Wednesday, March 10, 2010

...just because

Lunch box ideas continued...Easy Spreads & a Muffin recipe

My husband and I share the task of making our son's lunch. Whomever is least tired or whomever is home with the kids and is not working late makes the lunch. Mayonnaise has been a strong participant. Avoiding nitrate laden cold cuts seems to demand it. Egg salad, tuna salad, salmon salad sandwiches have been in heavy rotation. Being home this month I decided to mix it up a bit before he becomes sick of salad sandwiches. Enter cream cheese and home made veggie pate (veggie pate recipe and pics are coming next week). I almost always include a homemade dessert such a cookies or muffin and am trying to mix it up a bit there too. Spring inspires us to eat a little better and I am trying to re-embrace baking flours other than All purpose. Spelt, whole wheat and kamut flour make satiating additions to quick breads and cookies.

Cream Cheese spreads

(For lactose intolerant or vegan diets there are good vegan
"cream cheese" spreads that would do the job)

Bring the desired amount of cream cheese to room temperature (figure about 2 to 3 tablespoons per sandwich). For Pesto Cream Cheese Spread: add the desired amount of cream cheese to a small mixing bowl and add a heaping tablespoon of pesto* (per 2-3 tablespoons of cream cheese). Blend together with the back of a fork. Generously spread over a piece of bread, plain or whole wheat tortilla and then add sprouts, lettuce, grated carrots, sliced meats etc. to build a delicious sandwich. For Roasted Red Pepper Spread: finely chop several pieces of well drained roasted red pepper and then fold into several heaping tablespoons of room temperature cream cheese until well blended. Use in the same way as Pesto spread. *Store bought pestos are convenient and better tasting than ever and the pine nuts that are traditionally found in pesto are actually seeds (although in rare cases they can elicit an allergic reaction). If you click on pesto above you will find a basic pesto recipe which uses walnuts or pine nuts.

Pesto Cream Cheese Spread

Roasted Red Pepper Spread

Banana Raspberry Spelt Muffins

625 ml / 2 1/2 cup spelt flour
10 ml /2 teaspoons baking powder
2.5 ml / 1/2 teaspoon salt
90 ml / 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
180 ml / 3/4 cup demerara sugar or natural cane sugar
2 large eggs
10 ml / 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
250 ml / 1 cup plain yogurt
325 ml 1 /1/2 cups mashed ripe bananas
180 ml/ 3/4 cup fresh raspberries

Pre-heat oven to 180 C / 400 F.

Grease a muffin tin or pop in baking cups*.

In a large bowl blend together first 3 ingredients with a whisk. In another medium bowl whisk together butter and sugar then beat in eggs one at a time, then vanilla, yogurt and bananas. Add the wet to the dry and fold a few times with a spatula. Add berries and continue to fold until just blended.

You have the option of making 12 large muffins (muffin cups 3/4 full) or making smaller ones more suited to little eaters (muffin cups 1/2 full) which yields 14-16 muffins.

*If you care baking cups make the job of making muffins even easier.


  1. The cream cheese ideas are good, they also make a nice dip. Now if you could just show us how to make such a good-looking, tight wrap I would be in heaven.

  2. Yeah not complicated at all...I would use sour cream instead for dip. Wrapping: That will have to be in person unless I do something on ehow (hahah)...I am not even aware of what I am doing when I am doing it if you know what I mean.

  3. I know you make it look easy. Are those pitas or tortillas?

  4. Whole wheat tortillas and for the pesto I rolled it like sushi, tucking in what ever hangs out at the end.


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