Obviously the answer is no. You never have to buy anything specific, least alone a snack from a drive through.
I am not a coffee drinker, but I do stop by Starbucks from time to time for a hot chocolate because it’s pretty good. I’ve also never bought food much at Starbucks, until I was pregnant with my youngest. Then, inevitably, I was hungry in between the preschool drop off and whatever errand I was running that day. So, I tried a Cheese & Fruit Bistro Box. For the uninitiated, this includes apple slices; a mix of dried cranberries and almonds; small chunks of brie, cheddar, and gouda; and some multigrain crackers. While nothing spectacular, this was all pretty good. But, one day they were out so I tried the Protein Bistro Box which includes an egg, apple slices, grapes, cheddar cheese, muesli, and honeyed peanut butter. The egg was a nice addition so that became my go to box. Though, ideally I’d have the egg, three cheese mix, grapes, and apples. The other items are not fine, but I ate them because they were there not because they were my favorites (excessive calories are not a problem in our hose).
Then, the baby was born and not faced with 24/7 hunger I stopped buying the Bistro Boxes. Enter the Sous Vide Egg Bites this past January. Since we own a precision cooker (item required to sous vide things), I wanted to give them a try. And, they were pretty good. Add to that that soccer/baseball season is coming up pretty soon so I’ll be spending many entire Saturdays away from the house. I thought, maybe I can replicate these snacks, only with the ingredients I want. They would be reasonably healthy and are designed to grab and go. They include things that, in many cases, are already at home. And, it would be a lot cheaper to assemble them myself.
So, I purchased some divided Tupperware containers to keep the wetter things from the dryer things or the colder from the warmer (though I’m trying to keep anything extra warm or extra cold). And, behold, I have everything I need for homemade Bistro Boxes – apples, grapes, cheese, egg, and crackers. My plan is to assemble on Friday night so I can grab and go on Saturdays.
Then I came to the heart of the issue, the egg bites. I found some inspiration from Anova (https://anovaculinary.com/easy-homemade-sous-vide-egg-bites/), bought some 4 oz jelly jars, and adapted the recipe to what I had at home. These came out lighter than Starbucks’ version – more like the creme in creme brulee. But, they were tasty, easy enough, and batch cooked so I’ll have them for a while.
Sous Vide Eggs
Adapted from Anova
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated gruyere cheese
½ tsp salt
4 Tbsp diced red pepper (this could be about anything, but you’re looking for 4-6 Tbsp total volume)
- Set your precision cooker to 172°.
- In a blender, combine the eggs, heavy cream, cheese, and salt.
- Divide among 12 4-oz jelly jars, filling about half full.
- Divide the peppers (filling) among the jars.
- Use the rest of the egg mix to top up the jars.
- Use the two-part lids and close to finger tightness.
- Submerge the jars in the water bath for 1 hour.
- When done, if you are not eating immediately, move to a cold water bath to bring to room temperature before stashing in the refrigerator.
- They can be eaten straight from the jar. Or, use a butter knife around the edge to loosen from the jar and invert. When ready to eat, microwave for 30 seconds. (Or, I’m sure a few moments under a broiler to brown would be great. I just haven’t tried that yet.)