Lunchbox Tips

We promised some tips on packing your kids (or yourself!) a healthy lunchbox, and we didn’t forget. See below for some ideas on making healthy eating easy & delicious throughout the week. Of course, if you can get any of your ingredients from a local farmer’s market, even better! We promise they’ll taste fantastic, plus you’ll feel great about supporting the community.

 

  1. Leftovers – Always cook a little extra dinner? Portion it out the next day for school lunch. If you made a sauce, try putting it in a sandwich; if you made a casserole, stick a small portion in the lunchbox. There’s always a way to adapt delicious leftovers into lunch.
  2. Hummus – Nothing says healthy lunch of snack like this dippable dish. The best part is that you can make a big batch on Sunday night, and use it throughout the week.
  3. Charcuterie – May sound too fancy for lunch, but we don’t think it has to be. Most of us have cheese & deli meats hanging out in our fridge, so when you’re tired of a sandwich, just roll up those ham pieces and pack them with a few slices of cheese, several grapes or olives, and a handful of nuts.
  4. Healthy Sweets – Sometimes we just need that afternoon pick me up, and want that easy to get candy bar or doughnut. Instead, try making a batch of healthy sweets on Sunday afternoon, and pack one as a backup in your bag for those sluggish hours.
  5. Salad – Want something lighter for lunch? Pack whatever greens you’ve got in a mason jar with whatever proteins and veggies are in your fridge. Add a little olive oil & balsamic, or your favorite dressing, and you’ve got salad in a jar – quick and easy (and healthy) lunch fix.
  6. Market Finds – Make a trip out of visiting your local farmer’s market this Saturday. You’ll find plenty of delicious veggies to pack for lunch, and you’ll support local agriculture at the same time! Look for small peppers, radishes, cucumbers, beans, and anything else you can simply wash and stick in your lunchbox.

Meet October’s VegOut! Ambassador

Erin O’Leary Stewart, co-owner  of DEFINE body and mind, a wellness community that takes a holistic lifestyle approach to reach physical and inner strength goals.  Erin created DEFINE foodsa place where mindful eating and whole body health connect.  This busy working Mom of a two-year-old will be teaching, inspiring and empowering us to eat healthier with her daily VegOut! posts throughout October as she chronicles Liam’s Lunches on her Instagram feed.  Erin will also be cooking at the October 7 Chefs in the Field supper at Hope Farms.


Back to School & Fall Harvest Bounty

It’s that time of year again – backpacks and school supplies are purchased, and morning rushes onto buses or into carpools reign chaotic during the week. Often, as the year gets busier, we find it hard to keep on track with healthy eating. The last thing we want to do after driving the kids all over town after school or battling over homework  is to spend extra time cooking a healthy dinner from scratch. Never mind planning a healthy lunchbox for the next day! We know where you’re coming from, and we want to help.

October is also Farm to School month, so we’ll be sharing tips on ways to incorporate farmer’s market outings with the healthy foods you and your kids are eating at home!

Join us on your own, as a team, or with your school/company/friends/family for this monthlong challenge celebrating the fall abundance!


The truth about veggies and toddlers

Hi y’all,

My name is Laura Max Rose, and if you don’t know me, I’ve been a proud brand ambassador for Recipe for Success (and specifically, the VegOut challenge) for nearly three years. I love our mission and I love bringing it to you in such a fun, easy way every day of the year!

I’ve been working with Recipe for Success since before my daughter, Selma, was born. Even though I used to post all day long about incorporating veggies into your children’s diet, I had no idea how difficult it would be until I had my very own child that only wanted popcorn and french fries! I swore I would never be one of those parents whose kids survived on Mac n’ Cheese and Cheerios until I ultimately became one. Feeding toddlers is some seriously tough business!

The #VegOut Challenge has not only helped me grow more conscious of my own veggie intake as a busy, working mom, but its also helped me stay mindful of what Selma is eating so I can be sure she’s getting the nutrition she needs. Feeding kiddos is no easy task, but with all of the delicious veggie recipes available to me through the VegOut website and the veggie tracker in the VegOut app, I’m able to make it a fun adventure for both of us and weave in some green beans and carrots between bites of cookies and crackers.

Now that we’ve “met”, you’ll probably be seeing a lot more of me on the Recipe for Success Instagram feed, and I hope to follow you on your #VegOut2018 adventures, to. Tag me @R4SFoundation so I can see what you’re up to and share your veggie adventures with our followers! I hope you have as much fun partaking in the #VegOut2018 challenge as I have.

Happy *belated New Year,

Laura


Sautéed Okra with Onions

In our latest flash contest, VegOut! participants submitted #VegOutVideo entries, showing them vegging out this month for the challenge. Our winning video was submitted by Shubhra Ramineni, whose daughter Jaya demonstrated the secret to avoiding the unwanted “slime” sometimes released by okra when you slice it.

Congrats, Shubhra! Your gift card for Sparrow Bar + Cookshop is in the mail… enjoy!

Take a peek at the cute #VegOutVideo, and then see Shubhra’s recipe below.

 

Okra, known as “lady’s fingers” in India, has a beautiful bright green color and looks wonderful on the table. This simple and easy way to cook okra will leave you with a delicious dish, without any of the okra “slime!” When buying fresh okra, avoid the flimsy, flexible ones. Look for crisp ones in which the tail end can be snapped off. Avoid the very hard okra that are over-ripe with brown seeds instead of the ideal white seeds. I also never cover okra when cooking because doing so will darken its color. Okra can be eaten with Indian flatbreads, such as Naan or Chapathi, and goes well when paired with lentil dishes. – Shubhra

Sautéed Okra with Onions (Bhindi Pyaz)
Serves 4

Prep time: 5 minutes (15 minutes if using fresh whole okra)
Cook time: 35 minutes
Refrigerator life: 3 days
Freezer life: 1 month
Reheating method: Place the refrigerated or defrosted okra in a microwave and stir periodically. Or, place them in a skillet over medium-low heat and stir periodically.

Ingredients
1 lb (500 g) fresh okra or frozen, precut okra
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
Juice of ½ lime
1 small onion,  sliced into half moons
½ teaspoon ground turmeric
½ teaspoon ground red pepper (cayenne)
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground black pepper

Directions

  • If you’re using frozen okra, do not defrost. If you’re using fresh okra, wash the okra and pat dry with a kitchen towel. Trim the tip and head and discard. Slice each okra into ¼-inch (6-mm) pieces.
  • Pour the oil into a large nonstick skillet and place over medium heat. (Place over high heat if using frozen okra.) When the oil is heated, add the okra and lime juice. Sauté for 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
  • Reduce the heat to medium-low. Add the onion, turmeric, red pepper, salt, and black pepper. Stir to combine. Sauté until the okra is tender and the onion becomes transparent, stirring frequently, about 30 minutes.
  • Enjoy now or let cool to room temperature and refrigerate or freeze for later!

Tip
Okra has a peculiar, slimly substance to it that is released when the okra is cut and washed. The first time I cooked okra, I washed it after I chopped it and had slime everywhere! That is why it is important to wash it and pat dry before chopping to reduce the release of the sticky material. If you’re using frozen okra, it is best not to defrost it first, as it will become flimsy and release a lot of slimy substance. When okra is cooked with lime juice, any slime disappears as the okra cooks.

Recipe from Entice with Spice, Easy Indian Recipes for Busy People by Shubhra Ramineni. Learn more about Shubhra, her cookbooks and upcoming events and classes at enticewithspice.com.