Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Heart Shaped Carrot and Zucchini Tarts for School Lunchboxes

This morning I packed 8 lunchboxes in 20 minutes and felt slightly pushed for time.The reason being I am not a winter person and waking up at 5am proves most challenging when there is no hint of sunlight. Every morning I seem to steal another 5 minutes until I find myself under pressure like today. The first think Kelsey says to me when she climbs into the car after school is "Mom I'm starving, have you got something for me to eat." At first, I thought that I was not packing enough substance into the school lunchboxes until it dawned on me that Kelsey is quite active at school and rarely finds the time to sit still and empty the contents of her lunchbox - this explains the daily starvation. I ensure each coolerbox is packed with an ice pack to preserve freshness everyday, but after 7 hours somehow the lunchboxes lose their "fresh" appeal. The reason being not so much due to the temperature control but more the wear and tear they have to endure daily tilted on top of the wheelie bags to free up hands for sports bags and other bits and pieces. I started making frequent trips to "Woolworths"en route to school everyday to grab a quick snack in preparation for the words "I'm starving!". Quite soon my grocery bill almost doubled, and the quality of the food I was resorting to for lack of better choice was extremely poor. It is actually quite frightning how little healthy choices are available when you start opting for fast food. So it has taken quite a few weeks for me to realise that I now need to prepare 8 lunchboxes every morning, keep two on ice and reach for them prior to my afternoon rounds. How will I survive the winter at this rate?

Pictured above some heart-shaped carrot and zucchini tarts prepared the night before, orange wedges, baby tomatoes, crinkly cut carrot fingers  and heart shaped green peppers. The carrot and zucchini batter whipped up in my Thermomix in less than 2 minutes. What a machine! It cooks, it makes sorbets and ice-creams, dips, kneads your bread dough, weighs, blends, mills, grinds and virtually cleans itself too. What did I do without it before? Drop me an email if you would like to see this piece of german ingenuity in action at one of my weekly cookery dems. Here is the recipe for you to try, please adapt it if you haven't yet discovered the TM31.

Carrot and Zucchini Tarts
Yields: 9 Servings
350 g Zucchini cubed
100 g cheese cubed
5 eggs
80 g olive oil
2 small carrots
1 large onion quartered and roughly cut
50 g cornflour
70 g wholehweat flour
10 ml baking powder
5 ml rosemary leaves
3 cloves garlic
3 cm piece of ginger
1 red capsicum roughly cut
Salt & pepper


Place cheese into the TM bowl and grate for 3-5 seconds on speed 6. Set aside.
Place onion, ginger and garlic into the TM bowl and chop for 4 seconds on speed 6. Saute for 1 minute at 100C on speed 1.
Place zucchini and capsicum into the TM bowl and grate for 3-5 seconds on speed 6.
Place carrots into the TM bowl and chop for 10 seconds on speed 8.
Add all other ingredients into the TM bowl and mix for 10-15 seconds on speed 4. Use spatula to scrape down the sides of the bowl.
Bake in a well greased ceramic dish or shapes of your choice in a moderate oven for 30-40 minutes or until golden brown.
Great to eat warm or serve cold for picnics or lunchboxes.

More quiche like ideas for your school lunchbox.

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