Back to school snacks
There are close to 790,000 New Zealand children commencing their new school year. That means a huge number of lunch boxes containing arguably the most important meal of the day. Jamie Oliver thinks so and produced a plan for the British Government to ponder as did Michelle Obama in the USA. And it was agreed on by both the Republicans and Democrats.
After a morning of brain and physical exertion, young bodies need refuelling with foods packed with vitamins, minerals, protein and a little carbohydrate. Otherwise an afternoon of schooling can be wasted.
It’s sometimes difficult to persuade youngsters to enjoy their lunches but I believe you can sneak a few veggies surreptitiously into the lunch box in the form of sandwich fillings or muffins. Protein is absorbed more slowly by your body and provides that ‘full’ feeling for longer. Protein is also great brain food so if you can add an egg, meatball, a cube of cheese, a rollup of ham or a bean salad then one has more chance of absorbing an afternoon of education.
Add some fresh fruit or a handful of nuts, maybe something sweet plus a fruit juice or water you have a well-balanced meal. (Freeze tetrapak drinks to keep the lunchbox cool.)
When choosing a lunch box to carry there are myriad choices. There’s a trend towards not overwrapping food to decrease the amount of rubbish in school bins. To that end there are ‘nood’ or nude boxes available with small compartments for each food item. This works well when the foods are not too sloppy.
Whatever the lunch box, it’s what’s inside that counts. Ensure the food is low in fat and sugar and high in vitamins, minerals and protein.
Raw baby spinach could replace the broccoli. Add herbs such as coriander and basil, if preferred. Get the recipe
Little savoury nibbles add interest to lunch boxes. Get the recipe
Place in lunch boxes in a lettuce leaf or paper cup or wrap in plastic film. Add a little container of sauce or chutney to the lunchbox, if preferred. Get the recipe