Wednesday, August 27, 2008

What to do with leftover Bento food cut outs?

"What do you do with the leftovers from the bento meals after you have packed your kids those bento box food?" Jacss asked me.




I always have loads of leftover cut outs carrots, cut out bread, cut out ham from packing the bento meals.

I told Jacss I scooped them all into a ramekin bowl, beat up and egg, pour over it and bake it. Jacss asked me to blog about it so that she has an idea.

So here it is.


Scred up all the leftover cut out bread, cheese and vegetables.


Pour some milk in a jug and crack an egg into it. Be minded not to add too much milk cos you don't want a soggy bread pudding. Just a little below the top will do.


Pour over the leftovers and leave for about 15 minutes for the bread to soak it up. I normally just chuck it into the oven right away, though.


Bake for about 25 minutes or so. And you have your bread pudding.

Squeeze it to fit into a bento box


Add some vegetables and you have your own bento meal set for the day.


Hope that helps those who have lots of leftovers like we do.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Calcium again !

I am still continuing with my quest for calclum rich food.

My 2 1/2 year old is still not drinking formula. While other Malaysian kids go to kindergarten with a tummy full of probably 6 to 8 oz of formula milk, mine goes to school with an empty tummy. Purely because she wouldn't eat anything within the hour when she woke up in the morning, and because she has objected to formula milk since she stopped taking in breast milk. Hence the daily bento boxes for her snacks in school. check out my other blogs for posts on toddlers bento.

She was a breastfed baby and when my milk production index has gone down, she has not had her daily intake of calcium.

I do all I can to sneak calcium rich food into her diet. Refer to my posts below on recipes on calcium rich food.

Anyhow, just the other day, I was shopping with a girlfriend. As usual, I peered into those teeny weeny label indexing the food content, looking for anything above 0 to 5 % DV. My girlfriend had asked, what is it about the %DV?

I figured if she doesn't know, a lot of others out there may not know either.

So here I am listing down the yardstick for gauging the calcium content.

Percentage for DV

The percentage (%) DV for calcium on those labels stuck to the back of the food package, indexing the mineral content, is based on the adult daily requirements of 1000mg a day.

Take a pack of milk, for eg. If a pack of milk says it is 30% DV for calcium, you are looking at 300mg of calcium.

A toddler's calcium need is 500mg per day, so that is about 60% of a toddler's calcium needs for the day.

You need to know what is your kid's calcium need.

Kids who are 4 to 8 years old need abou 800mg per day. So Kimberly, being 7 1/2 year old, would need more calcium than Ashley, who is 2 1/2 year old.

A teenager would need about 1300mg a day. So that pack of milk that you are looking at would only b about 20% to 25%of a teen's calcium requirement.

Because Ashley doesn't take milk, I add a lot of cheese to their pizza and pasta sauce, and I sneaked in milk into their milo, poached fish in milk, and do a lot of milk based sauce for their food.

Scroll down the posts for more ideas.

I hope this will help other moms whose kids are not taking formula like mine. I know how stressful and worrisome it is when your infant rejects the bottle or any form of milk.

Have a great weekend, all !

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Sambal, oh, sambal !!!

one of life's greatest pleasure is simple food.

This is one of my alltime favourite accompaniment to food !! Sambal cooked with onion.


A simple homecook dish, really. All you had to do is fry lots of sliced onions till fragrant, set it aside. Then fry blended or pounded raw chili till the colour turned just right, dark red, not chili red, then add the fried onions in. Stir to blend then add about 4 tablespoon (or to taste) of sugar to it.

I am happy having this with just one boiled egg for lunch. That is, if I were single. That wont do now, cos our meals now has to please the kids and the guy who bring home the bacon. ha ha.

But isnt life great for the simplicity of it sometimes?

Ashley's Bento

I put this up at my regular blog, Allthingspurple, but thought i should be putting this post at my food blog instead, so I am adding this post here as well.

My 2 1/2 year old toddler is now attending kindergarten, so that i could afford some time to clear up my work at the office. Besides getting her to adjust to a new environment, my other concern is that she doesnt go to school with a full tummy.

She is not a formula baby, being breastfed till now. And with my MPI going down, i had needed to make sure she had something to eat before I send her over. Which is not always the case.

She turned up her nose at the fried rice and fried noodles the school offers, cos she like her rice plain and her veges seperated.

So, inspired by Montessorimum's bento, I started packing food for AShley as well.

My first clumsy attempt after a rusty 4 years of not packing lunchbox for Kimberly. But it will have to do from my then scanty refrigerator.


