Mac n' cheese in a lunchbox?
Beef burrito in a lunchbox?
Get real, Conde Nast people, you do not know food and you seem not even to know what to put in a lunchbox!
Dear Saveur: You know I adore you. But seriously, tuna in a lunchbox? This is going to be sitting in a cubby at best, not in a safe fridge in the staff room.
OMG, you know, these are such idiotic ideas for a lunchbox that I thought this was epicurious!
We expect WAY more of you, Saveur!
This is pathetic.
I thought these ideas were great. Umm well except the last one was kind of odd. Just because you can't open your mind on packing the lunch don't knock the ideas. I bought all 3 of my girls these really cool thermal lunch boxes that keep everything cold all day. For extra safety measures we freeze a juice box then wrap it in a paper towel lined baggy. Any soups or chili or such we warm up then put in a thermos. I know my girls will be welcoming some new additions to the normal lunches!
Really? Wow. These school lunch ideas are stretching it at best! I have 4 kids to pack lunches for. They all have 15 - 20 min. for lunch with no access to microwaves. Half of this stuff would be mush after packing it 5 hours prior to eating it. Let's get REAL with kids lunches Saveur!
Sorry, folks...I think you dropped the ball on this one. These "lunchbox" ideas are more suited to an office setting, where one might (if lucky) have access to a microwave, refrigerator, etc.
I'm disappointed....you can do better!
I have to buy special lunch boxes to serve these lunch box favorites? Thanks, but no thanks.
I notice you display them on pretty plates. How about sending them to school with a kid, then displaying them in the lunch box? That would give us (and you) a realistic idea of how well these 'favorites' will travel.
Not a great feature. I'm giving you an A for style, F for practicality.
I think I happen to agree and disagree with the comments. I agree that some of the suggestions are odd, or perhaps not ready for "prime time" lunch boxes, but on the other hand it elicited this reaction.
Meaning we are actually discussing what is or isn't appropriate for a lunch box. It is particularly important to discuss when we are simultaneously debating about the Government that wants to be the food police; when Government wants to control our grocery list, create prisons for parents that allow their children to weigh above what they consider "ideal, or basically wants to take away our choices and insisting to decide what is good or bad for our children - it is a great idea by bringing up this issue of what should or shouldn't go into a lunch box
What some people may consider absurd for a lunch box, others may embrace it as a great alternative for their children. The idea here is that these are choices that we and our children should make together; deciding for us is taking away choices and that is as bad as the the word that contains de-cide, homo-cide, sui-cide.
For a lighter discussion, check my post on my blog next week about the great snack I created for every lunch box. I considered health, as well as likes, that adds up to be eaten instead of beaten.
For those who think these ideas are ridiculous, you might consider that there actually ARE plenty of schools where children DO have access to microwaves and refrigerators.... like all the ones I went to as a child and the ones where I taught. I've actually never been to a school that didn't have one. Besides the fact that nowadays there are really cool lunchboxes and other accessories that keep hot things hot and cold things cold for several hours, long enough to keep junior's lunch safe. I actually thought most of these ideas were great, with the notable exception of the broccoli and cheetohs (shudders).
Whether a packed lunch if for a child, your spouse, or yourself, a packed lunch is about nourishment and love. The two main things about a good meal. Saveur was merely making suggestions, nobody said you must pack these items. If there is proper equipment for food safety and reheat etc.. then fantastic and if not, then make other choices. For me, nothing gives me more joy than to pack a delicious lunch for the ones I love, to fold their napkin, to sneak in a note or a treat, and to know that if for only 20 minutes, they have something special.
When and how did this become about the "government wants to control our grocery list?" Geesh, go find another blog, please.
I spend a lot of time trying to expose my kids to healthy food-- but then there is the reality, which is, they don't always like a lot of things adults do. (No matter how many times I try to give my son Hummos, he won't eat it-- and my family hails from Syria, so it's good homemade hummos). I guess i too am surprised by Saveurs attempt to pretend to cater to people who cook for children. Saveur is my food porn-- reminding me of those days I had time to cook and languish in food. Now, when I have to pack lunches for kids-- kids who don't eat hummos OR burritos, or even tuna, I wish that someone would get REALLY creative and offer me decent recipes that they really WOULD eat ( I've tried and gotten nowhere) . I comfort myself in thinking they are really French in palate and their repeated meals of bread and butter and hot cocoa are petite dejeuner.
