Oct 8, 2007

clever combos for brown bags.

...Or I can just put it together myself. I actually don' t mind all the marketing by grocers, companies and coffee shops that cater to parents who pack or plan for brown bag lunches.

I am amused by all the packaging of lunchable, easy-to-grab, pre-sliced and diced items. The carrots come in small packs with ranch dip, microwave popcorn comes in single servings, craisins are packaged in tiny boxes and apples are pre-sliced and sealed in small bags: all ready to drop into a nearby lunch.

In some instances, I don't mind the quick grabs, especially when I am out of time to cut, slice or sandwich things myself. I especially applaud when these prepared snacks serve to increase the number of healthy options for brown bags.

Coffee shops are even getting into the groove, offering non-pastry options for the mid-morning snack or quick lunch. One such coffee shop offers a small container of fruit, cheese and bread. More precisely fruit/nut bread, with a few slices of apple, some red grapes, a wedge of brie, and small 1/2 inch squares of cheddar and dill havarti. I confess to grabbing this snack, and now my 12 year old asks for it as well.

Sometimes, instead of grabbing the quick fix at the coffee shop, I DO take the time to assemble this healthy snack combination. Into my son's lunch I will put this exact fruit, fruit/nut bread and cheese chunk snack. The flavors together pack a punch, the dill havarti with the fruit/nut bread is our favorite pairing in the pack.

...In fact I sometimes serve dill havarti and fruit and nut studded bread toasts as an appetizer for guests! The good news is this: there are more healthy snack options appearing everywhere, all the time. AND even if you don' t grab them on the go, the snackable packs can simply serve as a bagful of ideas for brown bag lunch making!

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