So it is after great deliberation, thought, and discussion with many around me that I tell you all some sad news.


The Dietitian Mummy will be on hiatus for 6 months. Last year really took it’s toll on this here mummy and I do believe I took on too much (one of my annoying traits). I ended last year exhausted, frazzled and mojo-less. It was after a rather relaxing break that I realised that it is my choices making my life crazy and that is something that I need to change.


This year I am working a new job and it is 1 more day than I have usually been working.  I had no idea just how much of an impact that one extra day would have on our lives. And while it’s handle-able, it is one less day for washing, one less day for cleaning, one less day for actually spending time with my gorgeous girls who are growing up before my very eyes, and sadly one less day for blogging. I have been trying to keep up but I’m just not super woman. And that’s okay. I’m cool with that. Something has to give and unfortunately in this case it’s the blog.


I’m hoping that after the 6 months I will be in more of a routine with our new lives and I will have some more time for blogging on this page.


Never fear though, the blog will still be here, I will still be on Instagram and facebook, just under my other name homethejaksmade and will occasionally blog about life over there too (homethejaksmade.com).


I wish you all the best for the next 6 months. I will be paring back, taking stock (probably making stock too) and living the life of a mum who is happy not being able to do it all 🙂


Farewell for now,

The Dietitian Mummy


Veggie garden inspo – my amazing dad

Hows the view??

Hows the view??

My garden inspiration has always been my dad. He is the king of veggie gardens. I remember cold winter days, dressed in my red parka and gum boots, mucking about out in the garden with dad. I remember on hot summer days, him picking the peaches and nectarines up high in the branches for us and little sister eating fruit until she got the runs (bbaahhhaaaa). I have become accustomed to receiving bags of fresh veggies from his garden. I also endure (and love) his constant garden advice, “you should get your tomato seeds in now love” “those beetroot need thinning” “you need to add liquid seaweed/nitrogen/maure/etcetcetc to that love”. It’s one of my favourite things about my dad, his love for the home garden.


Zucchinis, cucumbers behind, peach tree and grape vines

Zucchinis, cucumbers behind, peach tree and grape vines

His veggie garden at home is epic. Dad always had a decent veggie patch in the back yard but his dreams of being mostly self-sustainable (when it comes to fruit and veggies that is) weren’t quite cutting it with the medium sized plot. So when the opportunity to buy the house behind his and extend his garden came up, he jumped. He claims that it was for investment purposes but almost as soon as the property settled the fence was moved and he began his take over.


More zucchs and fennel


He now has multiple levels of veggie mania and there is always something new happening. The girls LOVE pottering around the garden with grandpa and picking various bits of fresh fruit and veggie heaven with him. They know the hot-spots (the blueberry bush, the strawberry patch and the madarin tree) and hit them first every time.




His tomatoes are a force to be reckoned with. I snapped Miss 4 (who is quite tall for her age mind you) with them just to show the height these babies are getting at. I have complete tomato envy and dad loves to grill me on how big his are compared to mine. Bastard!


mammoth tomato plants

mammoth tomato plants

No garden in his (and my) eyes are complete without some chooks and his of course are pimped out in a left over aviary from the lovely euro man who live in the house before. The chooks are so useful and he really does maximise them. Pooh from their coop is shovelled into the garden to fertilise. He had an amazing discovery a few years back when tomato plants came up, grown straight out of the chook pooh he had dumped and what grew was the hardiest, most transportable tomato plants he had ever seen. I do believe it is saved seeds from these plants that are growing at a massive height in his garden today.  The chooks are fed the left over food from the amazing meals that are cooked from the produce their pooh helped to grow. It’s an amazingly effective circle, and is a beauty to watch.


Fennel, tomatoes and my nectarine tree in the background

Fennel, tomatoes and my nectarine tree in the background

The latest addition has been his pizza oven which was built in, along with an accompanying serving and seating area. This has been enjoyed by us, my sisters and their families. There is nothing better than hanging out on a nice cool evening with my favourite people in the world. Sitting around the heat of the pizza oven, picking herbs and veggies from the garden to put on our pizza dough made by dad. Eating them straight out of the oven hot and cheesy but full of flavour because everything is fresh. Actual heaven!


