Monthly Archives: August 2009

Dinner idea.

I like making soup. It makes me feel like a good housewife… I am making this recipe for the second time in two weeks now, and it’s because it’s the simplest, heartiest and most satisfying meal ever…

This new favorite of ours is a red lentil and brown rice soup. Essentially you just add some ingredients to a pot and leave them there until they are mushy… It turns out excellent with zero effort! The most exacting thing you have to do is chop half an onion.

I made it more or less as is the first time (well, I halved the portion), but no celery, which I didn’t have. Also substituted herbes de provence for the various herbs, plus some basil and rosemary which I had fresh. I also used a vegan stock cube, so it was totally vegan. This time we are spicing it up with some bacon… Yum!

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A couple of bentos.

Bento #35

Bento #35

Bento #35

I’m still super excited about this pretty new box!

This one has a lentil tofu burger, broccoli and a white rice onigiri in the main compartment. I sprinkled some gomashio on the onigiri, and, for once, remembered to put some salt on the broccoli. 

The smaller compartment is basically all desserts and snacks. I left a bunch of it to eat at 3 pm, which was nice. There is a mini blueberry pear muffin (somehow I messed up the muffin recipe this time and they are way too dry, dunno what happened…) and some dried fruit (apricot, apple, prunes — from a dried fruit mix I bought). There is also two small pieces of comté cheese (my favorite hard cheese!) and two sesame snacks. 

 

Bento #36

Bento #36

Bento #36

I got up and made this bento and went straight back to bed, because I was feeling so crappy on Wednesday (some kind of inner ear issue that made me so dizzy!). So this is the first bento I have consumed at home, on the couch..

It has a brown rice onigiri, a chicken burger and a bunch of julienned carrot with some shishimi togarashi and sesame oil. 

The smaller compartment has 3/4 peach, some dried apricots and a mini muffin. Some color to cheer me up on my sick day at home….

Vegan carrot cake cupcakes.

I wasn’t sure whether to call these cupcakes or muffins. They are definitely cupcake-y and decadent, but I have tried to sneak in some healthy ingredients too… 

 

Carrot cake cupcake

Carrot cake cupcake

  • 3 tbsp ground flax seed
  • 1/2 cup water
  • about 1/4 cup dark molasses (difficult to measure — I just poured it in and tried not to go overboard, probably ended up being closer to 1/3 cup)
  • 1/4 cup soy milk and 1/4 orange juice, mixed together so they curdle
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1.5 cup finely grated carrots
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup ap flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup wheat bran
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • cinnamon
  • ground ginger

Start by mixing the wet ingredients. First stir together the water and flax seed in a bowl to make “flax egg” (egg substitute). Leave it for a few minutes until it’s goopy. Add molasses, oil and soy milk/OJ. Mix well. Add carrots and raisins.

In a separate bowl or large measuring cup, mix the dry ingredients. Then add them to the wet ingredients and combine. Pour batter into muffin tins and bake at 180C for about 15 mins. 

Make delicious vegan cream cheese frosting from equal parts Tofutti plain cream “cheese” and vegan margarine, then add in icing sugar until the texture and taste is to your liking (no idea about measurements, just eyeball it). Incredibly tasty!

A new bento box and a dinner idea.

I recently indulged myself and ordered a beautiful Hakoya bento box online, and I am finally getting around to posting some pictures of it! I got it from Bento&Co, the super pretty store run by a Frenchman in Kyoto (please note, he is closed for the summer until 20 August). It took a little while to get here, due to a public holiday in Japan and Norwegian FedEx being really stupid (it sat at the airport here, 45 minutes from my house, from Friday morning until Tuesday, because “Tuesday was the guaranteed delivery date, so we won’t deliver it sooner”….) 

Bento # 33

Bento #33

Bento #33

So here it is…. Isn’t it a beauty? It comes with a red belt. It’s a bit smaller than my other one, but it still fills me up.

The top compartment has a piece of pepper smoked mackerel (store bought), some sesame snacks from the Vietnamese supermarket, and a raspberry white chocolate muffin.

The main compartment has some black quinoa salad that I made the night before. It has black quinoa, carrots, cucumbers and cilantro, and a lime/ginger sort of vinaigrette. It wasn’t as good as the one with smoked salmon, but over all not bad.

 

 

Bento #34

DSC_0473This isn’t the best picture, or the most photogenic food…

The big compartment has orzo mixed with red pesto, broccoli and cauliflower, which was left over from dinner. There is also a mini mustard chicken burger. I made it by boiling some mustard seeds in white wine and leaving for 15 mins, then mixing with ground chicken, some garlic and onion. 

The small compartment has still frozen raspberries (store bought, that’s why they’re so big), sesame snacks and dried apricots. I worried the raspberries would be super messy, but they kept their shape well. Also, the small compartment has a hermetic lid, so no spillage!

 

A dinner idea: fish tacos!

To many Norwegians tacos are what you get when you take a taco dinner kit, ground beef, some corn and some lettuce. After traveling first to the Mission district in San Francisco with a connoisseur friend, and later to Central America, I learned that was pretty far from the real deal… A taco dinner kit hasn’t been consumed in my household since I was about 12 and loved the stuff, but tonight we decided to try it and put a healthy spin to it. The one we got was only 10 kroner — First Price brand (no name) form Meny.

Our protein of choice was some cheap frozen haddock that we needed to eat (we’re cleaning out the freezer to move). Fish tacos are traditional in the Baja California area in Mexico, and are a great idea in general.

I thawed the fish and tore into little pieces. I then mixed about a tablespoon of the spice mix from the taco kit with to tablespoons of flour, and tossed the fish with it. I should have spiked it with some extra chili powder at this point. I fried it quickly in some canola oil. We heated the taco shells in the oven (sadly, I have never seen the more authentic small soft shell tacos in Norway), and served it all with the following toppings:

  • easy sort of guacamole made from 2 small avocados, some finely chopped onion, some chili powder and some lime juice
  • chopped white onion mixed with chopped cilantro and lime juice
  • thinly sliced white cabbage
  • taco sauce from the taco dinner kit
  • lime wedges

The result was a light and healthy meal, with very little sodium and fat compared to your regular taco meal, and much more similar to tacos I’ve eaten where they know how to make them. Also, a very nice way to use this kind of cheap, frozen white fish. Recommended 🙂