First day back at work bento suggestions?

dorayaki
Bento-ing from: Wellington › New Zealand
Joined: 7 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 3 years 35 weeks ago.

I'm starting work tomorrow after taking nearly 4 years off to stay home with my kids. Any suggestions of things that I can prepare tonight? I'm used to fluffing around a lot in the morning and having tons of time to prepare the kids' lunches because they didn't have to be at creche till ten, now we all have to be out of the house by eight.

I'm going shopping tonight, so I'm open to anything, and we're omnvivores who also eat tofu (most people we know think that is weird). I'll be making two preschooler bentos, and one each for my husband and me.

Thanks in advance!
Katy

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My Japanese/bento blog:
http://undefeatedbykanji.blogspot.com/

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bronwyncarlisle
Moderator
Bento-ing from: Dunedin › New Zealand
Joined: 12 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 1 year 5 weeks ago.
Re: First day back at work bento suggestions?

Oh goodness. That's kind of exciting and kind of scary!

I usually make a heap of things at the weekend that keep well or freeze. For example this weekend I made a couple of salads; from broad beans, feta and zucchini; and tomatoes, avocado, and zucchini. They're heat-up-able if I really can't stand the thought of cold lunch when the time comes! Then I just shovel them into my box the night before with something else (today it's some hot-smoked salmon) and away I go.

I think the way to go is make them the night before. When I was a kid I always made my lunch sandwiches in the evening. It's not as if you run out to the shop to get fresh bread before making lunch in the morning, and even if you make your own bread, it'd either be made the night before or too hot to cut for sandwiches in the morning anyway. You could at least pack most of them in the evening - the little boxes of sultanas, or cheese, or whatever fruit you're giving the kids. Then you could make maybe one thing, like tamagoyaki or whatever, in the morning and divvy it up between the boxes. But I usually do that the night before too!

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Bronwyn

My blog is Food and Shoes

Stephanie
Bento-ing from: San Lorenzo › California › USA
Joined: 15 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 3 years 43 weeks ago.
Re: First day back at work bento suggestions?

I am a big proponent of packing the night before. On the weekends I usually make big batches of things that store well in the fridge or freezer, like bronwyncarlisle. I usually cook whatever I have not prepared ahead of time and pack it before I go to bed at night, so all I have to do in the morning is grab it from the fridge in the morning and go. Of course I just use the microwave at work to heat up whatever needs to be heated.

For my husband I usually pack 2-3 lunches for him at a time and have them ready and packed in the fridge, already in is lunch bag and everything. He just stores them in the fridge at work until he is ready to heat them up.

Having a couple days between packing for the both of us is quite nice, as is not having to do anything in the morning :)

dorayaki
Bento-ing from: Wellington › New Zealand
Joined: 7 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 3 years 35 weeks ago.
Re: First day back at work bento suggestions?

I ended up making lovely bentos but can't find my camera! The second day Dave and I met for lunch, and the kids had yoghurt, fruit and canned mac and cheese. Will try again on monday, and hopefully find the camera before then.

bronwyncarlisle
Moderator
Bento-ing from: Dunedin › New Zealand
Joined: 12 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 1 year 5 weeks ago.
Re: First day back at work bento suggestions?

Work going well? Not missing the kids too much?

dorayaki
Bento-ing from: Wellington › New Zealand
Joined: 7 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 3 years 35 weeks ago.
Re: First day back at work bento suggestions?

Nope, they barely cross my mind. They've been in childcare part time for a while now, and I know they love it, so that helps. They also love bento, so I'm going to have to keep it up! Little darlings won't eat a sandwich very often, they much prefer rice. First thing on my list when I get paid is a rice cooker with a timer, so I don't have to cook in the morning (I do defrost frozen, but sometimes don't have any.

dorayaki
Bento-ing from: Wellington › New Zealand
Joined: 7 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 3 years 35 weeks ago.
Re: First day back at work bento suggestions?

Hmm, been quite a while since I was on here, you can probabably tell that I haven't been bento-ing as often as I should. Also, I get the third degree from my workmates about my 'weird asian' lunches, I've never worked in a workplace to openly racist. :(

On the upside, we're definitely planning to move to Japan in a couple of years, so if I can hold on til then I'll get my full bento fix. And some lovely local lady has opened a Donburi lunch stand just ten minutes walk from my work. MMmmm!

Jiza
Bento-ing from: Madrid › Spain
Joined: 13 Feb 2009
User offline. Last seen 2 years 22 weeks ago.
Re: First day back at work bento suggestions?
dorayaki wrote:

I've never worked in a workplace to openly racist. :(

Screw them. They're just jealous! :D

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My bento blog: http://justbento.com/blog/1305
My art blog: http://jizaacaso.deviantart.com

arkonitebabe
Joined: 14 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 2 years 15 weeks ago.
Re: First day back at work bento suggestions?
dorayaki wrote:

Also, I get the third degree from my workmates about my 'weird asian' lunches, I've never worked in a workplace to openly racist. :(

Sod them! I have never had any comments like this about my bento lunches and if I did, I'd smile sweetly and enjoy them even more. ;0)

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www.arkonite.net
www.arkonitebento.net

Sassia
Bento-ing from: Colchester › UK
Joined: 6 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 1 year 23 weeks ago.
Re: First day back at work bento suggestions?

My co-workers all seem envious of my lunches as they sit down to their soggy sandwiches and tinned soup! I usually make far more of a dish than I need for dinner and when it's cooled I bag it up into bento sized portions and freeze. That way I can take a bag of rice/onigiri and a bag of main dish out of the freezer the night before and leave overnight in the fridge. In the morning all I have to do is put the thawed items in a box and at lunchtime at work I microwave it all. As long as you get into the habit of setting aside 10 mins or so each night to have a think about what you have and what you can do, it's easy. Of course I just make lunches for myself so it's easy for me to say!

It's been a long time since I've had to make lunches for little ones (my 'little one' is 18 and pierced/tattooed!) so I'll leave that bit to someone with more experience!

Yllsa
Bento-ing from: Binghamton › New York › USA
Joined: 4 Oct 2009
User offline. Last seen 4 years 1 day ago.
Re: First day back at work bento suggestions?

I sometimes make an extra lunch to bring to my Korean friend (she is in her 6th year of college because she never goes to class, so I try to lure her there with food.) She always makes fun of me because I'm "more Asian" than her (I'm as white as fresh snow.) It's all - good I just call her Chinese and then stuff her mouth with daifuku so she can't yell at me.

hana.yori.dango

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