Sunday, November 7, 2010

What do You Mean You are STILL Hungry???? Some friendly neighbourhood tips on feeding a hungry teen.

Keeping enough food in the house to feed a rapidly growing almost 15 year old boy is tough.  Not only can it be expensive but it is a never ending job.  After school snacks are more like a first dinner.  Snacks after baseball practice have turned into just another meal.  I swear he would eat in his sleep if he could. When I tell you that my boy is a big guy, what I mean is that he is tall.  He towers over me.  If I need something from the top shelf, which is waaay out of my reach, I just call my son.   At the tender young age of 14, he is already over 6 feet tall....he doesn't get that from me.

Between baseball workouts, growth spurts, and his seemingly bottomless stomach, we have been looking for ways to keep him full.  Lucky for us, our son will give anything a try and is not a picky eater.  He loves sandwiches.  Actually, I think that is an understatement....he LOVES sandwiches.  The only problem with sandwiches is that deli meat is not only expensive but it is loaded with nitrates, sodium, and any number of other additives.  Lucky for us, today was grocery shopping day!

Today while shopping, outside round roasts were on sale.  We snagged a nice size roast for little money, rubbed it up with flavour and slow roasted it in the oven.  We will slice it up with the deli slicer and voila: sandwiches for lunches and snacks.  Of course it does take a little more than a great deal on a roast to feed a ravenous teen ager for a week.

Since I do enjoy baking and my son enjoys eating the results of my baking, yesterday I had a bakery day in my kitchen.  It really is a perfect match. I made a double batch of honey seeded buns and a double batch of pretzel rolls.  Both of these will help keep the food costs down for the week.  He can make a quick bunwich (or 3), have a piece of fruit and get on with his day.

 Tips for feeding hungry teens:
  • Shop the sales!  Buy a roast or chicken or which ever is on sale and plan the weeks lunches and snacks around that.
  • Cook your sale meat items to your liking and slice.  The kids will be more likely to use it up if it is already sliced and easy to access.  
  • Freeze excessive amounts in 1 or 2 sandwich portions for easy thawing and sandwich making.
  • bake your bread or buns at home, if possible.  If not, keep the freezer stocked with:
    • buns
    • tortillas
    • pitas
    • flatbreads
    • anything to make a sandwich or a wrap
  • keep a basket in the fridge with approved sandwich fixings (helps keep kids away from things you are wanting to use for other meals):
    • mayo
    • mustard
    • cheeses
    • dressings or spreads of choice
    • washed lettuce (also great for salads on the go) I like to buy the giant bag of prewashed lettuce to keep on hand so my son can make a quick cesar salad.
  • keep another basket with pieces of fruit or other pre portioned snack items that are solely for the purpose of snacking and lunches.  Ours tends to include:
    • apples
    • oranges
    • baggies of carrot sticks
    • yogurt cups
    • baggies of other cut fruit (melon, pineapple)
    • baggies of grapes, cherries
(These baskets are also a great way to get teens to make their own lunches for school.  Just keep them stocked and get input from the kids so you know what to buy)

Peppered Roast Beef

Pre heat the oven to 250 degrees F. (This temperature can change depending on what type of roast you have purchased.  Some roasts cook up better in a low temperature oven.)

Today I used an outside round roast.  Take it out of the fridge to come to room temperature while you assemble the rub.

Make a rub to season the roast.  Today I used:
  • 2 tbsp black pepper (fresh ground)
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (or to taste)
Rub the pepper mixture all over the roast, don't miss any part of the roast.  This rub will make a nice peppery crust on the outside of the roast.

Place the roast in a roasting pan, stick in a thermometer, and cover with foil.

Roast in the oven until medium on your thermometer (or medium rare, if that is how you like it).

Allow the roast to cool before you slice it.  This not only allows the juices to redistribute but allows the crust to settle on the roast.

Slice to desired thickness and start making sandwiches!!

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