Lettuce Lunch

Lunchbots

Throwback: Halloween Bento

halloween bento

It’s time for a cheeky throwback to one of our most beloved lunchboxes – the spooky, witchy, Halloween bento box! I just couldn’t help posting it again for some of our new viewers, and I hope you all like it! This was my very first attempt at bento box art and i’m very pleased with how it turned out – especially given the adorable mini pumpkins I found at the markets just in time to become this little jack-o-lantern. Anyway, happy Halloween everyone! To see the original post, you can click here 🙂

 

If you love the single-compartment look, try the updated Lunchbots Bento Uno.  It’s a newer, more compact version of the one we used here!

Lunchbox: Vegan Dumplings!

vegan dumplings

Steamed buns, vegetable gyoza, tofu – this box has it all! Mm.. vegan dumplings. If you’re craving some asian flavours but can’t put your finger on exactly which, why not just cover all your bases and throw everything in. We really loving have all these little finger foods to pick at, and there’s something for everyone here, so even the fussiest eaters will love it. Raid your local asian grocer for all the tastiest little bits you can find and go to town! It’s always inspiring to see classic meaty staples getting the vegan treatment – the steam bun we used, for example, has a rich, umami mushroom filling that contrasts really well with salad. Eating a pile of these on their own would feel heavy after a couple, but just the one alongside some other little treats feels downright luxurious and is absolutely worth a try! So good.

vegan dumplings

Delicious as they are, processed foods like this are better paired with a light, fresh salad to keep things simple. Edamame and broccolini give the leaves a bit of body, and avocado rounds it all out with a creamy element. What do you think? Sound good? Want to go that extra mile? A little zig-zag of vegan kewpie, sriracha, or a dash of sesame oil over the top will really make the flavours come alive – though things do tend to get messy in there and aesthetics will take a hit (so remember, if it’s bound for instagram, photograph before dressing). Enjoy!

  • Vegan mushroom steamed bun, vegetable gyoza, satay marinated tofu, silverbeet, spinach, avocado, broccolini, carrot, basil, chili, pepitas, edible flowers
  • Blueberries, raspberries, nectarine, watermelon, edible flowers
  • Lentils, cucumber, coriander

 

For this lunch we used the Lunchbots Bento TrioDishwasher safe, stainless steel and BPA free – what’s not to love! Click here for details.

Lunchbox: Vegan Rosewater Tart

Vegan Rosewater Tart

Today I bring you the marriage of two of my favourite things – panna cotta (you can check out my last attempt here) and trying my hand at wildly over the top pinterest recipes! When I saw a similar one online using a gel top and panna cotta filling I knew what I had to do; veganise! If you like to bake you’ve probably already found a gelatin substitute that works for you – which is the hardest part, so you’re already halfway there! Other than a little bit of waiting around it’s pretty much like making a regular tart, but the payoff and wow factor is real – I challenge anyone to not be delighted when they see this! It’s 100% worth the (minimal) extra effort involved.

Running through the ‘how’ briefly – just so gather your ingredients, roll that pastry out and blind bake it until it’s cooked. Into the fridge it goes! Next whip up a batch of vegan panna cotta or custard, making sure it’s got enough gelling agent to come together when cooled. Prepare, cook, and cool it to room temperature, then pour into the chilled tart case. Lastly, you guessed it – on goes the gel! This is usually as simple as gelatine substitute, sugar and flavouring (we used rosewater) that has been combined over heat, cooled to room temperature and poured over the panna cotta layer of the tart. Set this, decorate with pistachios and rose petals and you have an impressively luxe dessert that is sure to make waves.

As for sides – bright, fresh berries cut through the creaminess and provide contrast, while a salad of roast vegetables and toasted nuts is a perfect, hearty accompaniment. A real head-turner, this is one pinterest dream dish that’s easy to make reality – try it out and let us know how you go!

Vegan Rosewater Tart

  • Rosewater panna cotta tart, pistachios, rose petals, blueberries, fig, mint leaves, white peach, raspberry, pomegranate strawberry, vegan chocolate, coconut yoghurt, buckinis, edible flowers
  • Sweet potato, pumpkin cauliflower, corn, chickpeas, toasted farrow, pepitas, mixed leaf salad, enoki mushrooms, red onion, red chilli, pea shoots, broccolini, edible flowers

If you love the double-compartment look, try the updated Lunchbots Bento Duo. It’s a newer, more compact version of the one we used here!

Lunchbox: Stuffed Sweet Potato and Beetroot Waffles

Stuffed Sweet Potato

Mm, stuffed sweet potato! And yes… let’s get right down to it – yep that IS a dolphin shaped beetroot waffle. One might ask why, but I would say – ‘why not?’ – recently I came across a sea animal themed waffle iron and the rest is history – no longer constrained by the rigid grid lines and boring 4×4 squares of regular waffles, we now have bright, silly seahorse, dolphin or crab-shaped waffles. Add a little pureed beetroot in there for colour and depth of flavour and you’ve got a good time on your hands. Just look at that little guy! Swimming proudly on coconut yoghurt waves, in a sea of strawberries, cherries and banana.

If you can get your hands on a waffle maker with novelty shapes I highly recommend it – it takes no extra work seeing as you’re still just pouring out batter onto an waffle iron; but everyone loves it and will praise your creativity and think you’re great, a win/win in my books.

Alongside this we’ve got earthy stuffed sweet potato, with mixed vegetables and on a bed of toasted nuts and beans. Of course, it’s hard to get the limelight back from the attention seeking showpony dolphin waffle over there in the dessert compartment, but damned if this doesn’t give it a good run for its money with all those warm, autumnal flavours. Inner beauty or outer beauty, make your choice – because the prettiest thing about a big chunk of roast sweet potato is definitely the taste, not the look 😀

  • Sweet potato, asparagus, baby corn, green and red chilli, blue corn chips, kidney beans, cherry tomato, toasted almonds, celery, coriander, pepitas, spinach
  • Beetroot waffle, coconut yoghurt, strawberries, banana, cherries, blueberries, pistachios rose petals, mint, kiwi fruit

If you love the double-compartment look, try the updated Lunchbots Bento Duo. It’s a newer, more compact version of the one we used here!