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Back to School…

Updated: Mar 31, 2020

Yes we are back to school already… but as I said this time last year, I am ready to get back to the routine.  This time last year I was blogging about ‘lunchboxes’ but I am now at the stage whereby both daughters are at Secondary School so past the take lunch to school … which saves me a job!

Although the girls are out of packed lunches they are still absolutely ravenous when they get home.  I always think of the cartoon whereby the teenage boy flings open the fridge and a roast dinner leaps out at him to satisfy his immediate hunger! Unfortunately unless you are the most organised mother in the world, (please let me know if this is you as I would love to learn the secret) this immediate dinner on a plate does not leap out of any fridge, biscuit tin or oven at 4.30/5pm. So what to encourage eating at this time of day to not have an adverse effect on dinner is a challenge. Some children are home later which makes it even more difficult or are racing off to swimming, dancing and all the other after school activities. My normal expression is ‘grab some fruit’ or ‘take a couple of oat cakes and cheese’. I have made a delicious healthy flapjack yesterday and I will of course be sharing the recipe online as it was very well received as are the superfood cookies.  Chatting to Alex Thurman of ‘Feed the Brood‘ she agrees with me…”keep the after-school hangry gumps at bay by giving your children a snack on the journey home or on arrival. Remember to keep it light so as not to spoil their appetite for dinner later. I often give my three a banana each and an oat cake, breadsticks or rice cakes. If you avoid snacking all together, you may find that they get too hungry to wait for dinner, and nag for snacks right before serving. If this happens, I serve up the veg first. You’ve never seen a plate of broccoli disappear so quick!”

There are so many ideas online and books that focus on snacks I have asked a couple of colleagues about what to buy from the shelves when time is short. I would like to have a list of the best 6 after school snacks by next Friday… there are definitely some that are better than others! 

Alex Thurman from Feed the Brood is joining me on stage at the Tunbridge Wells Food and Drink festival on the 22nd and 23rd September. We will be talking about fussy eaters and encouraging great eating habits for the family, but hassle free!

Looking forward to our next ‘hands on’ supper club themed on Mediterranean food and hosted at Toast in Oxted, Wednesday 3rd October, tickets can be purchased here. Again this time last year I was practising some of the delicious recipes I sampled over the holidays at home and away and so will link again to my ‘one pot’ Mediterranean dish which cooks all by itself, if you missed the recipe please take a look here on my Facebook page at the video link. This weekend the weather is looking fab so I think we will be continuing our ‘alfresco eating’ with bbq and lunches planned. Life is too short to stand over the stove, I want to spend time with my friends/family not in the kitchen…. Happy weekend!

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