Beet & Lentil Salad

Ingredients (serves 4)

4 medium-large beetroots, leave skin on

 1 cup of brown or black lentils

 ½ of a fennel bulb, thinly sliced

Seeds from 1 pomegranate (or thinly sliced pear when pomegranates aren't in season)

2 large handfuls of greens – either rocket, baby spinach, thinly sliced kale or the beetroot greens from the bunch

½ bunch of loosely chopped flat parsley leaves

50g of crumbled feta if desired

Simple dressing

3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon of lemon juice



Preheat oven to 180 degrees (fan forced).

Wrap beet bulbs individually in foil and cook for 45-60 minutes or until tender.

Meanwhile, cook lentils in enough boiling water for about 20-25 minutes.

Once lentils are cooked and drained, combine with the fennel, pomegranate seeds, greens and parsley.

When the beetroot has cooled, peel skin and chop into chunks and add to the lentil mix.

Make dressing and gently stir through the dish.

Serve in individual bowls or on a large platter and top with feta if using.

A few notes about this beautiful dish:

  • This is a great dish to make at the start of the week and enjoy for lunches.
  • Lentils are a great vegetarian meat alternative, providing protein and low GI carbs, therefore leaving you full and satisfied!
  • This dish is gluten free for those requiring a gluten free diet.
  • The plant compounds that make beetroot the beetroot the colour that it is, packs powerful antioxidants.
  • The different textures help us slow it down, chew thoroughly and take our time to eat. 

Warm Mexican Bean & Rice Salad

With the vibrant colours, interesting textures and obvious nourishing ingredients, this recipe speaks for itself. Please don't be alarmed by the long ingredients list, this dish is so quick and easy to prepare.

Ingredients (serves 4)

2/3 cup of uncooked brown, black or wild rice

2 tablespoons of olive oil

1 large red capsicum, diced

1 large red onion, roughly chopped

1 garlic clove, finely sliced

1 teaspoon of paprika

2 teaspoons of cumin

1 large zucchini, diced into small pieced

Kernels from one cob of corn (you can use a small tin for convenience if needed)

1 large (400g can) of black beans or kidney beans

1 fresh chilli, seeds removed and thinly sliced 

1/2 bunch of coriander, leaves picked and stems chopped 

Juice from 2 limes

To top

1 tomato or 1 cup of cherry tomatoes (when in season), diced

1 avocado, mashed

1/4 cup of pepitas (pumpkin seeds) 

Cracked pepper to season


Start cooking rice (remember brown rice takes double the amount of time to cook than white rice).

Meanwhile, heat pepitas with a big pinch of cumin over a low-medium heat in a dry pan. When the pepitas start to become fragrant remove them from the heat - they are easy to burn! 

When there is about 5 minutes left for rice to cook, heat olive oil in a frying pan or heavy saucepan over a medium heat.

Add onion and capsicum and cook for about 2-3 minutes, stirring regularly.

Add garlic, zucchini and corn and cook over a high heat for 1-2 minutes, or until zucchini starts to become tender.

Stir through spices, chilli, beans and half of the lime juice and cook for a further minute. 

Remove from heat and stir through coriander and rice.

Serve in bowls, and top with avocado, pepitas, tomato and an extra squeeze of lime juice. 

Serve this dish hot, cold or at room temperature.

Nutrition information per serve Energy 2370kJ (564cal), protein 20g, fat 28g, saturated fat 5g, carbohydrate 50g, sugars 6g, fibre 17g, sodium 21mg


This dish is great for lunch or dinner and don't forget to save some for leftovers!

Have a smaller serving size and match with some fried egg, grilled chicken tenderloins or a small lean steak. 

tuscan bread & bean soup

Last night I was given some Italian bread, which was leftover from a catering job. Most people wouldn’t be too excited with a gift of bread that would almost stale, however most people haven’t recently been to the Chianti region in Tuscany. If you haven’t figured it out yet, it was my husband and I that were lucky enough to spend a week in Tuscany earlier this year.

During our stay we spent some time in a small town called Greve. It was here where I was introduced to the traditional Tuscan bread and bean soup.

Last night this almost stale bread reminded me of a lovely night we had in Greve, where we were warmly welcomed by locals and carafes of house red. It was on this night that the Tuscan bread and bean soup caught my attention. A soup made with soggy bread, cabbage, a mix of veg and mushy beans – oh YUM! (Ok maybe this doesn’t sound too appealing for all of you)…

I have wanted to replicate this soup for such a long time, as I just loved the flavours and textures. I also have very fond memories of eating this soup and was excited to reminisce in my kitchen today.

To create my version of this mushy mix, I took some inspiration from a few different variations on the net and the memories and the one iphone photo that I have (below). I wasn't able to get any cabbage, so opted for kale instead. Although my version looks slightly more colourful with a different texture, it certainly tastes similar and just as delicious. 

The Tuscan bread & bean soup we enjoyed in Tuscany 

The Tuscan bread & bean soup we enjoyed in Tuscany 

To make it more like the original just let it simmer on the stove top for longer so all of the ingredients just mush together!


2 tables spoons of extra virgin olive oil for cooking (and extra for drizzling when ready to serve)

2 medium carrots, diced

4 celery stalks, diced

2 onions, finely diced

3 garlic cloves, finely sliced

The leaves from 3 stems of kale, finely chopped (you can also use cabbage)

1 large can (400g) of cannellini beans

1 large can (400g) of kidney beans

1 large can (400g) of diced tomatoes

8 springs of thyme

2 bay leaves

6 cups of water

Approximately 3 cups of stale ciabatta bread (or another firm bread such as sour dough), diced into cubes

1 bunch of basil, leaves picked

Salt and pepper to season


Heat olive oil over a medium heat.

Add carrots, celery and onion and cook for approximately 10 minutes, until tender.

Add garlic and stir through for approximately 1 minute.

Add kale, beans, tomatoes, thyme, bay leaves and water then season with salt and pepper.

Reduce to a simmer and cover for 20-30 minutes.

Add 2 cups of the diced bread and most of the basil leaves (spare some to garnish) and simmer, covered for 10 minutes.

Remove bay leaves and thyme stems.

Serve in bowls and top with remaining diced bread, basil and a generous drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.

Enjoy with someone that you love!