Strawberries for days

Strawberries for days


So if you ever wonder why I’m so garden crazy then blame dad. It’s his fault. But do you know what? I love it. I love the proud look on his face when he talks about what’s fruiting. I love the tours we get when the garden is in full force. Pottering around seeing this and that. I love the generosity he has, providing us with fruit, veggies and seedlings from his saved seed. I love the lessons he is teaching our girls: provide for yourself; growing and caring for things; healthy food; the circle of life; and creating ecosystems. I love the shared interest we have.


Pottering along

Pottering along


So in the words of Austin Powers “dad, take a bow”, you do a pretty shit-hot job!


Happy growing,


The Dietitian Mummy

Busy girl dinners


Zero to plate in 15 minutes

Zero to plate in 15 minutes

So it has been brought to my attention (well I asked actually) that some of you out there want some quick healthy meal ideas for nights where you are short of time. This can apply to any of you ladies out there, mums, late night workers, studyers, or just girls out there being girls, multi-tasking and not having much time to spend making dinners.


Now I consider myself a busy girl, even though well, ahem,  I’m much more like a busy lady than girl these days. Regardless, I’m always saying yes to things and always ending up with not much time to cook dinner, especially during the week, yeesh!  So here are some things that I do to help with the busy times …


Plan your meals.

Oh the horror, the bore, the OCD. But seriously, it’s necessary! I never thought I would be one of “those” girls, but turns out, life is actually much less stressful if you pull out a bit of the “planning natzi” in you and plan the week’s meals. Not only does it help me with budgeting, but it helps me to plan quick meals on days I know I will be home late (or out all day) and will be wanting a quick option.

Meal planning like a boss

Meal planning like a boss

I plan out the week’s meal options before the start of the week. I write down what I’m doing on each of those days (and I’ve gotten so anally retentive that I also factor in the weather) and then decide what we will eat that night. From there I do my online shopping and work out what I need to do on my prep day. Dinners are SOO much quicker when you have all of the ingredients and meals are half prepared already.


Prep day.

Yup, sounds like more boring and time consuming doesn’t it. Prep day isn’t actually a whole day. Most of the time it’s an hour or so of prep, but basically it is the things I do to make sure most of the meals for the week are mostly prepared. I co-ordinate this time with when I get my shopping delivered so that everything is done from the get-go. The things you can do with prep day are:


  • Cut up meat into portions, marinade, put in zip lock bags and then freeze. These are AWESOME for when you get home late, just whack in the microwave to defrost and then cook.
  • Pre-prepare salads – wash and spin some salad leaves in either a salad spinner or by putting in the middle of a tea towel, grabbing all four corners and spinning it in a big circle with your arm. Cut up carrot, cucumber, capsicum, cabbage, snow peas, etc and put with the lettuce. Add some cherry tomatoes to the mix too (they keep amazingly because you don’t have to cut them). Keep in your fridge in between two dry tea towels, it will keep nice and fresh all working week. All you need to do before serving is add some avocado, feta, olives and seeds and you’ve got an amazingly quick dinner side to go with your meat you marinaded from the point above.
  • Slow cook meals or batch prepare meals. Things like bolognaise sauce, stew, pulled pork, slow cooked chicken, chilli con carne, all great options to pre-prepare and freeze. All you have to do when you get home is whack it in the microwave, put on some pasta or better yet 90 second rice/quinoa and by the time you go and change out of your clothes you have dinner already sorted.
  • Make some pizza bags. Make pizza dough, chop toppings, grate cheese, put it all in zip lock bags or containers and freeze. Move from the freezer to the fridge in the morning and by dinner time all you have to do is heat the oven, scatter over the pizza and within 20 minutes will be enjoying a delish, healthy homemade pizza.
  • Chop vegetables and container them. If you have planned to have steamed veg then cut and mix them on prep day. It cuts out about 5-10 minutes of your prep time if all you have to do is empty them into the steamer.
  • Roast veggies. Cut up pumpkin, zucchini, sweet potato, egg plant, whatever roasted veg takes your fancy and roast it on prep day so you can add that little bit extra to salads, sandwiches or just have as sides throughout the week.


