The Incas called quinoa ‘the mother of all grains’ due to its excessive nutritional value. You can spruce up the colour of the plate by using white, red and black quinoa.
The rice, with its slightly chewy texture and Indian spices, provides the perfect backdrop for tender chicken, crunchy raw vegetables, sweet grapes and toasted nuts.
Dried cranberries and toasted pistachios are mixed with buckwheat and dressed with a lemon and parsley dressing in this nutritious salad, perfect with barbecued meats.
This dish provides the nutrient-rich benefits of liver, combined with the high levels of anti-oxidants found in oranges, parsley, and many salad greens.
This rice salad is packed with vitamins, minerals and fibre. It is an excellent way of using up left-over roast beef, and the vegetables can be varied to suit all tastes.
This crunchy potato salad goes well with barbecued meats.
Potatoes and lentils make great partners, with their earthiness and ability to carry other flavours.
Tiny green puy lentils have a slightly nutty texture and flavour. They keep their shape well once cooked, making them perfect in salads. Here they are mixed with sausages and Mediterranean vegetables, plus a handful of fresh rocket.
Mac ‘n cheese is quite possibly the most perfect dish on the planet. The original version uses full-fat cheese, cream and white pasta, so the whole thing is pretty much fat and carbs. My version uses creamy sweet potato to thicken the sauce (plus adds nutrients and flavour), non-fat evaporated milk so that the sauce doesn’t separate during baking, and brown-rice pasta.
This protein-rich salad is perfect for a healthy lunch, or as a side with dinner.
Select small beets with their greens still attached; they have the most flavour.
A vegetarian version of the hearty French country dish, this uses canned beans for a quick and easy one-pot. It’s finished in the traditional way, with a crunchy breadcrumb and herb topping, plus nuts for extra protein.
This lighter version of the great French classic, chicken in red wine sauce, is lower in fat and includes more vegetables. It just needs some crusty, rustic-style bread and perhaps a light green salad to serve it with. The dish is better if made a full day ahead so the flavours can mature.
The combination of Pernod and fennel adds a wonderful anise flavour to this popular seafood dish, which just needs some crusty whole wheat bread to mop up the tasty juices. Mussels are low in fat and rich in many minerals, including iron and zinc.
This dish is best started overnight to maximize the rich flavour of the beef and red wine. It’s worth using a good-quality red in the dish – you’ll appreciate the superior flavour.
A hearty beef and vegetable casserole that can be left to cook or made ahead and then reheated before serving. Cook the dumplings on top shortly before serving.
This hearty dish of lean lamb layered with delicious root vegetables and baked in a covered casserole is perfect for busy lives. Once assembled, it can simply be left to cook and won’t be spoiled if left in the oven a little longer.
Perfect for summer lunches or an alfresco dinner party, this informal dish is simple to make and very healthy. Serve with slices of toasted ciabatta.
Chicken and spicy chorizo sausage combine well with vegetables and lentils, which are naturally low in fat and a good source of fibre, to create this hearty and flavourful pan-fry. Serve with a green salad to round out the meal.
The spiced coating on the chicken breasts cooks to a delicious crunchy crust, keeping the inside flesh really juicy. It’s served on a simple avocado, bean and tomato salad, but add some rustic bread to complete the meal.