The #WeDigDietitians series is all about introducing you to our favourite dietitians—and busting a few myths about what they really do (and don’t do) along the way. Today’s Feature Dietitian is Heidi Sze (of applesundermybed.com fame).
1.Tell us a bit about yourself
I live on the Mornington Peninsula in Victoria with my husband. I grew up eating apples and cherries and working in vineyards—pretty special. We’re expecting our first bub in September so soon there’ll be three of us!
2. Why did you decide to become a dietitian?
Because I wanted to be paid to talk about food all day long. I’m genuinely interested in what you eat for breakfast and what your favourite choc top flavour is. Food psychology is very interesting to me.
3. What does a typical day in your life look like?
There is no typical day! I love getting up early and always go for a walk first thing or perhaps do a dance video, before eating breakfast. If I’m seeing clients in the clinic I’ll be there and maybe ducking out to see my grandparents who live close by. I work with my parents in their clinic (they’re psychologists), so it’s always fun going to work.
I always take my lunch when I go to the clinic. If I’m home I’ll be working on recipe development or writing. My husband works from home 1-2 days a week, so we try to schedule home days together. Otherwise he gets home about 7:30pm and we cook dinner together, watch something on TV (currently starting The Wire) before going to bed to read.
4. Can you share an average ‘day on your plate’?
Breakfast is often porridge, made with rolled oats, milk, chia seeds and topped with toasted nuts and seeds, maybe yoghurt and fruit too. Lunch is always a lot of vegetables, usually as a salad, maybe with some tinned fish or boiled eggs. I love big salads with roasted vegetables, cheese, toasted pinenuts and extra virgin olive oil.
Afternoon snack might be a smoothie or some sort of homemade baked good like a brownie, date nut bar or muesli bar. Dinner is often pasta or maybe roasted potatoes with steak. Sometimes burrito bowls or a stirfry. Whatever I’m craving! But it always involves a lot of vegetables.
5. What’s your definition of good health, and how do you stay healthy?
Good health is when you feel energetic, happy and vibrant. I do this by eating well, lots of whole foods and loads of vegetables. I also love moving my body, it’s so important for my mental health—so I go walking in nature, dance at home, do yoga and swim at the beach in summer. Sleep is also super important. And not being too busy. I make sure I have plenty of time to read a book on the couch. Scheduling in down time is important.
6. What’s your perspective on society and body image today?
We’ve had such a narrow definition of beauty for so long. But I think this is changing, we’re seeing a wider representation of women in the media, and I think this is really important in fostering positive body image.
7. What are your top three favourite blogs/websites?
My personal favourites that I always check are:
I love food and stories.
8. What makes you happy?
My family, a bowl of pasta, swimming in the sea and coffee.
9. Shameless plug time: do you have a service, book, blog or something similar you want people to know about?
Yes! My blog is applesundermybed.com, where I write about food and life and whatever is happening in my world.
My dietitian website is gatherandgrownutrition.com.au. You can see me in the clinic or schedule Skype appointments.
And on Instagram I am @heidiapples
Heidi’s Flourless Chocolate Pots
These chocolate pots are a favourite on Sunday nights at our home, especially when eaten on the couch while watching a movie.
80g Dark Chocolate (>70% cocoa), roughly chopped
50g Unsalted Butter
¼ cup Almond Meal
¼ cup Raw Cacao
¼ teaspoon Sea Salt
¼ teaspoon Baking Soda
1/3 cup Honey
1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1 tablespoon Milk
2 Eggs, lightly whisked
Step 1: Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius and lightly grease two pots with butter (my pots were 9cm diameter and 6cm deep).
Step 2: Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat, allowing it to bubble and brown. When nicely browned and fragrant (nutty and delicious, like a batch of croissants) add the chocolate and stir with a wooden spoon, allowing it to melt.
Step 3: To this same saucepan add the almond meal, cacao, salt, baking soda, honey, vanilla, milk and eggs. Stir well to combine.
Step 4: Pour the mixture into the greased pots and bake in the hot oven for ~15-17 minutes. You want the centre a little (or a lot) gooey and the sides a little more fluffy/cakier. It’s better to undercook them than overcook so check from ~12 minutes, depending on the size/depth of your pots and your oven strength. Mine are usually done at 16 minutes. Serve with creme fraiche and berries.