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Fresh ideas for lunchboxes - prepared by kids!



Glad invited us to lunch the other day, but it was not your usual catered function - there was plenty of food but it was up to the kids to prepare it!

LOVE FOOD MORE … WASTE IT LESS was the idea of the day as Glad set out to inspire more interesting lunchboxes for Kiwi kids heading back to school and kindy.

While lunch preparations usually happen in a mad flurry of breakfast prep, homework checking and bag packing at our house, I can see the merit of getting children more hands-on with their lunchboxes from an early age.

We all know how disappointing it is when lunchboxes come home still containing most of the food so lovingly packed in the morning. Glad have given this issue serious thought so hosted a Lunchtime Inspiration Day, where families were invited to see just how easily lunch could be made more exciting. The theory of kids being more involved in meal processes is that they will eat more of food they have selected and prepared themselves.

 Gwilliamsglad

And the young guests, dressed in their aprons and chef hats, sure had fun in the kitchen. Fruit and vege kebabs, dinosaur sandwiches, mini pizza faces, rice balls and the icing on the cake - DIY cupcake decorating. And what was not consumed was all packed neatly into Glad plastic bags and containers, so Daddy could later sample, too. 

 Glad2

With Wendy Myer as host, and celebrity chefs; Carly Flynn and Dominic Harvey to name a few – lunchtime got a whole lot more exciting!

To inspire your family into making lunches that are a little outside the norm, the following inspirational recipes were created;

ANIMAL PIZZA FACES Untitled1

The best thing about Animal Pizza Faces, is that kids can get involved and pre-make them the night before, so they’re perfectly chilled for the following day's lunch.

You will need:

  • English muffins  (or bagels, pita breads, or even toasted bread)
  • Tomato paste
  • Tomatoes
  • Shredded carrot
  • Green capsicum
  • Pineapple
  • Salami
  • Black olives sliced and pitted
  • Cheese

 Method:

The trick for kids is choosing the best ingredients to help create your ‘face’.  Salami is great for ears, while sliced olives are perfect for little eyes …but we can’t guarantee the kids will eat them…so work with what you know your child likes, or will be open to being introduced too.

Once you’ve made your masterpiece, pop them in the oven at 180 degrees for around 10 minutes or until you see the cheese turn golden, and they’re ready to go.

Once cooled down slightly, pop them into Glad’s Snaplock Sandwich bags and they’re perfect to add to the lunchbox!

 

DINOSAUR SAMMIES Untitled2

Dinosaurs, butterflies … your sandwich creations can be anything you like.  There’s a huge variety of sandwich cutters available, so let your imagination go wild to make the plain ol’ sandwich something a little more intriguing for little hands come lunchtime.

You will need:

  • Sandwich cutters
  • Brown bread
  • Baby spinach
  • Ham / salami
  • Cucumber
  • Shredded carrot
  • Cheese slices

Method:

These sandwiches can have any fillings you like, once compiled, simply push your cutter through the sandwich to create the appropriate shape.  For more fun, then add eyes, and mouths to the top slice of bread, so that the lunchbox looks even more exciting.

 

FRUIT AND VEGE SKEWERS Untitled3          

How do you make a banana, or grapes more appealing?  Pop them on a stick! (We recommend removing the sharp ends of toothpicks of skewers before giving them to children)

You will need: 

  • Skewers (20cm in length)
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Ham
  • Cheese cubed
  • Ham or luncheon cubes
  • And for Sweet:
  • Grapes
  • Strawberries
  • Watermelon

 Method:

Easy to assemble (but you may want to help little hands), fruit and vege skewers can be prepared the evening before for a snack that is nutritious and a little more exciting that a plain apple.

 

RICE BALLS Untitled4

For something a little more unusual in the lunchbox, Rice Balls are the perfect addition, delicious as a snack, or add a few to create a hearty lunch.

You will need:

  • Short grain rice
  • Sushi Vinegar
  • Onion
  • Broccoli
  • Cucumber (sliced very thinly)
  • Capiscums (sliced very thinly)
  • Sesame Seeds
  • Sesame Seed Oil

Method:

Once rice has been cooked, add remaining ingredients.  Using Gladwrap, scoop a spoon full of rice onto the wrap, before adding any final flavours (as you choose).  Wrap the Gladwrap securely ensuring all rice is covered.  This is where it gets fun for kids, little fingers can squish and push to create their own shape (not necessarily a ‘ball’).  Once created, these can then be easily added to the lunchbox, or to make them look even more fun, add a fun coloured pipe cleaner enabling you to make a butterfly out of your creation.

OHbaby! Ellie Gwilliam took her two eldest daughters to the Glad Lunchtime Inspiration day in January. Recipes supplied thanks to Glad.

For further lunchtime inspiration, please visit; https://www.facebook.com/betterlivingnz



  




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