Once a week for many years, we’ve had what we call an Amish Lunch or Finger Food Lunch. This meal, which consists of, you guessed it – finger foods – was a concept we were first introduced to while reading The Amish Cook syndicated column in a local newspaper. The Amish Cook would talk about her daily activities as well as the meals they were having, and often, one of those meals was this very simple, yet delicious finger food concept – thus, the reason we have always called it an “Amish Lunch”. This type of meal always sounded so yummy and easy, so I began to brainstorm how we could incorporate it into our homeschool lunch menu.
Lunch for the Busy Homeschool Mom
Homeschool moms have a lot on their hands – especially around lunch time. It is VERY difficult to break away from studies and make time to eat, let alone make time to cook. Most homeschool moms I know choose to make very easy lunch meals or use up leftovers. The Amish concept of a finger food lunch fits in perfectly with these!
While you can certainly plan to buy specific foods to have for your Finger Food Lunch, you can also simply use up foods in your refrigerator and pantry that meet the finger food criteria. Serve them on plates and platters and let everyone dig in. You could even get fancy and give them toothpicks to choose their foods – but then again, toothpicks might end up being used as swords…or is that just my household?
Ideas for Finger Food Lunches
Meats – deli, summer sausage, hamburger patties, pepperonis, Canadian bacon, etc.
Cheeses – cheese wedges, string cheese, cheese slices or cubes, etc.
Cut Veggies – carrots, celery, cucumbers, tomatoes, jicama, cauliflower, broccoli, etc.
Fruits – grapes, apples, oranges, strawberries, kiwi, cantaloupe, blueberries, bananas, etc.
Pickled foods – beets, olives, onions, cucumbers, you might even want to try my pickled green beans!
Dips – this Autumn, try my Caramel Apple Dip!
Nuts – at Christmas time, we like to have Sugar-Coasted Roasted Nuts - YUM!
Breads - see my Large Family Recipes page for some of our favorite bread recipes!
Drinks – water is easy, but we like to do homemade lemonade because I have a daughter who really enjoys making it for the family!
Megan’s Famous Homemade Lemonade
2 cups of sugar (or comparable sweetener)
2 cups of lemon juice
1 gallon of water
Mix all ingredients well in a gallon pitcher. Watch it disappear!
I have a friend who calls this type of meal Snack Lunch; however, one complaint she has about it is that it does not seem to stick with her kids, and they are soon hungry again. I have a couple of suggestions to remedy this:
1. Be sure you have put enough food and enough caloric density on the platter. You may want to add popcorn, denser breads, and plenty of meat and cheese to your platter. Maybe you have a great roasted garbanzo bean recipe or you’ve made some savory oyster crackers – throw those in the mix!
2. Have your Finger Food Lunch on a day when you are able to have a heavier snack or an early dinner. Finger Foods may not be a good choice if you are going to be out all day shopping with the kids. It all depends on #1. If you can’t pull together a more caloric dense lunch, then save those lunches for days when you are home and snack time will be some homemade yummy or when dinner time will be early.
So, what would you put on your Finger Food Lunch platter?