(This was first published yesterday for about an hour and a half… But I refuse to make the same mistake two weeks in a row… So it’s reappeared for real today!)
So I’ve now completed my first two weeks of grad school, and in an effort to save money I’ve mostly been taking lunch into campus with me.
Over the summer I picked up some lunch supplies, meaning more dishes. I like kitchen supplies very much. So I found a nice thermos, for soups. It’s been too hot for soup.
I also picked up a nice, though largish, container, which has been nice for random pasta dish leftovers. And tapas like stuff. Helped out by silicone cupcake molds for spacing and separating.
But what I really like so far is my bento box. It’s not terribly pretty and I found out the hard way that it wasn’t leakproof. And I don’t even make the super pretty bento. You know the ones that look like pandas and Hello Kitty and are so sweet they hurt? I don’t make those… mostly because I don’t have the supplies or the will to obtain those supplies.
However, I like the structure of bento lunches. They’ve got easy to understand guidelines on how to put together your box and they are good for eaters like me. Aka those who like to eat little bits of everything instead of a lot of one thing. I’ve technically been eating the same stuff all week, but I’ve been puzzling them together in a variety of ways. Here is the site that helped me put together my bento plan for the semester: Just Bento. But simply using the guidelines half carbs, quarter veggies, quarter meat has been fantastic, and I (most of the time) don’t feel like snacking. Before lunch yes, but after lunch no.
It’s full of fun information, and lots of different ideas for filler items. I haven’t used any recipes from them yet, but these cabbage rolls, sweet veggie confetti, stir fried cabbage, and this kale-bacon-potato recipe sound delicious. This week my main filler items were cherry tomatoes from the farmer’s market, sauerkraut, and refrigerator pickles.
In fact, the refrigerator pickles were fantastic enough to share more about them! I think I may have well established my love of the site The Kitchn. I had bookmarked it a few months ago, but I never got a cucumber from the store. Fast forward a month and a half and I have an ugly overripe cucumber sitting in my fridge. My roommate was doing a mini fridge clean and pulled it out of the crisper and wrote a note, saying “Bad?” I knew at that point I needed to either use it or trash it. Originally I planned to put it in mini quiches, but as I was searching for a recipe for those, I re-stumbled upon the refrigerator pickles recipe. I eyeballed the measurements, since I was working with a smaller amount of ingredients late at night, and most of the silverware was dirty. I then actually forgot about them for a few days, at which point I found them and added them to my box. So delicious! The “quiches” turned out well too, though they ended up more like mini omelettes. Eggs, milk, and cheese do not a quiche make.
And a bread update! I made another loaf! This time it cooked all the way through, and even looked fairly pretty. Excepting the bottom of the loaf, that wasn’t so pretty. Still dense though. For some reason my dough just isn’t rising. I was hoping not to need to use yeast in my bread recipes, but it looks like if I want something even vaguely fluffy, the starter needs some boost.