Shakshuka Recipe



·     1 red onion, finely diced

·     1 garlic clove, crushed

·     1 small chilli, finely diced

·     1 teaspoon paprika

·     ½ teaspoon ground coriander

·     ½ teaspoon ground cumin

·     2 red capsicums, cut into 2cm pieces

·     400g chopped tomatoes

·     ½ large eggplant, cut into 2cm cubes

·     4 eggs

·     Fresh coriander, to serve


1.    Preheat oven to 2200C.

2.    Heat 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil over a medium heat and add onion, garlic and chilli. Cook for 5 minutes, or until softened. Add the spices and stir, cook for a further minute. 

3.    Add the capsicum and tomatoes to the pan and cook for 10-15 minutes, or until capsicums are softened. Turn the cook top off, then blend the sauce and return to the pan.

4.    Meanwhile, spray another pan with cooking oil and heat over a high heat. Add eggplant and cook for 10 minutes or until cooked through, turning occasionally.

5.    Stir the eggplant through the sauce. Make four wells with the back of a spoon and crack an egg into each well, then bake in the oven until eggs are cooked to your liking.  

Sprinkle with coriander and serve with wholegrain bread.

Nutrition benefits:

High in Vitamin C to assist your immunity and glowing skin

A good source of protein to keep you feeling full and lower the overall GI of the meal

Can be shared with friends (Always a benefit too right ;))

This recipe was brought to you by our amazing Kirrawee Dietitian Melissa - give her a call to get your health sorted down in the South of Sydney!


Everything you need to know about pregnancy nutrition

Whether you’re planning a pregnancy or already pregnant, what you eat can make a big difference to the health of you and your baby. But with so many guidelines, misinformation and anecdotal stories buried deep in the internet (or even simply passed on from a good-intentioned friend), it can be hard to know exactly what to eat (or not to eat) when you’ve got a bun in the oven. We’ve put together our top questions from clients we work with to highlight vital nutrition basics for pregnancy.


Should I eat more food when I’m pregnant?

Many people think that being pregnant means you’re eating for two, but unfortunately, that’s not the case. You see, in the first trimester, you don’t actually need any extra energy. It bumps up a little in the second trimester, to around 1400 extra kilojoules per day, and in the third, that quota is increased to 1900 extra kilojoules per day. In reality, that’s only the equivalent of an extra sandwich.

How do I meet these increased energy requirements but also optimise my nutrition to support a healthy baby and womb?

As you can see below some food serves you need to eat more of. We can help identify how many serves you are currently eating and how to practically achieve what you need!

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What are the top nutrients essential to growing and sustaining a new life?

1.     Folate – plays a crucial role in development and is protective against neural tube defects – so much so, that women who are planning a bub are recommended to take a supplement.

2.     Iodine – key for development. 

3.     Iron – important for your baby’s blood stores. 

4.     Zinc – key for the development of our DNA. 


The weighty debate: How much weight should I gain before conception?

As a guide, a woman with a healthy BMI before falling pregnant should gain between 11.5 and 16kg by the end of pregnancy. It’s different again if you are not at a healthy BMI! Of course, this is very individualised, so it’s important to seek individualised advice. Book in with one of our supportive and knowledgeable dietitians here


What about food safety?

No soft cheese? What!? We empathise. There are many other foods too that are recommended to be avoided to be safe. But why? This is due to risk of contamination from bacteria and possible infection which can be harmful to the baby. Finding healthy and tasty substitutes can be tricky but not impossible. For example: Even though you are saying goodbye to camembert and brie for a while doesn't mean you have to avoid tasty cheese on some grainy crackers as a snack.

And there you have it! Common questions answered. Again, if you’re planning a pregnancy (or are already pregnant) – why not book in to see one of our Accredited Practising Dietitians for up to date, evidenced based and individualised advice. 

Spiced Banana Oat Loaf

Serves 12

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Ingredients for Loaf: 

3 ripe bananas

2 eggs 

1 cup Greek yogurt

1/2 cup rolled oats

2 cups wholemeal flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 teaspoons cinnamon

1 teaspoon nutmeg

1/4 cup honey 


Ingredients for Topping: 

1/2 cup walnuts

2 tablespoons pumpkin seeds

2 tablespoons sunflower seeds

2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive OIl

1/4 cup coconut sugar 



1. Preheat oven to 180°C fan forced

2. Line a rectangular loaf tin with baking paper

3. Blend the bananas for 1 minute until soft with small chunks

4. Add in the remaining ingredients to the blender and blend for another 1 minute until smooth. Pour mix into the baking tin.

5. Add the topping ingredients into a clean blender and mix leaving chunky. Use your hands to sprinkle the topping along the cake before putting in the oven.

6. Mix all ingredients in a blender and blend for 1-2 minutes until smooth. Grease and line a muffin pan with grease proof paper.

7. Bake in the oven on the middle shelf for 15-30minutes or until an inserted skewer comes out clean. Let stand for ~10 minutes before eating.


This recipe has been adapted from Sports Dietitians Australia



Ash's Super Simple Butternut Pumpkin Dahl with Mango Chutney & Asparagus


I developed this one the other week whilst things were starting to get a little cold in Sydney! Its quick and SUPER tasty. Enjoy enjoy!