It's weiners, cut up. And a moulded boiled egg. The little pink apple tube contained soy sauce.

Not exactly a bento, which should consist of 3 part carbo, 2 part vege and one part protein. So i added a stick of grapes on the side, but didnt have time to snap a pic cos Ashley had wandered off to the front without supervision.

I found this Bento container which i used to pack lunch for Kimberly a few years back when she was attending kindergarten. I have forgotten how pretty it is.


But i think i need to get a bigger one for times when i wanted to put more food.

On Thursday, she had pancakes for school, with slices of apple and fried nuggets on the side. That's because we had pancakes for Wednesday's tea time and it is convenient to pack for the next day's bento.

It's pancakes cooked in a moulded pancake pan.


I forgot to take pic of that day's bento. So will post this pic instead.


Kimberly had it with maple syrup while Ashley had it with jam.


This is Ashley's Friday's bento. Its rice moulded in a teddy bear plastic mould, with weiners and grapes again.


Same food. So boring...sigh.. cos I haven't replenish my fridge yet. Been meaning to get some baby carrot, some cherry tomatoes, ham slices and stuff.

This is today's bento.


It's origini that i made over the weekend. I froze a batch of it. With the advise from Natesgirl, I learn that I could freeze them in batches and that I could steam it up mighty quick in the microwave. Never knew that one could steam rice other than in the wok or the steamer. hee hee..

I took one out and cut it up so that Ashley could pick it up with her fingers. She doesnt fancy it wrapped in seaweed or omelette.

I skewers some apple cubes in the lower container and added some soy braised chicken in the upper container together with the rice, on the side. At first i attempted to skewer them as well, but they broke up cos I cut up the chicken pieces too small. so in the end, i gave up and put them in a side dish instead.

I packed this in a new container I got from the 100yen shop at SS2 when we went to SS2's pasar malam yesterday.


I got the container for only RM4.90. Such a good deal, yea?

Its been sometime since i have been into bento, and that was a long time ago (about 5years ago?) and nowadays i see some really cool tools and bento kits on the net. I am going to get myself some new bento tools soon. This bento thing can get addictive. ha ha.

Have a great day today, all !!

Monday, June 11, 2007


The FINAL LIST is up !!

The List is a project by Daryl for the Malaysian Community on how to increase your links and blog rank. It is on Malaysian or Malaysian related posts by non-Malaysian.

I am now putting up the final updated and complete list of participating Malaysian blogs and all My List Post to be permanent and accessible.

Here's the final participants !

Once Upon A Time
Money Making Blog
Bubba Stuff
Little Raymond's
quaint melody
Seraph Chronicles
Route Brumeuse
Coder's Talk
Reggae And SKA
Art Of ApOgEE
Coretan Pengalaman Mat
Diet & Detoxification
Karma Kameleon
Hsien's Dirty Little Secret
The Rojak Blog
My Life Online
Fun Stuffs
Donny's Bits
Nicholas Chan's Blog
dream of's DESIGN
strike freedom 115
Truly Malaysia
It's another new day
Lisan's Scribbles
Ramblings of a 22 years old
The Towering Joe
Life's a Breeze
Life's Roller Coaster
In His Time
in His time
The New Sanctuary
a life full of surprises
Sketches of Life
Shannon's Old Space
Pikey Dude
SEO & Online Marketing Blog
I am Who I am
yung . silent whisper
Simple Life
One blog.One girl.One story
The World Through My Eyes
Why Malaysia?
Giddy Tigers
Make Money Online: Exploring The Dark Side of Blogging
Xilly's Blog
Malaika Xiao Yu
My Home Recipe
SQKIKI’s Simple Tech
Nukilan Jejari Azhad
Just My Lil' Organic Life
Oooh La La...
Weird World of MerapuMan
Fibre Art
The World at My Fingertips
Organic Income
Organic Parade
Shopping Flavor
Daily postings of a chung ling student
Something about LAI
KennyP’s Technology Blog
Women Mumbles
Lyon & Wien
Under The SUN
Crumbs In Life
SotongZai's Flow In the Ocean
Christene's Kitchen
[ Wood ] [ Earth ] [ Cheap ] [ Flight ]
Ah Ling's blog
Memoirs.:*CRoSs mY hE@Rt
vivivava Design
My Mothering Corner
Shoppingmum’s Home Office
My Filling Station
Shopping Mum
All about Beauty
Shoppingmum and Kids
Notes from my heart
Joy Montessori
wahlau's online hut
Cedric’s Asylum
mott’s mutterings
Just My Thoughts
Incoherent Ramblings
Make Money Online with Malaysia Love AGLOCO
Funky Cookies
Earn Money Online
PabloPabla's Whatever
Make Money with Blogging
Paris Beaverbanks
Free Links Giveaway
Free Blogger Templates
Making a Living
How to be a Better Blogger
My Women Stuff
Hochiak! Delicious Asian Food
Best Recipes
Champagne Tastes on a Beer Budget
Daryl's Discovery Journey
The fluff must go somewhere

