Lettuce Lunch

Vegetarian

Lunchbox: Grapefruit Tart

Grapefruit tart lunchbox

When you think of lunch boxes, the meal you usually associate it with is, well… lunch. You might just get away with a breakfast box to get you moving, or a dinner box full of last night’s leftovers,┬áso why is it so taboo to have a lunchbox entirely dedicated to dessert? Well, the practical amongst you might say ‘you won’t have long lasting energy or feel full for long’. To them, all I can say is ‘that’s absolutely true, good point’. But hey, just this once we’re doing it anyway. Don’t tell anyone yeah – this can be our little secret. Presenting, the grapefruit tart lunchbox!

Grapefruit tart lunchbox

So here we have it – the grapefruit tart. Tangy grapefruit curd in a short pastry – what’s not to love! Sprinkled with pistachio and laid out on a bed of chocolate soil, this lunchbox is sure to take people’s breath away when they see it; I know Amy sure got a surprise when she opened it up and found this staring back at her! If you’ve got that cute little pastel grapefruit tart and the baked chocolate soil happening, you may as well go the whole way and make it a little garden to sit in! Decorate as necessary with leaves and flowers, cover with pistachios for a beautiful little crunch, add some honeyed fig for a sweet finisher, then pair with some palette cleansing buddies like the raspberries and mint and you’re all set!

  • Grapefruit curd, short pastry, grapefruit, pistachio
  • Fig, honeycomb, cream, raspberries, mint
  • Chocolate soil, star anise

Lunchbox: Vegetable Dippers

vegetable dippers

Vegetable dippers! Unlike my last lunchbox, the pumpkin soup, which was wholly unsuitable for kids due to fundamental ‘oh my gosh it’s spilling everywhere!’ issues, here we have the opposite end of the spectrum – kids love dipping stuff! Heck, who doesn’t right? Amy isn’t a kid, and she sure loved it ha ha. The idea here is, you’ve got a whole bunch of crunchy, yummy bits and pieces that you can combo with sauces or wrap in leaves and crunch with capsicum until your heart is content. Healthy and fun, what’s not to love!

vegetable dippers

So let’s take a look at the lineup! From left to right, we have teriyaki tofu. Just chop up some tofu and press the moisture out, then soak it overnight in teriyaki sauce. A quick trip to the oven (it can piggyback off the roast potatoes when you put them in, doesn’t need long) and it will be beautiful and sticky and just yummy. Cover it with sesame seeds and you’re all set on the tofu front. NEXT, roast potatoes! Really, no introduction necessary here. Crunchy, golden, awesome. Carrots are here to bring a fresh crunch to the whole thing, and the capsicum on the end, even more so. It sort of goes from heavier to lighter, so mix it up.

Sauces are kewpie mayo (they do a vegan mayo too, use that one!), peanut butter (you can mix it with a little sesame to give it a more liquid, dippable consistency, and spicy sriracha + chilli for some kick. And that’s it! What a lunch!

PS: After I was done photographing, I loaded a whole bunch more dippers in there – a girl has got to eat! She ended up with about double the pictured amount in total ­čśé

  • Teriyaki tofu, sesame seeds, roast potatoes, carrot, rep mini capsicum, spinach, lime
  • Sriracha, red chilli, peanut butter, peanuts, vegan kewpie mayo, cucumber

Lunchbox: Crouton Pumpkin soup

Crouton Pumpkin soup lunchbox

Presenting the crunchy crouton pumpkin soup lunchbox! Once again pushing the boundaries of what should realistically be placed in a lunchbox with open compartments. I would recommend keeping this one upright, otherwise you may be greeted with pumpkin coated strawberries for lunch. Maybe I should embrace that in a future box – a lunchbox where all the elements are designed to be super complementary┬áso you can just shake it up and you’ll have some crazy soup-vegetable-salad combination, but everything just works. It could┬ábe a thing! That said, this soup was way thick and didn’t leak out under the compartments, making it a breeze to pack compared to the acai bowls! If you’re feeling brave, give it a go ­čśé

Crouton Pumpkin soup lunchbox

Pumpkin soup is of course the hero here, but we toasted some bread to give it some crunch, fried up some little diced potato bits for more crunch, then figured we’d throw on some roasted pumpkin seeds, for uh… well, more crunch, actually. It’s a fairly crunchy bowl. It is the crunchy crouton pumpkin soup bowl, after all! Another thing to remember, is that fried sage is essential here. Oh and the roasted pumpkin seeds were from the pumpkin that we made the soup from, so you don’t need to throw them out – they make anaamazing snack if you roast them in a little bit of oil and paprika. Highly recommended. Finish with some fresh fruits and a little salad and you’re good to go!

  • Roast pumpkin, roast sweet potato, soy milk, garlic, vegetable stock, onion, greek yoghurt, potato bits, croutons, roasted pumpkin seeds, fried sage
  • Cherries, strawberries, pomegranate
  • Red cabbage, pistachios, lemon

Lunchbox: Portobello Pizza

Portobello pizza lunchbox

Delicious pizza – the eternal dilemma. Pizza tastes incredible, that is an immutable fact of the universe. But it’s also not very healthy, so you want to eat it, but then you also don’t at the same time. My head hurts already. The thing is, your standard pizza wouldn’t be so bad if it wasn’t for the base, the sauce, the cheese, and the toppings. If you take out all that junk you have a perfectly healthy… oh. I see the issue now. Let’s see if we can take the old adage of ‘swap, don’t stop’ and make something great here. Portobello pizza, when it comes to guilt free pizza eating, you’re our only hope.

Portobello pizza luncbox

The first thing you’ll notice is yep, it’s a portobello mushroom. We did say it was a portobello pizza! You won’t find any high carb bases here – just mushroom deliciousness. It gives a lovely savoury, umami flavoured foundation to get things moving and has such a unique texture. Next, just find an organic or no-sugar tomato paste that you like and go to town.

BONUS SAUCE HINT: the tomato paste sauce will taste even better if you mix in some dry Italian herbs, loads of garlic paste and smoked paprika before putting it on your pizza – the flavours will carry through every bite – never a dull moment, we promise.

Toppings are of course, up to you. Olives being a perennial pizza favourite! Add whatever you like, it’s your pizza. Lastly, cheese. The trick with that is, if you don’t add any, you’ve still got a really tasty meal and you don’t get all that oil slick thing happening. Trust me, you won’t miss it. Vegan pizzas, woo! Put it in the oven for a couple of minutes and it’s all done! Pair it with a kalette and pea salad, then some coconut yoghurt and you’re all good to go – and all in less time than it takes for delivery. Healthy, filling, fast – great work, you!

  • Portobello mushroom, tomato paste, garlic paste, smoked paprika, Italian mixed herbs, tomato, capsicum, red onion, red chilli, olives, dill
  • Coconut yoghurt, nectarines, muesli, toasted coconut
  • Peas, kalettes, brown rice