In Sweden, we have one week off from school around late February, and this particular break is referred to as “Sports break”. Needless to say, it’s a break where everyone typically takes to the outdoors and goes skiing, ice skating etc.
My own sport breaks meant a loaded car, half a backpack full of tapes (my brother and I had a large collection to listen to during the ride) and everyone’s eyes set on a week up north. When finally there, we’d normally spend half the week downhill skiing and half the week cross-country skiing, and for breakfast, we were allowed to have as much store-bought, sweetened granola as we wanted. Dinners were wonderfully simple and widely popular among us kids – fish fingers and mashed potatoes, meatballs and pasta, and pancakes right, left and center. No prestige, no expectations. Instead, we popped into the local grocery store in colorful ski jackets and blushed cheeks every late afternoon to pick up whatever felt quick and easy after a full day outside.
And if you weren’t lucky enough to score a waffle with cloudberry jam for lunch (a Swedish classic), you could count on being satisfied anyway. Sandwiches, raisins, chocolate bars and fruit came flying out of either dad’s semi-dated backpack or mom’s massive fanny pack (one for the books), and I’ll forever remember exactly how little deep frozen chocolate tastes, and how you had to warm it up in your mouth first. These are wonderful memories for me. They make me happy in every fiber of my body, and it makes me smile, just thinking about all those weeks spent skiing through beautiful landscapes and the intention being nothing but enjoying ourselves, having a good time, breathing fresh air and spending time together. My dream is for my own children to look back at their sports breaks the same way I do.
And now over to the sports break lunch sandwiches. I grew up with butter and cheese, and truth to be told, both Mike and I do have a weak spot for this utmost traditional combination. But if you want to spice things up a bit (figuratively, not literally) – and turn the whole thing into a plant-based feast – we’ve put together three different sandwich wraps we’d happily have for lunch every day, whether at home or sitting on a mountain top somewhere. We’ve used flatbreads here, simply because the wrap-format is so practical when out and about, but the fillings work equally well with any type of bread, of course.
Regardless if you have any skiing planned in the next few weeks or if you can’t even comprehend what outdoor winter activities mean, it’s always a good idea to move your body somewhere out in nature – and the whole thing tends to get even better when allowed to bring a packed lunch. In other words, treat yourself to a little outdoor expedition – including a yummy sandwich – sometime in February. You can’t go grow with that. Enjoy!
PS. Both spreads can preferably be made in advance for even easier morning prep.
För recept på svenska, klicka här: 3 goda veganska fyllningar till tunnbrödswraps
Hummus, pickled red onions and carrot ribbons
Pickled red onions
2 medium red onions (~200 g), cut in half and then thinly sliced
1 1/2 dl white wine or apple cider vinegar (or a mix of both)
1 1/2 dl water
1 1/2 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp salt
3 large garlic cloves, peeled
~7 dl cooked chickpeas (460 g or 2 tetras), rinsed and drained
4 tbsp lemon juice
4 tbsp canola oil
5 tbsp tahini
4 tbsp warm water
1 large garlic clove, roughly chopped
1/2 tsp salt
2-3 medium carrots
6-8 flatbread wraps
Optional: sesame seeds
- Start with the pickled onions by placing the thinly sliced onions in a glass jar (any airtight, food grade container will do, but we prefer glass because it doesn’t hold smell). Choose a container that you’ll more or less fill up over one where you’ll only fill up the bottom. For this, a 5 dl/pint size jar is appropriate. In a small saucepan, stir together water, vinegar(s), salt and sugar. Add in garlic cloves and bring the mixture to a boil. Remove from the heat. Pour the hot liquid into the jar, filling up so it covers the onions entirely. Screw on a lid and allow to cool before placing it in the fridge (energy saving measure – in the winter, we always put food items to cool outside before placing them in the fridge).
- Place all ingredients for the hummus in a food processor (or bowl, if using a stick blender) and blend until smooth.
- Make carrot ribbons with the help of a vegetable peeler.
- Assemble sandwich wraps by spreading a layer of hummus across the bread and topping with carrot ribbons, pickled red onions and an optional sprinkle of sesame seeds. Roll up.
Peanut butter and apple slices
6-8 flatbread wraps
~2 dl salted peanut butter (or more if you’re like us and can’t get enough)
2 medium crisp apples, cut into slices
Optional: dash of cinnamon, sprinkle of flake salt
- Spread peanut butter across the bread, top with apple slices and add optional dash of cinnamon and/or sprinkle of flake salt. Roll up.
White bean-parsley spread with pea shoots
White bean spread
1 dl (~50 g) raw sunflower seeds, soaked for 3-4 hrs*
~6 1/2 dl cooked white beans (460 g or 2 tetras), rinsed and drained
2 tbsp canola oil
1 tbsp tahini
2 tbsp warm water
2 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
2 dl chopped fresh or frozen parsley
1/2 tsp salt
6-8 flatbread wraps
A pile of pea shoots or other greens
- First, drain the sunflower seeds. Then place them in a food processor (or bowl, if using a stick blender) together with beans, canola oil, tahini, water and lemon juice. Blend until entirely smooth. Stir in red onion, parsley, salt and a good amount of black pepper.
- Assemble by spreading the white bean spread across the bread and topping with pea shoots or greens of your choice. Roll up.
*If you don’t have the time, you can pour boiling water over the seeds and let them soak in that for 30 min. Some nutritional value might get lost, but you got to do what you got to do.