What “back to school” means for your kitchen.

Posted on August 20, 2010

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Whether you’re singing the praises of summer’s end or you’re already sniffling over missing your little ones, there’s no denying that back-to-school generally means big changes for your kitchen.  I love ideas of for lunches and after-school snacks and I’m posting some of my favorites (courtesy of Food Network) below.

Black Bean Hummus Puree a 15-ounce can drained black beans with 1 garlic clove, 2 tablespoons each lemon juice and tahini, and 1 teaspoon cumin; add water if needed. Season with salt. Serve with crackers or vegetables.

 Apple Moons Slice an apple into crescents. Spread with peanut or almond butter and press granola on top.

 Artichoke-Pesto Bites Mix 1/2 cup each ricotta, chopped artichoke hearts and pesto with 1/4 cup grated parmesan, and salt and pepper. Spread on focaccia and top with mozzarella. Bake 10 minutes at 375 degrees F.

 Granola Bars Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a saucepan with 1/3 cup each honey and brown sugar, and a pinch of salt. Mix in 2 cups rolled oats, 1 cup each chopped nuts and dried fruit, and 2 tablespoons wheat germ. Press into a parchment-lined 8-inch-square pan and bake 30 minutes at 300 degrees F. Cool, then cut into bars.

 Bean Roll-Ups Spread bean dip on a flour tortilla, top with shredded cheddar and roll up. Brush with vegetable oil and bake 10 minutes at 400 degrees F. Serve with salsa.

 Sweet Bagel Chips Slice stale cinnamon-raisin bagels crosswise into thin rounds. Brush the tops with melted butter and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. Bake 10 minutes at 325 degrees F; flip, brush with more butter, sprinkle with more cinnamon sugar and bake 10 more minutes.

 Caramel Popcorn Melt 1/3 cup butter with 1 tablespoon honey and a pinch of salt. Toss with 12 cups popcorn and 1 cup pecans. Spread on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake 15 minutes at 325 degrees F, tossing. Cool.

 Crunchy Chickpeas Cook a 15-ounce can drained chickpeas in an ovenproof skillet with 2 tablespoons olive oil and 1 teaspoon each cumin and smoked paprika, 2 minutes. Season with salt, then bake 20 minutes at 425 degrees F.

 Pizza Pockets Make Jam Pockets (No. 31), but fill with tomato sauce and grated mozzarella and parmesan. Brush with egg and sprinkle with more parmesan before baking. 20 minutes at 400

 Tortellini Kebabs Toss cooked spinach tortellini, grape tomatoes and mini mozzarella balls with pesto, olive oil, salt and pepper. Thread onto skewers.

 Jicama Sticks Peel a jicama; cut into sticks. Toss with lime juice and sprinkle with chopped cilantro, salt, sugar and chili powder.

 Pomegranate Slushies Blend 1/2 cup pomegranate juice and 1 cup strawberries with  2 tablespoons honey or agave and 3 cups ice until slushy. Pour into glasses and top with more juice.

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Posted in: Healthy Kids