Strawberries & A Summer Snack Pack...
Nothing says summer like a crate full of fresh strawberries in the fridge! One of my favorite things to do in the summer is to go to a nearby strawberry field for hand-picked strawberries. These sweet and tasty little treats are a far cry from the ginormous, waterlogged and tasteless strawberries sold in most grocery stores. The boys love it when I come home with a bucket of berries and they love the goodies I make with them such as; strawberry smoothies, strawberry popsicles, strawberry fruit leather....lots of strawberry goodness. But most of all, they love eating them straight out of the bucket which makes them a great "quick and easy" snack on hot summer days.
Speaking of snacks, at the beginning of the summer I knew I needed to find a solution to the snack situation. The summer season is the busiest time of the year for me with my job and we also spend as much time as we can at our cabin. Between my work and traveling to the cabin it is VERY easy to fall into the convenience trap when it came to snacks if I don't plan ahead. With the boys running in and out between bike rides, practices and friend's houses and me immersed in work it's easy to lose track of what the kids are eating on any given day. So on busy days at home or when we're up north at the cabin I've been putting together little snack packs in the morning. These little packs are filled with a variety of snacks the boys can enjoy throughout the day. When the boys need a little something between meals they know they can go to their snack pack and grab whatever they want and I don't have to stop what I'm doing to get snacks ready. The boys know the snack pack is their snack for the day so they don't eat everything at once. Typically they pick one thing out of their snack pack and leave the rest in the refrigerator. When they come back for another snack they have whatever is left in their snack pack to choose from. This has been a great system for us and the boys love having the variety to choose from when it's snack time.
Here are a few pictures from our local strawberry field:
Today's snack pack includes: strawberries, a chocolate "Twinkie" (recipe below), Wisconsin cheese curds, carrots, energy bar (recipe below)
"Twinkie" (recipe from Maria)...you can click on her name and read some really interesting facts about this traditional kid's snack:
1/4 cup coconut flour
1/4 tsp Celtic sea salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/3 cup Truvia (or erythritol and 1/2 tsp stevia glycerite)
1/2 TBS vanilla
1/4 cup butter or coconut oil
CHOCOLATE OPTION: add 3 TBS cocoa powder
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, mix all the dry ingredients and then start adding all the wet ingredients to the dry mix. Blend until it is light and fluffy. Grease the Twinkie pan (click HERE to purchase on amazon.com) (or cupcake pan if you don't have a Twinkie pan). Pour the batter into the pan and fill 3/4 to the top. Bake for 11-12 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Remove from oven to cool completely.
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/8 cup Truvia (or a few drops of stevia glycerite)
Whip the cream until light and fluffy, add in the sweetener. Place the cream in adecorator tool or a ziplock bag with a hole cut into the corner and fill cakes in three areas along the bottom of the cake.
No-Bake Energy Bar (also from Maria)...again she has GREAT information about what makes these a great snack option:
1 cup raw sunflower seeds
1 cup raw pecans
4 TBS Coconut Oil
1/2 cup coconut flour
4 TBS Truvia or Erythritol
1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds
2-4 TBS natural peanut butter
1 TBS vanilla extract
Dried, shredded unsweetened coconut
4 TBS coconut oil
8 TBS cocoa powder
2-3 TBS Truvia
Grind up 1 cup of sunflower seeds and the cup of pecans in food processor or coffee grinder and pour into bowl. Add coconut oil, coconut flour, sweetener, almond butter, vanilla flavoring, 1/2 cup sunflower seeds and mix all together. Pour into square casserole dish and press mixture down firmly.
In small saucepan, melt 4 tablespoons coconut oil and mix in cocoa and sweetener until thickened. Pour chocolate sauce on top and sprinkle with shredded coconut. Refrigerate for about 25-35 minutes. Cut up into squares and enjoy!