In the GI News Kitchen

American dietitian and author of Good Carbs, Bad Carbs, Johanna Burani, shares favourite recipes with a low or moderate GI from her Italian kitchen. For more information, check out Johanna's website. The photographs are by Sergio Burani. His food, travel and wine photography website is photosbysergio.com.

[JOHANNA]

Summer green beans
Fresh green beans are an excellent source of potassium and folic acid. They are fibrous and have diuretic qualities too. These nutritional virtues may not mean as much to Italian cooks, however, as their fresh and wholesome summery taste. Every Italian vegetable garden has a designated spot for the much-loved ‘fagiolini’. This recipe is unbelievably easy and quick – less than 15 minutes from garden to table! Serves 8 (about 1 cup each)

450g (1lb) fresh green beans
450g (1lb) ripe plum tomatoes
½ small red onion, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons. pesto
Coarse sea salt (optional)

Summer green beans

Per serving (1 cup)
Energy: 239kJ/57cals; Protein 2g; Fat 2g (includes less than 1g saturated fat); Available carbs 6g; Fibre 3g

Cut back on the food bills and enjoy fresh-tasting, easily prepared, seasonal, satisfying and delicious low or moderate GI meals that don’t compromise on quality and flavour one little bit with Money Saving Meals author Diane Temple. For more recipes check out the Money Saving Meals website.

Leek, silver beet (Swiss chard) and feta slice
Everyone says that children and veggies don’t go together. TV ads promote sauces to smother vegetables so the children will eat them, magazines feature stories on helping anxious parents get veggies into their children and there are best-selling cookbooks based entirely on being a sneaky chef and hiding vegetables in meals. And I have to confess to hiding grated zucchini in spaghetti Bolognese and burger patties. But my views have totally changed since I have been teaching children how to cook as part of the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Program at Bondi Public School. The children grow the vegetables in our school garden, they look after them, they harvest them and prepare and cook them in our kitchen. So we can’t hide them – they know they are there because they put them there, and they happily eat them. The week I made a silver beet tart there was nearly a stampede for seconds, and this slice – an adaptation of a zucchini slice – made with silver beet, leeks and herbs the children picked from the garden disappeared just as quickly. Makes 10 slices

2 tablespoons oil
1 leek, halved lengthwise, washed, dried, sliced
10 silver beet (Swiss chard) leaves, remove stems, washed, dried, shredded
1 carrot, grated
3 tablespoons chopped parsley
1 teaspoon chopped spearmint leaves or 2 tablespoons chopped mint
¾ cup (60g) finely grated parmesan cheese
60g (2oz) feta cheese, crumbled
1¼ cups (180g) self-raising flour
5 eggs, lightly beaten
1/3 cup (80ml) milk

Leek, silver beet (Swiss chard) and feta slice

Per serving (1 piece)
Energy: kJ/ cals; Protein 9g; Fat 9g (includes 3g saturated fat and 101mg cholesterol); Available carbs 15g; Fibre 3.5g