Slow cooker batch meals

Slow cooker batch meals

Supermarket meal list

Do you ever go into the supermarket to get something for dinner and wander aimlessly around for about 20 minutes getting hungrier and hungrier before getting so hangry and frustrated that you just buy something crappy for you? Well writing yourself a list of quick supermarket meals you can throw together may help out. It means that when you are faced with the no-time situation all you need to do is go straight in and get what you need. It will stop you getting tempted by the crap. Some of our quick supermarket eats are

  • Yiros – marinated lamb, yiros bread, salad, grated cheese.
  • Hot chicken and salad bag. Bread rolls on the side or wrap it up in wrap bread for carbs.
  • Pasta, pasta sauce and broccoli. Even better if you make and freeze your own pasta sauce, extra points for that one.
  • Steak and steamed veg seriously will take you 15 minutes, TOPS.


Quick yiros salad

Quick yiros salad



And lastly, just keep it simple! Healthy doesn’t have to mean gourmet. Baked beans on rye toast, or eggs with rice and asparagus (ahhh random!!) is a-okay. Simple meals are qupre quick and a great way to throw something together when you are short of time and can’t be fecked slaving over a stove.


Random healthy eats

Random healthy eats

So if you are a busy girl and want to eat healthy, try some of my tips! Don’t forget to tell me yours too… what are your go-to quick meals?


Happy cooking,


The Dietitian Mummy


Christmas Baking hit list


For quite some time, I hated Christmas. Like really hated it. It coincided with the fact that I worked in a toy store and had to endure hours and hours and hours of Christmas holiday angry mothers trying to find that one essential toy that their little cherub demanded for Christmas. The after effects were also made worse by the fact that I worked on the refund desk and was subjected to abuse from said mothers who were now post Christmas angry mothers whos children’s toys did not work for many reasons. Apparently it was all my fault.


So it was much to my surprise after quitting the ol’ toy store that I found my Christmas spirit return. Little sister and I used to always Christmas bake and sometimes those baking products would make it to Christmas. We no, I’m lying actually. They never lasted. But it was always a fun and delicious experience.


Now a few years back I was lucky enough to gain a sister-in-law who loves to Christmas bake as much as I do and we now make it an annual activity. We get together, put on very bad Christmas carols and bake the day away. Last year we even enlisted mother-in-law to come along. The lovely dear thought she was coming to join in on the baking. Much to her surprise, the job given to her was to keep the girls entertained and out of our hair. He hheeeeeee.


So while I will be very pushed for time this year (with new job training and all) I am hoping to lock down a date with sister-in-law to get our bake on. I am very excited this year because Miss 4 is actually old enough to help out and to be trusted to not eat too much of the baking supplies before they are baked. Here are my pinterest finds for this year….


These cute little snowmen caught my eye! The girls will LOVE them. I really don’t need to say much more because they are just so cwute!



Candy cane biscuits. On their blog, the We are not marthas call them Sparkling Peppermint Sugar Cookies, and of course they would being American, it makes sense to the. I on the other hand, will be calling them Candy cane biscuits so that Miss 4 knows what the hell I’m on about!



ON pinterest the description for these just said “balls”. That was enough to catch my eye (ooohhh balls!!) and being the immature mother that I am, of course I lol-led. They are Peanut Butter balland they have my mouth watering already. Sure, innuendo intended.


Red Velvet Snowflake Cookies @createdbydiane

Red velvet snowflake biscuits. They look just beautiful. And I sneakily acquired a snow flake cutter (by way of sneaking yet another home magazine into my food shopping without husband knowing) so they will be perfecto!


Sheena 3.jpg

Have you ever eaten a chocolate coated pretzel? Errmaggheerrddd they are so freaking good. And when you find a recipe for Chocolate Coated Pretzel Rods  (hhaaahhaaa am I the only deviate laughing at this too?) you really can’t go wrong, can you ladies?? 😉 😉 You’re terrrrible Murrriel. yes I am, and delirious with Christmas spirit too.


So here’s hoping I get to make them all, and that I don’t eat them all in the first week after making. Being a heifer for Christmas was not really on my plans.


What are you baking for Christmas??


Happy baking,


The Dietitian Mummy.

