It’s the third month of 2017 coming to a near end. How is everyone doing and especially to mothers of Year 1 kids? How are things coming along? Haha! I remember when my son went into Year 1. First two weeks were a lot of missing stationaries and torn books, or even spilt water all over the bag. In case some of you are unaware, my son was homeschooled all throughout his pre-school days so when he was put into a proper school at age 7, a lot of stuff were a bit of a crude shock for him. And yes….it goes without saying that he did get into trouble here and there and once in a while the teachers will report back to me. When this was all happening, I of course, like any sane mother do what naturally comes…..freak out. But now it has passed and things have sort of settled in its own pace, I look back and wondered, ok…there was no need to go into panic mode all that much. So I’m giving a shout out to mothers out there who feel like their kid is putting them through some sleepless funk….chill, you’re doing a good job and if you raise them right, you gotta believe that they’re good kids.

When my son started school, my main concern was packing his lunch. Initially I had this grand plan of mapping out in some high-tech chart what I would make for him everyday of the week. Lunches would alternate between simple sandwiches to more rice and dishes staples. First day, I packed too much for him cause I actually included a box-drink, some snacks, a piece of fruit and his main meal. Guess what, he finished his main meal but all others were like half-eaten mess. What I didn’t account for was his pace when eating….he was VERY slow. So before he could finish, he had to proceed to the next session. Oh, and mind you…I wasn’t using an air-tight container on the first day and he got gravy all over the lunch bag. That thing stank for days. So here’s a tip…air-tight containers!! MUST!

Know what I do these days? Make more portions during dinner so that he could bring leftovers as his lunch the next day. That saves a lot of headache of preparations and time in the morning. He’s still eating home-cooked food and so what if they were leftovers? No matter how much effort you put to making things from scratch, sometimes all they want in their minds is french fries. So here’s a dish that could easily be done for any meals and packed in as a bento for your kids the next day.

Meat and vegetables in one.

8 slices of sirloin or chuck beef
a bunch of asparagus
1 packet of enoki mushrooms, separated
Black pepper
1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon cooking sake
1 tablespoon mirin
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon sugar
2 garlic cloves (chopped)
Wash the asparagus, cut it all into about 14 cm each. Blanch them in hot boiling water in a pot on the stove for 5 seconds. Drain and place them into icy cold water.
Take the slice of beef and lay them flat on the cutting board. Place cling film around it and pound them thin.
Season the thin slices of meat with salt and pepper.
Cut the enoki mushrooms and the root end, to the same length of the asparagus.
Divide the mushrooms to 8 equal portions.
Place the enoki and about 3 asparagus per roll on the beef slices. Roll them slant ways and secure the end with a toothpick.
Repeat till you have rolled all your beef slices.
Heat a flat frying pan with some oil and add the butter. When the butter has melted, add the beef roll ups.
Brown on all sides.
Take them out on a dish, remove the toothpicks.
Add chopped garlic to the pan, sear and add a little water to deglaze. Add the sauce mixture. Heat and taste.
Bring back the roll ups and toss them in the sauce.
Plate and serve garnish with toasted sesame seeds.



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