Healthy Summer Salads with Just Hummus

Hummus is one of my favourite dips and spreads and my go to brand is Just Hummus. It’s healthy and delicious which is always a win-win in my books.  With a base of wholefood ingredients including chickpeas and tahini, it’s a nutritious addition to the diet.   It’s also the only hummus on the market that meets the Heart Foundation Tick criteria too.

While I love Just Hummus as a dip and a spread, it also makes a delicious base for dressings and salads as it provides a good flavour kick while being healthy at the same time.  I’ve been playing around with the Just Hummus range and I’ve created some new healthy summer salad ideas to help you kick start your healthy summer eating.  These recipes are also budget friendly too, made with simple, nourishing ingredients.  You can also save 50c off your next Just Hummus purchase by downloading a discount coupon here.

Crunchy chickpea salad with Basil & Spinach Hummus



This simple and nourishing healthy summer salad is flavour packed and quick to make. Simply double the ingredients if you need a larger serving size.  This uses the new Just Hummus with Basil & Spinach.
Serves 2-3

1 tin of chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1/2 of a 175g tub of Just Hummus with Basil & Spinach
Juice from one large lemon
Half an orange, peeled and cut into small chunks
1 red onion finely chopped
1/3 cup chopped parsley
1 tablespoon chopped mint
2 tablespoons pumpkin seeds
2 tablespoons sliced almonds

Place the rinsed chickpeas in a bowl and add the hummus and lemon juice. Stir well to combine.  Add the remaining ingredients and gently mix through. Top with a little extra herbs and seeds.

An alternative version of this is to make with Just Hummus with Kumara & Butternut. To turn this into a yummy lunch, serve on a bed of baby spinach, add some chopped cherry tomato and halloumi.


Iskander style salad with Just Hummus


This dish was inspired by my favourite Turkish takeaway.  I love the combination of flavours and textures, and that’s what I’ve created here. The ingredients list is quite large, but in reality it doesn’t take long to make.

Serves 2-3

Brown rice & quinoa tabbouleh
1 250g microwave packet of Sunrice brown rice/quinoa mix
½ cup finely chopped parsley
¼ cup chopped mint
3 tomatoes, chopped into small pieces
½ red capsicum, finely chopped.
Juice of one large lemon
1 tablespoon olive oil

Crispy chickpeas

1 tin of chickpeas
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
½ teaspoon dried oregano

Red cabbage slaw
¼ red cabbage
1 small red onion
¼ cup Italian parsley, chopped
100g feta cheese

2 zucchini, cut into thin slices
2x 120g beef steaks

To serve: Just Hummus with Beetroot & Roasted Garlic and Just Hummus with Basil & Spinach

Cook the brown rice/quinoa mix as per the instructions and place in a bowl.  Fluff with a fork to help separate the grains.  Stir through the herbs, tomato and capsicum.   In a mug, briskly mix the olive oil and lemon juice together with a fork. Drizzle over the salad and mix through.

To make the chickpeas, heat the oil in a fry pan over a medium heat.  Add the chickpeas and sprinkle over the paprika and herbs.  Lift and shake the pan every few minutes until the chickpeas are slightly toasted and a little crispy to bite.  Be careful not to burn them.

For the salad, finely shred the cabbage and place in a bowl.  Finely chop the red onion and add to the bowl along with the Italian parsley. Crumble over the feta cheese and stir to combine.

Heat a cast iron grill pan (or any pan if you don’t have one) over a medium heat. Add a drizzle of olive oil and cook the steak for 3-5 minutes on each side (longer if you want it well done).  Leave the steak to sit while you cook the zucchini slices in the pan.  These should take around 3-4 minutes.

Cut the steak into slices and plate up along with the salad, chickpeas and tabbouleh.  Serve with big spoonfuls of Just Hummus with Beetroot & Roasted Garlic and Just Hummus with Basil & Spinach

Mediterranean Salad with Beetroot Hummus Drizzle

The Just Hummus with Beetroot and garlic makes an amazing, healthy dressing for this salad.  And it makes it pretty too 🙂

3 zucchini
1 eggplant
drizzle of oil
4 handfuls of baby spinach
8 baby beetroot
100g feta cheese
juice from one lemon
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 tub Just Hummus with Beetroot & Garlic

Rinse the zucchini and cut in half lengthwise. Cut each half into four long thin slices.  Cut the eggplant into rounds.  Heat a cast iron grill pan over a high heat, then turn down to medium once hot.  Drizzle over the oil then place the zucchini and eggplant in a single layer on the pan.  You’ll need to do this in batches.  Heat for around 2-3 minutes each side, or until cooked.  Place on top of the baby spinach.  Crumble over the feta cheese.

