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Greek Lamb Kebabs

Ingredients

  • 750g lamb, cut into 2.5cm cubes
  • 60ml (4 tbsp) olive oil
  • 85ml (1/3 cup) white wine
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 20ml (4 tsp) dried rosemary or a handful of fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 18 pickling onions or 2 red onions, cut into chunks
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 12 rosemary stalks — woody ones, or use kebab sticks, soaking them in water for 30 minutes before using

Instructions

Combine all the ingredients up to and including the rosemary. Pour boiling water over the pickling onions, if using, and leave to stand for 5 minutes, then drain and add to the marinade. If using the red onions, add to the marinade. Leave for 2-3 hours, stirring occasionally. Remove lamb cubes and onions from marinade and thread alternately onto the rosemary skewers. It is easier to pierce the lamb and onion with a metal skewer before threading onto the rosemary sticks. Brush with olive oil, season with salt and pepper and grill over the coals, turning frequently until the lamb is just cooked, about 5-7 minutes per side. Serve with tzatziki (garlic and grated cucumber in plain yogurt).

Lime and Chilli Salted Sweetcorn

Lime and Chilli Salted Sweetcorn

Ingredients

  • 4 mealies, leaves removed
  • 100g butter
  • Juice and zest of 3 limes
  • 10ml (2 tsp) salt
  • 1 chili, seeded and finely chopped
  • 50g parmesan cheese, grated

Instructions

Blanch the mealies in unsalted boiling water for a few minutes. Drain and set aside. Mix the butter with the lime zest and juice, salt and chili. Braai or grill the mealies, turning constantly and basting with the lime and chili butter. They are ready when slightly charred. Serve hot, topped with parmesan.

Top Tips for Japan

Traveling in Japan

The easiest way to travel from city to city in Japan is by train. the Bullet trains make rail travel swift and the rail network reaches many destinations. services are frequent, particularly between major cities.

The metro is the quickest way to get around in large Japanese cities. Tokyo, Nagoya, and Osaka have extensive metro systems, which are supplemented by Jr commuter trains and other rail company services. Jr rail Passes are also valid on Jr commuter trains.

Hotel, Ryokan or Minshuku?

Japanese hotels are much the same as their Western counterparts. a quick web search of hotels in Tokyo can locate rooms for under 40 euros per night. the cheapest rooms may be very small, but they usually have their own baths.

A Ryokan is a traditional Japanese inn. the ryokan generally has a cozy feeling and tends to place emphasis on food, with both breakfast and the evening meal provided for guests.

Minshukus are family businesses that offer a window into the everyday lives of locals. accommodations include an overnight stay on a futon mattress in a straw mat room, meals, and Ofuro bath.

Ofuro – Japanese bathing

Ofuro is an important part of relaxing at a hotel or boarding house where there are large common baths. guests disrobe entirely, taking only a small towel.

It is important to wash carefully before entering the hot bath. although the bathwater is replaced regularly, it is polite to join other bathers only after first washing dirt from the body. You will emerge to cool off from time to time before returning to the water which is about 40 ̊C.

Shopping in Japan

Japan, Tokyo in particular, has a reputation for being expensive. however, high prices do not extend to eating, celebrating or shopping.

Shops are generally open from ten in the morning until eight at night, and in larger cities, many shops stay open as late as 10 p.m. however, they do not close on weekends or public holidays. Sunday is the most popular shopping day. on the other hand, shops and department stores tend to be closed on Mondays or Tuesdays. Public offices and banks are closed on weekends.

Sightseeing

Tokyo has become an important center of youth fashion. You will find the more unusual characters at Harajuku, where some young people make extraordinary fashion statements.

Kyoto is home to over 1,000 temples. the five most worthwhile are perhaps the golden and silver temples – Kinkakuji and Ginkakuji, Kiyomizudera, Ryoanji, and Heian- Jingu. those interested in samurai times and in the history of Japan should visit Osaka Castle, which was originally constructed in the 16th century.

Visitors to Japan between April and October should find the time to attend a baseball match. While sumo wrestling remains the national sport, baseball has become a very popular favorite.

