Nutrition

The Importance of Healthy Eating

Adequate and appropriate nutrition intake is required for all cells within the body to function optimally including the immune system. Some micronutrients and dietary components have very specific roles in the development and maintenance of the immune system to initiate effective responses against pathogens to allow for optimal immunological outcomes. 

The Immune System

The immune system is a complex system of organs and processes that actively fights against infections invading the body. The main parts of this system are white blood cells, antibodies, the lymphatic system, spleen, bone marrow, the complement system and thymus.

The immune system is divided into the innate and adaptive immune responses. The innate  response is a rapid and generalised first response to an invading pathogen, whereas the  adaptive immune response specifically identifies a pathogen and how to combat it effectively. 

Adequate and appropriate nutrition intake is required for all cells within the body to function optimally, including the immune system. Some micronutrients and dietary components have very specific roles in the development and maintenance of an optimal immune system to initiate effective responses against pathogens to allow for the best immunological outcomes.

Malnutrition is well understood to impair immune function, which may be due to nutrient  deficiencies in dietary intake, development of poor nutrient absorption due to complications  associated with illnesses or disease and other medical problems.

The poor dietary choices within the Western diet reveal harmful impacts on our immune  system and these harmful immune modifications are likely to be passed onto our offspring.  The Western diet is characterised by an overconsumption of sugar, salt, saturated fats and  food additives and sweeteners. The high consumption of these nutrients in the diet reveals  immune system impacts, such as increasing inflammation, heightening stress and disruption to gut microbiome.

The gut microbiota are the complex and dynamic micro-organisms that support various  aspects of human health and wellbeing including innate immunity, energy metabolism and  other physiological functions from within the gastrointestinal (GI) tract.

There is an interconnected relationship between the gut and the immune system where  impaired immune functions is frequently caused or accompanied by disruptions in gut  microbiota. The disruption of microorganisms of the gut microbiome leads to dysbiosis,  which is associated with the development of intestinal and extra-intestinal disorders.  Intestinal disorders include inflammatory bowel diseases, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and coeliac disease, whereas extra-intestinal disorders include allergies, asthma, metabolic  syndrome, cardiovascular disease and obesity.

Antibiotics are medicines that treat infections and diseases by damaging bacteria so that the  immune system can effectively fight back against the bacteria causing the infection.  Unfortunately, antibiotic use can negatively affect the health of the gut microbiota by  reducing the bacteria species and diversity, which can also affect immune function.  To improve our gut health and support immune and overall health, it is beneficial to consume probiotics and prebiotics in our diet during and after antibiotic use to help restore lost  bacteria. 

Probiotics are dietary sources of live microorganisms that restore and improve the gut  microbiota in the human intestinal tract, which can provide some beneficial health effects to  the human body. They improve overall gut health, strengthen the immune system, have  antioxidant and antihypertensive effects, support absorption of minerals, and reduce  dermatitis and allergic symptoms. Probiotic food sources include dairy products such as  yoghurt, aged cheese (cheddar, gouda, mozzarella), kefir and traditional buttermilk. They’re also found in non-dairy yoghurts, fresh and sour dill pickles, kimchi, kombucha, miso, natto, sauerkraut, tempeh, and water or brine-cured olives. 

Prebiotics are dietary sources of microorganisms that stimulate the development and activity  of the gut microbiota in the human intestinal tract, which can enhance overall health and  wellbeing. They improve and promote the development of various gut bacteria, stimulate the  immune system, lower cholesterol levels, increase the absorption of calcium, and maintain  the intestinal pH value of the gut. Prebiotics food sources include apples, artichokes,  tomatoes, bananas, barley, berries, cocoa, garlic, green vegetables, soybeans, oats, onions,  legumes and wheat.

Understanding Nutrients

Protein

Protein is a nutrient necessary for cell growth and repair, maintaining muscle, bone and tissue health and many other important functions of the body. Adequate daily protein intake is important especially during certain life stages where there is increased need such as childhood, adolescence, pregnancy, and breastfeeding. Dietary sources of protein include  meat, poultry, fish, cereals, grains, dairy food and vegetables.

Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates provide necessary energy to support important bodily functions and physical  activity. Healthy sources of carbohydrates such as whole grains, beans, fruits and vegetables in the diet support health through providing vitamins, minerals and dietary fibre.Avoid carbohydrates such as white bread, pastries, soft drinks and other highly processed or refined foods in the diet as these may contribute to weight gain and promote diabetes and heart disease. 

