SUMMER is here, and this week the kids have a double-whammy of town camp in the morning (something that the locals affectionately call “rec”, where the primary activities are knock-hockey, dodgeball and weaving a thousand lanyard key chains) and nature camp in the afternoon (where the primary activities are hiking, making tie-dye t-shirts and removing ticks). This leaves a small window of time in between sessions for lunch at home, which is a summer ritual that I actually love. It’s so much easier and more interesting to make the kids lunch when they’re around, rather than packing it for school. I pack both Belle and Conor’s lunches every single day for the entire school year, a task that I seriously start to loathe come June (by the last week or so of school, I’m basically throwing pretzels, cheese slices, and raisins in their lunchbox and calling it a day).
When it’s summer and we’re home together during the midday, there’s complete bliss at not having to rush, or hunt for missing thermoses, or clean out the remnants of a turkey sandwich that had been left in the bottom of a lunchbox overnight. Obviously everything is also fresher because it hasn’t been sitting inside of a cubbyhole for four hours before being consumed. You can also make things that you wouldn’t normally dare pack, like tuna sandwiches, or my new favorite, salmon sandwiches wrapped in nori (a sheet of roasted seaweed).
I use leftover grilled salmon or tuna from the night before (making a bit extra so there will be enough left for lunch) that has chilled in the fridge overnight, and then flake it in a bowl and mix it with the following: mayonnaise, lemon or lime juice, a little white or yellow miso, and freshly ground pepper. On top I like to layer some cucumbers that were quickly pickled (peeled and sliced thin, sprinkled with salt, placed in a colander to drain, squeeze out liquid, then put in bowl and cover with rice wine vinegar, add thinly sliced red onion if you’d like), and a sprinkling of toasted sesame seeds for some crunch or my favorite condiment, furikake! I’ll also pour on hot sauce for my own roll, like sriracha or green Tabasco. If you want to go heavier on the roughage then you could also add any kind of raw vegetable that you like, perhaps something from your CSA that’s still kicking around in the crisper like radishes, cilantro stems, or shredded carrots.
Once the roll fillings are placed on the nori then just do a simple sushi roll log (as seen above) and “voila!”âa summer salmon sandwich-roll that should never be jammed into a lunchbox but is perfect between camp runs.