To make the dressing, mix the Just Hummus with Beetroot & Garlic with the lemon juice and olive oil.  Drizzle over the top and serve.

This makes the perfect vegetable dish to go alongside barbecued meat.

For more yummy ideas with hummus click here and to download your 50c off coupon for Just Hummus click here.

This post was made possible thanks to Just Hummus. All opinions are my own.


Slow cooker Mexican beef tacos

During these cooler months I love to use my slow cooker.  In past years, I tended to get stuck doing the same casserole over and over, so I decided it was time to experiment.  I’ve been trying out a few new recipes lately and these slow cooker Mexican beef tacos is a winner.  You simply pop some blade steak in the crockpot with some spices, stock and sauce, and leave it to do its thing.  The beef is tender, flavourful and melts in your mouth.  Add some salad veges and wrap in a corn tortilla and voila – it’s a super quick dinner that tastes amazing. It’s fairly low cost too, as blade steak is cheap.   These slow cooker Mexican beef tacos are based on a recipe for shredded beef nachos from Jess’ Underground Kitchen, (which is an awesome cookbook by the way) with a few of my own touches, using soft corn tacos instead of nachos.


Slow cooked Mexican beef:

500g blade steak, fat trimmed
2 cups beef stock
1 sliced onion
4 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 cup chipotle sauce
1 tablespoon cumin
1 tablespoon coriander
1/2 tablespoon smoked paprikia (plus 1 tsp extra, for after cooking)
Sprinkle of chili flakes
1 lemon half

Chickpea Chili

1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 cup liquid from the slow cooker
1 tin of tomatoes
1/2 tablespoon cocoa
1/2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons sugar
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

To serve:
Corn tortillas
Red onion
Grated cheese
Fresh coriander (optional)


Place all the ingredients in a slow cooker and turn onto low.  Leave to cook for 8 hours.

After the 8 hours is up, place the beef on a plate and shred with a fork.  It should fall apart easily.  Sprinkle with the extra smoked paprika.  Cover while you make the chilli.

To make the chickpea chilli, place all ingredients in a fry pan, and simmer for approximately 15-20 minutes, until the liquid has reduced

Heat the corn tortillas and top with salad vegetables, chickpea chilli and a little grated cheese if desired.



New food reviews (including the new Whittakers!)

Food is one of life’s great pleasures, and every few weeks I’ve been sharing with you some of my favourites, or giving you the low down on my taste and nutrition opinion on foods.  Here’s some things I’ve tried the past few weeks.

Organic Dried Banana Chunks

I’d been wanting to try a recipe with dried banana, but haven’t been able to find any and doing my own was a bit of a disaster.  Then I found these babies at Moore Wilsons.  They’re organic, and contain no added sugar or preservatives.  It’s just dried banana with a little lime.  I ate a strip before using them in cooking, they were really yummy, chewy and intensely banana flavoured.  Delicious!  Because it’s a dried fruit, it’s best for occasional use rather than every day. A bag of dried bananas is about equivalent to two fresh bananas – so if you want to eat them dry, half a bag would be a good serve.  A yummy sweet treat though.  These were $2.75 a bag at Moore Wilsons

In case you’re interested, for a 50g bag, the nutritional information is as follows.

Energy: 690kj/164 calories
Carbohydrates: 38g
of which is sugars: 22g
Sodium: 1mg
Potassium: 500mg
Fibre: 2.2g

 Whittakers Samoan Cocoa Chocolate

So the new range of Whittakers chocolates have hit the shelves and the flavours sound amazing.  I bought this dark chocolate for a recipe, but of course I tried a few sneaky pieces before I used it.  It’s divine.  Creamy, rich and flavourful, it’s got that great melt in the mouth feel.  I love the thin pieces too.  I also tried  a few pieces of the salted caramel chocolate and that was delicious too.  Has anyone tried any of the other flavours?  I really want to try the white chocolate with apple and vanilla!

