I'm still trying to use up the prime rib, so my son's lunch has thinly sliced beef, mustard, and romaine on Sheepherder bread (from Trader Joe's). I sent it with pistachios and pretzels, and more of the Pink Lady apples dipped in a wash of vitamin C. Since my son had used up all the ice bags and had forgotten to give them to me to refreeze them (he was collecting them in his room instead) I used frozen guacamole to keep his lunch cold and I told him to dip his pretzels in the guacamole. That sounds good to me.

My daughter said her backpack was too full, so she needed a smaller lunch. She has the reuseable "brown bag" and is taking an almond butter sandwich, to which I added walnut pieces, apples, sharkies (which are kind of an organic gummy bear, made without high fructose corn syrup), and I gave her some Cheeze-Its.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Prime Rib Sandwich

Shaved leftover prime rib is mixed with romaine lettuce in this roll up on spinach flat bread. I used cream cheese mixed with onions to keep the sandwich together.

I also put in two "two bite" passion fruit scones, pistachios, and pretzels. There are apples (Pink Ladies) soaked in water with vitamin C crystals. The apples are in the plastic container. The vitamin C keeps the apples from turning brown,

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Passion Fruit Scones

I had a bit of drama with these scones today. The first batch I made burned badly on the bottom, though the tops were perfect (I know because I ate most of them.)

So I did a little reflection, and decided that because the passion fruit puree was so wet, I needed to make the scones smaller, and cook them at a slightly lower heat. I changed the oven to 400, and made the scones about 1/3 the size of my normal scones. They came out PERFECTLY.

And they taste just amazing- if you like passion fruit, which happens to be one of my favorite flavors. The scone mix I use is Garvey's Organic Scone mix, and I added 1/3 cup of Napa "A Perfect Puree"- passion fruit puree, as well as 2 heaping TBS sugar, and a little dusting of sugar on top (probably 1/4 of a tsp, though I don't measure it).

I was planning on sending these in the kids' lunches this week, but I don't know if there will be any left by tomorrow...

All About My Lupini

I thought these beans looked interesting, so like so many innocents before me, I bought them, only to find out that cooking lupini is a multi-week process. But I'm not a quitter, so I will conquer this bean.

The first step was to soak the beans. Before I knew about their special super powers (alkaloids) I had soaked them overnight in salt, as I do all my beans. Then I found out this was not nearly enough to overcome the fearsome power of the lupini.

So today I am boiling them for a few hours, then I will put them in my fridge for a few weeks of soaking- until the bitterness goes away, and the soaking water is no longer yellow. I will be changing the water every day, as per all the directions I have seen for the lupini. I hope to (finally) use these as a snack in my kids' lunches. I will flavor them with olive oil and vinegar and fresh parseley, when they are finally done.

I guess you could say these are one of the ultimate slow foods.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Ham, Cheese and Onion Scones for Breakfast

Yesterday's ham and cheese lunch becomes today's scone. The 2 slices of ham leftover from yesterday's sandwich rolls was diced up, and mixed with 1 cup of the Mexican blend shredded cheese, and 1 finely diced green onion, and mixed with one package of Garvey's Scone Mix prepared as usual (any scone mix or recipe for basic scones would work.)

I baked mine at 425 for about 14 minutes- I watched them closely, and as soon as I saw the bottoms were starting to brown, I took them out of the oven. That always gives me a perfect scone.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Friday Ham Rolls

This sandwich is built on Wholly Wholesome spinach flat bread from Whole Foods. I spread 1/2 of it (the top half, where the sandwich would be sealed) with Trader Joe's cream cheese with onion. I layered rosemary ham (no nitrates, from Trader Joe's) in the middle of the sandwich with organic romaine (ribs removed) and shredded Mexican blend cheese. Then I rolled it and sliced it. You will see pretzels (I buy the giant bag from Costco) around the sandwich, and delicious organic oranges in the small container. I also sent a Luna bar with this, for my son's passing period, in case he needed a snack.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Peanut butter celery sandwiches

We've all had peanut butter on celery, now here is peanut butter with sliced celery in a sandwich! It's delicious, and much less messy in a lunchbox. You can see I used a round scalloped cutter to shape the bread (saving the trimmings, which have a hole in a slice of bread, for "eggs in toast" on the weekend).

