In the GI News Kitchen

Here's how you can cut back on the food bills and enjoy fresh, easily, seasonal, satisfying and delicious low or moderate GI meals that don’t compromise on quality and flavour one little bit with our Money Saving Meals including chef Michael Moore’s Chilled apple, pear & quinoa porridge with raw almonds from Blood Sugar: the Family reprinted courtesy New Holland Publishers.

Chilled apple, pear and quinoa porridge with raw almonds. 
A little goes a long way says chef Michael Moore’s suggesting you add (or substitute) seasonal berries or the fruit of your choice. Serves: 4

1 1/3 cups skim milk
½ cup water
120g (4oz) quinoa (a slightly heaped ½ cup), rinsed
½ cup plain yoghurt
1 tbsp agave nectar/syrup
1 red apple, washed
1 green pear, washed
Pinch ground ginger
Pinch ground cinnamon
60g (2oz) raw almonds, skin on, chopped or finely sliced

Chilled apple, pear and quinoa porridge with raw almonds.

Place the milk, water and quinoa in a small saucepan, bring to the boil then reduce to a simmer and cover. Cook, stirring occasionally for approximately 15 minutes until soft then allow to cool.
Place the cooked quinoa in a mixing bowl and stir in the yoghurt and agave nectar.
Grate the apple and pear into the bowl with a coarse cheese grater, including the juices. Mix together well. Add the spices to taste and adjust consistency with a splash of milk to your taste. Spoon into small serving bowls and sprinkle with chopped almonds.

Per serve 
1270 kJ/300 calories; 12g protein; 11g fat (includes 2g saturated fat); 38g available carbs; 5g fibre

Family Baking, Anneka Manning, author of Bake Eat Love. Learn to Bake in 3 Simple Steps and founder of Sydney’s BakeClub,  shares her delicious ‘better-for-you’ recipes for snacks, desserts and treats the whole family will love. Through both her writing and cooking school, Anneka teaches home cooks to bake in practical and approachable yet inspiring ways that assure success in the kitchen.

 Anneka Manning

Gluten-free mandarin roasted almond cakes.
These cakes are a play on the original (and wonderful) Middle Eastern orange cake from the one-and-only Claudia Roden. Making use of seasonal mandarins (while they are still around), ground roasted almonds and with the addition of polenta this version is also flourless and gluten-free. The ground roasted almonds give this can a lovely ‘toasted’ flavour but you can substitute pre-ground almond meal if you prefer.
Makes: 12
Prep: 20 minutes (+ 30 minutes simmering and 15 minutes cooling time)
Bake: 15-18 minutes

2 large mandarins (about 110g/3½oz each)
Melted butter or olive oil spray, to grease
½ cup instant polenta
80g natural almonds, roasted, finely ground (see Baker’s tip)
½ tsp baking powder
3 eggs, at room temperature
3/4 cup raw caster sugar
2 tsp natural vanilla essence or extract
icing sugar, to dust (optional)

Gluten-free mandarin roasted almond cakes.

Put the mandarins (skin and all) in a small saucepan and cover with water. Bring to the boil and simmer for 30 minutes or until very soft when tested with a skewer. You may need to place a small saucer over the mandarins to keep them submerged. Remove from the water and set aside to cool slightly.
Meanwhile preheat the oven to 180°C. Brush a 12-hole 80ml (1/3 cup) muffin tin with the melted butter to grease.
Combine the polenta, roasted almond meal, and baking powder in a medium bowl and mix well to combine evenly.
Quarter the mandarins and remove and discard any centre core or seeds. Puree in a food processor or blender until smooth.
Put the eggs, sugar and vanilla in a medium mixing bowl and use an electric mixer with a whisk attachment to whisk until very thick and pale and a ribbon trail forms when the whisk is lifted. Add the mandarin puree and use a spatula or large metal spoon to fold in until just combined. Add the polenta mixture and fold together until evenly combined.
Divide the mixture evenly among the muffin holes (pouring the mixture from a jug or using a ladle works well).
Bake in preheated oven for 15-18 minutes or until the cakes are firm to the touch on the top and cooked when tested with a skewer. Remove from the oven and cool in the tin for 10 minutes. Use a palette knife to ease the cakes out of the tin and transfer to a wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature dusted with a little icing sugar if you wish.

Baker’s tip
Per piece
560 kJ/ 130 calories; 3.5g protein; 5g fat (includes 1g saturated fat); 18.5g available carbs; 1g fibre

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


Grilled shrimp over rucola salad. 
This dish is short on work but long on flavor.  Simple, fresh, unadulterated whole foods, marinated, grilled, then placed on a bed of fresh greens (I always use organic).  Add a glass of chilled Pinot Grigio and some sourdough crostini and you have a perfect meal – Italian style! Serves: 4 (2 skewers each)

20oz (600g) uncooked large shrimps (prawns), shelled and deveined
10oz (300g) baby bella mushroom caps
10oz (300g) large grape tomatoes
6oz (180g) rucola (arugula/rocket), washed and drained

For the marinade
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
juice half lemon (about 1½ tbsp)
1 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley
1 shallot, finely chopped
¼ tsp salt a few twists freshly ground pepper

Grilled shrimp over rucola salad.

Place all marinade ingredients in a medium bowl; mix well.  Add the shrimps and stir thoroughly to coat the shrimps evenly.  Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, stirring a couple of times.
Wash the vegetables, pat dry and set aside.
Heat the grill according to manufacturer’s instructions. Using metal or wooden skewers previously soaked in water, alternately thread the mushrooms, shrimps and tomatoes. Grill the skewers 2 minutes per side, basting with the marinade for the first 2 minutes only.
Divide the rucola among the 4 dinner plates.  Place 2 skewers on each plate and serve.  This dish tastes best when the shrimps and vegetables are removed from the skewers and mixed in with the rucola.

Per serve (assumes 50% marinade consumption) 
250 calories/1040 kilojoules; 30g protein; 10g fat (includes 1.5g saturated fat); 14g available carbs; 2g fibre