For lunch today Ella and I made (or at least attempted to make lol) California rolls (they didn't turn out too pretty but they tasted good just the same), a tangy sesame cucumber salad, and heart shaped rice using a heart shaped bento rice mold topped with heart shaped nori cut outs. Ella had a lot of fun "helping" Mommy. Cooking with a toddler takes about four times longer than just doing it yourself, but the smile on their face and seeing them excited about eating is definitely worth it. :)
Here's Ella's heart shaped rice.
Here's Ella......who needs a fork when you can just dive right in? lol
Here's my sorry attempt at a California roll lol
More rice, topped with carrot, a nori heart, and black sesame seeds, served on
a little bed of spouts and cucumber slivers
My heart shaped rice mold. You just pack the rice in, then pop it out (there's a little push tab underneath) and you've got a heart. Easy, peasy.
I got my mold from http://www.ichibankanusa.com/
Nori punch. (basically like using a paper punch on seaweed)
Cucumber Salad (garnished with a bit of sprouts and carrots)
The recipe I used I found on one of the gardengirltv.com forums (although I didn't cut out my cucumber seeds, just diced it up to make it easier and not waste any cucumber):
Japanese Cucumber Salad
2 cups thinly sliced cucumbers (Japanese, English, or regular)
1/2-1 teaspoon salt (to taste)
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon sugar (or slightly less honey)
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1 teaspoon sesame oil
2 teaspoons sesame seeds
If using English or regular cucumbers, they need to be peeled, cut lengthwise, seeded and sliced into thin half moons. In a large bowl, combine cucumbers, salt and pepper, mix well. Add sugar (or honey), soy sauce, rice wine vinegar and sesame oil and mix well. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and mix. Let marinate for 20 minutes before serving. Adjust seasonings before serving.