We’ve fallen in love with the bento box and its friendly little compartments which has inspired a new theme for us: world bentos. There’s something about the format that just seems to invite your creativity — it also creates the perfect canvas for tasting and is just plain fun. Fill your bento with homemade goodies, store-bought or a mixture of both and you’re on your way!
Because starting with Japan would be too obvious, we headed to Scandinavia for our inaugural bento filled with Swedish meatballs, a refreshing cucumber salad and some heavenly creamed potatoes with dill. [Simran was dying over the awesome-ness of these potatoes, so I can assure you the recipe will be coming soon.] For dessert – our favorite homemade, whole grain hardtack crackers, Norwegian Jarlsberg cheese and berry jam.
Recipe for Hardtack – rest of the recipes coming soon
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter
1 ½ cup buttermilk
1 ½ cup whole wheat flour
1 ½ cup all-purpose flour
3 cup finely ground oats (finely grind the oats in a food processor before you begin)
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp kosher salt
- Preheat oven to 375. Lightly grease the bottom of 2 11×17 inch cookie sheet (or whatever size you have)
- Melt butter in pan over medium heat. Set aside to cool briefly.
- In a large bowl, stir together the melted butter and buttermilk. Add remaining ingredients to make a stiff, sticky dough. Let stand for 10-15 minutes so that dough becomes less sticky.
- Divide into four parts and place one part each on greased bottom of two cookie sheets,
- Roll dough with rolling pin all the way to edges of cookie sheet. You want a very thin dough — less than ¼ inch. If it breaks, that is ok. Just press gently back together and smooth. Trim edges to make a neat rectangle. Pierce all over with a fork (all over!). Score dough into 2”x4” rectangles, or the shape of your choice! Bake for 20-25 minutes until dark golden (but not brown) and crisp.
- Let cool for a few minutes, then break apart on score lines and let cool on cooling rack.
- Makes approximately 110 crackers. They will keep in tightly sealed container for about a week.