Ingredients (Serves 4-5)

  • 2xpackets of chefs selection: Simple Dahl (Orange Packet)
  • 1/2 butternut pumpkin - Chopped
  • 1 punnet cherry tomatoes - Halved
  • 2 cups brown long grain rice (I highly recommend the Riviana Brand)
  • 2xBunches of asparagus 
  • Mango Chutney
  • Greek yoghurt (Small tub)


1. Cook the Simple Dahl as per instructions (30 mins simmer)

2. Steam the pumpkin in the microwave with a tiny bit of water for 5 mins

3. At 20 mins add in the butternut pumpkin and tomato to the dahl mix

4. Cook the rice for 15 minutes (2 cup of rice & 4.5/5 cups water) and then take take off the boil to steam **I usually put in after the Dahl has cooked for 15 mins**

5. Steam some asparagus just before the dahl and rice are ready to serve

6. Serve dahl over rice and top with mango chutney and yoghurt, place some asparagus sprigs on the side

7. Devour!!


- Low GI and a good source of fibre: This fills you up and aids digestion!

- Source of plant protein: Lentils, like asparagus are also a prebiotic - perfect for winter immunity

- Butternut pumpkin is high in vitamin A, which assists in maintaining cell integrity

- Tomatoes are high in vitamin C which ensure the iron absorption from the lentils

- Dollop of yoghurt provides some extra calcium to your day

Pretty amazing huh!

Recipe: Home made baked beans

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Legumes: Amazingly high in fibre and pre-biotics for gut health. Here is how to make this warming dish at home rather than buying it in the supermarket.

Makes: 3.5 cups

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cook time: 15 minutes


·      1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

·      1 brown onion, finely diced

·      1 garlic clove, crushed

·      1x 200g punnet cherry tomatoes, halved

·      1x 400g tin crushed tomatoes

·      1x 400g tin bean mix, drained and rinsed

·      1 zucchini, grated

·      1 tablespoon dried mixed herbs

·      Freshly cracked black pepper, to taste


1.     Heat olive oil over a medium-high heat.

2.     Sauté onion and garlic for 3-5 minutes or until softened.

3.     Add cherry tomatoes, crushed tomatoes, bean mix, zucchini, mixed herbs and pepper and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.


1/2 cup provides roughly:

·      460 kJ (110 cal), 4.5g protein, 3.3g fat, 0.5g sat fat, 13.1g carbs, 4.2g fibre

Enjoy 1 cup with some grainy toast and a little sprinkle of cheddar cheese for breakfast :)

Sweet Asparagus and Tomato Frittata

Here is one of my favourite quick dishes which can be thrown together in a few minutes with whats left in the fridge and leave you with only one pan to clean! 

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Serves 4


- 500g Sweet potato (grated)

- 1 medium onion diced

- 2 bunches Asparagus

- 250g Cherry tomatoes

- 6 eggs

- 1/3 cup light milk

- ½ cup cottage cheese

- 1 tbsp olive oil

- 1 avocado chopped

- Salad to serve


Step 1: Heat a large (20cm) non-stick fry pan over a medium heat. Add cherry tomatoes and cook for 3 minutes. Add onion, asparagus and grated sweet potato cooking for a further 3 minutes.

Step 2: Whisk together the eggs, milk and cottage cheese and pour over the pan to cover the vegetables. Reduce the heat to low and cook for a further 5 minutes.

Step 3: Place the pan under a hot grill to cook until the top is golden. Set aside to cool for 5 minutes.

Step 4: Top with avocado and serve with a side of salad.




Three tops tips for the time poor corporate: Increasing vegetable intake to boost health, longevity and work performance


Back to back intense meetings, extended work hours, skipping meals whilst adding copious amounts of caffeine – sound familiar? What if nutrition could be quick, tasty and practical to make everything easier? Well it CAN and not only will this reduce your risk of chronic health disease such as diabetes, cancer and heart disease, but also help improve body function and increase energy.

The stats: Lettuce tell you

Did you know that in 2014-15 that only 7% of Australian adults met the guidelines for recommended intake vegetables?

Similarly, in a recent survey conducted in a leading Australian bank by our business Body Fusion, 85.5% of employees were not meeting their recommended serving.

Fact: Healthy employees have been found to be three times as productive than unhealthy employees!

So what are these “guidelines” ?

Taken from the Australian Healthy Food Guide Portion Sizing Poster

Taken from the Australian Healthy Food Guide Portion Sizing Poster

The implications: Lettuce tell you more

 Not meeting your brightly coloured intake of rainbow veggies means:

·      Less fibre, negatively influencing digestion and increasing risk of colon cancer

·      Decreased satiety = hungry worker = impacted mood and interaction with team plus reduced  ability to concentrate

·      Insufficient intake of vitamins and minerals, which support body function. For example vegetables are an excellent source of potassium which aids in electrolyte balance, regulation of blood pressure and supports nerve and muscle function (including the heart!)

