Packing Lunches for School and Work
Popcorn: Make your own and divide the batch up into little bags or containers. I make popcorn with an air popper. spritz on a little oil from a spray-oil can, and toss with salt, cumin, chili powder, and nutritional yeast. If it’s for the little ones skip the chilli powder.
Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, 30 Day Vegan Challenge
Day 10 is similar to Day 8 – a wonderful collection of ideas designed to suit a wide range of tastes and lifestyles, only instead of breakfast it’s a packed lunch, or really any time you have to pack food to go.
At my workplace we have a full kitchen with a fridge, microwave, sink, bench space and even a few appliances like a toaster and panni press. There is a cupboard with dishes and utensils. This increases the range of food I can take for lunch.
However, Day 10 assumes you don’t have any of that, you just need to pack and eat. The ideas are organised into three categories – sandwiches, salads and snacks.
Here are the five ideas I liked the most and want to try. If you don’t like my picks, no problem. there are plenty of ideas in the chapter to appeal to almost anyone’s idea of a good lunch.
Vege subs (or rolls), pita pockets or any sandwich breads
Any sandwich bread with your favourite condiments and stuffed with vegetables. Colleen gives a few of her favourite suggestions like tomatoes, roasted eggplants, roasted peppers (capsicum), shredded carrots and beetroot, lettuce or other greens and alfalfa sprouts. She even recommends stuffing a pita pocket with scrambled tofu – sounds delicious.
Of course, sandwiches are mostly vegetables already! I would just add in one more ‘hearty’ ingredient like eggplant, roasted spicy pumpkin, slices of marinated and baked tempeh or even pan-fried slices of seitan, along with the salad. Vegan sandwiches are filling and delicious. This is the best thing I have found to do with sliced eggplant for sandwiches.
Bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich
Colleen makes the bacon with flakes of coconut marinated in liquid smoke, tamari and maple syrup, and then baked in the oven. These are used in the sandwich with eggless mayonnaise, tomato, lettuce and avocado. I want to try this; will look for coconut flakes next time I’m at Bin Inn.
Colleen has lots of great ideas for packed lunch salads, but this one I especially liked. It is basically a template, or formula, that you can mix and match into an almost infinate array of salads.
Cooked grains – quinoa, barley, bulgur or couscous
+ Chopped raw veges – carrots, capsicums (bell peppers), tomatoes, green onions, red onion, corn, snow peas, chopped broccoli or chopped cauliflower
+ Dried and fresh fruit – raisins, currents, dried cranberries, dried apricots, apples or oranges
+ Nuts and seeds – almonds, walnuts, peanuts, pinenuts, sunflower sesame seeds or poppy seeds [nuts and seeds are delicious when toasted first]
+ Herbs and spices – dried ginger, curry powder, turmeric, cardamom, cumin, fresh basil, parley or coriander (cilantro)
+ Dressing – sesame oil and rice vinegar; Italian dressing; creamy dressing; garlic, lemon juice and olive oil; olive oil and balsamic vinegar, or just lemon juice
How could I have forgotten about popcorn? Who doesn’t love popcorn? I went out yesterday and brought corn for popping, It is also another great way to get in some nutritional yeast. I want to give the tip (in the quote above) a go one night this week.
Olives have to be one of my favourite food. I like them all, but especially love Kalamata. Colleen has a great recipe for tapanade which I can make from preserved artichoke and Kalamata olives. I have made it several times now. It makes a great snack, especially when people are round.