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And on one morning, almost immediately after our 12-week scan my wife woke, tuned to me, took off her beige-tinted glasses and said ‘Adam, I’m ready. Give me all of the fruit and veg.’

Ok so it didn’t happen exactly like that, but as soon as Anni’s second trimester started, she suddenly found herself not just tolerating, but craving lots of fresh fruit and vegetables. She was suddenly awake to all the beautifully colourful fruits and vegetables that her body now told her to eat. It was if she had been living the last few months in grey whereas now everything was bursting with colour. This also coincided with the start of Spring and with it, the emergence of lots of fresh and healthy produce ready to be eaten.

The second trimester is often called the honeymoon trimester, and for good reason. Her morning sickness had passed, we began to tell friends and family that Anni was pregnant and we also started to plan trips away over the summer, our last holidays as just a two. Most of all the first trimester was over and Anni could now just enjoy being pregnant.

It was at this point that I really began to focus on the food that Anni should be eating during pregnancy, and I saw it as my mission to turn those ingredients into delicious meals for all three of us. During the first trimester the focus rightfully so is on carbs and anything else that she could keep down or find appetising. The first trimester fog had cleared, and now, we both wanted to make sure that she was eating well for the sake of our unborn child.

Visually this is one of my favourite dishes, as I think the roasted figs open up like flowers when cooked. The salty feta contrasts really well with the sweet fig, another pregnancy superfood as they are full of fibre, magnesium and lots of vitamins. I’ve topped the salad with crushed walnuts and roasted pumpkin seeds, two really powerful foods to eat in pregnancy.

If I could make summer on a plate for me it would be this dish. Every single ingredient used here is healthy, so I know that Anni is getting all the good stuff she needs to grow our baby. I made this dish a lot for her over the spring and summer, and the roasted figs also make excellent snacks between meals.

 

Ingredients

-6 figs

-200grams of feta

-two oranges

-two teaspoons of honey

-one handful of walnuts

-one avocado

-two teaspoons of pumpkin seeds

-half a cucumber

-two handfuls of rocket leaves

-two handfuls of spinach leaves

 

Method

-Cut up the avocado, orange and cucumber into bite sized pieces, add the rocket and spinach leaves and mix together in a bowl, adding a little seasoning and olive oil.

-Turn the grill on and slice criss-crossed into the figs about two-thirds of the way down. Fill the figs with some of the feta and roast under the grill for a few minutes until the cheese has melted.

-Remove from the grill, drizzle a little honey over the figs and top with crushed walnuts. Place in the salad, sprinkle pumpkin seeds over and serve whilst still warm.

 

Why is this good for mum and baby?

 

Figs Fibre, magnesium, iron, vitamin B, D, K
Oranges Calcium, Folate, Vitamins A, B, C, potassium
Cucumber Vitamin A, B, C, K, folate, magnesium, potassium, fibre, iron
Avocado Vitamin A, B, C, D, E, K, folate, potassium, omega-3 fatty acids, fibre, magnesium, calcium, iron
Pumpkin seeds Calcium, protein, iron, vitamin B, zinc, omega-3 fatty acids
Rocket Vitamins A, C, K, folate, calcium, fibre, protein
Walnuts Omega-3 fats, vitamin B, E fibre, protein
Spinach Calcium, Iron, Vitamin A, B, C, K, folate, magnesium

 

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I’m a Leiths trained chef on a mission to overhaul the way we see and enjoy food during pregnancy. Current healthy-eating advice when you’re pregnant focuses on what you can’t eat (no shark or marlin for you on a cold Wednesday evening in January) whereas I want to focus on all of the amazing food that you can eat over the nine months and beyond. When my wife became pregnant with our first son last year as a guy I felt pretty redundant. Sure, I could carry her bag, do up her shoelaces when she couldn’t bend over anymore and go to all of the classes and appointments with her, but I felt like I was a bystander and that there was nothing I could actually do that would make a difference either to her or our unborn child. So, I decided to make sure that whatever we ate over those nine months not only tasted delicious and made her feel good, but was also full of vitamins, nutrients and other good stuff for our unborn child. My wife gave birth to our beautiful boy last October and I’m still looking after our food whilst she takes charge of his. During these first few crazy sleep-deprived months I’m making sure that whatever we eat is quick to make, quick to eat (normally with one hand as we can’t put the little guy down at all….) and gives us energy for when we’re putting the dummy back in his mouth for the 416th time that night.

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