Dietary Fibre

Dietary fibre is resistant starch and components of plant materials that provide important nutritional and physiological effects for human health and wellbeing. It is a low density nutrient essential for the healthy functions of the gut and other beneficial  effects including reduction in blood cholesterol levels, modulation of blood glucose and laxation properties. Dietary fibre food sources include wholegrain cereals, fruits and  vegetables, legumes and soy products.

Dietary Fats

Dietary fats are naturally occurring fats and oils within animal and plant food products that are added to processed food products. Made up of two main types of fatty acids being saturated and unsaturated fats, where saturated fats are solid at room temperature and unsaturated fats  are liquid. Unsaturated fats are associated with increased health benefits, whereas saturated fats are considered unhealthy due to their negative impact on cholesterol and health. Healthy food sources of fats include peanuts, nuts, avocado, oils (such as olive, sunflower, peanut and  coconut), seeds, walnuts, oily fishes (salmon and trout), and plant oils.

It is also essential to be drinking enough water each day, where women should have around 2 litres or 8 cups and men have about 2.6 litres or 10 cups per day.

Electrolytes are essential minerals within the body’s blood, sweat and urine that are required for a variety of the body’s functions and key for the body to maintain homeostasis and  hydration. Consumption of electrolytes such as sodium, calcium, potassium, magnesium and zinc support the immune system through regulation, and fighting bacteria and inflammation. Food sources include dairy products, green leafy vegetables, seeds and nuts, fruits and vegetables (such as banana, avocado and sweet potato), pickled foods and table salt.

Vitamins and minerals are essential nutrients required for bodily functions such as  strengthening muscles and bones, hormone regulation, fighting infections and metabolic processes.

Eating a healthy and balanced diet of a variety of fruits, vegetables, grains, lean meats, legumes and reduced fat dairy products will provide your body with the vitamins and  minerals needed.

Healthy Lifestyle Behaviours to Support Immune Health

Diet

The Australian Dietary Guidelines are based on the latest scientific evidence on food and  health, and have been constructed to provide the general Australian population with a guide on what and how much of the nutritious food of each of the five food groups to include in a balanced diet each day.

A wide variety of nutrient dense foods should be consumed each day to support overall  health and wellbeing, the quality of life and reduce the risk of chronic diseases.

Vegetables and Legumes/Beans

Vegetables and legumes/beans are a great source of vitamins and minerals. Nutrient dense and good sources include dark green leafy vegetables, potatoes, carrots, beetroots, beans, tomatoes, pumpkin and capsicum. Legumes are seeds of the plant including green peas and beans, lentils and chickpeas.

Children, adolescents, and toddlers are recommended 2-5 serves of vegetables and legumes/beans each day and adults are recommended 5-6 serves each day. 

Grains

Grains are a great source of carbohydrates/starch, protein, fibre and are a good source of a wide variety of vitamins and minerals. Cereals and wholegrain foods can reduce the risk of developing certain diseases including coronary heart disease, colon cancer, diabetes and diverticular disease. Food sources that include grain (cereal) foods include mostly wholegrain and/or high cereal fibre varieties such as rolled oats, wholegrain breads, rice, pasta, polenta and  quinoa. At least two thirds of grain foods eaten should be wholegrain. Wholegrain cereals contain more fibre, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants than refined cereal foods such as white bread.

Children, adolescents and toddlers are recommended to have 4-7 serves of grains each day and adults are recommended 3-6 serves each day.

Fruit

Fruit is a great source of vitamins, minerals, and fibre and provides many health benefits. Choosing fruits in season provides higher quality and better value. Include in your diet  different coloured fruits to increase the variety of nutrients you gain. Some sources of fruits are apples, oranges, peaches, bananas, berries and grapes.

Children, adolescents, and toddlers are recommended 1-2 serves of fruit each day and adults are recommended 2 serves each day. 

Protein

Lean meat and poultry, fish, eggs, tofu, nuts and seeds and legumes/beans are great  sources of a variety of nutrients such as iron, vitamin b12, iodine, essential fatty acids, protein and provide many health benefits. These foods are usually the main source of energy  in meals and there are a variety of ways to easily prepare and use these foods in the diet.

Children, adolescents, and toddlers are recommended 1-2 ½ serves of proteins each day and adults are recommended 2-3 serves each day.

