Thursday, June 19, 2008


I come from a family of cooks. My mom is one of the best cooks I know and my older sister, Michelle, is a close second. When we were in Toronto last weekend, Michelle made Hiyashi-chuka, one of my favorite picnic dishes. Hiyashi-chuka is a cold noodle salad. You can be creative with the noodles and toppings but Michelle's Hiyashi-chuka is usually made with a bed of somen noodles (very thin Japanese noodles) topped with thinly sliced eggs, ham, and cucumber. The dressing is simple: 3 tablespoons white vinegar, 2 tablespoons soy sauce, 1 tablespoon sugar, 1 teaspoon sesame oil. Caroline loves Michelle's Hiyashi-chuka. Pasta salad was on the menu today so I decided to pack Hiyashi-chuka in Caroline's lunch. Since I didn't have somen noodles, ham, eggs, or cucumber, Caroline's Hiyashi-chuka was made with buckwheat soba noodles and topped with Tohono O'odham Trading Company Tepary beans (a gift from my friend Cheryl), carrots, and lettuce (Owosso Organics). It wasn't as pretty as Michelle's Hiyashi-chuka and the noodles were a bit too starchy but Caroline liked it just the same.

Caroline's Lunchbox Menu, June 19: Breakfast - strawberries (Threadgould Gardens), 100% whole grain toast, cardamom apple butter; Lunch - Hiyashi-chuka (buckwheat soba noodles, carrots, lettuce (Owosso Organics), Tepary beans; Snacks - whole wheat pita bread, hummus (Eden garbanzo beans)

Childcare Center Menu, June 19: Breakfast - strawberries, wheat French bread, strawberry jam; Lunch - pasta salad with pinto and garbanzo beans, red and yellow peppers, apples; Snacks - sweet potatoes, wheat crackers

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