Saturday, December 18, 2010


Baby spinach is so easy to grow and can be continuously harvested all year round. I am having great success with it in my little garden patch, and for some reason, the snails and slugs are avoiding it too!

High in iron, calcium, beta carotene, vitamin C, riboflavin, and folic acid. But unfortunately, the bioavailability of calcium and iron in spinach is quite low. This is because spinach is also high in oxalates that bind to the minerals, preventing their absorption.

High in fibre and low in calories, spinach makes a nutritious and filling food for dieters. Spinach is virtually fat free and contains slightly more protein than other vegetables.

Exceptionally rich in phytochemicals with some of its antioxidant components being studied for their role in preventing cancer.

Frozen spinach is as nutrient dense as the fresh varieties. Snap frozen vegetables in Australia are sometimes even richer in vitamins than the fresh options we purchase off supermarket shelves.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Homestyle Baked Beans

Baked beans for dinner? You will never eat the canned variety again after you try this recipe. And it is almost as quick and easy too, but far more nutritious.

Homestyle Baked Beans
1 tbsp olive oil
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 large red onion, finely diced
250g bacon, fat removed
1/2 cup white wine
2 x 400g cans of butter beans, drained
1 red pepper, finely diced
1 zucchini, finely diced
1 cob corn, kernals only
1 can whole peeled tomatoes
Cracked pepper

  1. Heat oil in a pan. Saute onions and garlic. Add bacon and cook till crispy.
  2. Add wine. Cook briefly, then add tomatoes, pepper, zucchini and corn kernals.
  3. Simmer gently with lid off until vegetables are soft and liquid reduced to a thicker sauce.
  4. Season with cracked pepper.
  5. Add butter beans and turn off heat. Beans only need to heat through.
  6. Serve immediately. Delicious hot or cold. Try using leftovers up in a toastie pie.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Caramelised Onion and Roast Kumara Frittata

This dish contains only four main ingredients, making it a simple and nutritious week night dinner. 

Sweet potatoes are high in fibre and low in GI. Eggs are a great source of protein. I use mozzarella as it is a lower salt cheese and I am cooking for a baby. However, a tastier cheese like cheddar or even gruyere would suit this recipe.

Suitable for 7-9 mths +.

Caramelised Onion and Roast Kumara Frittata
1 tbsp olive oil
2 large onions, thickly sliced
800g sweet potato, cut into cubes and roasted
10 eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1 cup mozzarella cheese

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees.
  2. Heat oil in a large oven-safe frypan. Add onion over high heat and cook until caramalised. Remove from heat.
  3. In a bowl, combine beaten eggs, nutmeg, and cheese.
  4. Add roasted sweet potato to onion in pan. Spread evenly through.
  5. Pour egg mix over sweet potato and onion.
  6. Place pan in oven. Cook at 180 degrees for about 40min or until just set in the centre. 

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Spinach and Cauliflower Pancakes (Shrek-Cakes)

Once a week, I make savoury pancakes for dinner. It is an easy meal that the kids love. Not only do they eat them up without a fuss, but I also know that they are getting plenty of nutrition from the vegetables I include in the recipe.

Suitable for 9-12mths +.

And for the adults, I serve topped with dill and smoked salmon.

1 large bowl of baby spinach leaves (approx 80-100g)
1 onion
1 carrot
2 eggs
3/4 cup cauliflower puree
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup grated cheese (mozzarella for low salt version)
2 tbsp shredded parmesan
1 cup SR flour

  1. In a food processor, puree spinach, onion, and carrot, adding eggs, cauliflower, and milk as necessary to enable mixing.
  2. Mix in cheeses and SR flour until well combined and not lumpy.
  3. Spoon batter into lightly greased hot fry pan and cook with lid on until bubbles begin to form.
  4. Flip once and cook on other side.
  5. Serve hot as they are or topped with smoked ham or salmon.