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I thought I was going to have to head out for a birth last night or this morning, so I prepped M1's lunchbox last. I didn't, and it was really nice to have the lunchbox ready to go this morning.
Do you plan the night before, or the morning of? Why?
Last night I made Quinoa Tabbouleh. This is a dish that I love to make in the spring mostly, but ended up with a big batch of parsley and needed a way to use a good chunk of it. Tabbouleh is a parsley based salad. There are so many variations out there, but traditionally it is made with Bulgar. I really enjoy Quinoa, but have a hard time finding recipes that I like. I tried this combo a couple of years ago and it was a hit with the family. This batch, I had some yellow tomatoes, so its not quite as colorful as it should be, but they were really sweet tomatoes, so the flavor was excellent.
Okay, so this is a dish that I like, but what about the kids? M1 is a veggie eater, if you have not noticed. She loves tomatoes and cucumber, so this is a win for her. M2 on the other hand has a compete overs ion to anything tomato. If you ask she will tell you she is allergic to them. Really, she says she is allergic to anything she doesn't like the flavor of. I think having the tomatoes be yellow was actually beneficial last night. I didn't say anything, just served it and watched. She ate the tomatoes, no problem! She did complain about the green onion in it though…sigh, but did eat it.
This Tabbouleh is so much better the next day. I highly recommend making it a day before. That way the flavors can marinate.
Here is a link to my Quinoa Tabbouleh Recipe.
Quinoa for Kids
I find the word, Quinoa, just a fun word to even say. I have been known to throw a err of flare at it when I am talking about it with the kids. I am sure most of you have tried it by now, it is awfully popular these days.
Quinoa has significantly higher levels of protein than other grains. Specifically Lysine and Isoleusine. Lysine is necessary of proper growth in children of bones and teeth. Lysine deficiency is rare, but is commonly found in those who are have Vegan diets, or strict Vegetarian diets. Isoleucine is needed to grow muscles, regulate blood sugar, and in necessary in the formation of hormones.
Quinoa also has a higher fat content, which is essential for children…remember the last post. Specifically Oleic Acid (same as olive oil), and some ALA (Omega 3).
Certain varieties of Quinoa contain higher levels of antioxidant flavonoids than berries.
So, finding ways to incorporate new grains into our kids diets is a good habit. The more variety we give them, the stronger their palate for new flavors becomes. Also, it can vary up and increase the overall amount of nutrients they are consuming daily.
I am noticing now that I had a lot of fruit and little veggie in this lunchbox.