Fun with Cookie Cutters

Fun with new cookie cutters

Pita, low-fat salami, hard-boiled eggs, dried berries, grapes, mini-bell peppers stuffed with hummus or meat and cheese.

After finding a small tin filled with cute little metal cookie cutters, I’ve wanted to use them for ages, but we had some trouble opening the container. No wonder they were on sale! After denting the container a bit, we were finally able to access the cookie cutters. Next task – finding foods in our fridge that would be fun to cut. I used cheese, salami, and egg white cutouts as decorations.

Since this was packed for hubby, I used a bigger lunch box and a lot of highly caloric items to keep him filled up. The verdict: too many dried blueberries, but everything else went over well.

Rice Cooker Double Duty

Since November is a busy month for me, I was hoping to multitask using some of my cooking appliances. I’ve always been a fan of steaming some vegetables while I cook rice in the rice cooker, experimented with steaming dumplings, but when I came across some recipes that cooked entire meals in the rice cooker, I was intrigued. This lunch bento is the result of my first (and most likely last attempt).

I’m not going to include the recipes because none of them actually worked. The chicken and bell peppers were marinated in sesame oil with some pepper and salt, wrapped in foil, then tossed into the rice and water and left to steam with them. No matter how long I kept it in the cooker, the chicken remained raw in the middle, so I ended up giving up and tossing it in a skillet . Great end taste, but not worth the time and effort of seal up the chicken in a nice little foil pouch, especially since I ended up having to cook it in a pan anyways.

The savory egg dish was also incredibly delicious, but very ineffective in the rice cooker. It was flavored strongly enough that it tasted good both hot and cold the next day in our lunches. I just had to keep it in my rice cooker for 4+ cycles. It also puffed up to incredible heights while cooking. It might be that my rice cooker just isn’t strong/good enough, but I won’t be using it to cook anything more than rice or steam veggies again anytime soon.

Rice Cooker Multipurpose Attempt

Top Tier: Steamed Rice with Scallions and Kinpira, Bottom Tier: Sesame Chicken and Red Bell Pepper, Carrot Kinpira, Savory Quiche