Dairy

Milk, yoghurt, cheese and/or alternatives are a great source of calcium and many other  nutrients that provide various health benefits. Food sources include reduced fat and full cream milks, plain and flavoured, long-life milks and dairy alternatives such as soy, or almond  milks. Other dairy products include yoghurts and cheeses and dairy or lactose-free  alternatives.

Children, adolescents, and toddlers are recommended to have 1-3½ serves of dairy each day and adults are recommended 2-4 serves each day.

Discretionary Foods

Discretionary food choices are food and drinks that are not required to be consumed as they are  not necessary for a healthy diet. This may be due to being too high in kilojoules (energy), low levels of nutrients, being too high in saturated fat, added sugars, added  salt, or alcohol or being low in fibre. Discretionary foods and drinks include sweet biscuits, cakes,  desserts, pastries, processed meats, fatty and fried takeaway foods, chips, sugar-sweetened  beverages and alcoholic drinks.

Children and adolescents are recommended 0-5 serves of discretionary food choices or additional serves from the five food groups, with a maximum 5 serves being recommended for active and/or adolescent boys. Adults are recommended 0-3 serves of discretionary food choices or additional serves from the five food groups each day. 

Enjoy a wide variety of  nutritious foods from these five food groups everyday.

Graphic adapted from ‘Australian Guide to Healthy Eating’, Eat for Health.

Sleep

Good sleeping patterns and sleep quality are important in maintaining immune health. A lack of sleep  duration and quality can influence disease risk. Adequate sleep duration may improve infection outcomes and is associated with reduced disease risk and reducing the severity and progression of disease.

Adequate dietary and nutrient intakes according to the Australian Guide to Healthy Easting  (AGHE) recommendations are important for supporting all aspects of lifestyle behaviours,  including sleep, mood, energy, leisure and physical activity.

 

Research has identified associations between sleep and dietary patterns where consumption of low protein and carbohydrates and higher fat intakes resulted in poor sleep quality. However, incorporating sleep promoting foods such as milk, fatty fish, cherries and kiwifruit into your daily diet may provide benefits for acute and immediate sleep improvement. 

Good Sleep Hygiene Practices

Exercise

Regular exercise can help with good sleep. Avoid strenuous exercise within four hours of bedtime. 

Try again

When you can’t fall asleep after about 20 minutes, get out of bed and do something relaxing or boring such as reading in low lighting until you feel tired and  return to bed and try again. 

Eat healthy

Maintaining a healthy, balanced diet will help improve the quality of your sleep. 

Reduce Caffeine & Nicotine intake 

Avoid consuming stimulant products with caffeine such as coffee, tea, soft drinks and chocolate, or smoking cigarettes for at least 4-6 hours before going to sleep. 

Regularity

Go to sleep at approximately the same time everyday to establish a regular sleeping pattern.

Reduce Alcohol intake

Avoid consuming alcohol for at least 4-6 hours before going to sleep.

Sleep when you need to

Try to sleep only when you feel tired instead of spending  too much time lying awake in bed.

Avoid naps

Avoiding naps during the day can help to make sure that you’re tired at  bedtime. If you can’t avoid naps, make sure it’s before 3pm and less than  an hour. 

Exercise

Adequate nutrient intake and regular physical activity within a balanced and healthy lifestyle  are important in supporting immunity and reducing disease risk. Within research, regular  exercise has been shown to have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects in the body, influence gut health and the regulation of the immune system and may delay the onset of immune  dysfunctions that occurs with aging. 

Being active is important for all age groups to reduce disease risk, support healthy growth  and development, and to maintain physical and mental wellbeing.

 

The Australian Department of Health recommends children and young people to do at least  60 minutes each day of moderate to vigorous physical activity and to limit sedentary  behaviour and maintain good quality sleep patterns. For adults it is recommended to be active on most days to achieve 2.5 to 5 hours of moderate intensity physical activity or 1.25 to 2.5 hours of vigorous intensity physical activity per week, including muscle-strengthening activities at least 2 days a week. It is also important for adults to limit sedentary behaviours and to maintain good quality sleep patterns. 

 

Breakfast Recipes

Simple Overnight Oats

5 minutes (Chill Time: Overnight)

Ingredients

1 cup of rolled oats

1 cup of choice of milk

½ tsp of cinnamon

1 tbsp of honey

1 tbsp chia seeds

½ cup Greek yoghurt, or dairy-free alternative

1 cup berries frozen or fresh (to serve)

Method

1. Add all ingredients into a sealable container and stir well to combine.  2. Allow the mixture to soak in the fridge overnight, then top with berries to serve.