·      Compromised immunity, which influences energy, enjoyment of work and sick days needed


Help me solve this creatively and simply: Now!

1.    Be organised

This means from the get go on a Monday and yes a shop is crucial over the weekend! We suggest bringing healthy snacks to work that include vegetables: veggie sticks (carrot, cucumber, red capsicum) and hummus, savoury muffins or a small snap lock bag of cherry tomatoes.

2.    ALWAYS make sure there are vegetables in your lunch

What’s the easiest way to do this? Take food from home that has been cooked in advance. A huge vegetable frittata, vegetable lasagna or spinach and ricotta pie at home will make multiple serves. Salads are also always a winner!

Like to purchase on the run? Alternatively look to add veggies to your lunch in other quick ways. How about you match a veggie-based juice (carrot, celery, beetroot, ginger and apple) with your grainy ham and cheese toastie?

3.    Use tools and cues as reminders to eat

When things get busy, eating goes to the end of the priority list. Putting your snacks or lunch near your keyboard, setting a phone alarm or having another healthy buddy in the office to keep accountable will all work.

Another option is the new amazing App VegEze app by Hort Innovation which gives your hot tips and reminders to encourage you to get to your goal of 5 serves in the day.

So there you have it: Get started today by doing a big healthy grocery shop or better yet check in with a Dietitian to help guide you on your own personalised journey!

Ash, Vegetable and life enthusiast

Tahini Chicken Bowl

As summer is nearing an end, the weather doesn't show any signs of cooling down. This heat calls for a refreshing dish full of vibrant colour and flavour. I love this dish as it is super simple and a great way to use up any excess vegetables sitting in the fridge. 

Image Credit: Australian healthy food guide

Image Credit: Australian healthy food guide


  • 500g chicken breast fillets
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 2 cup brown rice (cooked)
  • 150g snow peas, thinly sliced
  • 2 beetroot grated
  • 2 carrots grated
  • 120g mixed leaves


  • 1 tablespoons tahini
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3 teaspoons olive oil


Step 1 Combine the tahini, garlic, lemon juice and olive oil in a glass jar and mix. Use half to cover the chicken and leave to marinate in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. Save the other half and mix with 1 teaspoon of honey and 2 teaspoons of hot water, mix and set aside for later.  

Step 2 Heat a large pan over medium-high heat. Remove chicken from marinade and cook for 3–4 minutes each side, or until golden and cooked through. Transfer to a plate, cover with a sheet of foil and set aside for 2–3 minutes. Thickly slice.

Step 3 Blanch the snow peas for 30 seconds; refresh under cold running water. Drain well.

Step 4 To serve, divide the brown rice, snow peas, beetroot, carrot, salad leaves and chicken between 4 bowls; then drizzle each with the reserved tahini dressing.

Asian Barley Salad

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Discovered this one from my amazing and talented cousin Ben at Christmas time! We loved it so much that leftovers didn't even last long. An excellent salad that also provides some sustaining low GI carbohydrates to keep your energy optimal. It also keeps really well!



  • 1 cup pearl barley (you can buy it in the soup section of the supermarket
  • 6 spring onions - chopped
  • 1 red capsicum - chopped
  • 1/3 cup currants
  • 100g roasted cashews
  • 100g sunflower seeds
  • 1 handful chopped parsley


  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 tbsp sesame oil
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2.5 cm ginger - grated
  • 1 clove garlic - chopped finely


  1. Soak pearl barley overnight for 6-8 hours
  2. Bring to the boil with 3 cups of water and then leave to simmer for ~25 mins. Make sure all water has evaporated. Wait to cool
  3. Add all salad ingredients with pearl barley in a bowl
  4. Add all dressing ingredients to a jar and shake well
  5. Add dressing to salad 
  6. Devour with you choice of protein ie. honey/soy/ginger/garlic/sesame marinated chicken

Cooking is a great way to facilitate a healthy relationship with food and transform your connection into a positive experience - get creating!!

Festive Freekeh Salad

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1 bunch coriander, chopped

1 bunch parsley, chopped

1 bunch mint, chopped

1 small red onion, diced

1 cup freekeh (Use Quinoa for a Gluten Free alternative)

2 cups cooked brown lentils

¼ cup toasted pumpkin seeds

¼ cup toasted slivered almonds

¼ cup toasted pine nuts

1/2 cup currants

1 lemon, juiced

3 tbsp extra virgin olive

1 pomegranate, deseeded, to serve

Yogurt Dressing:

1 cup natural Greek yoghurt

1 tsp cumin seeds, toasted and ground

2 tbsp lemon juice



1.     Bring 1 cup of freekeh to the boil with 3 cups of water, cover and cook for 15 minutes. Drain and set aside to cool.

2.     Toast pumpkin seeds, slivered almonds and pine nuts in a pan on a medium heat until golden.

3.     Place in a mixing bowl, coriander, parsley, mint, cooked freekeh, lentils, current and toasted nuts and seeds and mix well.

4.     Mix in a small bowl yogurt, ground cumin seeds and lemon juice until combined.

5.     Place salad into a serving dish and top with yogurt dressing and pomegranate seeds.

6.     Enjoy!