Friday, October 2, 2009


Lots of different textures, and repeating ingredients in different forms.

The main dish (all compartments are equal) is Hillshire Farms turkey keilbasa, with sauted potato slices, onions, cortland apples,  finished with sauerkraut and Cabot Monterey Jack.  As with bento 3 there are both blueberries and concord grapes - they look very much alike except for size.

There are fresh cucumbers and pickled cucumbers (Alton Brown's kinda sorta sours recipe), cooked onions and pickled onions, cooked apples and a fresh apple, melted monty jack and a star of monterey jack in the fresh apple, cut with a linzer cookie insert.
The fresh apple is honeycrisp, which is quite possibly the best apple in the world, despite my fondness for the apples of my youth.  It's a great apple to carry already cut because it doesn't brown. The honeycrisp and cortlands are both from Hacketts' Orchard in South Hero, one of the islands in Lake Champlain connected to the rest of the state by a causeway.

The bento box is a tin that held L.L Bean milk chocolate coated blueberries.  The plastic insert probably won't last for very many bentos, and I'll have to remove the keilbasa mix if I want to heat it, but it was just what I needed for this morning.

This bento: keilbasa melt, broccoli, blueberries, concord grapes, cucumbers, homemade pickles, honeycrisp apple, monterey jack star.

Local foods: onions and pickles from my garden. cucumber from Sam Mazza's, apples from Hacketts, Cabot cheese.


  1. Cabot cheese, yes please! (That should be their slogan.)

    Kielbasa sounds great right now. And I have yet to try Honeycrisp, I think.

  2. Max: Okay, I was really late this time, because when I checked this email address I didn't think I had anything new. So I got your advice to make my new blog part of this one too late. The other blog is really going to be what I had in mind, and this one was prompted by the challenge and the motivation to make my lunch more often. The other blog is, and I just got it up yesterday.

    I like your Cabot slogan. Give them a call and tell them. There are real people who answer the phone. I once called about some past date cheese that had been in the fridge for a long time and had bloated with gases, to ask if it was okay - no mold or anything, and they said sure, go ahead and eat it. Isn't that a riot? Healthy respect for cheese as a living organism, I guess.

    I hope you can get Honeycrisp out there. It could be a Northeast apple, and it's relatively new. More expensive as I guess it's either more difficult to grow or not productive. Incredibly crisp and sweet, but not cloyingly so. I was at Hackett's wondering whether to buy a bag or wait til my Cortland's had given out, because I didn't have that much storage space, and Celia Hackett told me I didn't have to refrigerate the Honeycrisp.

    Brattleboro is, as you realize, at the opposite end of the state from me. I've passed through many times though. Very nice place. There used to be a brand of potato chips from there - State Line potato chips, that my family would get on trips to Massachusetts, and buy hershey bars to go with them. Still love chocolate and potato together.

    I'm really enjoying your blog, (and your comments)

  3. Hi Kathy,

    Sorry for the delay in commenting! It's just been a really crazy week. And thanks for the kind words about BCC; it's a great deal of work to update it so often, but it keeps me on my toes in a good way, and if even one person enjoys it, then it was worth it to write.

    VerFoodie is great. Am I capitalizing it correctly? I really liked your first two posts on there, but I'll just leave you more detailed comments about them over there. I'm actually glad you didn't take my advice, because I didn't realize your plan for these two blogs, of course--and your plan sounds great, so I'm excited to follow both blogs. Have you thought about how often/on what days you plan to update each site? I like that you opted for similar designs for both sites, it keeps a good sense of continuity going between them, visual and otherwise.

    That's wild about calling Cabot. Maybe I'll really do that. I've sometimes had the urge to call places like that with questions or suggestions, but I've never actually done so. When I was a little kid, I once wrote a threatening email to a certain mouth hygiene company for doing animal testing. I was very young at the time, so the letter was short, sweet, and entirely nonsensical. Incredibly, I received a typed--but really signed!--reply from the VP of the company (this is a name brand company) apologizing for their previous testing, assuring me it no longer happens, and promising biannual updates on the company's efforts to continue to change their testing practices. And, amazingly, I continued to receive lengthy, multipage reports twice a year for a couple or even a few years. Pretty wild!

    I'll definitely still keep an eye out for Honeycrisp. I haven't seen it around yet. And yes, Brattleboro's super-far from you, but I thought maybe you'd been there (and I'm glad to hear you have), and mostly I just wanted to give a frame of reference for my limited experience with your state. Oh, and I've been to Middlebury, too--many years ago, when my sister was applying to colleges and I tagged along.

    Speaking of Hershey bars, have you ever been to Hershey, PA? I went once when I was a kid--I think around age 5?--but I haven't been back since. My vague memories of Hershey are good ones, though, and were stirred a little when I read David Benioff's great short story on Hershey, PA in his book, When the Nines Roll Over. The name of the short story is "The Barefoot Girl in Clover." If you're interested, I think it's free online somewhere, so I'll send you a link. That whole book is really stellar, though.

    Hope you're having a nice weekend, and cooking up a storm! I have some lentil soup cooking right now, and its aroma is wafting through our apt. Hopefully it'll be done soon, because it smells realllly great.


  4. Kate - I love that you reused the plastic insert for your bento - very clever!

    I have some hard boiled egg shapers that I never use that I'd like to get to you

  5. @moxie - we will do this. Thanks