This chocolate is 64% cocoa, so it’s dark, but not super dark.  The cocoa is single origin, meaning all the beans are sourced from Samoa.  It’s nice to support our pacific neighbours and if this is anything to go by, their cocoa beans are spot on 🙂

Go Healthy Manuka Honey

I was sent this honey by Health 2000 to try out.  It is definitely very yummy.  The UMF mark on this stands for Unique Manuka Factor and is a quality trademark and grading system for identifying manuka honey that has a special unique natural property found only in some strains of manuka honey.  Grades go from:

  •   0-4  Not detectable
  •   5-9  Low levels
  • 10-15 Useful levels
  • 16+   Superior high grade levels

Manuka honey contains an antibacterial component called methylglyoxal (MG). This is found in most honey, but only in small amounts. It’s higher in manuka honey because manuka flower nectar contains a compound called dihydroxyactone. This is then converted to metylglyoxal (1).  Manuka honey is delicious, but consuming it doesn’t protect you from bacterial infections.  Most of the benefits of manuka honey has been around assisting with healing wounds (this is a special medical grade of honey, not the stuff from your cupboard). You can read a bit more about medicinal uses of honey here.  My favourite use for honey is a hot lemon and honey drink. It’s very soothing on a sore throat – I’ll be using my honey for this purpose.   You can buy it online here.

The Muesli Hub Muesli

The Muesli Hub is a great concept.  You go online to their store and make up your muesli just as you like it – choose your favourite nuts, seeds and fruits to go into one of their specially crafted bases.  The base mixes include a gluten free mix, as well as a bircher, toasted and dry roasted blend.  After choosing your base you can add in whatever extra goodies you wish.  I’ve just been dreaming up a blend of brazil nuts, blueberries and mango with chia seeds.  As well as creating your own, you can buy some of their premix blends.

I was sent the Honey Roasted Bliss blend to try which is a blend of whole-grains, seeds and nuts in NZ honey to lightly coat them. This mix is then topped off with dried apricots, banana chips and yummy yoghurt coated cranberries.   It was very tasty, and not too high in sugar either. A 50g serve contains 5.4g of sugar, and also gives you a fibre boost, with about 4g of fibre.   I’ve been having mine with Greek yoghurt and feijoa – it’s a delicious combination.    This brand is $16 for 500g.  You can get your own here.

Have you stumbled across any new foodie finds this week?

Feijoa Cheesecake

Feijoa season is, in my opinion, one of best thing about autumn.  As well as eating these in abundance, I’ve created one of my one of my favourite recipes so far, a feijoa cheesecake.

We’ve got four feijoa trees at home, and while they are still small they have produced plenty of fruit.  I think the fact that feijoas are only around for a few months a year makes them even more desirable.  These sweet, tangy fruits are also known as the pineapple guava and are a source of vitamin C, potassium and soluble fibre.

This cheesecake cuts down on the cream cheese (1 tub instead of 2-3) and uses Greek yoghurt to create a lighter yet delicious taste and texture.  It’s sweetened naturally with the feijoa and a little honey, although you can use any sweetener you wish.  The base is made with wholesome ingredients instead of the standard biscuit base in traditional cheesecakes.  I’ve included two versions for the base, because I ended up making two feijoa cheesecakes to get the filling right and thought I may as well test a new base recipe.  I think I may prefer the oat one, but choice is yours.

Enjoy the feijoa cheesecake while the feijoa season lasts. You could even have my feijoa ice cream with it too!

Feijoa Cheesecake


1 cup of mixed nuts (I used almonds and cashews)
1/2 cup ground almonds
1/2 cup dates soaked in boiling water for 30 minutes
1/2 cup coconut
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons melted coconut oil (or butter)
1 tablespoon coconut sugar (or any sugar – optional)

(alternative base:  1 1/4 cups rolled oats, 1/2 cup ground almonds, 1/4 cup soaked, chopped dates, 1/2 cup coconut, 2 tablespoons honey, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 4 heaped tablespoons melted coconut oil – simply blend all ingredients together, add more coconut oil if required )

For the cheesecake:

250g feijoa flesh (this is approximately 10 feijoas)
250g tub cream cheese
3/4 cup Greek yoghurt (I used Anchor Greek)
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
Juice and grated rind of 1/2 lime (optional)
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon gelatine
2 tablespoons boiling water
2 tablespoons of honey or other alternative sweetener

Blend the mixed nuts in a food processor until the nuts are finely chopped.  Add the remaining ingredients and blend until the mixture is well combined.

Place a piece of gladwrap inside a 20cm round tin so it comes up and over the edges.  This makes it easy to pull the cheesecake out.  Alternatively, you can use a spring bottom tin.

Press the base mixture into the bottom of the tin.

