Need a little inspiration in those first weeks back at school when we’re all desperately trying to get back into a routine? Wondering what to put in the kids’ lunchboxes that’s healthy enough to sustain their brains and bodies all day and will still impress their friends? We have some hot tips to kickstart things.
Our kids are a pretty healthy bunch in the Shire. Many have attended the Mullumbimby and New Brighton Farmers Markets ‘Grow Your Own Lunchbox’ event, which is coming up again on Friday 3 September 2021! They know more than most kids about where their food comes from. Rather than racking your brain, why not inspire them to make their own lunch?
Bring along a lunchbox to the Mullumbimby or New Brighton Farmers Markets before school begins and set them a challenge! It will probably end up costing you less, and the stallholders love chatting to the children.
There’s always an abundance of seasonal fruit and veggies. Some of the market lunchbox favourites just coming into season are strawberries, blueberries, apples and mandarins, all of which go really well mixed with yoghurt from Cheeses Loves You. Spice Palace have various healthy dips you could pair with seasonal veggies such as carrot and cucumber sticks. Another idea would be to toss their pesto through Byron Gourmet or Woodland Valley pasta, which you could prepare at home on the days when the market isn’t on.
Everyone’s lunchbox favourite is rice crackers, which Nimbin Valley Pecans and Rice make fresh from their locally grown insecticide free rice. You can team these with just about anything, although a couple of winners are avocado, sprouts, and Davidson Plum Jam. Fruit buns are always a treat, as are the sausage rolls and vegan pies.
Then there is the ever-favourite hand-rolled sushi. Takayuki, the talented Japanese chef hand makes rolls you can put straight into the lunchbox, and Radiance Kitchen make delicious gluten free dumplings that will stay yum until lunch. Mix that with farm fresh produce and you have a winning formula, every time.
Getting the kids involved means they will learn so much more about eating with the seasons. I find that getting them to make their own fruit and veggie choices means they are a lot more likely to eat them!
Mullumbimby Farmers Market is open every Friday, and New Brighton Farmers Market is open Tuesdays, both from 7–11am. Please see their website for more detail on the various lunchbox stalls.