Nightlife in Japan

Japanese nightlife is uniquely fine by world standards. traditional Japanese celebrations mean eating and drinking and the ideal is to spend an evening at a restaurant with fine food, drink, and good friends. the izakaya restaurant is specif ically geared to this objective.

The major cities provide amusements of all kinds. in Tokyo, for example, one can find some of the world’s liveliest clubs and most individual bars.

A culinary trip to Japan

Eating is a favorite Japanese pastime and Japan offers fantastic culinary experiences on a much smaller budget than you would need in Europe.

Izakaya, literally a shop that sells sake, is based on the same idea as the tapas bar. this makes an izakaya the ideal place to sample a variety of Japanese dishes, although they often offer dishes from abroad too, such as favorites of the Japanese ranging from Chinese to Korean food.

Fast Guide to Sushi

Do flip chopsticks over

If the sushi bar or dinner host doesn’t provide serving utensils, go ahead and flip your chopsticks over and use the blunt, clean ends to pick up some tasty bit of sushi from a communal platter or bowl or from a friend’s plate, if the friend is willing to share! after setting the items down on your plate, flip the chopsticks back to their original position to eat with them. doing this is hygienic and shows that you care for yourself and others at the table.

Don’t rub your chopsticks together

Don’t rub disposable wooden chopsticks (waribashi) together after splitting them apart. doing so shows bad manners and implies that the chopsticks have splinters and are cheap, insulting your host. If your chopsticks really do splinter when you snap them apart, rub them together discreetly, not in view of all.

Do use the washcloth to wipe your face

In a sushi bar or restaurant, you’ll receive an oshibori, which is a small hot or cold (depending on the weather) wrung-out towel to cleanse your hands with, before and sometimes after you finish your meal. oshibori is set in front of you when you sit down. after wiping your hands, fold the oshibori and put it back in its small basket. You may also keep this first oshibori to wipe your fingers during the meal. sometimes you’ll see the Japanese wiping their face with their oshibori. this is perfectly acceptable.

Don’t ask for a spoon

The Japanese don’t use spoons. they sip their soups out of small soup bowls. sometimes soups are served in lacquer bowls with lids. You remove the lid (which keeps the soup warm) and sip out of the bowl. slurping as you sip is considered acceptable. any small, solid ingredients may be picked up with your chopsticks. if it’s too difficult for you to drink soup without a spoon, go ahead and ask for one. But give it a try the Japanese way, at least once.

Do eat sushi with your fingers

Finger sushi started out about 200 years ago as a street snack meant to be picked up and eaten with your fingers. You can use chopsticks to eat sushi, but fingers are still perfectly acceptable. But always use chopsticks, not fingers, when you eat sashimi.

Do place chopsticks together

When setting your chopsticks down, lay them tightly together, below your plate and directly in front of you. Never stick your chopsticks in a bowl of rice! that’s a definite no-no! this is done only at funerals, where the deceased’s personal chopsticks are placed upright in a full bowl of rice, offering the person sustenance for the journey into the next world.

Don’t put wasabi in soy sauce

Unless you’re absolutely crazy about wasabi and can’t help yourself, don’t mix wasabi in your soy sauce when eating sushi. if you want to do the proper thing, ask your host or sushi chef to put extra wasabi in the sushi when preparing it. eating sashimi is the exception. When eating sashimi, it’s acceptable to mix a bit of wasabi into your soy sauce.

Don’t use lots of soy sauce

Lightly dip your sashimi (slices of raw fish) or sushi in your soy sauce. don’t drench or soak them! soy sauce is meant to enhance flavors, not smother them. Just as it’s polite to taste your food before you salt it, it’s polite to limit the use of soy sauce, letting the hosts or sushi chef’s mastery of flavors be your guide.

Sushi vocabulary

  • Konichiwa! – good afternoon!
  • Arigato! – thank you!
  • Domo arigato! – thank you very much!
  • Dou itashimashite – You’re welcome.
  • …o kudasai – Please give me. First say the type of sushi you want, then “o kudasai”.
  • Shiawase – happiness or to be happy.
  • Itadakimasu – traditional phrase opening a meal meaning “I humbly receive” or “I will take this”.
  • Gochiso-sama deshita – traditional phrase closing a meal meaning, “thank you for the meal”. it literally means, “that was a gochiso (feast)”.