Kitchen Experiments
Elliottwave Signal
Internet-Crazy Blog
Newopps Blog
Make Money Online Review Center
Little Penang
Healing tips and home remedies
Ornamental Fish
Grasp! Seize! Get hold of it!
Life Snapshot
Mental Freedom, Por Favor
Eat. Live. Be Merry!
Funny Junk Addicting Flash Games Pictures Video Clips
mott’s island
Clinke Bidding Directory Blog
Easy Home Cooking
Pink Poison Store
Show Me Health Biz
The Undeniable Beauty - Revamped
An Anonymous Journal
Blank Canvas
She Rambles On
Money Online | Adsense Money | Tips For Adsense
Belajar Cara Membuat Blog Wordpress
Usahawan Internet
Peluang Perniagaaan Internet
Made In Penang
Syaf The Geek
snapshots of life with Cheng Leng
Blogging Through Depression & Life
Trying to Save Money
novatech personal playground
Little World Of Thoughts
Sumber Dekorasi & Laman Anda
Sleepy As Usual
thoughts ---> blogs
Share Everything In Life
Value Bookshop’s Reading Notes
Tips and Tricks to Happy Parenting
life is beautiful
Adino Online
Penang Homes
A Mom's Diary
Health Freak Mommy - It’s hot
Tracking Movies
Voice of a Glass Doll
Online Article Directory
Wise Life Advice
Kaklong Online Portal
Down Memory Lanes
Sleeping Princess
Online Bisnes Forex Marketing Blog
Pigeon Card
KCLau’s Money Tips
The Great Swifty Speaketh
Mr & Mrs. Imran
If fate allow our destinies to meet
From chopstix to steak knives
Where's My Noose?
Duke Amiene Rev
Mum & Kids In Wonderland
Yum-Yum Cuisine
Software, Web Development and Technology
just another ordinary story
Mummy In Vain's Little World
How To Solve Your Question
add this to my life
Free Encyclopedia
High Paying Keywords
arshad's photojourney
Lovelymummy's Bay
My Yummy Cruise
Home Sweet Home
Lovely Mummy
OnlineBisnes Malay Blog
Purest of e2wen
MyAnimes MySpace
Blog Badruzamani.Org
Parenting Life
Forum Newbie Bisnes Internet & Blogger
Mohd Sufian
A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words
hcfoo's blog
Amazing Grace
The Sanctuary
Welcome To cHrIstInA_YY's Pink World
Defying Destiny
Dead Boredom Seeking Freedom
An amazing & adventurous journey
Fluffy's Day Off
My Fairy-Tale

Okay, now to hop over to the forum to let Daryl know that my post is up.


Sunday, May 6, 2007

Calcium-Rich Recipes for non milk-drinking toddlers

I have listed out some calcium high snacks in the post below. But snacks just isn't going to bring my non milk drinking 15 month old toddler through her daily required calcium intake. I try to prepare at least one or two calcium rich dishes (including snacks) for Ashley everyday, sometimes up to three (including snacks like bacon cheese srips or fried mozzarela sticks) over the weekend when she reject the dish.

These are her current favourite tried and true calcium rich dishes.

This one here has a whopping 896mg calcium per serving and is one of my favourite, cos she only need to take 1/3 of the one serving and i could save the bulk in her tummy for other necessary daily nutrients like protein.

Calcium rich mac n cheese - 8 servings
8 ounces elbow macaroni
16 ounces sharp cheddar cheese
16 ounces mild cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
2 cups milk

1. preheat oven to 350.
2. boil the elbow noodles until cooked, drain and pour into a greased (I use cooking spray) 9x9 casserole dish.
3. cut 3/4 of the bar of 16 oz. sharp cheddar cheese in to small cubes, do the same with the mild cheddar.
4. in a 2 quart saucepan melt the butter.
5. with a fork mix in flour until it looks like a paste.
6. stir in the milk, and cook until warm (not boiling).
7. once warm add in cheese and continue cooking until cheese is melted stirring continuously with a fork (if you don't stir continuously cheese will burn to bottom of pan).
8. once cheese is melted, pour over the noodles, use a fork to move the noodles around to get the cheese mixture to the bottom.
9. bake at 350 for about 30 min., or until you see some brown on top.
10. let it sit out for about 15 minute before eating.

