This lunchbox is much better than soggy sandwiches and room-temperature juice boxes.
Take a look inside LuLu's Lunchbox, the casual eatery at 4022 University Ave., Suite 12, in Columbus. The restaurant offers a diverse menu and is popular among everyone from college students to professionals on a lunch break.
Watching your weight? Try one of the popular salads at LuLu's. Want to indulge? It's hard to resist the chili dogs on the menu.
Crafting a mouth-watering menu wasn't too difficult for the restaurant's co-owners, Melissa Low and Robert Malcom.
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Melissa told us she's had a longtime interest in cooking. Her advice for anyone experimenting with recipes? "Use the freshest ingredients that you can," she said. "Taste everything that you make."
Since LuLu's Lunchbox offers a variety of healthy options, it's a great dining destination for local vegetarians. "Just because it's healthy doesn't mean that it has to taste bad," Melissa said.
Melissa and Robert recently shared three recipes with us: chicken salad, easy eggs and cheesy creamy grits. Make the eggs and grits on the same morning and you'll have a "20-minute Easter brunch for a crew," Melissa said.
Haven't mastered the art of making chicken salad? "The key is always the chicken," Melissa said, advising at-home cooks to focus on seasoning the meat.
LuLu's Chicken Salad
4-5 chicken breasts (slightly over-seasoned and slow-roasted)
1 apple, cored and diced
3 celery stalks
1/4 cup crushed pecans
1/3 cup olive oil mayo
1/2 cup LuLu's ginger sauce (available at the restaurant)
Finely chop all ingredients and blend together. Salt and pepper are optional, though Melissa and Robert use neither. Makes 6-8 sandwiches.
adjust according to how many people you're serving
Spray a muffin pan with extra virgin olive oil. Place a sliced mushroom, halved cherry tomato and basil in each shell. Crack an egg inside each stuffed shell and bake at 350 for 12-15 minutes depending on how done you prefer your yolks.
They pop right out of the muffin pan and store easily for "on the go" breakfasts.
Cheesy creamy grits
Prepare grits depending on how many servings you need. For a 4-6 serving recipe, add these ingredients:
1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup fresh grated Gouda cheese
1/4 cup fresh grated Italian blend cheese
Salt, pepper and butter to taste