I sent these sandwiches with cashew clusters, Back To Nature Oreo style cookies, and pretzels fill in the spaces around the sandwich in the Lunchbot tin. I also sent applesauce on the side- it would not fit in the tin.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

It's Weds- so my kids don't need lunch

On Weds my kids have a short day, so I don't need to pack them a lunch. I took a little salad, a KIND macadamia and apricot bar, and a thermos full of mint tea with lemon.

I left some Indian food- naan and lentils, eggplant and veggies in corningware in the fridge- for the kids when they get home.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Orange zest, white pepper and parmesan scones

I sent these in my kids' lunches today. I was playing with my Garvey's Organic Scone Mix (from Amazon- love it- it's the best for a lazy scone baker). So I was thinking- why not mix cheese and orange peel? So I grated the zest off 2 organic blood oranges, and mixed it with 1/3 of a cup of coarse grated parmesan cheese and 1/2 tsp white pepper. I stirred those ingredients in to the scone mix and baked as directed. The taste was amazing- or that's what we thought.

With the scone I sent a wedge of cheddar cheese, some apple sauce, a Think organic bar, and some celery sticks. I think the cheese and orange peel mix would be good in any bread or biscuit.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

cheese, pepper and pecan salad

Easy salad- especially if you cut a bunch of cheese and pepper hearts out and keep them in a baggy in your fridge :-) The tough part, if we can all it that, is getting the cutters out, so you might as well cut a bunch, and use them up!

This salad is organic baby romaine, red pepper, chopped pecans, and cheddar cheese. You can see a packet of Drew's balsamic vinegar dressing, which will be very tasty on this.

I also sent a Think organic cherry bar, some cheese its, some blueberries, and an organic fruit leather.

This salad is packed in a large Lunchbot tin.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Raita roll with blueberries and couscous

I'm trying to use up the raita. Today I spread lavosh with raita and topped it with lots of chopped red pepper, green onions, black olives and baby lettuce- I ground some fresh black pepper on before I rolled the bread up. It's in the blue section of the bento with black olives.

In the green section of the bento you see couscous, organic blueberries, and french macaroons (pistachio, orange and rose flavored).

This was pretty tasty, and shockingly easy- especially since I didn't have to make the macaroons- Costco had them :-) The SF Farmer's market has a bakery that carries French macaroons, and I've bought them at Bouchon, and now Trader Joes carries frozen ones (but only in vanilla and chocolate).

Monday, February 8, 2010

Hearts, Hummus and Raita

Lavosh bread with hummus and raita on it- layered with baby lettuce, chopped red peppers and chopped black olives- and a light dusting of finely chopped green onions and fresh ground pepper.

To the right, you see a small salad with red pepper hearts.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Panda Valentine

This little panda bento is packed with a peanut butter sandwich topped with honey roasted nuts, and you also see honey roasted nuts around the outside of the sandwich. I also drizzled a tiny bit of honey on the inside of the sandwich, for flavor. I packed a heart shaped shortbread cookie on top of the sandwich. and in the other compartment I added organic blueberries and mint lacha- Indian shoe string "fries" with an amazing flavor. You can find mint lacha snacks at Amzon if you are so inclined. This bento is held together by a band that goes around the panda's forehead (this bento, too, can be found on Amazon). My daughter likes this bento because it is very small, and she has a lot of other stuff in her backpack.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Hummus, sweet red pepper and olive roll up

These roll ups are simply Lavosh bread spread thickly with hummus, leaving about an inch and a half at the top for the "seal". I put organic baby lettuce, chopped red pepper, and chopped black olives in the middle. In the "Lunchbot" tin there is a baby salad, and a silicone cup of black olives. I put a lettuce leaf on top of that, and added a layer of orange sections.

In the Vivo Bento (which is more like a tiffin container, really)- you see another arrangement of the rollups. The black olives make a nice center, don't they? In the blue half of the bento you see orange sections, deglet noor dates, and honey roasted peanuts.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Happy Groundhog Day!

This is lavosh bread spread with a blue cheese pecan dip, sprinkled with pecans, and mixed with organic baby lettuce. I get the dip at Trader Joes- but any dip would do. I rolled and sliced the bread (note the area not covered by nuts which will provide the seal to the sandwich), then added couscous salad and organic deglet noor dates on the bottom layer, then I put a leaf "lid" on the silicone cups, and put fresh organic mandarin slices on top- I moved a few of the slices so you could see how well the leaf can conform to the area you need to cover.