Where did this article say that it was just for kids and kid's lunchboxes?
As for safety, if you use commercial mayo, foods like tuna salad won't spoil and some of these choices are probably pretty good at room tempature. We had no microwave or fridge in any of my schools and took tuna salad and egg salad sandwiches all the time - with no ill-effects.
I was thinking about my lunchn while reading this. I love these ideas!
If I made the recipe for the Southern Classic, Pimento Cheese Sandwich, for my daughter, I would end up on Dr. Phil, (think Â“Hot Sauce MomÂ”), and in jail for child abuse. Â½ a Habanero pepper and some Tabasco to taste would send her to the hospital screaming. If she were in college, a beer would go well with that, but then I wouldnÂ’t be packing her lunch, would I?
The Italian Panino (Italian Train Station Sandwich) is another failure. Herb crusted bread and Speck are too expensive and for more advanced palettes than elementary school kids. The Ham Salad is another spicy version, with jalapenos, Dijon mustard to Â“kick-it-up-a-notchÂ”. Yeah, great for me, but my kid would kick it into the trash can after weeping at first bite! Beef Burritos, has more jalapenos. Â“Texas chili doesn't get any better than this fiery-hot version.Â” This is another misstep by the Editors. Broccoli with Cheetos sounds great, (my kid would eat liver with Cheetoes!), but the chef has 1 tsp. crushed red chile flakes in there. IÂ’ll have to try this one to see if that might be too much. Kids have hyper sensitive taste buds, which the Editors seem to disregard. These are adult friendly tastes in these recipes.
I doubt that the majority of the magazine's readers subscribe to Saveur for the opportunity to cook meals specifically for children. It's a gourmet magazine folks, so chances are, when they publish an article about lunch box meals it's for the office crowd with a fridge, microwave, and an audience that will actually bring home the tupperware and utensils they took to work that morning when they are finished eating. Nowhere in this article does is specify that the meals are designed solely with children in mind- I wouldn't have eaten a pimento cheese sandwich in grade school to save my life, but it sounds fantastic now. Appreciate the article for what it is- a creative take on bringing your lunch to work everyday, and breaking up the monotony of a turkey sandwich and a bag of chips. And the government is trying to control your grocery list, really? Get back in the kitchen, live a little, and let go of the conspiracy theories.
These aren't unreasonable for a lunch box. When I was in middle school, my mother packed me mac and cheese and much more for lunch. The only problem was that my friends would steal it to see what she packed for that day. As for the comments about children's palettes, kids do like this stuff if they were exposed to it at any early age. Allowing a child to eat only chicken fingers will set them back when they are adults especially when they are unwilling to try new foods.
These are some great ideas, however, definitely geared for adults, but you never know about children's taste. My Danish friend packed traditional Danish pickled beets, rye bread and liver pate for her kindergarten daughter. Also, unfortunately, most schools have rushed lunchtime (my Middle School children only get around 15 minutes) and no access to microwave. I either put an ice-pack for cold food, or food thermos for warm food. When my kids were younger I used to pack them Japanese bento lunches which they loved (since I grew up in Japan).
These are realistic, just as realistic as PB&J - I have been packing lunches for my now-4th grader since 1st grade, and I pack lunches with items very similar to this every single day (plus a snack - a healthful snack). Her lunches stay cold, her hot items stay hot, she's happy, she's healthy! Tuna? Easy - pack it separately, and then send whole grain crackers or bread for the kid to dress at lunch. As for using chile flakes, not all kids can't "do" spicy - just adjust the recipe for your child's taste. (A habanero would not find its way into her lunch - but it might find my way into my husband's!) Anyway, have an open mind. My daughter does! I recognize that not all parents may have the time to pack lunches like this, and not all kids will enjoy lunches like this, but try to be open-minded and remember that for many parents and kids, these are absolutely doable lunch items.