I remember the days of having pack ups for school. Soggy sandwiches, crisps and an apple. Not varied at all and after a while, it became very boring to eat every day.
So when it came to the time that my sons started school, I initially wanted them to go on to school dinners but that didn't happen. The fussy little buggers decided that they wanted packed lunches like their friends and the visions of the soggy ham sandwiches cam flooding back like a nightmare.
I said there and then that I would make sure that the boys packed lunches would be better than mine were. That they'd get a varied diet and would love checking their lunch boxes each day to see what they had this time.
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Obviously sandwiches are the biggest part of a pack up. So each day I would spice it up a little. A bit of cheese here, a slice of ham there but then I got advantageous and started making my own bread. With my bread maker sitting in the kitchen doing nothing, I got to work creating my own loaves for the kids to eat at lunchtime.
With a whole load of bread machine recipes by Panasonic to try out, the kids ended up with totally new experiences as they tried artisan loaves, rustic sourdough and even our own scones too. The fruit and nut dispenser comes in handy too as it means that I can make sweeter loaves for them too for a bit of a change up.
But bread doesn't even have to be the be all and end all. I have made them yummy chicken salad wraps, crackers and cheese and even pasta salads. They seem to get a better variety of food than I do!
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And it's a good thing that my sons aren't fussy when it comes to fruit and veg as I always pack their lunches full of the stuff. Mangetout, baby corn and sugarsnap peas are their favourites but we sometimes go for kiwis, strawberries and even the humble apple too.
Yogurts always go down well and in the warmer weather I freeze them so that they keep their lunch cool throughout the day and are defrosted and ready to eat by lunchtime. There are so many choices out there now for packed lunches that they no longer need to be boring. No more soggy sandwiches needed!