Mister Man was in a cooking competition on Saturday through our school district. The food service provider was sponsoring a healthy recipe contest (oh the irony!) where 4th and 5th graders were invited to create sandwich recipes. Needless to say, my budding chef leapt at the opportunity. I was so proud of him at the district finals where he prepared his sweet protein sandwich, and he’s already preparing to enter next year’s contest – as is Little Miss.
This was a sandwich he truly came up with all on his own. Granted, I did help him a little bit, but that’s only because I vetoed his first option: salami and pineapple. Once I pointed out that this may not be such a popular option with most people, he started brainstorming other ideas before coming up with this sandwich. It is definitely not one I ever would have dreamed up on my own, but he did and I can vouch for the fact that it’s pretty tasty!
He’s been practicing this sandwich repeatedly, ever since he submitted his recipe to his school and found out that his creation was one of two finalists from his school to compete at the district level. I love how he got creative and made a strawberry garnish because he felt the plate needed a little something “extra.”
The trick to making the sandwich work is cutting your apples fairly thin and the strawberries just a bit thicker. He got really good at that at home using my sharp knives (under my supervision always), but it took reminders a few times. Unfortunately, the competition wasn’t quite so easy. He was flustered when they put out his ingredients and his Nutella came out in chunks because they had refrigerated it, and it was hard as a rock. We finally got them to microwave it so that he could spread it, but that was a challenge for him to adjust to (hello, autism). He pulled off the leaves of his strawberry garnish because he completely lost his focus, and there was nothing I could do to help him get back on track but watch. Couple that with the fact that they gave them “child safe” knives (read: dull butter knives) to use, and we knew there was no way he’d win – have you ever tried to cut apples with a butter knife? thinly? – but he had a blast competing and showing off his sandwich, and that’s all that matters to us.
In the end, he won a bronze medal and a plaque for his entry. Granted, everyone who made the finals won a bronze medal, but who cares? His sandwich was definitely one of the most creative and judges gave feedback that they would have scored him much higher had he cut his fruit thinner, but again – he had so much fun, and we aren’t complaining, especially when we get to go home and eat this sandwich again and again.
Sweet Protein Sandwich
2 slices sourdough bread
2 t Nutella
2 t flax seeds
1 Granny Smith apple
1 quality red apple (something with good flavor – not a Red Delicious)
Remove the hull from your strawberries. Slice them about a quarter of an inch thick, lengthwise. Slice your apples as thinly as you can. You’ll want 4 or so slices of each apple.
Spread the Nutella on one slice of bread and sprinkle with flax seeds. Press strawberries gently into the sandwich, then top with apple slices.
Place the second slice of bread atop the first and cut the sandwich in half for easy eating. Garnish with another strawberry for fun, if you so choose.
This sandwich is one invented by my 10 year old son for a cooking competition. It's surprisingly tasty and actually fairly healthy!
- 2 slices sourdough bread
- 2 t Nutella
- 2 t flax seeds
- 2 strawberries
- 1 Granny Smith apple
- 1 quality red apple (something with good flavor - not a Red Delicious)
- Remove the hull from your strawberries. Slice them about a quarter of an inch thick, lengthwise. Slice your apples as thinly as you can. You'll want 4 or so slices of each apple.
- Spread the Nutella on one slice of bread and sprinkle with flax seeds. Press strawberries gently into the sandwich, then top with apple slices.
- Place the second slice of bread atop the first and cut the sandwich in half for easy eating. Garnish with another strawberry for fun, if you so choose.