Sunday, August 22, 2010


This is pretty much like last week, but it is quick and low ww points at least.

So here it is on one of my Uniqlo yukata and on my 一番tshirt from Kyoto.  Top: just lettuce and the frog has balsamic vinegar in him.  Middle: chicken baked then grilled at the end, with salt, pepper and garlic salt.  Sitting on more lettuce.  Bottom: cherry tomatoes with feta.  YUUUUUUUM. おいしそうね!

Packed up for work.  Top box is Cath Kidston Kids range, from my friend Yaeko.  She gave it to me when I visited her in Osaka.  How great is she!!!  Bottom box is Care Bears which I got at Narita airport last month.

Tomorrow (Monday) is my friend Joanna's birthday.  We had a Kath and Kim themed party last night.  This is me on the right dressed as Kath.  The wig was in a bag so I didn't realise how big it was when I bought it! It is hard to see in the pic but I also had Kath-esque earings!

Here is the cake I made.  It has a layer of chocolate butter cream in the middle.  There are more photos of the cake on my tweetphoto page. 

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Rice cooker risotto

I'm doing a Massey paper in occupational health and safety at the moment - this week is the final three day block of classes and today we finished a little earlier.  Because it's in town I got home really fast so had just over an hour before I went to RPM so I thought I might as well make dinner first. 

I had quite a few vegetables so decided I would try making a vegetable rice risotto in my rice cooker (background to this is I used to have a Wishbone risotto almost everyday because they are quite low in weight watchers points, but they changed the recipe and now they are really high in points!! agh!!  When I say I used to have one almost everyday, I mean like 9 days out of 10 so it's really thrown me and I've had to start thinking of other stuff to have for lunch.  It's hard!). 

Anyway, back to this post!  So, I rinsed the rice (3/4 cup uncooked) then put it in the rice cooker with enough chicken stock to cover it (a bit more than you would using water the normal way).  Then while that started cooking, I sauteed an onion (with a little water, no oil), then mushrooms.  That went in the rice cooker with celery, courgette, broccoli and cauliflower.  I just put them in as I chopped them, rather than all at once.  I put in maybe a teaspoon of that mashed up garlic stuff in a tube and then garlic salt and salt and pepper.  I just kept adding more stock as it got down a bit, and stirred it every now and then.  I added some frozen peas and corn mix near the end because I thought it needed a more colour.

It actually burnt a little on the bottom near the end because I thought it didn't need much stirring so I'd left it.  I just mixed the burnt bits in and it was fine.  When I wasn't stirring the lid was on the cooker.  When it looked about done I took the bowl part out of the cooker because I didn't want it to burn more.  I added more stock after I took the bowl out because I was worried that when I reheat it for lunch tomorrow it will be too dry.  I'm not exactly sure how much of the stock I used all up because I can't see in the container, but I am guessing maybe about 3/4 of a litre or 800mls-ish. 

This was soooooo yum. Seriously.  I'm wondering what is in that garlic salt because I used it on the chicken in my last post and that was delicious too.

This made a huge amount (I guess because so much stock and lots of vegetables) and it worked out at 4.5 weight watchers points!  I think it would be really nice with some pine nuts through it too, but was great like this. 

This is the stock I used, and the amazing garlic salt.  It looks a bit watery in this photo, but this was before I reheated it and some of it evaporated out and stirred through.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Almost Friday...

I haven't made a bento for ages because I don't want them to look rubbish (I understand the irony here...) but I had chicken to use so thought I might as well have it for lunch.  I'm not really a salad person, however I think this is going to be quite nice. The feta is low fat! Who knew you could get low fat feta! It is only seven weight watchers points for the whole 200g block so I think I'm going to be using this a lot more. 

Anyway, in my new bento box from Japan is chicken which I baked then grilled at the end.  It has garlic salt, normal salt and pepper.  With it is red onion, lettuce ("spring mix' from New World) and some kiwi fruit.  

I went to Christchurch for work on Tuesday and Wednesday.  I was on the east side both times so didn't get any pics of the mountains.

Waiting to get up in the air...

Up in the air, but still "at" the airport!


Almost at the airport...

Can't wait for tomorrow - Friday drinks and sushi at Wasabi in Cuba Street.  My blackberry has been sent to Auckland to be replaced (yay new phone!!) so there won't be any (much...) drunk tweeting going on tomorrow night since I only have my normal phone and I am guessing it might cost a bit on that! Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

I went to Japan and did a little shopping...

So as promised, here is what I bought.  This doesn't includes clothes, although I didn't buy much (a skirt from H&M, a tshirt from Murphys, a really cool tshirt that is like the train station sign thing for Harajuku (Jlist have towels like it), a number one tshirt (一番) and Air New Zealand gave me two tshirts (one was meant to be for my Dad but it's too small. Score for me though!); also got a bit of kitchen stuff from the hundred yen shop too.

So sort of going clockwise from the first photo - in the middle top is microwave steamer.  These are AMAZING! I got it at Tokyu Hands but was a bit confused because there were heaps of different ones for different vegetables but they seemed to be the same so I asked the girl at the counter if you could do other things in them and she said yes.  So I said then they are just really the same, not that you can only do edamame in the one with the edamame pic and potatoes in the one with the potato pic and she kind of laughed and said yup, that actually you could. Now that I have just written that it was much funnier at the time.

Anyway, then there are some gel ring things to keep bentos cool, then silicone heart shaped cups, nori face punchers (how heavy are they though!!), a gyoza maker (not that I need it, but it was on sale at three minute happiness for 50 yen!), picks, more silicone cups, chopstick container, picks to stick into food to make like balloon cherry tomatoes and stuff, a sandwiches, more pics, a bento (from 100 yen shop), some baran. In the middle are star cutters, sauce cups and bottles.

I got the Care Bear set at the airport at Sony Plaza when I was leaving, although now it is just Plaza (the huge one in Osaka is now a Zara store too!!!!).  I couldn't resist the Very Hungry Caterpillar one!

My friend Yaeko got me this Cath Kidston Kids box for me as a gift.  It also came with a book, which also has bento ideas in it (and the other normal Cath Kidston crafty stuff too).  I couldn't find a Cath Kidston shop while in Japan so was so grateful to her for this (and for remembering I loved her stuff!).

I got this set at Loft.  I didn't really need it but I couldn't resist all the cute writing! They're quite good shapes though - the small one fits well into the big one as a sauce or okazu container.

I got quite a few antibacterial sheets to put on top of my lunches, some picks, chopsticks, panda bread cutter.  I love this play on words - "pan" is bread, and "da" is the plain form for "is/am/are" so "pan da" means "it's/I'm bread". Which it is!  It cuts off the crusts and seals in the filling!  Like magic!  I also got some of the microwave crisper sheet things to try too - basically it cooks stuff in the microwave like it had been done under a grill.  Again, Jlist have these too.

And finally, these aren't bento related but I was really into nail art when I lived in Japan so I couldn't resist buying more.  I was stoked to see that graduation nails are still popular (where the colour graduates from one into another).  The coolest thing was that Loft now sell these nail cocktail sets like the top left where they give you three colours and a guide on the back of what order and where to do them!  Today I have on the pale pink down the bottom right.