Just Bento’s bento box challenge

Just Bento and Just Hungry are two of my favourite sites. I stumbled across them last year when I started taking a packed lunch to work again…something I should have been doing anyway but rarely remembered except on occasions when my Mum hands me sandwiches when I dropped Spider off.

The spur to being more organised was Spider’s pre-school starting a lunch club. As it was on mondays it was an incentive to think about packed lunches over the weekend for the rest of the week (admittedly perhaps FQ and I did spend slightly too much thinking about it and from time to time wasted hours discussing what to put in our childrens lunch bags). Anyway, it worked, for the space of a term I remebered to take lunch with me everyday.

I should point out that when I don’t take food with me, I don’t buy lunch elsewhere – I just don’t eat. Which is a bad thing for many reasons and can contribute to a weight problem as your body gets used to storing calories when it gets them !

I used the internet to get ideas for lunches as I have a limited interest in sandwiches and quickly discovered Lunch in  Box which reminded me about bento boxes, and searching for that brought up Just Bento. Both these sites are jammed packed with ideas not just for lunches but for speeding up preperation of lunches and greater use of the freezer for staple items (I am as you may realise from early posts totally dedicated to my freezer).

I have treated myself to a genuine Bento Box from the Japan Centre but I haven’t used it much – mainly because there was no lunch club last term and as a result I stopped taking lunch – besides  I  found  a cheap partitioned plastic box from a supermarket much more versatile (and its dishwasher safe !).

Anyway, not only is lunch club back this term but Just Bento is running a bento box challenge, starting on the 11th January – it has 3 stages to it Basic, Going Deeper and Weight Loss (in theory the size of your box can be related to the amount of calories it can hold – but that I guess depends on the type of food you are putting in it).

So this is my new years resolution, make lunch for work daily and to keep me on track I am taking the Just Bento challenge…cooking my way through Delia How to Cook 1 & 2 is a personal challenge and not a resolution and I’m giving myself a year for that one due to financial constraints…

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Delia, Diets and Dilemmas

OK I know its a cliche going on a diet for the new year but it seemed timely in view of the government’s latest healthy living campaign besides I’ve also taken a break from alcohol – thought it was time to give my liver a wee rest following the extensive use I’ve made recently of the 2 bottles of gin I had for Christmas.

Also it fits in with my attempt this year to change the way I cook, meals being dictated more by what I have in than by cookbooks (finished my kitchen stock take, was pleasantly surprised by some of the things I found lurking in the freezer, threw a few frozen kitchen experiments away). I’ve also started Fitday again as I found that useful for keeping an eye on calories and exercise…and will be taking up the Bento challenge on the 13th. I don’t intend to mention this again in the next 6 months but Islay if you are reading the starting weight is 11st 11lb…

The cookbook cull continues and I have a dilemma over Delia. I do not read Delia for pleasure ( I prefer cooks with passion for food, the only passion I’ve ever seen Delia demonstrate was her infamous shouting at the crowd when Norwich were losing) , I wasn’t even taught

how to cook from watching her programmes ( I learned from watching Mum and trying to pass an o level in Home Economics – allegedly I even know what those symbols are on clothes labels…allegedly). However there is a generation and a half out there, about 30-65 which keeps a copy of Delia’s cookery course in their kitchen as a sort of lifebelt…It’s like that game “What would Madonna do” (or perhaps that only happens in India Knight novels) instead when you don’t know what to do in a cooking crisis you ask “what would Delia do”. Me I phone Mum and she consults her copy of Delia’s Complete Cookery Course. ..I only have her How to Cook Books 1 and 2.

There are things I would like to do properly, for example I can’t make rice but Husband can. One day after grimacing his way through my latest offering he took control, went into the kitchen for the How to Cook and next time we had rice he cooked it – and sickeningly it was perfect.

So do I stick it on Amazon as secondhand or do I bite the bullet and as a new years resolution work my way through it…we do have an abundance of eggs in the fridge at the moment…and cheese…and Husband did enter my life some years ago complete with his own omelette pan…