1 January 2008

Low GI Recipes of the Month

Our chef Kate Hemphill develops deliciously simple recipes for GI News that showcase seasonal ingredients and make it easy for you to cook healthy, low GI meals and snacks. For more of Kate’s fabulous fare, check out: www.lovetocook.co.uk. For now, prepare and share good food with family and friends.

Kate Hemphill

Vietnamese-Style Trout with Cucumber Salad
This is a nice, light dish to balance out some of the richer food you might be eating at this time of year. You can substitute the trout for any delicate white fish you like. Ask your fishmonger to fillet the fish, or cook whole using the herb paste for stuffing in the cavity. Use less fish sauce if you are on a reduced sodium diet. Rice (a lower GI one of course) steamed with ginger would make a nice accompaniment.
Serves 2


2 small trout, filleted
2 cups picked coriander leaves, chopped
1 cup dill leaves, chopped
15 large mint leaves, chopped
1 lime, juiced
2 spring onions, chopped
1/2 long red chilli, chopped
1 small clove garlic, chopped
2 tablespoons fish sauce
1 teaspoon caster sugar

1/2 long cucumber, peeled, seeds scooped out and sliced
2 spring onions, finely sliced
1/2 long red chilli, sliced

  • Pre-heat the oven to 200ºC (400 ºF).
  • Mix the coriander, dill, mint, lime juice, spring onions, chilli, garlic, fish sauce and sugar in a pestle and mortar and bash until a rough paste forms.
  • Take half of the paste and place between the trout fillets. Loosely wrap the trout in foil, place on a baking tray and bake for 10–12 minutes or until cooked. The flesh should be opaque and the skin should peel off easily when cooked.
  • Combine the remaining paste with salad ingredients, toss, and serve with fish.
Per serve (without rice)
947 kJ/225 calories; 33 g protein; 4.6 g fat (includes 1.2 g saturated fat); 8 g carbohydrate; 7.4 g fibre

Black Bean and Corn Soup

This is such a delicious hearty soup, also very nutritious and low in fat. Don't be put off the grey/brown colour - all will be forgiven when you taste it. This soup will freeze well (before garnishing), if you have any leftovers. If it’s not easy for you to get hold of the spices indicated with *, use 2 teaspoons smoked paprika, 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin, 1 teaspoon medium chilli powder and 1 teaspoon dried oregano.
Serves 6

Black Beans

500 g raw black beans, soaked overnight in cold water or two 400 g (14 oz) cans black beans
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 small red onions, chopped
3 small garlic cloves, chopped
6 cups (1½ litres) reduced salt chicken or vegetable stock
1 teaspoon Herbie's Mexican spice blend*
1 teaspoon ground pasilla chilli*
2 chipotle chillies, soaked in water and seeds removed*
1-2 teaspoons sea salt or to taste
2 limes, juiced
2 cobs corn, kernels removed
1 small bunch coriander, roughly chopped
2 tablespoons low-fat crème fraiche or low fat plain yoghurt or light sour cream
  • To cook the raw black beans, drain the off the soaking water and cook them in fresh water for about an hour or until cooked. Rinse well.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large saucepan and sweat onions until soft, then add garlic and cook for 2 minutes. Add the spices to the pan, then return drained beans to the pan and cover with the stock. Simmer for 15 minutes, until beans are getting extremely soft. Blitz with a hand-held blender or transfer to a blender and process.
  • Return the soup to pan and add lime juice and corn kernels. Simmer gently to cook corn through and season to taste – a few minutes. Serve garnished with coriander and a dollop of crème fraiche.
Per serve
936 kJ/223 calories; 11 g protein; 5 g fat (includes 1 g saturated fat); 27 g carbohydrate; 10 g fibre