The new school term is here, causing anxiety among those of us with kids going to nursery, kindergarten or Year One. Can they cope with this new phase in their lives, will they make friends, can they follow SOPs and for many Asian parents, the important question of what will they eat at nursery, kindergarten and school?
Back-to-school Bento lunch boxes are an essential tool for busy parents who want to ensure that their little ones are getting healthy, well-balanced and preferably organic meals from an early age.
Alce Nero, a leader in organic food including, pasta, pasta sauces, honey, jams, olive oil and apple cider vinegar among others is here to help parents with nine simple tips to make back-to-school Bento boxes a breeze.
The case for switching over to a more organic diet especially for kids is strong as these foods are absent of chemicals from pesticides. Research suggests that even low levels of pesticide exposure in an extended period can affect young children’s neurological and behavioral development, with evidence showing links between pesticide exposure to neonatal reflexes, psychomotor and mental development, and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder.
Alce Nero’s Organic Kid’s Pasta are incredibly delicious. They comes in a mix of naturally coloured and flavoured pasta using tomato and spinach that sneaks in the goodness of vegetables and fibre, a plus for parents of fussy eaters. It is bronze drawn for a rougher and more porous pasta, ideal for sauce absorption. Made using organically grown durum wheat, it is a source of fibre that leaves you feeling full for longer, and helps keep intestines functioning optimally.
Parents love the organic goodness, convenience and taste of Alce Nero Organic Kid’s Pastas. Not surprisingly Alce Nero Kid Pasta Sports Shape received a 5 Star Rating, the highest rating possible, on Motherhood Malaysia.
Alce Nero Organic Pastas contain no preservatives or artificial substances such as sugars. These pastas are made in Italy to be low in fat and sodium, high in protein and are a good source of dietary fibre.
Now on to the tips!
1. Start with A Base That Kids Love – Pasta
The majority of kids love pasta. Pastas can be prepared in numerous ways to suit your child’s preference. Savoury, sweet, spicy and even air-fried as a healthy Bento box snack!
2. Prep Ahead, Leftovers Included
Cook up a larger than required dinner, so that there will be enough to pack for the next day’s lunch. Alce Nero Organic Pasta is an excellent choice as it refrigerates well and reheats. Fill the Bento boxes before serving dinner, then refrigerate. In the morning add sauce to pasta and microwave, then add fresh fruit; carrot, cucumber or celery sticks and some cherry tomatoes, a small pack of raisins or other sweet treat in their individual compartments or use cupcake cases or lettuce leaves as separators. Quick, healthy, delicious, organic and almost too pretty to eat!
3. Cuteness Encourages Appetite
Picky eaters can be encouraged to eat just a little bit more with cute food. Alce Nero Organic Kids’ Pasta comes in the shape of alphabets, vehicles and sports equipment that are visually arresting. The pastas includes dehydrated organic spinach for green shapes, and dehydrated organic tomato for orangey red shapes. Depending on your child’s interest they will love playing with and eating their favourite pasta shapes in their Bento box. With some practice you will have the skills to create Insta-worthy Bento boxes. Personalize their Bento box lunch by spelling their name using alphabet pasta. The young, and the young at heart will both love this little touch.
4. Make It Saucy
Kids love pasta with tomato sauce in their Bento boxes. Prepare Alce Nero Organic Kids’ Pasta according to the instruction, and at the same time warm up Alce Nero Pasta Tomato Sauce in a pan. Depending on your child’s tolerance for organic vegetables and proteins, add what they like, then combine the pasta with the pasta sauce. Grate some cheese over this tasty delight, and its ready. Another Bento lunch box done and dusted.
5. Get Creative
Have you tried making dessert pasta salad? Cook up a serving of Alce Nero Organic Fun Shapes pasta, toss with Alce Nero organic honey, flaked almonds or other nuts, raisins or dried cranberries, sweetcorn kernels and some diced cucumber or celery. Top with cherry tomatoes or strawberries. Add a creatively sliced boiled egg on the side. A balanced, colourful, cute and tasty Bento box for kids who cannot handle spicy food.
6. Portion Control and A Nutritionally Balanced Bento Box
Kids tend to eat smaller meals than adults, but their meals need to be well balanced. The Malaysian Healthy Plate by the Ministry of Health recommends that a meal comprise of half vegetables and fruits, a quarter of protein and a quarter of carbohydrates. An easy way to portion kids’ meals is to get a well-proportioned kids’ Bento box, and not overfill the compartments.
7. Scale Up For The Entire Family
With the cost of eating out increasing and most of us back at work as the country enters the COVID-19 endemicity stage, organic Bento boxes for the entire family are a great idea. It helps the family eat healthier, more balanced organic meals, saves on costs and you do not need to worry about the provenance of your meal.
The brand’s farm-to-table concept is made possibly working with its network of organic farmers, making the produce much healthier. The brand’s extensive line of authentic Italian organic produce is 100% organic certified by European Union law and by JAS organic agriculture in Japan.
Malaysian parents can use Alce Nero products with confidence as it is certified Halal by official certification bodies recognized by JAKIM.
Alce Nero products including the Alce Nero Kids’ Pastas are available at AEON, Ben’s Cold Storage, Giant, Jaya Grocer, Village Grocer, TF Value and via the Ayam Brand Shopee Official Store (https://shopee.com.my/ayambrandofficialstore ) & Ayam Brand Lazada Official Store (https://www.lazada.com.my/shop/ayambrandofficialstore/)
For more wholesome, unique and organic recipes that you and your little ones can enjoy together, please visit https://alcenero.asia/recipes.html and Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/AlceNeroMalaysia/.