 

Breakfast Smoothie Bowl

10 minutes  |  Serves 2

Ingredients

1 frozen or fresh banana

1 cup frozen or fresh berries

1 cup milk of choice

1 tbsp honey

1 tsp chia seeds

¼ cup Greek yoghurt, or dairy-free alternative

2 tbsp protein powder (optional)

Toppings

¼ cup granola

¼ cup sliced banana

¼ cup desiccated coconut

Method

1. Place all ingredients in a blender, and blend for roughly 1 minute.

2. Transfer the mixture to 2 bowls and add toppings.

Peach & Ricotta Sourdough

15 minutes  |  Serves 2

Ingredients

4 slices wholemeal sourdough bread

2 fresh peaches

1 tbsp honey

1 cup reduced fat ricotta

1 tbsp pumpkin seeds

Method

1. Toast sourdough bread and thinly slice peaches.

2. Spread ricotta on bread, top with peaches and honey, and sprinkle with pumpkins  seeds.

Breakfast Muffins

15 minutes  |  Serves 2

Ingredients

12 large eggs

Grape tomatoes, halved

1 cup baby spinach

1 spring onion, thinly sliced

170g goats cheese

Method

1. Preheat oven to 170 degrees. 

2. Add eggs to a bowl and season with salt and pepper. Whisky eggs until fluffy. 

3. Slice bacon into small pieces, add to a frying pan over medium heat and cook until  crispy. Remove cooked bacon to a paper towel to drain. 

4. Spray muffin tray generously with olive oil. Halve the cherry tomatoes and combine  all ingredients in a large bowl then evenly fill muffin tray and bake for 20-25 minutes.  5. Allow muffins to cool, then remove each egg muffin from the tray to serve  immediately or store in fridge or freezer. 

Snack Recipes

Orange Chia Pancakes

20 minutes  |  Serves 8 Large or 16 Small

Ingredients

2 cups milk of choice

¼ cup chia seeds

¼ cup honey

1 tsp vanilla

1 ½ cup self-raising wholemeal flour

1 tbsp orange zest

Method

1. In a large bowl, combine chia seeds, honey, vanilla, orange zest and milk and set  aside for 20 minutes in the fridge. Then add flour to the mixture and mix well.

2. Heat tsp oil or butter in a frying pan over medium heat, and spoon batter mixture  according to desired size into pan cook for 2 minutes on each side and flip over when bubbles start to form and pop on top.

3. Serve with a tbsp of orange juice or maple syrup.

Choc Protein Balls

10 minutes  |  Serves 15

Ingredients

1 ½ cup rolled oats

1 cup natural nut butter

1 tbsp cacao powder

1 tbsp protein powder

2 tbsp chocolate chips

½ cup desiccated coconut

Method

1. Place oats, nut butter, protein powder, cocoa powder, and chocolate chips in a large  bowl and stir well to combine. If mixture is too dry or crumbly, add 1 tbsp of water or  choice of milk.

2. Once well combined, use a spoon to scoop a small amount of the mixture and form  into balls. Add desiccated coconut to a small bowl, and roll balls in the coconut to  coat.

3. Store balls in a sealed container in fridge or freezer.

Low Sugar Chocolate Muffins

35 minutes  |  Serves 12

Ingredients

2 cups wholemeal flour

1 tsp baking powder

½ tsp baking soda

100g sour cream

2 large eggs

1 tsp vanilla

3 tbsp cocoa powder

½ cup dark chocolate chips

Method

1. Preheat oven to 170 degrees, and spray muffin tray with light olive oil.

2. In a large bowl, add sour cream, egg, vanilla, and whisk ingredients together. Sift  flour, baking powder and baking soda into bowl, and make sure not to overmix.  Gently fold through chocolate chips.

3. Transfer mixture to muffin tray and bake for 25 minutes or until a skewer comes out  clean. Set aside to cool for up to 10 minutes before serving.

Granola Snack Bars

5 minutes  (Chill Time: 1 hour)  |  Serves 8

Ingredients

1 cup natural nut butter

2 cups whole rolled oats

½ cup honey

1 tsp vanilla extract

½ cup pepitas

1/3 cup chocolate chips

Method

1. Line an 20-25 cm square baking pan with baking paper.

2. In a large bowl, add nut butter, honey, and vanilla, and combine until smooth.

3. Roughly chop pepitas, then add oats, pepitas and chocolate chips to the mixture. Once  the mixture is well combined, transfer to pan and press down evenly and firmly.