Types of Sushi

  • Chirashi-zushi: Toppings, usually raw fish, served over a bowl of sushi rice.
  • Inari-zushi: A type of sushi in which the toppings are stuffed into a small pouch of fried tofu.
  • Nigiri zushi: A type of sushi made with the toppings attached to hand-formed balls of rice.
  • Maki-zushi: Sushi rolls covered with nori (dried sheets of seaweed).
  • Temaki-zushi: Hand-rolled sushi wrapped in a cone of nori.

Bhutan Travel Tips

In keeping with the Royal Government’s cautious and balanced approach to all aspects of development and modernization, the tourism industry in Bhutan is run on the principle of sustainability. This means that tourism must not only be economically viable but also sensitive to the local culture and environment.

Income generated from tourism tax goes toward the Tourism Development Fund and is used by the Royal Government for:

  1. Environmental protection work
  2. Setting up foundations to ensure that the country’s natural resources are being used efficiently
  3. Actively protecting its rich culture and profound Buddhist traditions
  4. Contributions towards Education and Health

There is no restriction imposed on the number of tourists to Bhutan. However, the policy of low volume, high-quality tourists ensures that Bhutanese tradition and culture can be preserved and numbered without exception.

Travelers can only reach Bhutan through all-inclusive packages for which the government of Bhutan sets the tariff. All tours are booked through recognized Bhutanese tour operators and the entire trip’s arrangements are provided for by the same agent, with visas processed by the tour operator. The Department of Tourism, Ministry of Trade & Industry has laid down a few guidelines and rules for foreign visitors.

GETTING TO BHUTAN:

  • BY AIR: Druk Air, Bhutan’s national airline is the only airline service in the country. The airport is in Paro. During monsoons and winter, unpredictable weather can delay flights and travelers should consider allowing an extra day in their itinerary for this eventuality.
  • BY ROAD: The nearest Indian airport is in Bagdogra, which can be reached by plane from Calcutta and Delhi. The road from Bagdora connects to Phuentsholing, a border town in Bhutan. It is a 3-4 hour drive from the airport. It takes approximately 6 hours from Phuentsholing to Thimphu (capital city) or Paro (airport).
  • VISAS: Visas are obtained by your local Bhutanese tour operator and must be confirmed before departure for Bhutan. Tickets for Druk Air (the only airline flying in and out of Bhutan) cannot be purchased without visa clearance, which is issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Thimphu. The actual visa is stamped on arrival in Bhutan, while the visa is cleared in advance and a visa clearance number is issued. Visa extensions can be obtained in Thimphu.

TOURIST TARIFF

The international tourist tariff is set by the Royal Government of Bhutan and is valid for all-inclusive packages. The tariffs for tourists visiting in a group of 3 persons or more are as follows:

PEAK SEASON – US$200.00 per day:
Jan/Feb/Mar/Apr/May/Jun/Sept/Oct/Nov/Dec

LOW SEASON – US$165.00 per day:
Jul/Aug

These rates are the same for cultural tours, treks or any other special interest tours.

TOURIST ENTITLEMENTS

The above minimum daily tariff/package rates are inclusive of the following services:

  1. Accommodation on a twin-sharing basis
  2. All transfers and sightseeing within Bhutan
  3. The services of an accompanying guide
  4. All meals
  5. 35% royalty and taxes payable to the Bhutanese government
  6. Riding ponies and pack animals on treks
  7. Access fees for temples and monuments in Bhutan

The rates given above are applicable per tourist, per night’s stay in Bhutan. On the day of departure, the local agent’s obligations shall be limited to providing breakfast only and any extra requirements shall be payable as required.

The rates apply uniformly, irrespective of locations and the type of accommodation provided/asked for. These accommodation establishments shall be approved by the Tourism Authority of Bhutan (TAB).

TARIFF FOR INDIVIDUAL AND SMALL GROUPS (FIT)

Individual tourist and smaller groups of less than three persons shall be subject to a surcharge as follows:

Single individual: US$40.00 per night stay
Group of 2: US$ 30 per person, per night stay

These FIT surcharges are net payable. All tourists are required to pay an additional US$10.00 per visit as a Tourism development contribution.