Take the feijoa flesh and blend up in a blender until it is a liquid.  Set aside.

Place the cream cheese in a medium sized glass bowl and out at room temperature to soften for an hour.   Or if you’re like me and don’t want to wait, place it in a bowl and microwave for 30-45 seconds.  Add the Greek yoghurt, honey, vanilla essence and the lime zest/juice.  Add the blended feijoa flesh. Mix together with an electric mixer, or use good old muscle power and whisk until well combined.

In a mug, add the gelatine and boiling water.  With a fork, mix together quickly and stir until all the crystals have dissolved.  Add to the cheesecake ingredients and mix again well, until the mixture is smooth and well combined.

Pour the cheesecake mixture on top of the base and smooth the top with a spoon.

Place in freezer for 3-4 hours until set.  Store in the fridge.  To serve, top with coconut chips and slices of feijoa.




Beetroot falafels

I’m a huge falafel fan. They’re a healthy, fast food snack that can be turned into a delicious vegetarian meal.  I’m also a big fan of beetroot.  Armed with some of the new Gourmet Beetroot packets from Leaderbrand, I decided to make beetroot falfafels.

The Leaderbrand ready to eat beetroot are a part of a new range that also includes corn and potato.  There’s nothing added, it’s just 100% pure baby beetroot cooked and ready to eat. While I do still cook my own beetroot, these are perfect for those days when you’re in a rush and want something nutritious but quickly.

Beetroot is a rich source of folate and also a source of potassium.  The plant pigment that gives beetroot it’s vibrant red purple colour is called betacyanin. Betacyanin belongs to the betalin family.  This pigment is thought to help boost the body’s detoxification processes and have an anti inflammatory effect in the body.


This is a slightly unconventional falafel recipe with the addition of beetroot, but it’s just as delicious, if not more so than your usual falafel.  Beetroot falafels are simple to make, and provides a source of fibre and protein.

Beetroot falafel ingredients:

1 teaspoon oil + 1 tablespoon oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
4 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon cajun seasoning
1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/2 packet leader brand beetroot
1 handful of flat leaf parsley, chopped
1/3 cup rolled oats (or you could use ground almonds or flour)
1 small egg

Heat oil over a medium heat in a fry pan. Cook the onion and garlic for around 5 minutes, until the onion has softened.  Add the cumin and cajun seasoning and mix through. Add the can of drained chick peas and cook for 2-3 minutes.  This helps crisp them  up a little and removes any excess moisture.  Place the onion spice mix, chickpeas, beetroot, parsley, oats and egg in a food processor and blend until well combined.  If the mixture is a little wet, add some extra oats.

Place the tablespoon of oil in a fry pan over a medium heat.  Place heaped tablespoons of the mixture into the hot oil and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side, or until heated through.

Serve in corn wraps (or wraps of your choice) with salad, feta cheese, minted yoghurt and avocado.


Citrus chicken salad with macadamia and avocado

A salad can be a really filling, nourishing meal that contains a balance of all the food groups, if it’s done well.  This citrus chicken salad with macadamia nuts and avocado ticks this box. Years ago, I thought of salads as “diet food” that were bland and boring, but they are most definently not.  The key to a good salad is ensuring you get a balance of vegetables, protein, carbs and fats as this keeps it flavourful and filling.

Chicken lends itself to a wide range of flavours, and this simple citrus marinade infuses the chicken with an amazing flavour.  The citrus marinade, creamy avocado, crunchy salad vegetables and macadamia nuts make a yummy combination of flavours and textures.

This salad provides a good serve of vegetables, healthy fats from the avocado and nuts, protein from the chicken and carbohydrate from the grapes and orange.  All in all, it’s a meal that will help nourish your body and give you the energy you need to be at your best.

This makes a light dinner meal, or lunch.  Serve this citrus chicken salad with crusty bread or a side of new potatoes if desired.

Citrus Chicken Salad with Avocado and Macadamia Nuts

Serves 2

350g chicken tenderloins, or skinless chicken breast
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
4 cloves of garlic, crushed
3 tablespoons reduced salt soy sauce
2 oranges
1 cos lettuce
1 cup of green grapes
1/2 small red onion
1/2 yellow capsicum, cut into strips.
1/2 cup macadamia nuts, cut in half
1/2 a large avocado, cut into pieces

Cut chicken into small pieces and place in a medium sized bowl.  Sprinkle over the turmeric, crushed garlic and soy sauce.  Take one of the oranges and grate the rind.  Add this to the chicken.  Next, squeeze the juice from the orange over the chicken.   Mix well.  Set aside for at least 45 minutes to marinade, or leave in the fridge for up to 8 hours.