Ashley takes this with meatloaf (non cheesey ones. It can be dreary just taking cheese based and milk based food all the time but cheese has higher calcium content than a lot of other food. I halved the recipe and freeze the rest for later.

These are other CALCIUM RICH RECIPES that I tried out which Ashley is seems to favour more than others.

Bacon Cheese Strips

1/3 cup Mayonnaise
1 Egg, beaten
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/8 teaspoon Ground mustard
5 To 6 drops hot pepper sauce
Dash pepper
1 cup (4 oz) shredded cheddar cheese
8 Bacon strips, cooked and crumbled
8 Bread slices, crusts removed and toasted
Paprika, optional


In a bowl, combine the first seven ingredients; mix well. Stir in bacon. Spread over toast.

Sprinkle with paprika if desired. Cut each slice of toast into three strips. Place on a baking sheet.

Bake at 350 for 12-14 minutes or until cheese is melted. Yield: 2 dozen.

This has 125 mg Calcium and 1 mg Iron per serving . This is ONE of the few recipes that she would not reject . I don't always have all the ingredients on hand and made do with whatever i have. My primary one school-goer likes this for her snack when she comes home from school around 3.30pm.

This here is another dish that works well for both my non milk drinking 15 month old toddler and my picky 6 going on 7 year old. Ashley takes the burger without the buns. To be honest, more often than not, Kimberly abandon the buns as well.

Chicken "burger"
½ lb ground chicken – I use tight and breast for more iron
¼ c grated cheese
¼ c breadcrumbs
½ tsp garlic
½ tsp olive oil
16oz (1/2 can) pizza sauce
¼ c mozzarella cheese
2 buns/muffins/bread

1. Mix ground chicken, Parmesan cheese, bread crumbs and minced garlic; shape into four 1/2 inch thick patties.
2. Cook in olive oil in a non-stick skillet, turning as needed, 6 minutes or until cooked through.
3. Top with pizza sauce and shredded mozzarella cheese.
4. Cover; cook 1 minute to melt cheese.
5. Serve on toasted buns or English muffins.

This is a quick to prepare tomato base pasta recipe i got from the Kraft website.
Italian chicken pasta

1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 green pepper, chopped
1 small onion, cut into thin wedges
1 jar (26 oz.) spaghetti sauce (about 3 cups)
2 cups (6 oz.) mostaccioli, cooked, drained (I just use any pasta on hand)
1 pkg. (8 oz.) KRAFT Shredded Low-Moisture Part-Skim Mozzarella Cheese, divided ( i just use any mozzarella cheese, cos i cant find Kraft's mozzarella here)

COOK chicken in large skillet sprayed with cooking spray 5 min. Add green pepper and onion; cook 5 min. or until chicken is cooked through and vegetables are tender.
ADD spaghetti sauce and mostaccioli; cook until heated through.
STIR in 1 cup of the cheese. Sprinkle with remaining 1 cup cheese; cover. Let stand 2 min. or until cheese is melted.

This has Calcium 30 %DV and Iron 15 %DV . One of my favourite meal to prepare because you can kind on cheat on the cook from scratch spaghetti sauce and alternate it with the ready made bottled type.

This is a vegetable quiche but i have not used zucchini on it. I used bacon, luncheon meat or whatever vege i have on hand.

Zucchini Quiche

1 cup breadcrumbs
1 medium zucchini, thin sliced,drained on paper towel
( I use any vegetables on hand)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup margarine
1/4 cup flour
2/3 cup scalded milk
1/2 cup romano cheese
1 egg, beaten
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
salt and pepper

1. Butter a 9" pie plate and press the crumbs into it to make a crust.
2. Preheat the oven to 350F degrees.
3. Saute the zucchini in the olive oil for 3.
4. minutes, remove and again drain on paper towels.
5. In a saucepan, melt margarine.
6. Add flour, stir well.
7. Add milk slowly stirring all the time.
8. Cook until thickened.
9. Stir in the cheese, egg and salt& pepper.
10. Gently mix in the zucchini.
11. Ladle into the Bread crumb crust.
12. Bake in 350F degrees oven for 35 minutes.

