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Posted on Aug 31, 2007 in Bento, Corn Tortillas or Masa, Curry, Fish or Seafood, For Kids, Gluten Free, Poultry, Rice, Salad | 11 comments

Tamale box lunches

Tamale box lunches


Costco has changed the brand of frozen tamales they sell, and now they’re light, fluffy, and delicious (better than the old kind they stocked, which were a little too dense and heavy). Frozen tamales are great to have on hand for a fast dinner or lunch, especially if you have a large microwave steamer. Just pop them in the microwave for a few minutes, let sit for another minute, and they’re ready. These actually start to approach the quality of homemade! Evidently they’re from Del Real Foods — very nice. (Disclaimer: I have no commercial affiliation with Del Real Foods or Costco.)

Tamale lunch

Contents of my lunch: Steamed chicken tamale with containers of spicy salsa Taquera and Greek yogurt, plum slices, blueberries, and salad with pitted cherries, pine nuts, fresh mint and feta cheese (plus homemade apple-balsamic vinaigrette). We ran out of crema (Hispanic sour cream), so yogurt was a fine stand-in.

Morning prep time: 6 minutes, using leftover tamale and salad. I packed the tamale the night before when cleaning up from dinner, so in the morning I sliced the plum and filled the sauce containers (I was out of pre-filled sauce containers with salad dressing).

Packing: Quick reminder to pack salad dressing separate from the salad itself in a container so you don’t have wilted, soggy salad at lunch. Yuck! Lunch packed in two 350ml tiers of a Lock & Lock lunch set.

Tamale lunch for preschooler

Contents of preschooler lunch: Same as mine, with a slice of crisp Asian pear (nashi) and a little container of yogurt for the tamale.

Morning prep time: 5 minutes, using leftover tamale from dinner and leftover Asian pear from an earlier snack for Bug.

Packing: Packed in one 350ml tier of a Lock & Lock lunch set, and a 220ml metal container from the Daiso in Daly City, CA. Daiso is a great Japanese dollar store with branches internationally.

Contents of husband’s lunch: Grilled skate wing (a.k.a. ray or stingray) with Nonya-style sambal sauce on top, on a layer of rice. The left hand side holds more of the same salad that I had, plus a couple of cherry tomatoes. The chili ray is the last of the leftovers that I used earlier in the week in lunches for Bug and myself — my husband was happy to get another taste of the spicy ray after all the effort he put into making it! Delicious.

Nonya skate wing lunch

Morning prep time: 9 minutes, using all leftovers. I microwaved leftover cold rice to restore the texture, then removed the skate wing from the bones to make it easier to eat (my husband doesn’t have a lot of patience for deboning fish when eating on the run).

Packing: I packed the sauced skate wing right on top of the rice layer, with the rice absorbing a little bit of sauce (”donburi bowl style” — it wasn’t so liquidy that the rice became sodden). Packed in a 500ml Leaflet box with movable divider.