While the chicken is marinading, prepare the salad ingredients.  Rise the lettuce and tear into small pieces and place in a bowl.  Cut the grapes in half and sprinkle over the lettuce.  Slice the red onion into 1/2 rings, then in half again. Add to the salad mixture along with the capsicum.  Peel the other orange and cut into small pieces. Add to the salad, then sprinkle over the macadamia nuts.  Add the avocado to the salad once the chicken is ready to stop it going brown.

Once the chicken is marinaded, place a pan over a medium heat and add 1 tablespoon olive oil.  Take the chicken pieces from the marinade and place in the pan.  Cook for approximately 15 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through.


5 minute sweet and savory platters

Entertaining is great fun, but Christmas is a busy time of the year and being a domestic goddess can be time consuming.  When I got asked if I’d like to create some ideas for platters using products from the Alison’s Pantry range I was happy to give it a go.  I wanted to create platters that were delicious, contained nutrient rich ingredients and not too expensive.  And the mission was accomplished.  The best bit is it’s so easy too.

The bulk bins are one of my favourite parts of the supermarket – so many yummy nut mixtures, seeds, and fruits and you can pick just the amount you need too.  I work close to New World, so when I’m hungry and out of snacks I’ll often go grab a bag of nuts to much on.   Alison’s Pantry have recently put out some new ranges – so I put a couple of new items to the test in my platters which I’ve shared below.

Here’s my platter ideas:

Sweet Platter:

From Alison’s Pantry, I chose figs, dates, chocolate almonds and for a bit of something new, chai spiced chocolate almonds.  I also added some fresh strawberries and blackberries.

Alison’s Pantry have two date varieties and I chose the gourmet dates.  They’re sort of an in betweener variety between your standard dried date and the medjool date. They less fibrous than the standard Alison’s pantry every day date and quite delicious.  Dates a yummy healthy sweet treat and they provide a source of magnesium and vitamin B6.

Figs are naturally sweet and are also quite nutritious.  They provide a little calcium, magnesium, vitamin B6, iron, vitamin C and vitamin A.

Chocolate is always nice on a platter and the new chia chocolate almonds make a nice twist on the usual chocolate almonds.  They taste just like chia tea, only chocolatey and crunchy.   The plain chocolate almonds are always a favourite too, and didn’t last long.

Savoury platter:

For a savoury platter, my favourite new item from Alison’s Pantry is the savoury sprinkle. In this yummy mix there is roasted chickpeas flavoured with garlic, karengo (NZ seaweed),  pumpkin and sunflower seeds, almonds coupled with goji berries.  The slightly sweet goji berries go really nice with the savoury flavours of the other ingredients.

I also added figs, pistachios and the deluxe raw nut mix.  This contains raw Brazil nuts, cashews, almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts and pecans.

Then I simply grabbed a packet of blue cheese and some crackers and voilà a yummy savoury platter that contains nutrient rich ingredients.

If you’re keen for more platter ideas, I’ve shared some yummy recipes and combinations for platters here

What are your favourite things to add to platters? 


Chocolate cake made over

A good chocolate cake is a yummy treat, but it’s even better when it’s delicious and healthier than the original version.  This cake was a bit of an experiment based on the traditional favourite chocolate cake in our family.  It’s super easy to make – you only need one bowl and no food mixer/processor.

This cake uses ground almonds (a source of magnesium, calcium, vitamin E, niacin and riboflavin), wholemeal spelt flour (a source of B vitamins, magnesium) in place of white flour and macadamia nut oil instead of butter.  Macadamia nut oil is high in heart healthy monounsaturated fats and is also high in antioxidants.

I used coconut sugar in this recipe but you can use whatever sweetener you want. Even though coconut sugar does contain some nutritional value, it’s still sugar.

Even the icing’s a healthier version of your traditional chocolate icing.  It’s made with cashew nuts, cocoa butter, cocoa and sweetened with maple syrup and it’s delicious.

All up you get a healthier chocolate cake that’s a delicious sweet treat.

