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Publisher Description

It started with a rant about muesli bars marketed as suitable for kids’ lunchboxes or snacks. Muesli bars are so aggressively marketed, but in reality they are overpackaged, overprocessed, overpriced, full of corn syrup and transfats, made from cheap and nasty ingredients with a long shelf life.

And yet, when you are frantically trying to put together a marginally healthy lunch that will actually get eaten, you can be forgiven for whacking a muesli bar in there.

The Muesli Bar Challenge was my bet that I could bake easy, fast, lunchbox treats that were healthy, real food and acceptable to kids. It was a year-long series of recipes, one in every week of school term, reviewed by a team of school age reviewers ranging from kindergarten to high school. Their brief was to take my challenger to school each week and rate it for how it tasted, how well it satisfied hungriness, and how it rated in trade value with their friends. The rules were that the Challenger must be healthy enough for everyday food, that is, no corn syrup or transfats, little sugar and fat, mostly wholegrains, and based on fresh in-season ingredients. It also had to be quick and easy enough to make that it is actually a realistic option for busy parents (or kids themselves).

The Challenger won every single week of the Muesli Bar Challenge. These are the recipes that went to school in a lunch box, never came home in the lunch box, and were rated by the reviewers as preferable to a muesli bar in every way.

Food & Drink
January 6
Linda Woodrow