This week I was sent to Country Victoria for some fairly last-minute work. I have done a bit of rural work in the past for very short stints (maximum 5 days), and I do love a good Aussie Country town, so I was a little excited when early Wednesday morning I got into my car and headed North.
My destination was Shepparton, where I would spend two days this week and next. I am used to driving fairly long distances, so the 2.5 hour trip didn’t bother me so much. In fact, I was rather excited by the prospect of menu planning…
I thought it may be fun to show you how I plan my food on such trips. Apparently I’m not normal (pffft), and most people don’t go to this much effort to ensure they have food that they enjoy, without having to spend much money. I don’t know, maybe it will take a while before the ‘poor student’ mentality leaves me. In the meantime, I’m happy saving my pennies for special things like travelling overseas (hello USA in 4 weeks time!)
Road Trippin’ Eats
*disclaimer: all photos were taken while the car was stationary. I’m a big advocate of not touching your phone while driving. It’s so dangerous. Don’t do it. That is all.
The night before I left, I made Bircher Muesli (albeit a very quick, no fuss version, as it was rather late and I was tired). I simply mixed Rolled Oats and Sultanas with a dash of Skim Milk and loads of Vanilla Yoghurt. By the time I ate it in the morning the oats had absorbed the yoghurt and the sultanas too, making them super plump and utterly delicious. Usually I add grated apple and chia seeds along with the yoghurt before soaking overnight, and I love to serve it with toasted almond flakes and fresh blueberries. I adore Bircher Muesli.
Wednesday morning I left home at 6:15am, and only drove for 10 minutes before my first stop. For coffee. Naturally.
I was rather impressed with my Skim Latte from McCafe (Don’t judge me! What else is open that early??)
An hour later I ate my Bircher Muesli at a pit stop, a nice way to break up the trip. I think I was somewhere south of Kalkallo (these towns have such Aussie names, don’t they?)
Around 9am I got into Shepparton and headed straight to work. I made sure to pack my food for the day, as I didn’t want to have to waste time driving into the town centre for nourishment.
So, without a lot of time for prep or planning, lunch consisted of Carrots, Cruskits, Tuna and Yoghurt. Random, but it worked. Usually I favour Vita-Weats as a cracker (they’re more nutritious), but I had a packet of Cruskits in the cupboard so I took them instead.
Come the afternoon I was rather ravenous. So some definite snackage took place…
Cute little Apples.
Fresh Dates – nature’s candy, I swear they’re the most delicious sweet ever.
Chicknuts – I’m loving these roasted chickpeas for a crunchy snack. You can find them at Woolworths. I often put them out for nibbles when I have friends over for dinner. They’re a source of protein too (although they’re not low in sodium).
Dinner required a little googling, hoping to find some sort of noodle joint. Noodles Boxes and the like are my never fail Country dining option. While I do like the idea of a good old fashioned Country pub meal (please forgive my excessive stereotyping), the last thing I want to do after a long day is eat out. I much prefer to hop in the shower, throw on my trackies and hoodie, grab some take-out and plop on the bed watching some tv. It’s nice. And you can’t go too wrong with noodles. I always ask for more veggies and tofu than noodles (I never order meat from places like this – too many bad experiences with dodgy, fatty cuts), and stick with soy sauce based sauces, to avoid that “urgh” greasy feeling in my stomach.
Chocolate was also consumed. Koko Black 74% Dark Chocolate, but that didn’t get photographed…it was just eaten.
The next day for breakfast I microwaved some Baked Oatmeal, leftover from my brunch. I served it with beautiful Strawberries, also leftover from said brunch (they were amazing, thanks phe!) and Vanilla Yoghurt.
Lunch was Cruskits, tuna and yoghurt again.
Then after some more work it was home time! A quick stop off in Nagambie on the way for a Tea…
…before devouring my BFF Brownie. It was decidedly smushed after being in by bag all day, but it was still gooooood. Carrots were also munched.
And then I was home…
So there you have it! That is how I do a road trip and a couple of days away from home. All in all I spent $3.25 on my Skim Latte, $14.95 on the noodles (I know, right? Apparently extra veggies costs more…) and $2 on my tea. I feel rather thrifty and fabulous.
I have been informed by many, on numerous occasions, that I am far more keen than most to pack my Bircher Muesli and snacks the night before an early start… Yet I really don’t feel that Road Trippin’ need cost you a bundle and make you to forget healthy habits. It just takes a little motivation, planning and prep, and you’re good to go. Thrifty and fabulous.