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Two Chicken Bentos

So… some sad, demoralizing news. Despite my optimism last week and the enthusiasm on Mr. D’s part, I still got a mostly full bento box back on Friday. He ate one triangle of the grilled cheese sandwich and the muffin. I wasn’t able to tell if he ate any of the apple fries he was fawning over, but he claimed he didn’t.

He said that the grilled cheese sandwich was awesome, but he also said he wasn’t that hungry, so I’m thinking the problem was a couple of things. One, I think he’s filling up during his snack, so I need to pack less crackers.

Two, I think he might be yakking it up too much during lunch. Mr. D is one of those kids where if you don’t hound him like a fiend, he’ll just sit there and talk your face off while not eating a bite. Then he’ll declare he’s starving.

And so, my solution was to try a simpler lunch in a smaller box. This bento literally took me all of five minutes. I chopped up some Costco chicken, added mayo, sprinkled salt, and cut the sandwich in half. Added muffin, added strawberries, and done.

I found this box at Piikoi Daiso on Saturday (more on that another day), and it’s only slightly smaller than the Tavvi one I bought, but that tiny bit can make a difference. It can be a struggle to fill a box that’s even half an inch longer.

To get my fancier bento energy out, I made Mikia (formerly Baby Girl) a surprise teri chicken bento. It’s a surprise because I didn’t mention I was going to make her lunch (probably why I got some sassy lip when waking her up). I’d asked her last week if I made her lunch, would she eat it, and her answer was yes. I knew it would be because she really doesn’t like lunch at her high school. To think, it only took TWELVE YEARS to get her to willingly take my bento lunches to school.

I actually cheated on the chicken. It’s some frozen pre-grilled chicken strips that I heated up and put on top of leftover rice. I made the sauce in a pan and then dripped it on top.

Next to it, there are leftover fried noodles from Zippy’s. I ordered this on a whim a few weeks back, and ever since she saw me eating it (and poached a bite), she’s been obsessed with getting this every time we get Zippy’s. The regular size is too big, but leftovers are always yum.

On the side are some cucumber pickles and fukujinzuke pickles, which is a current favorite of ours. It’s SO yum, and so far I’ve only found it at Foodland.

Time to make both: 28 minutes. Not great, but that teri chicken wasn’t as easy as I thought.

I mentioned last week I was cabbage souping, and now that that ordeal is finally over, I’m starting up on the Cooking Light Diet again. I overcooked my egg this morning, but it was still yummy. I replaced one clementine with two rambutans.

One last thing: I’ve created an Adventures in Bentomaking Instagram account! Yay. I figured it was time to split it off. You can follow it @aibentomaking. (someone already had @aibento, sob) I’m also working on a site revamp. It’ll look almost the same, but it’ll hopefully be cleaner and eaiser to use and read.

Happy Monday!