Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Dumplings and Lunch Packing Plans

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The last few days I have been focused on lunch. Not on the lunch I will be consuming on that particular day, but lunch packing for during the week. My reasons for packing lunch are many (health, money, decreasing waste, the challenge, the aesthetic possibilities). I have been doing my homework. I have read Lunch in a Box and Just Bento backwards and forwards over the last couple weeks. I have procured lunch boxes, and I am gearing up.

Biggie from Lunch in a Box has wonderful resources on speed bento (like speed dating with food hahaha). But, one thing I really took to heart is that I shouldn't over spend on getting your pantry ready for making lunches. I went out yesterday to get more brown rice and some other supplies, but mostly I started to think more about what we already have and what I could make.

One consideration for my family is that it not always be leftovers (boring) and second that include lots of veggies (healthy). The other day my book club came over to discuss The Distant Land of My Father which takes place in Shanghai under Japanese occupation (and then later). Steamed dumplings played a part in the story, so I decided to make some from scratch. I used the recipe that the gang from Recipes to Rival made last month. I filled them with ground turkey and shitake mushroom. Then I made a second batch with miso and sweet potato.

The wrappers were not hard, but seriously labor intensive and enormous. So, I have frozen a couple dozen to eat over the next few weeks in my lunch. Anyway, there will be more lunch talk here in the next few weeks, so be prepared. Just Bento also has wonderful information on the calories in the food in our lunchbox and I know that gyoza can be quite caloric (even when steamed) so I tried to use more healthful fillings on some of the other frozen dumplings. More on those as they get eaten.

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11 comments:

maki said...

the dumplings look fantastic! I never have enough patience to make the skins from scratch.

Tasty Trends said...

beautiful dumplings!

Sophie said...

These are so cute! I would love to see what the sweet potato filled ones taste like :).

Pam said...

I take my lunch everyday too, and I read all those bento sites. I don't really do bento, yet, just admire the pictures! The main thing that I get from it, is to take a variety.

Temperance said...

I love the way you have the peas peaking out of the top. Very nice pleats too, my first try was no where near as nice.

I still have half a batch to make up, I wish it was more, they are seriously good.

melissa said...

Bentos are great for using up last bits of what you already have in your refrigerator and pantry. Very economical.

I really don't need to find out how many calories are in my beloved gyoza. I could seriously eat those things every single day!

Maggie said...

The peas are so pretty and the sweet potato and miso sounds delicious. I'm going to have to try using that combination.

Kevin said...

Bentos are fun to make but a bit more work than just throwing leftovers in for lunch. Those dumplings look good. Nice job crimping them.

glamah16 said...

Oh wow. I purchased flour for dumplinmgs the other day and have been working up the courage and time to makes some.

fluffernutter said...

Where's that miso and sweet potato dumpling recipe? That sounds great and we've got miso and sweet potatoes coming out our ears.

cook eat FRET said...

oh dumplings....
i love dumplings

hey i bought some of that weird shaped rice mochi flower petal noodle. i haven't made it yet though. actually i bought 3. white and brown that were refrigerated and a white dried version...

experimental time