Welcome to my garden. There are earwigs in my romaine lettuce and spiders on my green beans. I am not scared of bugs, but I am positively annoyed by them. I am also annoyed by having to wash my lettuce and spinach over and over to get it recipe ready.
These are some of the convenience drawbacks to having a garden and producing your own food. It’s great to be involved in every stage of growth, harvest, and [finally] eating. However, I argue that fruit and vegetable farmers provide excellent value to the home cook by doing this for us. It’s the absolute best kind of processed food out there. Continue reading
My favorite portable convenience food right now is dried fruit. Each of my children has a favorite. Big P likes apricots, Middle E likes dates, Little A loves freeze-dried mango. I consistently have dried fruit around because it is so easy to “grab and go.”
Why is this a true convenience food?
- It packs well.
- No peels to throw away.
- Full of fiber.
- Everyone in my family likes it.
- Available in all grocery stores and some gas stations.
Dried fruit isn’t new of course. But, we all need a reminder that it is the original fruit snack. Look for dried fruit without any added sugar.
Pick a few new fruits to try this summer with your crew like currants or figs. Pack them in your favorite plastic bag or container and get moving!
Ages ago I heard a story about orange growers trying to make their products as convenient as a bag of potato chips. I think it was on NPR, but I couldn’t find it with a quick search. Anyway, it really stuck with me. I continue to think about how difficult it is for fruits and veggies to compete with snacking giants like, FritoLay.
I can’t change what they stock at my local convenience store. But I can change what I stock in my home that meets all of the most important convenience criteria:
- Ready to grab and go
- Portable packaging
- Easy clean up
After I ditched the fish-shaped crackers, I was determined to find ‘grab and go’ snacks that I could serve with confidence. I needed to make sure that whatever I packed into my purse can also pack a nutritional-punch. Small stomachs with high nutrient needs can’t mess around with a bag of chips. Sorry, FritoLay.
My additional criteria for these snacks are:
- Minimally Processed
- Naturally Sweetened
- Healthy Fats
- Tasty for Both Me & My Kids
I am always working to increase my collection of healthy, grab-and-go snacks. As I discover and test them, I will happily pass them onto you in this series. Please be willing to share your ideas, too!