Thursday, September 28, 2006

Pimp My Tiffin!

While Vegan Lunch Box ("The Book") is away at the printers (soon! very soon!), I've been keeping myself busy inventing something new!

This summer I posted a series of picnics featuring my stainless steel food carrier. Although I love, love, love my carrier, several times I found myself walking out the door with lunch in hand but napkin and fork still on the kitchen counter. I dreamed of finding a way to attach my utensils to the tiffin so I wouldn't forget them.

Building a better brain wasn't an option, so eventually I got busy in my sewing room and came up with something I'm calling a Tiffin Hugger:

The quilted fabric cinches tight around the top but leaves the handle exposed for easy toting, and includes enough extra space around the food carrier to tuck in a small ice pack or a snack bar or two. A pocket on the outside holds utensils and a snazzy matching napkin. The hugger is not insulated enough to keep food cold all day, but with an ice pack it will keep lunch cool on the way to work or to the park. And it looks darn-tootin' adorable!

It was so much fun I didn't want to stop, so I made four black floral huggers with matching napkins, and three green floral huggers with hot pink napkins. I've decided to try selling them here for $14.00 each (such a bargain!).

Each tiffin hugger will include a napkin and a little stainless steel ramekin with plastic lid (the same kind I use for dressing in lunches like this one). The stainless steel food carrier and bamboo utensils are not included; you'll have to visit To Go Ware to get those.

$14.00 Black Tiffin Hugger with napkin and ramekin (stainless steel container and bamboo utensils not included) SOLD OUT

$14.00 Green Tiffin Hugger with napkin and ramekin (stainless steel container and bamboo utensils not included) SOLD OUT

Wow, thanks everyone! Tiffin Huggers will be heading out across America on Monday!

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Tofu Apple Spring Rolls

Here's a lunch I created and photographed especially for the cookbook (which is on the way to the printers, eek!). A rice paper wrapper enfolds a mixture of gingery baked tofu, fresh apple slices, Napa cabbage, and cilantro. On the side is a small container of peanut sauce for dipping and some of my stepdad's Asian-style asparagus (he's thrilled that a recipe of his is actually going in the cookbook). For dessert, a nectarine and a dish of luscious black rice pudding. This is our favorite treat when we eat at a local Thai restaurant -- chewy black rice topped with a mixture of sugar and coconut milk.

Verdict: Big thumbs up from the photographer and testers -- my husband even said this spring roll was worth the cost of the entire book! Shmoo doesn't care for rice paper, so he stuck with tofu and apple slices and a big, piping bowl of black rice pudding. He says to pack the pudding in a thermos and eat it warm, but I think it's also nice at room temperature if you don't want the added weight of a thermos. 5 stars.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Leaning Tower of What?

I’m glad to see that there are so many wonderful blogs are out there filling the gap left by our lack of lunches. I'm especially inspired by the health-conscious mom over at Junk Food Lunch Box.

Now there's a mom who understands that nothing says "I Love You" like high fructose corn syrup.


Speaking of back-to-school, most of you have probably noticed that we have not. Gone back to school, that is. This year we’ve enrolled in a part-time program called "parent-teacher partnership". It's fabulous! I think he's learned more in the last two weeks than he did all last year. Although it cracks me up that I have regular meetings with my son's "learning consultant".

Anyway, that means shmoo only packs lunch once a week. So far he’s been very enthusiastic about packing his own. It’s an interesting mish-mash of whatever he can put together by himself -- sandwiches, cold veggies, fruit, and soy yogurts. Yesterday he fried a pan of veggie bacon for a bacon sandwich, then ate it all for breakfast. He made a very squishy cashew-macadamia butter and strawberry jam sandwich instead.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

A Vegan Daily Bite

Vegan Lunch Box is being featured today on AOL's Diet & Fitness page as the "Daily Bite".

Welcome, AOLers, and don't forget to check out the Archives for an entire year of vegan lunch boxes!

"Pack a Lunch With Punch!" has put together a great list of Veggielicious Lunchbox Dishes and other ideas for the back-to-school crowd.