Healthier chocolate cake:

1 cup water
1 cup coconut sugar
2 tablespoons honey
3 tablespoons cocoa
1 cup finely ground almond flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 cup wholemeal spelt flour
1/2 cup macadamia nut oil
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup boysenberries (I used frozen ones)

Preheat oven to 180 degrees celcius

Heat the water, coconut sugar and honey in a pot over a medium heat, stiring regularly until the water is simmering, for around 5 minutes.  Take off the heat and mix in the cocoa, oil, flours and baking powder.  Stir well.   Add the eggs and baking soda and mix well.  Gently fold through the boysenberries.

Pour into a greased cake tin and bake for 55mins – 65 mins (it will be less if you use a ring tin) or until a skewer comes out clean.  When cool, ice with the chocolate cashew icing recipe below.

Chocolate cashew Icing
50g cacao butter or coconut oil, melted
1/2 cup raw cashew nuts
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
pinch of salt

Melt the cacao butter or coconut oil over a low heat and leave to cool slightly. In a food processor, blend the cashews, cocoa powder, maple syrup, lemon juice and salt for a minute or so until the nuts start to grind up. As the blade is still running pour in the melted cacao butter and process into the mix is smooth and the nuts are ground.

Spread the icing over the cake and refrigerate until the icing is set, about 15 minutes.

Eggs for breakfast

Breakfast is super important to give you the best start to the day.  If you eat well at breakfast time, you’ll avoid mid morning cravings, have good energy levels and also get a dose of vitamins and minerals to help keep you fit and well.    I have to admit that I do get lazy in the breakfast department sometimes and just have a couple of bits of toast.  While that’s ok sometimes, just having toast can leave you feeling hungry later on as it’s low in protein.

This week as a part of NZ Nutrition week I’m giving eggs a go for breakfast this week.  They are actually really quick to prepare and the best bit, they’re tasty!

Once upon a time, eggs were thought of as being unhealthy because of their cholesterol content, but eggs are a great source of nutrients.  Eggs are a good source of over 11 vitamins and minerals essential for our health.

  • Selenium -antioxidant which protects our body and immune system
  • Folate – for growth and maintenance of healthy cells
  • Biotin – helps cell metabolism and the utilisation of fats, proteins and carbohydrates
  • Calcium- for building and maintain bones and teeth
  • Cephalin- a phosphorus-containing lipid found in tissues
  • Lecithin – contains acetylcholine which has been proven to help brain function
  • Pantothenic acid (Vitamin B5 ) – releases energy from our food for our body to use
  • Vitamin B12 – for brain and nervous system functions and blood formation
  • Vitamin A – for growth and eye health
  • Iodine – to ensure proper function of our thyroid gland
  •  Vitamin E – antioxidant to protect our bodies against disease
  •  Phosphorous – helps build strong bones and teeth
  •  Iron – to produce haemoglobin which carries oxygen around our bodies
  •  Thiamine -to turn carbohydrates into energy our body can use
  •  Zinc – helps in growth, wound healing, blood formation and maintenance of tissues
  •  Vitamin D -important in bone health

I had my first egg breakfast yesterday, and the first thing I noticed as I wasn’t hungry at all until almost lunch time.  This is due to the fact that eggs are a good source of protein.  2 eggs provide 12g of protein, compared to 2 pieces of toast which has around 6g.  This was a bonus as some days I’m starving by 10am.  I’ll be posting some of my egg recipes I’m trying out later this week.

Why not give eggs a go for breakfast this week too.




Apple and cinnamon muffins


These apple and cinnamon muffins remind me lots of cooking at home when I was young.  Mum had all of Alison Holts muffin books – I think muffins were the cupcakes of today – it was what everyone made.  They were a lunch box treat that we quite often had.  I recently decided to whip up a batch of muffins for friends that were popping around one afternoon.  Instead of the chocolate versions I made when I was younger, these are a healthier option.   This version is made with a little spelt flour and almond meal with a lovely dash of cinnamon that really complements the apple flavour.   Cinnamon also has the benefit of helping lower blood sugar levels.

These muffins are yummy alone or with a dollop of greek yoghurt.


100g butter
1/2 cup caster sugar
2 eggs
1/3 cup spelt flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
100g ground almonds
2 apples, peeled and finely sliced into small pieces.

(recipe modified slightly from Taste)

Preheat oven to 170 degrees Celcius. Grease muffin tins.  Beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well between additions.  In a seperate bowl, sift in the flour and baking powder then mix in the cinnamon and almonds.

Fold dry ingredients into the butter mix. Add the apple and stir until just mixed.  Place dollops of the mixutre in tins and bake for 15-20 minutes.