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Tamale box lunches
Posted By Biggie On August 31, 2007 @ 10:59 am In bento, corn tortillas or masa, curry, fish or seafood, for kids, glutenfree, poultry, rice, salad | 488 Comments
Costco has changed the brand of frozen tamales they sell, and now they’re light, fluffy, and delicious (better than the old kind they stocked, which were a little too dense and heavy). Frozen tamales are great to have on hand for a fast dinner or lunch, especially if you have a  large  microwave steamer. Just pop them in the microwave for a few minutes, let sit for another minute, and they’re ready. These actually start to approach the quality of  homemade! Evidently they’re from  Del Real Foods — very nice. (Disclaimer: I have no commercial affiliation with Del Real Foods or Costco.)
Contents of my lunch: Steamed chicken  tamale with containers of spicy  salsa Taquera and  Greek yogurt, plum slices, blueberries, and salad with pitted cherries, pine nuts, fresh mint and feta cheese (plus homemade apple-balsamic vinaigrette). We ran out of  crema (Hispanic sour cream), so yogurt was a fine stand-in.
Morning prep time: 6 minutes, using leftover tamale and salad. I packed the tamale the night before when cleaning up from dinner, so in the morning I sliced the plum and filled the sauce containers (I was out of  pre-filled sauce containers with salad dressing).
Packing: Quick reminder to pack salad dressing separate from the salad itself in a container so you don’t have wilted, soggy salad at lunch. Yuck! Lunch packed in  two 350ml tiers of a Lock & Lock lunch set.
Contents of preschooler lunch: Same as mine, with a slice of crisp  Asian pear (nashi) and a little container of yogurt for the tamale.
Morning prep time: 5 minutes, using leftover tamale from dinner and leftover Asian pear from an earlier snack for Bug.
Packing: Packed in one  350ml tier of a Lock & Lock lunch set, and a  220ml metal container from the Daiso in Daly City, CA. Daiso is a great Japanese dollar store with  branches internationally.
Contents of husband’s lunch:  Grilled skate wing (a.k.a. ray or stingray) with Nonya-style sambal sauce on top, on a layer of rice. The left hand side holds more of the same salad that I had, plus a couple of cherry tomatoes. The chili ray is the last of the leftovers that I used earlier in the week in lunches for Bug and myself — my husband was happy to get another taste of the spicy ray after all the effort he put into making it! Delicious.
Morning prep time: 9 minutes, using all leftovers. I microwaved leftover cold rice to restore the texture, then removed the skate wing from the bones to make it easier to eat (my husband doesn’t have a lot of patience for deboning fish when eating on the run).
Packing: I packed the sauced skate wing right on top of the rice layer, with the rice absorbing a little bit of sauce (â€donburi bowl styleâ€ â€” it wasnâ€™t so liquidy that the rice became sodden). Packed in a  500ml Leaflet box with movable divider.
Article printed from Lunch in a Box: Building a Better Bento: http://lunchinabox.net
URL to article: http://lunchinabox.net/2007/08/31/tamale-box-lunches/
URLs in this post:
 large : http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0004F7IW4?ie=UTF8&tag=lunch-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&
 homemade: http://lunchinabox.net/2006/06/27/homemade-tamales/
 Del Real Foods: http://www.delrealfoods.com/
 Image: http://www.flickr.com/photos/lunchinabox/1285605613/
 tamale: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tamales
 salsa Taquera: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0000GG25Q?ie=UTF8&tag=luinabo-20&linkCode=as2&camp=178
 Greek yogurt: http://gogreece.about.com/od/eatinganddrinking/a/greekyogurt.htm
 crema : http://www.foodsubs.com/Cultmilk.html
 pre-filled sauce containers: http://lunchinabox.net/2007/06/04/speed-tip-pre-fill-sauce-containers/
 two 350ml tiers of a Lock & Lock lunch set: http://www.flickr.com/photos/lunchinabox/166717199/in/set-72157594150632817/
 Image: http://www.flickr.com/photos/lunchinabox/1286464054/
 Asian pear (nashi): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nashi_pear
 220ml metal container: http://lunchinabox.net/2007/05/11/croquette-lunches-and-metal-containers/
 branches internationally: http://www.daiso-sangyo.co.jp/english/storeinfo/
 Grilled skate wing (a.k.a. ray or stingray) with Nonya-style sambal sauce on top: http://lunchinabox.net/2007/08/28/nonya-skate-wing-box-lunches/
 Image: http://www.flickr.com/photos/lunchinabox/1286463830/
 500ml Leaflet box: http://www.flickr.com/photos/lunchinabox/634050895/in/set-72157594150632817/
 Need for speed: A mommyâ€™s lunch manifesto: http://lunchinabox.net/2007/04/23/need-for-speed-a-mommys-lunch-manifesto/
 Food safety for packed lunches: http://lunchinabox.net/2007/05/08/food-safety-for-packed-lunches-updated/
 How to pack a bento lunch and use â€œgap fillersâ€: http://lunchinabox.net/2007/06/11/guide-to-bento-packing-and-gap-fillers/
 Biggieâ€™s list of top speed tips, tutorials and equipment reviews: http://lunchinabox.net/top-tips/
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