Budget week recipes

Zucchini slice

Zucchini slice

So a few weeks ago you would have seen me posting my budget week pics on Instagram and facebook as well as a post on ways to save on that darn food shopping bill. Well there was a bit of interest in the meals I cooked for budget week so I’m going to post the recipes.

My original plan was disrupted (saved) by a few dinner invitations that week but here are the meals I cooked:

Zucchini slice – using eggs as the main source of protein for a meal is a GREAT way to save the moolah. Especially if you have three girls out the back laying those babies for fwwweeeeee.

Jamie Oliver’s meatloaf with home made spaghetti (for obvious reasons I’m not providing the recipe here, but seriously get Save With Jamie if you are budget conscious, it’s a plethora of great information and recipes).

Meat balls and fettucini – using mince is another great way to cut down costs. It’s super cheap. Yes the budget mince isn’t as healthy but my thinking is, if you are cooking more from home you are cutting out a whole whack of nasties and the fat in the mince doesn’t outweigh that.

Enchiladas which includes my recipe for slow cooked Mexican chicken. Slow cooking a meal and re-using it throughout the week or month is super saving, especially in the case of the Mexican chicken because it is bulked up with veggies to make it go further!

Curry sausage casserole – Sausages are a no-brainer really when it comes to budgeting. They are dirt cheap. Not the healthiest, but again cook from home, avoid takeaway and the sausages wont be so bad in the whole scheme of things. I used a recipe out of homesplus magazine. Unfortunately they don’t have their recipes on their website, but you can find similar recipes on good ol’ taste.com.au


Curried sausage casserole with brown rice

Curried sausage casserole with brown rice

So here we go…


Zucchini Slice – one of our family favourites because it is so well frozen for lunches or quick meals and it’s also amazing cold on a hot summer’s night for dinner.

Ingredients – For 1 large and 1 medium slice (it made 1 dinner for 2 adults and 2 children, and 4 adult lunches).

10 eggs

5 slices short cut bacon, diced

3 zucchini grated

1 onion, diced finely

¾ cup plain flour

2 cups grated cheese

A few good lugs of olive oil


Preheat your oven to about 180 degrees celcius.

Chuck everything in the bowl and give it a nice big mix. Seriously after chopping all the ingredients and mixing that’s ALL!!

Spray your baking dishes with oil spray and pour in. Bake in the oven until the slice is nice and brown on top. Serve with a nice big salad.

The slice will be quite gooey because of the cheese when you eat it hot but once it cools it goes much more firm.


Meatballs and fettucini – mince is amazingly cheap and our kids love meatballs.

Ingredients (for 2 adults and 2 children + lunch for the next day)

500g mince, I used veal, pork and beef but feel free to use anything you want.

1 zucchini grated

About 2 cloves finely chopped or crushed garlic

A good pinch of salt

Cracked pepper

1 large jar passata

1 tin chopped tomatoes

1 onion diced

1 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp brown sugar

1 tsp salt

Olive oil

¾ packet store bought fettucini


Grate the zucchini and squeeze out most of the liquid. Put in a bowl with the mince, garlic and pinch of salt. Squeeze all of it together with your hands until mixed through and then roll into balls. Put in the fridge for as long as you have.

Boil some water and once bubbling, whack in the fettucini. Once it’s cooked, drain and serve onto the plates.

Brown your onion in a pan with olive oil until soft. Then add in the passata, tomatoes, oregano, brown sugar and salt. Simmer on low heat for about 10 minutes.

Heat some oil in a fry pan and cook your meatballs until they are browned on all sides. You can shake the fry pan to get them rolling and cooking evenly. Once they are browned, plop them into the sauce. Cook for another 15 minutes until they are cooked through.

Serve on top of the fettucini with extra sauce poured all over and grated cheese on top. If your kiddies are picky with their plating, serve the meatballs on the side “not mixed in MUMMMMM”.



Ingredients – makes 9

1 container of slow cooked Mexican chicken – see below

9 tortillas

2 green capsicum diced

1 cup grated cheese

½ jar salsa

Mexican salsa to serve with – diced red onion (1/4), half avocado diced, 1 small cucumber diced, 2 tomatoes, squeeze lemon juice, coriander. Mix all together. Please NOTE – this is only a budget option if cucumbers and tomatoes are on sale, if not, make a simple salad of whatever is cheap that week.


Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celcius

Layer a few dessert spoons of chicken down the middle of a tortilla and sprinkle a small handful of capsicum over the top. Roll up the tortilla and put in a baking dish. Repeat until you can’t fit anymore in the dish (I got to 9)

Pour the salsa over the top and sprinkle the cheese. Put in the oven for 15-20 minutes.

Serve with a salad (Mexican salsa if its cheap).


Slow cooked Mexican chicken

4 chicken breasts

3 jars salsa

1 large tin corn drained

1 tin red kidney beans drained


Put everything in the slow cooker and stir. Turn onto low level and leave for about 6 hours, or until you can flake the chicken easily with a fork.

Once it’s done, flake the chicken off with a fork and mix into the sauce.

Freeze in portioned containers, this will keep for a few months. We did dinner sized containers and lunch sized ones.

We use this for:

  • As a meal base with rice and Mexican salad on the side
  • On top of lunch time salads
  • Mexican chicken hot potatoes
  • Enchiladas
  • Tacos
  • Lunch time wraps
  • Eating plain out of a container because its just so damn awesome.


So there you go, budget beauties. If you like them I have plenty more in my arsenal that I can spout out.


What are your favourite budget meals?


Happy cooking,


The Dietitian Mummy

It’s getting hot in hurrrr, so mar-i-nade your meat

Yeah that’s right, I’m a gangsta. Well obviously not really, but I can pretend right?


Basil and garlic chicken

Basil and garlic chicken

Over here in Radelaide the sun is starting to shine and the weather is getting amazing! It’s funny how much the weather determines the foods that I cook. Sometimes I will have a comfort-food type recipe planned for a dinner and then that day turns out to be warm and I just can’t bring myself to cook a hot meal on a hot day. When the weather is warm, we turn to salads.


Marinade madness

Marinade madness

Salads for me though are so much more than just leaves and chopped up tomato plonked on the side of the plate. I LOVE to make a meal out of it, adding in meat or eggs, carbs in some form, seeds, nuts, cheese, whatever takes my fancy on the day actually. There is one thing that really makes  a salad. And that is a good meat marinade.


Lamb greek salad kids version

Lamb greek salad kids version

A good marinade means that every bite you have with the meat in it, is just one of those mouthfuls that you just can’t help but groan out loud. I have two go-to marinades that always come out of the woodwork when the weather warms up: garlic and basil chicken; and greek lamb.


These marinades are the sorts of things that busy girls can do in the morning before work or mum life and then throw together into an amazing salad at the end of the day.


So here they are, do your taste buds a favour and get into these.


Garlic and basil chicken:

This will be enough for 2 chicken breasts or 4 chicken thighs.

Finely dice 2 cloves of garlic (or use 2 tsp minced garlic from a jar) and put into a bowl with a big handful of basil chopped finely, a squeeze of half a lemon, a pinch of sea salt flakes and a good glug of olive oil. Plonk your meat in and get in there with your hands and give the meat a good massage with the marinade. Leave this for at least half an hour but for as long as you have.

When I use this marinade I normally brown the chicken well on all sides then finish it off in a 190 degree oven.


Greek Lamb:

This is enough for about 500g lamb pieces.

Finely dice 2 cloves of garlic (or 2 tsp minced garlic), put in a bowl along with 1 lemon squeezed, a big pinch sea salt flakes, some cracked pepper, and 2 tsp oregano (fresh if you have it). Repeat as with the chicken marinade.

For the lamb pieces I will just fry them in a frypan with some olive oil.


Add to your salad or on a plate with some salad and voila, summer meat madness.

Happy cooking,


The Dietitian Mummy





Budget week – 10 tips on how to reduce your food costs

Budget week

Budget week

So every now and then, I get sick of spending so much money on food. Sometimes I spend a ridiculous amount of our money on ingredients at the supermarket because well, cooking, it’s my passion (even though I hate that word in that context). But it is. So sometimes, after seeing all the Woollies and Coles entries on our bank statement I decide that it is time to pull in the purse strings and have a good ol’ budget week!


I’ve been instagramming some of our budget week pics, but I thought I’d write a bit of a post about ways you can keep your food budget under check! These are my tried and true tips, but I’m SURE you all have your own that you can tell me too, so comment below if you have some!