4. Chill for at least 1 hour, then slice into bars. Store bars in the fridge or freezer.

Lunch Recipes

Curry Lentil & Quinoa Bake

1 hour and 15 minutes  |  Serves 8

Ingredients

2 cups tri-colour quinoa

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1 brown onion

800g canned lentils

1 tbsp minced garlic

1 tbsp grated ginger

3 tbsp tomato paste

1 tbsp garam masala

1 tsp paprika

1 tsp turmeric powder

4 tbsp lemon juice

1 medium carrot

Salt to taste

Method

1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees and line a medium sized dish with baking paper.

2. Cook quinoa as per packet instructions.

3. In a saucepan, heat oil over medium heat and add chopped onion, sauté until soft.

4. Add all your ingredients into a large bowl and stir to combine. Transfer mixture to  baking dish and evenly spread mixture in dish, then place in oven and bake for 1 hour.  Allow to cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Brown Rice Salad

35 minutes  |  Serves 12

Ingredients

2 cups brown rice and quinoa

1 orange, squeezed

½ cup almonds

¼ cup currants

1 cup baby spinach, chopped

1 capsicum, diced

Method

1. Cook rice and quinoa as per packet instructions.

2. Preheat oven to 180 degrees and roast almonds in a single layer on a baking tray for  3-5 minutes, then roughly chop them up and set aside.

3. In a large bowl, combine cooked rice, spinach, currants, almonds, capsicum, and the  juice of squeezed orange.

4. Serve warm with a protein of choice, or just on its own.

Tuna & Olive Pasta

35 Minutes  |  Serves 4

Ingredients

500g wholemeal pasta

425g tin tuna in olive oil

½ brown onion

1 tsp minced garlic

½ cup parsley leaves

1 tsp olive oil

1 cup tomato passata

½ cup pitted kalamata olives

Method

1. Drain tuna of olive oil into a strainer held above a saucepan. Place saucepan on  stovetop and heat oil on medium heat.

2. Finely chop onion and parsley leaves, transfer to a small bowl and add minced garlic.  3. Add mixture to saucepan, stir occasionally for 5 minutes or until softened. Add  tomato passata, and simmer uncovered over medium-low heat for 10 minutes or  until slightly thickened.

4. Cook pasta as per packet instructions in a large saucepan of salted water and drain.  5. Stir tuna and olives into the sauce over low heat until combined and heated through.  Season to taste, then serve with pasta.

Dinner Recipes

Salmon & Brown Rice Patties

25 minutes  |  Serves 9

Ingredients

1 cup brown rice

1 ½ cups diced sweet potato

210g tin of pink salmon

½ cup brown onion

1 tsp minced garlic

3 tbsp plain flour

1 egg

1 tbsp hummus

½ cup parsley leaves

Salt and pepper to taste

Method

1. Cook brown rice in rice cooker for 25 minutes as per packet instructions.

2. Preheat oven to 180 degrees, and place baking paper on a baking tray.  3. Finely chop brown onion, and parsley. Once rice is cooked, combine all ingredients  into a large bowl.

3. Roll into palm-sized balls, and place patties on the baking tray and flatten the patties gently. Bake for 25 minutes and serve with choice of salad.

Roasted Vegetable Salad

45 minutes  |  Serves 12

Ingredients

½ Kent pumpkin, roughly chopped

1 large, sweet potato, chopped

2 carrots, halved and chopped

1 red capsicum, cut into chunks

1 medium red onion, roughly copped

¼ cup extra virgin olive oil

180g light fetta, crumbled

4 cups baby spinach and kale

1 tsp sea salt

Method

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 C) and line 2 baking sheets with parchment  paper,

2. Add the chopped sweet potato, pumpkin, and carrots onto tray and bake for 25mins or  until they start to brown. 

3. Plate salad by adding the leafy greens to a serving platter, add with roasted  vegetables, then top with feta to serve. 

