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Food Question!!!

OK, so I have been observing the fantastic bentolunch community lately. And then today tzel sent me this bento link. It is easy to chop up some things, or grab a few pita chips or carrots, or what have you to put in a bento box. But what I don't get is:

How do you prepare noodles to pack up on a daily basis? Or rice? Surely these people do not cook these starchy items the same day they pack them? Don't noodles get kind of oogy and weird if you refrigerate them? And rice, doesn't it get hard?

Please forgive my food ignorance, and enlighten me gently. :)

Also, I want to write a lengthy post about how on some talk show last week some food expert was talking about how we make (some stupid number like) 750 decisions about food a day. My point of decision making remains emotional in lots of cases. If there is a lengthy post to be dragged out of that, I don't have it in me today. I do feel that I am experiencing the psychological "backlash" of dieting that is the downfall of many dieters. So my attitude about WW is not as 100% rosy as it once was, and I have not proved to learn quite so many of the lessons I would have liked.

I made a list of all the meals I have at my fingertips in the house, and it's kind of long. That way I can't think "there's nothing to eat in here! I guess I will have to give up and order chinese!". AND I will have a handy reference for what's missing when I go shopping.

I went looking for the babybel cheese things that everyone and their sister loves at the grocery store and failed to find them. The would fit so well in my bento box. Oh yeah, I got a bento box off ebay. I also got some of that Sabra hummus that Tracy introduced me to, but forgot to get anything to PUT IT ON. DER. My kingdom for a pita chip or celery stick.

I feel like my back is better enough to start running, but uh, the ground is covered with ice! So I lifted weights and made an annoyed face. I am also having possibly paranoid delusions that my running shoes don't fit right.

And if you got this far and are not on my health filter, and want to be on it, let me know. I talk about weight watchers and shit. I didn't put this post on that filter because I wanted to get the most noodle feedback I could.



Feb. 14th, 2007 09:02 pm (UTC)
If you rinse the noodles in cold water and then put the sauce on them, it stops the cooking and removes the starch which makes them gummy.

With rice, as another commenter said, covering it tightly is the key. However, if your rice dries out, don't despair, that makes the best fried rice (which contrary to its name does not need much oil).

I keep a whiteboard in my kitchen and list allllll the food I have in the house. All of it. It's the only way to stop myself from going shopping, when I can look at the board and say, "hey, dummy, you have tomato soup, beans, and tortillas, make dinner out of that."
Feb. 14th, 2007 09:04 pm (UTC)
I should specify that my sauces tend to be oil-based (like sesame noodles), so they don't get soggy. I wouldn't sauce ahead of time with tomato sauce or something else water-based.
Feb. 14th, 2007 09:34 pm (UTC)
The bento boxes I was attracted to looked like they had something like pad thai in them, which I do like, and would enjoy having in my lunch even cold. But I'd need to be sure it wasn't going to be disgustimacating by day 3.
Feb. 14th, 2007 09:31 pm (UTC)
I am pleased to know that we both came to the same plans seperately. I don't have a whiteboard but close enough. :)

Do you think whole wheat pasta will be any different?

What about the type of noodles you'd use for say, pad thai, versus spaghetti?
Feb. 14th, 2007 09:38 pm (UTC)
Whole wheat pasta is more resilient (though the texture does vary a LOT from brand to brand). Pad thai noodles are softer so I think they keep less well (but still should be fine for a couple days if they are not swimming in sauce).

And now I am hungry. :-)
Feb. 14th, 2007 10:44 pm (UTC)
I only buy whole wheat noodles nowadays.

PRO: they get a lot less soggy in soup! I have been enjoying the many quarts of homemade chicken noodle I made last week, and the wheat noodles don't get slimy upon reheating.

CON: they are a lot starchier, so rinsing is even more important. I shock-rinse them in cold water and then warm them again in the sauce I am using. And they are a lot less tasty cooked al dente, IMO. I really cook them all the way through.