I was so tired Sunday night that I almost forgot to defrost something for bento. Getting up from bed, I threw one of my mini-packages of frozen chicken breast in a dish of water, then stuck it in the fridge, thinking I’d do a quick teriyaki in the morning.
Hours later, as I was preparing the marinade, I cut the pack open and foundâ€”a fillet of fish. How stupid is that, I ask you? No wonder I couldn’t find the CB initials on the bag. It’s because it wasn’t Chicken Breast. It crossed my mind to just add salt and pepper and sear it quickly, but where’s the sense of adventure in that? Instead, I marinated the fish in the teriyaki sauce I made for what I assumed was chicken, then cooked it the way I would for quick chicken teriyaki. My verdict? SUCCESS! New bento recipe added to my repertoire.
â€¢ Plain rice. This rice was frozen then reheated in the microwave a few days later.
â€¢ Teriyaki fish. I don’t even remember what fish it was. It’s something fleshy and light, similar to labahita (surgeonfish) and mahi-mahi, but I’m not quite sure what it is exactly.
â€¢ Kani (Imitation Crabsticks). I’m so obsessive about empty spaces in my bento, can’t help but stick a couple of grapes along with the fish.
â€¢ Buttered Asparagus Stir-fry.
TERIYAKI FISH v. 4 June 2007
1 Fish Fillet. Choose a light, fleshy fish like Grouper, Surgeonfish or Mahimahi.
1 tsp sugar
1 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp mirin
1 Tbsp cooking oil
1. Mix together sugar, soy sauce and mirin. Pour over fish fillet and let it marinade for 15 minutes or so.
2. Heat oil in a heavy pan. Fry lightly on both sides, until done.
3. Pour leftover marinade over fish and let it glaze over until thickened.
BUTTERED ASPARAGUS STIR-FRY v. 4 June 2007
4-6 stalks asparagus, cut into 1-inch long pieces.
1 Tbsp butter
freshly cracked black pepper
1. Melt butter in pan.
2. Stir-fry the asparagus until cooked through, without overcooking.
3. Dust liberally with black pepper, stir-fry for a few more seconds then remove from heat.
Take a Tip:
To freeze rice, wrap it in a Ziploc bag or place in a freezer-safe container while still fresh. When reheating, do not defrost. Instead, place the frozen rice in a microwave safe container and nuke on high until warmed throughout. Microwaving on high preserves the rice’s natural moisture instead of drying it out when defrosting first. For efficiency, I usually apportion leftover rice into single servings before freezing since it’s quite impossible to break the rice lumps apart when frozen.