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Posted on Sep 6, 2007 | 11 comments

Chicken drumstick box lunches

Chicken drumstick box lunches

My preschooler actually gets distressed if his hands get messy when he eats, so I used some decorative aluminum foil to create a clean “handle” on a chicken drumstick for him. Success! He dove right in and grabbed the chicken leg without complaint, gnawing happily.

Chicken lunch for preschooler

Contents of preschooler lunch: Roast chicken drumstick, strawberry tree fruit (a.k.a. arbutus berry), mango, blueberries, and pasta salad with roasted corn, cherry tomatoes, cilantro and chipotle chiles (recipe from Cook’s Illustrated’s The New Best Recipe).

Morning prep time: 5 minutes, using store-bought roast chicken from Costco and leftover pasta salad.

Decorative aluminum foil

Packing: In addition to using decorative foil to make a clean “handle” on the chicken, I also used plastic sushi grass to keep the sweet fruit away from the savory chicken. The pasta salad is packed in a disposable condiment cup with a lid, although I forgot to put the lid on and some of the corn escaped the cup in transit (oops!). The entire lunch is packed in a 350ml Power Rangers bento box.

Equipment: A while back I picked up some yellow and pink aluminum foil from Daiso in Daly City (Japanese dollar store with branches internationally) for US$1.50 each (click on the photo for a larger view). It’s Ciao! brand, which puts out a popular line of bento lunch accessories such as food cups, rice ball wrappers, picks, cutter, dividers, antibacterial lunch sheets, etc.

Smoked burger lunch

Contents of my lunch: Smoked hamburger that my husband the grillmaster cooked over the U.S. Labor Day holiday weekend, red-leaf lettuce, container of poppy seed dressing, and the same fruit and pasta salad that Bug ate.

Morning prep time: 5 minutes, using leftover smoked hamburger and pasta salad. In the morning I just cut the fruit and hamburger.

Packing: I used red-leaf lettuce as an edible food divider to keep the sweet fruit away from the savory burger, and cut the burger into bite-sized pieces to avoid in-box cutting. I grabbed a pre-filled sauce container with salad dressing from the refrigerator, and used it to dress the lettuce as a mini-salad after I ate the burger. Last week I filled three little sauce containers with leftover salad dressing from a store-bought salad, which speeds things up when I pack lunch on the fly in the morning. Packed in a 500ml Leaflet box with movable divider.

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  1. Waaaaai! Cute aluminium foil! Now you’re making me wonder whether the box of japanese aluminum foil I saw at our local 88PHP store is decorative. Can’t wait to go and check this weekend :D I’m make sure to inspect the roll up close :D

  2. Hey Biggie, stumbled to your blog through the addictive art of bento-making and have been reading daily ever since! Even though I’m only an undergrad with no kids of my own, your site is definitely inspiring for students like me who wants something more than boring old packed sandwiches.

    Also, those coloured aluminium foils are super-duper cute (and a really great idea as well for presentation). I’m so gonna get them the next time I visit Daiso! :)

  3. I can’t tell you how jealous I am that you have Daiso!! I had the opportunity to visit the Daiso store in Vancouver, BC in July and was absolutely floored! Fortunately, both my husband and I have high school reunions in Northern California (Sonoma and Mendocino Counties) next year so a stop at Daiso on the way to or from SFO is already on the “to do” list.

    I love that foil!

  4. @1 from Kaoko: This is where just wandering leisurely around Japanese dollar stores really pays off — weird things like decorative foil! I don’t think I would have noticed it at all if I wasn’t taking my time, looking at everything (it wasn’t in with the bento gear).

  5. @2 from Sarah T: Thanks for the kind comment! BTW, when you go to Daiso, be sure to look in sections other than the bento gear area for the foil. I found this with the plastic wrap and other aluminum foils, back by the plastic freezer containers.

  6. @3 from Beanbean: Yes, definitely swing by Daiso (and Ichiban Kan if you have time, although parking around there blows). US$1.50 is definitely the right price to pay for silly lunch gear, not six to ten times that, plus shipping!

  7. @4 from Summers Love: Wow, cool! Hello to everyone coming over from Slashfood, then! :-)

  8. I am amazed and in awe of these bentos. I have sat here for 3 hours looking back at your old posts and I am just in awe. I especially loved your Bibimbap one (I’m Korean). When I send it along wiht my husband, mine don’t look like that!

    I do have a question. I have been thinking of getting some bento boxes and I have seen all different kinds, from the melamine to the laptop type, to the stacking tins that are common in China. But what about refridgeration? I guess I get sqeamish at the idea of leaving the food even in the containers at room temp for 4 or so hours. Especially if there is a commute (hubby commutes 60 miles one way per day). How do you keep things wamr or cold as needed?

    Kim
    P.S. I came by way of Slashfood too!

  9. I found you by stumbling, and I’m so glad I did. I’ve almost reached breaking point with lunches – now I feel excited about trying new things. Just awesome, thank you!

  10. Biggie – I looked at your Food Safety section. For something like the chicken drumstick, do you just put one ice pack in with your son’s lunch or 2 where they sandwich the container in between. I am so reluctant to send chicken because its difficult for me to tell how cold the food stays from 7:30 am until lunch at about noon.

    Also, I LOVE your website. I’ve been looking at it periodically for the past 2 years.