Friday, January 21, 2011

A New Year, A New Mandate

I've been photographing my kids' lunches for the last 3 weeks (almost) every day, yet I seem to have a block when it comes to posting them on this blog! 

So, I started to think a bit about why I was doing the blog.  I really wanted to show that it is possible to put together a variety of healthful lunches for your kids that get past nitrate-laden luncheon meats and transfat-full peanut butter sandwiches (check your ingredient list on the peanut butter you buy - many have partially hydrogenated fats in them (aka trans fats) which are very harmful to your health and that of your kids).

Perhaps the past 50 odd days have inspired a few of you to think outside the lunch box, but I don't think the format is the most helpful to demonstrate how it is possible.

So, instead of blogging daily to show what I put in the lunchbox, I'm going to switch it up and offer my favorite time-saving tips, healthful recipes and just plain fun food.

To all of our health and vitality in 2011!


Thursday, December 16, 2010

Day 57 - Omelet on a Waffle

Sounds more like a double breakfast, doesn't it?

I was making the kids an omelet this morning, complete with kale, leeks and feta - when I realized they would not have room (or time) to eat it.  I had two left over waffles (whole wheat, of course) from another breakfast, so I figured I could cobble together something interesting!  I even had this maple tapenade which added some maple flavor without the stickiness to the 'sandwich'.

It all worked out!  Along with some oranges.

Kale, Leek & Feta Omelet
 Incidentally, I threw out all my teflon pans (the toxic chemicals in there...don't get me started), so now I use cast iron to do the messy egg cooking.  As long as you line the pan with a little oil, natural non-stick surface!

Whole Wheat Waffle

Omelet sur la waffle...


Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Day 56 - Stir Fry

Today's lunch went over like a lead balloon.  It's now dinnertime, and guess what my kids are eating?  Yes, lunch...with a little shredded romano on top!

- Stir Fry - spinach, leeks, potato gnocchi, brown rice (yes, a little unusual, but it did taste good - the gnocchi was more like added potato)
- Apple & Mango Chips
- Oatmeal Sesame Square

(Of course the apple/mango chips and the oatmeal sesame square were eaten at lunch.)

Apple & Mango Chips (homemade)

Stir Fry
Oatmeal Sesame Squares

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Day 55 - Macaroni & "Cheese"

Well, giving into the vegan spirit (almost), I used my roasted squash puree for the 'cheese' in my macaroni and cheese dish.  Full disclosure - I did sprinkle some romano cheese on top (with some panko bread crumbs). 

In the lunch bag today:
- Macaroni & "Cheese"
- Cucumbers & Black Bean Hummus

OK, the macaroni is actually whole wheat penne...
Macaroni & "Cheese"

Cucumbers & Black Bean Hummus

Day 54 - White Bean Soup

Monday is usually a cacophony of weekend leftovers.  Yesterday was no exception!

- White Bean Soup (yes, more homework for my vegan chef school)
- Baby Cucumbers
- Black Bean Hummus
- Apple
- Vegan Halvah

Let's start with the halvah.  Our last class, we had a guest instructor:  Fran Costigan - gourmet vegan pastry chef.  I had to (of course) pick up her cookbooks.  I may be a decent cook - but am very lacking in the baking department (likely due to my lack of patience and precision in measuring).  For a playdate where I had to be sensitive to a nut allergy, I made these sesame oat squares, which turned out tasting like really good halvah.

Sesame Oat Squares (Halvah)
If you want to check out her cookbook - here it is!

White Bean Soup
Baby Cucumbers

Black Bean Hummus (tastier than it looks)
Organic Gala Apples
Did you know apples were one of the most highly pesticided crops?  Buy organic...

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Day 53 - Millet Croquettes

- Millet Croquettes with Dill Sauce & Lemon
- Baby Cucumbers
- Homemade Halvah
- Apple

The Millet Croquettes come from my homework - I don't think I mentioned this - I'm back in school, chef school that is!  Vegan chef school to be exact.  The croquettes were one of my first homework assignments.  While the plate below is what it looked like when we had it at home for dinner, the lunch version was not quite as fancy!

Millet Croquette with Dill Sauce & Lemon

Just the croquettes...
Baby Cucumbers

Homemade Halvah

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Day 52 - Pasta & Soup

There weren't enough of one leftover to go to both kids, so I took two leftovers.  Made for a large lunch bag with two thermos', but it worked out.

Today's Lunch
- Pasta with Spaghetti Squash
- Potato & Leek Soup
- Baby Cucumber
- Apple & Mango Chips

Pasta with Spaghetti Squash

Potato & Leek Soup

Baby Cucumbers (with Banana for perspective)

Apple & Mango Chips