Tuesday, September 3, 2013

inside the lunchbox

A few of you have asked what I pack inside the kid's school lunch boxes. So here it is. A week's worth of lunches. When we started this wheat free thing, it was very tricky figuring out what to pack in the absence of sandwiches. Afterall, it is what lunchbox packing used to revolve around here. Through trial and error I have slowly discovered what gets eaten and what doesn't (and nobody likes unpacking a lunchbox still full of food!).  I have found that if I have a few staples of real food such as eggs, nuts, seeds, dried fruit and cheese, then I can create quick lunch box fillers without packet food. Of course one or two baked treats a week doesn't go astray either, and I have found the most popular ones have been almond flour based. Sometimes I soak spelt flour for baked treats such as pancakes. Sandwiches are not entirely off limits, but these days they are usually rye, spelt or kamut sourdough, although not very often due to the cost.

Monday :
Buckwheat pancakes spread with butter and filled with grated carrot and cheese.
Popcorn cooked in coconut oil.

Tuesday :
Corned beef (leftovers from last night's dinner).
100% Rye sourdough* bread with butter.
Tapioca pudding from Nourishing Traditions.

Sweet carrot muffins from From Scratch.
Nuts, sultanas and sunflower seeds.
Leftover bolognese style sauce with grated cheese.

Sweet carrot muffins (links above).
Boiled eggs.
Sliced cheddar cheese, cos lettuce, celery and carrot.
Mandarin. Again.

Pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds and sultanas.
Grated carrot, camembert cheese and leftover roast lamb.
Sliced orange.*

*Lately I have been buying oranges and mandarins in bulk through Fresh Citrus Direct. I love being able to support farmers directly, and I have to say that that these are the freshest and sweetest citrus I have ever tasted. The oranges make the sweetest juice ever. Stored in the fridge they tend to last much longer than the supermarket variety.

*While I am still not yet venturing into the world of sourdough making, for the moment I have discovered a wonderful online sourdough baker, Hope Farm Bakery, for the occasional treat. (I ordered 5 loaves to save on postage, and stored them in the freezer).

So, yes, it is a tricky business, this lunch box thing, but it is good to finally feel more confident with changes. Thankfully my kids have not been too embarrassed with these homemade efforts, though there has been a few teasing comments in the past. Along the way I have tried to educate them as why we eat the way we do, and they seem to be embracing that, in no small part because a few of their friends eat in a similar way.

How do you handle the whole lunchbox thing?
Any ideas or recipes to share?