Chicken & Mushroom Risotto

45 minutes  |  Serves 8

Ingredients

1L chicken stock

30g unsalted butter

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1 ¼ arborio rice

1 cup dry white wine

500g chicken thigh, chopped

1 cup white cup mushrooms

3 garlic cloves, crushed

1 cup parmesan

2 cups spinach, chopped

1 brown onion

Method

1. Cook brown rice in rice cooker for 25 minutes as per packet instructions.

2. Preheat oven to 180 degrees, and place baking paper on a baking tray.

3. Finely chop brown onion, and parsley. Once rice is cooked, combine all ingredients  into a large bowl.

4. Roll into palm-sized balls, and place patties on the baking tray and flatten the patties gently. Bake for 25 minutes and serve with choice of salad.

Simple Chilli Con Carne

40 minutes  |  Serves 6

Ingredients

500g lean beef mince

1 brown onion

2 tbsp minced garlic

35g taco seasoning

800g diced tomatoes

2 tbsp tomato paste

400g kidney beans

2 cups white rice

2 baby cos lettuce

Method

1. Cook white rice in rice cooker for 25 minutes per packet instructions. 

2. While rice is cooking, heat a large saucepan over medium-high heat, add meat and  cook for five minutes or until brown, making sure to separate any chunks of meat. 

3. Finely chop brown onion and drain and rinse kidney beans. Add brown onion and  garlic into saucepan, cook for 5 minutes or until onion is soft. Stir in taco seasoning,  tomatoes and tomatoes paste and kidney beans. Let simmer for 10 minutes. 

4. Serve chilli con carne with rice and spoon mixture into lettuce to eat like a taco. Top  with sour cream and cheese.

Dessert Recipes

Coconut, Pear & Raspberry Bread

125 minutes  |  Serves 10

Ingredients

2 cups tinned pears

2 eggs

200ml coconut milk

½ cup desiccated coconut

½ cup raw sugar

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp cinnamon, ground

1 cup wholemeal self raising flour

Method

1. Preheat oven to 170 degrees, line a loaf baking tin with baking paper.

2. Mash pears in a large bowl until smooth. Mix in desiccated coconut, sugar, and  cinnamon, then sift flour and baking powder into the bowl.

3. Add pear to the mixture, then add coconut milk and eggs. Once well combined, gently  fold in the raspberries and transfer mixture to baking tin. If desired, top the mixture with additional pear slices. Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until a skewer comes  out clean. Serve with butter and a sprinkle of cinnamon and sugar.

Overnight Chia Pudding

10 minutes  (Chill Time: 3 hours – Overnight)  |  Serves 4

Ingredients

2 tbsp cacao powder

2 tbsp honey

1 tsp vanilla extract 

1 cup choice of milk

1//2 cup chia seeds

Method

1. Add all ingredient into a large bowl and whisk to combine. Cover bowl or transfer to  a sealed container and place in the refrigerator overnight or for minimum of 3 hours. 2. To serve, top with fresh fruit, cinnamon and desiccated coconut, or other garnishes of  choice.

Healthier Chocolate Brownie

45 minutes  |  Serves 12

Ingredients

1 cup unsweetened apple sauce

¾ cup cocoa powder

½ tsp bicarbonate of soda

½ cup of smart sugar or sugar alternative

1/3 cup dark choc chips

70 grams chopped walnuts

Method

1. Preheat oven to 170 degrees and prepare your baking tin.

2. In a large bowl, place the apple sauce, and sift in the flour, bicarb soda and cocoa  powder. Then add sugar and stir through until combined. Gently fold through walnuts  and choc chips.

3. Use a spatula to transfer mix into your baking tin and bake for 30 minutes.

Simple Apple Crumble

1 hour  |  Serves 8

Ingredients

6 small apples

1 lemon

1 tsp vanilla extract

2 tsp cinnamon

2 tbsp corn starch

¾ cup brown sugar

1 ¾ cup oats

½ cup almonds

1/3 cup light olive oil

1 egg

½ tsp baking powder

Method

1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees. 

2. Wash, peel and chopped apple into small chunks. Juice lemon into a small glass or  bowl. In a large bowl combine apple, lemon juice, corn starch, cinnamon, vanilla, and  ¼ cup sugar. Once well combined, transfer to a baking dish. 

3. For the topping, blend ¾ oats and almonds. Then add blended mixture, remaining  oats, oil, egg, remaining sugar, and baking powder to a large bowl and mix until well  combined. Transfer mixture evenly across the apple mixture, then bake for 45  minutes, or until the top is golden and crispy. Serve warm with ice cream or choice of  cream.