Lunches. Suck. 

It’s the night before the first day of school all across Ontario. Kids are irritated that their summer is over but they don’t have to give a crap about lunches because at this stage of the game the parental units are feeling generous with their time and making lunches that their kids might actually like. Truth.

In this household we started with the obligatory chat on the way home from the cabin. “So, what might you want to have in your lunches this year?” Yawning silence. Best friend of 14 yr old daughter says “well I can tell you all of the things she eats out of MY lunch…” OMG why the hell didn’t I think of that LAST year?? Turns out: pasta salad and perogies are favorites. Who the hell would guess that?? Jeez.

So tonight I embark on making pasta salad all 3 of us will like. It goes like this:

No dressing for the 12 year old. Add dressing and tomatoes for the 14 year old. Add peppers for me. Done.

Then I decided that muffins would be a good idea, so I whipped up a batch of blueberry lemon muffins. The kids have both stolen one and they’re ‘good’. Gee thanks.

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Love the Pampered Chef muffin pan … makes pro muffins every time.

Finally, I need granola for my own personal survival. I like it with yoghurt and whatever fruit I can salvage. It’s the perfect thing to keep at work and eat whenever I have the chance. This granola is a Deborah recipe … made with coconut oil and maple syrup and cinnamon and a dash of cloves … nice and crunchy and flavorful. I will give you the recipe for this one since it’s insanely good – not like that lame-ass orzo salad that I hobbled together with whatever was in the fridge…

After tomorrow’s lunch everyone is officially on their own. It’s all downhill from here.

You’ve Gotta Be Nuts Granola (odd title, but bear with me)
In a large bowl mix:
3 c large flake oatmeal
1 c slivered almonds (I used sliced, whatever)
1/2 c raw pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
1/2 c raw sunflower seeds
Reserve: 1 c raw pecan halves (you’ll add this to the whole mixture after 15 minutes of baking time)
Melt together:
1/4 c coconut oil
1/4 c butter
Add: 1/4 c maple syrup
1/3 c brown sugar
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cloves (go with it)
1/8 tsp salt
Pour the wet ingredients over the dry, mix. Spread onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Bake 15 minutes at 325 degrees (where the hell is that symbol on an Apple keyboard? Wtf). Add pecan halves and toss. Bake another 15 minutes or till the stuff at the edges is looking dangerously brown. Cool. Store in an airtight container. Eat it and share it and be the granola boss.

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