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Dill Freekeh + Roasted Carrot Salad & Roasted Greek Eggplant w/Feta

With the change in weather, you’ll likely enjoy adding some new dishes or ingredients to your family menu. To help you do just that, I’m happy to share two great recipes from the brand new book, The All-Natural Diabetes Cookbook, 2nd Edition by the fabulous and creative registered dietitian nutritionist and chef Jackie Newgent. While the book is geared toward those with diabetes, the recipes are designed for anyone who likes to eat delicious, nutritious food.  


Dill Freekeh and Roasted Carrot Salad


Dill Freekeh and Roasted Carrot Salad

Freekeh is a roasted young, green wheat grain. It has a significant amount of fiber. Lucky for our health and taste buds, it’s becoming more readily available everywhere and can easily be purchased online. However, if you don’t have freekeh, you can make this recipe with 2 1/2 cups of any other cooked whole grain, such as bulgur wheat, brown rice, or barley. Whether made with freekeh or another grain, this recipe is designed to be served as a salad. But it’s equally tasty served at room temperature or warm as a side dish, if you prefer.

Serves: 4

Serving Size: 1 cup Prep Time: 18 minutes (plus chilling time)

Cooking Time: 50–52 minutes


1 cup freekeh
1/3 cup finely diced red onion
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
3/4 teaspoon sea salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 jumbo carrots, very thinly sliced crosswise (about 1/8 inch thick) Juice of 1/2 lemon (1 1/2 tablespoons)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill or tarragon


1. Cook the freekeh according to package directions. Or, add the freekeh and 3 cups cold water to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Stir, cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer until the freekeh is tender, about 40 minutes for whole-grain freekeh (or 20 minutes for cracked freekeh). Remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes. Drain any remaining water. (Makes 2 1/2 cups.)

2. Transfer the cooked freekeh to a medium bowl and immediately stir in the onion, 1 tablespoon of the oil, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt, and the pepper. Set aside to slightly cool, about 20 minutes, stirring a couple times. Then chill in the refrigerator.

3. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 475°F. Add the carrots and the remaining
1 tablespoon oil to a large bowl and toss to fully coat. Add the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and toss to fully coat. Arrange the carrots in a single layer on 2 large rimmed baking sheets and roast until lightly caramelized, about 10–12 minutes, stirring the carrots about halfway through the cooking time.

4. Fluff the chilled freekeh with a fork. Stir in the carrots, lemon juice, and dill, and serve.

Nutrition info:

Choices/Exchanges: 1 1/2 starch, 1 vegetable, 1 1/2 fat
Per Serving: calories 210, calories from fat 70, total fat 8g, saturated fat 1g, trans fat 0g, cholesterol 0mg, sodium 460mg, potassium 355mg, total carbohydrate 33g, dietary fiber 5g, sugars 2g, protein 7g, phosphorus 170mg


Roasted Greek Eggplant with Feta


Roasted Greek Eggplant with Feta

Sides shouldn’t be thought of as afterthoughts. They deserve as much culinary love and attention as entrées. If you’re looking for a side dish that’ll impress, this roasted eggplant recipe is it. The finishing touches of fresh herbs, feta, and lemon zest make this side more like the star of the plate.

Serves: 4

Serving Size: 2 wedges Prep Time: 12 minutes

Cooking Time: 30 minutes


3 tablespoons marinara sauce of choice
Juice and zest of 1/2 small lemon (1 tablespoon juice), divided
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 large clove garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 small (14-ounce) eggplants, each quartered lengthwise, stems removed 3 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint OR 1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano
3 tablespoons finely crumbled feta cheese


1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. In a small bowl, whisk together the marinara sauce, lemon juice, oil, garlic, salt, and cinnamon. Arrange the eggplant wedges, skin side down, on an unbleached parchment paper–lined baking sheet. Generously brush the cut surfaces of the eggplant wedges with the marinara mixture.

2. Roast the eggplant wedges until fully cooked, about 30 minutes.

3. Transfer to a platter, sprinkle with the parsley, mint, feta, and lemon zest, and serve.

Nutrition info:

Choices/Exchanges: 2 1/2 vegetable, 1 fat
Per Serving: calories 110, calories from fat 45, total fat 5g, saturated fat 1.5g, trans fat 0g, cholesterol 5mg, sodium 280mg, potassium 520mg, total carbohydrate 14g, dietary fiber 6g, sugars 7g, protein 3g, phosphorus 80mg

©2015 by Jacqueline A. Newgent, RDN. From The All-Natural Diabetes Cookbook, 2nd Edition. Reprinted with permission from The American Diabetes Association. To order this book, please call 1-800-232-6733 FREE or order online at

To learn more about Newgent and all her great work, check out her website here.


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About The Author

Elisa Zied is a nationally recognized and award-winning health and nutrition expert, author, speaker, and spokesperson. A trusted source of food, nutrition, and health information, Elisa has garnered millions of media impressions, lending her expertise and real-world perspective to dozens of TV shows, web sites, news organizations and magazines. She’s the author of four nutrition books. An avid walker, she loves motivating others to #moveitorloseit. A book lover, she recently earned a certificate in children’s literature from Stony Brook Southampton and is currently working on several young adult novels. You can find her previous Food, Fitness & Fiction posts here and connect with her on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

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