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Cute Lunches: Perry the Penguin

Costa Coffee challenged us to take their newest gingerbread offering, Perry the Penguin, on lots of adventures for the next three days. Feel free to follow all the fun we’re having with Perry on Twitter and Instagram, as well as the adventures he’s having with other bloggers (just search for #perryontour). We’ll do a round-up of all the fun we’ve had on Monday.

Inspired by our new penguin house guest, I made Nicholas a cute penguin lunch. It was the perfect opportunity to finally try making the adorable penguins I often see in the bento boxes on my Instagram feed.

bento, cute food

To make the bigger penguin, I followed Ming’s from Bento, Monsters very easy instructions.

I used a normal boiled chicken egg, a sheet of nori and corn kernels. Ming suggests sticking the nori to the egg with a little mayonnaise; I just lightly wet the egg and it stuck well (using the nori was actually much easier than I’d anticipated). I used some mashed up egg (from the hard-boiled egg I didn’t manage to peel very well!) to stick the corn kernel feet on.

The smaller penguins are made from black grapes. There are lots of little penguins, especially on Pinterest, made from black olives, but I thought Nicholas would prefer grapes to olives.

I cut a thin slice off the fronts of the two larger grapes for the penguins’ tummies. I threaded the two smaller grapes on top for the heads using cut lollypop sticks. You could also use toothpicks, but be very careful of these with little ones. The feet and beaks are small triangles cut from a clementine/mandarine segment. Then I added some yogurt to make their tummies white and tiny dots of yogurt for their eyes.

Thank you to Eats Amazing for the tortilla snowflake inspiration. We actually had two more smaller filled snowflake tortillas on the side.

I’m linking up to Fun Food Friday, a weekly round-up of fun and creative food by the lovely Grace of Eats Amazing.

Eats-Amazing-Fun-Food-Friday

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Cute lunches: penguin snow globe

Another Christmas-inspired snow globe lunch, this time featuring one of Nicholas’ favourite animals, an adorable penguin.cute lunches: penguin snow globe

What you need:
2 tortilla wraps (I used wholemeal ones)
blue food colouring
pastry brush
tortilla filling of your choice (I used cooked spinach and ricotta)
2 tbsp ricotta (or other cheese such as mozarella or cream cheese)
2 pitted black olives
1 slice of orange pepper

Directions:

Using a small bowl as a template, cut out two circles from the tortilla wraps (mine were about 12cm in diameter). From the scraps, cut out one snow globe base and the trunk of the Christmas tree.

Mix 1 or 2 drops of blue food colouring with 2 tbsp water. Using a pastry brush, lightly paint one tortilla circle (don’t let it get too wet) and leave to dry.

Put your other circle on your serving plate and top with your filling. Place the base cut from the remaining pieces of tortilla at the bottom of your plate.

Once your coloured tortilla circle is dry, place it on top of your filling and spread some of the ricotta at the bottom for snow.

Cut one olive in half lengthways, then cut 6 thin strips from the sides. Using 4 strips, make the outline of the penguin’s round body and add its flippers. Cut the other olive in half lengthways and trim down the sides of one piece to form the penguin’s head.

Fill the penguin’s body with some ricotta and add two small dollops of ricotta for its eyes.

Cut a nose and feet from the orange pepper. Cut two small squares from the remaining olive piece to finish the eyes.

Finally, drop tiny dollops of ricotta around the penguin for the snow.

scrutinising his lunch