Ashley takes one slice or less of this quiche and I usually reserve another slice for Kimberly for when she got home from school and freeze the rest for later.

To be honest, Ashley doesn't take to cheese based or milk based dishes very kindly so I still haven't got it easy. I need to alternate her meals with other non-calcium savoury dishes. She needs the other nutrients like iron and protein from those other dishes anyhow. But at least those calcium rich dishes gave me assurance somewhat that she gets optimum nutrition as long as I can manoeuvre a variety around her meals so as to get her to eat them.

I am maid less for awhile but will put up pictures when i have time to upload them up at Flickrs. Hope these help moms with toddlers who don't take milk from a bottle like mine or kids who just don't take enough calcium for one reason or another.

List of calcium high food

Following my quest for calcium rich food, I have listed down a list of calcium high food most favourable to my picky eater. Those are now necessities in her diet.

1. cheese
2. flavoured milk ( I would be lucky if she takes more than 3 sips of those
flavoured milk)
3. Mac and cheese, quiche, pizza, flaked salmon with cheese sauce, cod poached in
5. oatmeal cooked in milk
6. Calcium fortified breakfast cereal, am still looking for those which have 100%DV
of calcium per serving.
7. Calcium fortified orange juice
8. Calcium fortified soy milk
9. calcium fortified Instant oatmeal
10. milk shakes and ice creams, yes, ice creams
11. tuna sandwiches and sardines sandwiches including bones
12. Broccoli and deep greens, although calcium contents in them are lower and less
readily absorbed.

13. calcium fortified biscuits and wafers.

In between tempting her with calcium high food and calcium high dishes, i give her a break every alternate meals with other savoury non cheesy dishes. It can be dreary having cheesey milky dishes ALL the time.

I have tried these calcium high veges below but she rejects ALL of them, save for brocolli.
• Spinach
• Ladies fingers/Okra
• Baked Beans
• Broccoli
• Peas
• Brussels Sprouts

I have also tried chocolate flavored formula (Pediature)and obtained all kinds of chocolate or flavoured formula milk sachets from my pediatricians. She has also turned up her nose at every single one of them at the second offering. Sneaked milk or cheese into sauces or soups, some work , some didnt.

My only consolation is that she likes smoothies and milkshakes. Probably because these are served cold. So, its better than nothing. This is one of her favourite shake. It's a shake by and is a quick and cool calcium rich dessert which you can make in minutes.

Apples & Cream Shake


2 cup Vanilla low-fat ice cream
1 cup Unsweetened applesauce
1/4 tsp Ground cinnamon or apple pie spice ( I omitted the spice)
1 cup Fat-free skim or 1% low-fat milk
Ground cinnamon (optional)


In a blender container combine low-fat ice cream, applesauce, and the 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon or apple pie spice. Cover and blend until smooth. Add fat-free skim or 1% low-fat milk. Cover and blend until just mixed. Pour into glasses. If desired, sprinkle each serving with additional cinnamon. Serve immediately. Makes 4 (8-ounce) servings.

Thie has 31 g Carbohydrates, 4 g Protein and 177 mg Calcium per serving. I normally halved or quartered the recipe.

I am also constantly checking out the labels at the aisles. Anything with high calcium goes in to the shopping basket.

You will find that there are a lot of calcium rich snacks being offered on the shopping aisles and your only barrier is getting the picky kid to eat them. If you are not sure, anything on the food labels that says 20% DV or more per serving is high calcium. These are what i found for Ashley.

1. calcium high yogurt (Calci-yum is a good choice, if your kid likes them, mine
only takes them in hot weather),
2. calcium fortified orange juice,
3. yogurt drinks (Yakult has a high DV% of calcium),
4. biscuit sticks with cheese dips (laughing cow's brand offers this)
5. calcium high biscuits (Tiger’s milk biscuits and Manna is another good choice, very high
in calcium, for those kids who doesn’t mind them although mine doesn’t fancy it)
6. cookies like Ritz’s cheese mini sandwiches,
7. calcium high wafers etc.

The list could go on.

Sad to say, Ashley turns up her nose at most of them, unlike most other kids. I guess she has been exposed to so much variety of food that nothing much interest her anymore. Perhaps she is just super duper heavy duty picky.

I am actually sneaking milk into hot chocolates and milo for her. I mean, she is not even suppose to be taking hot chocolate or milo at this tender age, but when in the face of adversity, I do whatever I can, as long as the calcium gets in there !!!