It’s lunch box time again. Although your children might relish the thought of peanut butter sandwiches, will that provide sufficient nourishment for them to cope with an afternoon of schooling? Peanut butter does contain some protein but adding a little grilled bacon, tomato and lettuce — a PBLT — provides a more rounded meal. Children need carbohydrate for energy, protein to make them feel satisfied and some fruit or vegetables for vitamins, fibre and crunch.
Some of my fave fillings for sandwiches, rolls, baps, pita bread, croissants, focaccia or wraps include: ham and coleslaw; Ploughman’s (ham, cheese and gherkin); cheese and bacon; pulled pork and lettuce (using leftover pulled pork); corned beef and piccalilli; chicken tikka, yoghurt and slaw; chicken and curried mayo; chicken and cranberry; mashed egg and watercress; cheese and mango chutney; and cream cheese, cucumber and grated carrot. Include extra veggies where you can.
Great fruits for lunch boxes include: mandarins, kiwifruit, strawberries, blueberries, small apples, grapes, cubed fresh pineapple or a small container of mixed fresh fruit. Add cherry tomatoes, baby carrots and celery sticks (filled with a little cream cheese, if preferred) for extra vitamins, colour and crunch.
And remember, food that travels should be kept cool. A small insulated chilly bag is ideal for carrying lunches or add a frozen drink to the lunch box. And keep them in a cool place prior to enjoying.