Tuesday, July 27, 2010


It just seemed natural to top our dinner of beanie weanies with octo-babies. I had left-over homemade baked beans from last week and they really needed to be used up so I thought making beanie weanies might be a good way to turn them into something "new."

Since I'd never made or consumed beanie weanies, I looked up a recipe; turns out that was pretty silly of me since they are just baked beans and cut up hot dogs. Well that didn't seem very difficult so I decided that, at the least, I could take an extra minute to make a little hot dog octopus topping.

* As a side note: today i organized my categories and re-labeled some posts. As a result, my biggest category is now the cuteness category! hip, hip, hurray for cuteness!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

More bento madness

One of the big activities that I had planned for the trip home involved making bentos. Since it was my dear mother who set me on this bento craze, I thought we would have fun making them together. As it turns out, we didn't make bentos in little lunch boxes liked I had planned for, but instead we made all the components for the bentos and then just placed them on beds of lettuce and sprouts. Part of the change in plans stemmed from the fact that the temperature was nearing 100 degrees and we just ran out of steam. We had thought it would be fun to have the bentos for dinner but realized that we'd actually prefer to eat pizza and drink beer in an air conditioned restaurant, so that's what we did!

The next day we set all the little bento goodies out for appetizers and everyone enjoyed the adorable snacks. I will admit though, egg creatures don't really save as well as I thought they would. the nori eyes ran and the cheese features drooped. Only a few of the photos are even worth showing, but please believe me when I say, "the egg bee and piggies and chickies and mice were utterly, unbearably cute." I loved everyone of them and only wish I'd taken proper photos of them the day we made them.

A tiny crab

Since the egg molds wouldn't work for hard boiled eggs we used them to make shaped onigiri.

hot dog octopus- cute!!

Appreciating rural-life

When Matthew and I traveled home for the teensiest, tinsiest visit(only four full days) I spent the entire time just soaking in all the joys of rural life with plants and pets and delicious, home grown treats: Home grown strawberries, lettuce, herbs, zucchini and snow peas. The back yard chickens laying eggs. A little organic dairy farm that produces gorgeous, cream laden milk. A lavender farm grown in full view of Mt. Shasta.

I just took a few photos of it all to remind myself of why I can hardly wait to move back to Oregon.

Onions blossoming

Snow peas in blossom and fully grown. They were delicious.

Peeping through the lattice - my mother-in-law's garden is really thriving.

And though I was extremely disappointed with the photos I took of the hops, I've included a couple for the annual hop update - they are certainly bigger than they were last year and have significantly more hop flowers on them. Maybe there will be enough to do something with next year.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Not a bento, but still cheerful

Instead of using two bowls to hold the different salad toppings, I simply placed the little bit of grass between the two ingredients to keep them separated. It just looked so adorable that I had to take a photo.

I think I'll try to use the cute grass separator in the future (for other non-bento uses), as it seems like a very fun and cheerful idea.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

yummy plummy

Dinner was incredibly easy tonight (avocado sandwiches and pasta salad left over from wednesday), so I figured I could muster up a couple more drops of energy to make something delicious from the three lovely, and very ripe pluots that I bought yesterday. I mean, we could have eaten them plain and it would have been a nice treat, but then I just figured, why not warm them up with a little sugar, a dash of rose water, a smidgen of allspice and some potato starch to make an ice cream topping.

At the very least, dessert will look lovely =)