 So here are my top 10 tips for saving money on food (plus one bonus cheeky tip)…

Curried sausage casserole with brown rice

Curried sausage casserole with brown rice

  1. PLAN, plan and plan again. It’s so important to plan your meals before you go to the shops. Write yourself a list and stick to the list. I use to be rubbish at that and would pick anything and everything I saw, as well as the list. Not recommended, trust me.
  2. Shop without your kids. When I shop with the girls, I speed through, trying to get it done with all three of us alive and avoiding tantrums so I buy way more than I need because I’m not concentrating, or I forget the things I need so on top of an already over budget shop, I have to buy more. Most supermarkets these days are open late night every weeknight so it’s easy to go after the kids are in bed. And I tell you this for free, it’s damn right peaceful in the shops at night. Sometimes I like to just wander the aisles aimlessly because I am kid free! If you can’t get out alone, try the next tip….
  3. Shop online! I’m terrible at estimating my budget as I shop. Sometimes I think it’s a big shop and it’s not, sometimes I think it’s a small shop and I’m that person at the checkout with their jaw on the floor thinking, did I really spend THAT much. One of the best ways for me to stick to a budget has been to shop online. I can add everything to my trolley that I need and if it goes over budget I can easily sit back and decide which items I need to take out. Rather than feeling like a scab at the checkout getting the operator to take things off or trying to decide in a hurry because Miss 2 is pushing Miss 4 who is screaming blue murder.
  4. Shop in season. Fruit and veg are cheaper when they are in season. It’s hard to work out what is in season these days because you can access almost every fruit and vegetable ALL the time, but if you go around the fruit and veg section choosing what’s cheapest, you are probably eating within the season.
  5. Buy home brand. I KNOW, I get it, it’s not ethical, it’s not local, it robs farmers. But when I am trying to budget conscious, that is one ideal that I have to give up. It makes a HUGE difference to the price tag at the end of my shopping.
  6. Have some cheap, really basic meals on your menu. I’m thinking like: toast and baked beans, eggs on toast, egg in a hole, that sort of thing. I used to HATE doing this. I felt like I was making boring food for the kids and that husband would think that I was being lazy. Turns out none of them care! The girls love egg-in-a-hole nights or baked beans and husband loves the fact that there’s less to clean up after dinner. And I’m less stressed when I know that meal prep is going to be really
  7. Look at the portions you are providing. I am a typical European girl who loves to over-cater when it comes to food so I would cook up massive meals and portions. Which was a waste of money, because all it did was make husband and I gain weight, and the girls serves get wasted. So we have cut portions down. Meat especially and it really does make a difference in how much we spend.
  8. Grow your own. Simple as that. Start a veggie garden, grow some fruit trees. Get some chooks. You will supplement your shop with fresh delicious foods that you don’t have to buy. Save your seed to eliminate the need to buy seeds or seedlings the next year. I really REALLY love gardening which you will know, so I wont bang on about it too much but it is seriously cool.
  9. Save fancy meals for once or twice a week. This is my HARDEST. I love cooking, and I love cooking new recipes I see. I seriously don’t think I will ever get to the point where I have tried all of the recipes I want to. But in terms of cost of ingredients, basic meals are usually the cheapest. So I hold off my urges until the weekend and make fancy meals with fancy ingredients then.
  10. Buy things in bulk. I buy nuts, grains and seeds at a bulk shop and it works out MUCH cheaper in the long run than buying small bags at the super market.
  11. This is the bonus tip, eat at someone else’s house!! When I decided to do my budget week, I had 7 meals planned out and shopped for (online of course). I then realised that I had not factored in 2 family birthdays where we would be eating at someone else’s house, and then we also had a last minute family dinner at my mother in laws too so that knocked 3 meals off my plan for this week. That’s my bonus because those weeks will become meals for next week that I don’t have to buy. Obviously I’m not condoning you to turning up at peoples house uninvited for eating, but as a young family, accepting invitations from parents and parents-in-law for dinner is GREAT!.
Zucchini slice

Zucchini slice

So there are SOME of my tips for keeping your shopping budget tight. But I want to hear yours. Comment below your tried and tested budgeting tips…


Bye for now,


The Dietitian Mummy