I'm an adoptive mom, so I spend a lot (read: far, far, too much) time checking out other adoption blogs. One of my favorites is Do They Have Salsa in China
? To keep her two little girls interested in eating healthfully, the blog's creative author has delved into bento boxes
We've posted about the art of packing bento boxes before
. Common in Japanese cuisine, bento is a single-portion meal that is often beautifully arranged -- food
that is not only pleasing to the palate, but also to the eye. You can make bento boxes a toddler favorite with a few simple twists that I'll share after the break.
- You can purchase kid-oriented bento boxes and straps to hold the boxes closed.
- Use bright picks with fun shapes instead of utensils when possible. Not only do they add to the attractiveness of the bento box, they add to the fun!
- Flexible cups are perfect holders for finger foods. Purchase bright colors to grab your toddler's attention. The cups also prevent foods from touching each other, when it's necessary to do so.
- Molds and cookie cutters are perfect for creating fun shapes out of rice, cheese, lunch meat, vegetables, and fruits.
- Fashion faces out of just about anything -- such as a slice of cucumber with small dabs of cream cheese.
- Try making kid-friendly "sushi" out of bread with sliced veggies on the inside (such as avocado, carrots, and cucumber).
- Aim to serve foods in multiple colors -- the bright variety will keep your kids begging for more, and, at least where fruits and vegetables are concerned, different color categories can ensure your child is getting a variety of nutrients.
Want to learn more about crafting beautiful bento boxes? Instructables has some great tips.