Tara Valencius loves cooking with fresh, home-grown produce.
Tara Valencius loves cooking with fresh, home-grown produce.

In my kitchen: Nutritionist cooks with fresh produce

Name: Tara Valencius.

Occupation: Naturopath at Gladstone Holistic Health.

Who had the most influence on your cooking skills? My mother and grandmother both taught me the joy of simple home cooking using fresh home-grown produce.

Why do you enjoy cooking? It's a wonderful feeling knowing that you are preparing delicious healthy meals to nourish both yourself and your loved ones.

The first thing I cooked was… Anzac Biscuits with my grandmother.

Would you pursue a career in cooking? No, because I love the work that I do too much.

What are your favourite ingredients? Fresh vegetables straight from the garden. At the moment, I'm loving sugar snap peas, baby spinach and chives.

What's y our signature dish? Fish and salad is my go-to meal. It might sound kind of boring, but it's super nutritious as well as being quick and delicious.

I try to really mix the salads up - garden salads, Greek salads, roast vegetable salads, quinoa salads - the choices are endless.

How do you flavour your food? With lots of herbs and spices.

There's really no need for artificial flavour enhancers, sugar or processed sauces when we have such wonderful natural flavours.

I love garlic, chillies, turmeric, rosemary, thyme, basil and seaweed flakes.

MasterChef or My Kitchen Rules? To be honest, I'm not a big fan of either one.

I prefer Jamie Oliver or Alive & Cooking, because they cook simple healthy dishes that anyone can prepare.



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