DISCOUNTS ON THE TOURIST TARIFF

  1. Diplomats from foreign embassies/missions accredited to Bhutan shall be given a 25% discount on the daily rates.
  2. There shall be no charge for children up to the age of 5 years. However, those between the ages of 6-12 years, accompanied by parent or guardian shall be given a 40% discount on the daily rate.
  3. Full-time students below the age of 25 years, holding valid identity cards from their academic institutions shall be given a 25% discount on daily rates.

EXCLUDED FROM THE PRICE OF TOURS

  • Druk Air airfare US$ for airport tax
  • Tourism Development Fund (US$10.00 per visit)
  • Visa Fees (US$20.00)
  • Excess baggage and Airport Tax (US$10.00)
  • Personal items – e.g. laundry and toiletries
  • International air fare
  • Medical, evacuation and Trip Cancellation Insurance

CANCELLATION

Trips can be cancelled at any time without obligation.

A cancellation fee for tours booked paid for and later canceled (plus additional wire-transfer fees) applies.

The penalty charges for the land cost are as follows:

  • 45 days or more prior to the planned arrival date in Bhutan – no penalty
  • 30-22 days prior to the planned arrival date in Bhutan – 20% penalty
  • 15-21 days prior to the planned arrival date in Bhutan – 30% penalty
  • 14-7 days prior to the planned arrival date in Bhutan – 50% penalty
  • Less than 7 days prior to arrival or after arrival in Bhutan (or without notice) – no refund
  • Druk Air tickets once confirmed and purchased are not refundable
  • Passengers who fail to show up for a flight will not be eligible for a refund
  • Lost tickets are non-refundable

Passengers who reschedule their flights will be subject to the following rebooking fees:

  • 48 hours before departure: US$11.00
  • 24 hours before departure: US$33.00

Due to the limited availability of Druk Air seating and the nature of travel to Bhutan, Tour operators cannot vary from this standard cancellation policy on confirmed and issued Druk Air tickets, regardless of the guest’s situation. They strongly recommended the purchase of trip cancellation and trip-related insurance upon booking a tour program.

DELAYED ARRIVAL/DEPARTURE

  1. There shall be no fixed charge for the number of days of delay in the arrival of visitors due to weather conditions, Druk Air problems or roadblocks, except for minimum charge on hotel cancellation, transport, and guide.
  2. There shall be no charges for the number of days of delay in departure of visitors due to the weather conditions, Druk Air problems or roadblocks. They will be charged only the actual expenses on accommodation, food transport and any other services required.

SINGLE ROOM SUPPLEMENTS

The quoted package rates are valid for accommodation on a twin sharing basis and the following supplements will be applicable in case of single room accommodation:

Festival Season: US$50.00 per night
Other Season: US$25.00 per night

REMITTANCE OF TOUR PAYMENT

Your payment must be settled one month prior to the date of arrival in Bhutan and VISA is cleared by the government subject to advance payment only. For high seasons (Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr, May, Jun, Sept, Oct, Nov, and Dec) it is advisable to remit payment for Druk Air flights 3 months in advance. This will help in getting your seats confirmed and secured.

PRE-TRAVEL PLANNING

If you are visiting Bhutan you will know that you are one of the fortunate few. We’ve put together important information that will come in handy as you begin planning your trip.

PACKING LIST FOR TREKKING

In preparation for your trip, we recommend that you review the suggested packing list which includes seasonal options:

PACKING LIST FOR TREKKING

  • Boots – worn in, pre-trip
  • Teva or similar sandals
  • 2 pairs of inner sox
  • 4 pairs of thick socks
  • Lightweight long skirts and trousers
  • Warm trousers
  • Waterproof jackets and trousers
  • 2 lightweight long sleeved shirts (quick dry)
  • 2 short sleeved T-shirts (quick dry)
  • 1 set of thermal underwear
  • Large headscarf
  • Fleece jacket
  • Fleece vest or gilet
  • Very lightweight windproof jacket
  • Fleece gloves and waterproof over gloves
  • Broad-brimmed sun hat
  • Bathing suit (for hotel and hot springs)
  • Sleeping bag (at least 3 seasons)
  • Liner
  • Thermarest sleeping mat
  • The pillowcase of a size to take your fleece (useful as a substitute pillow)
  • Washing kit
  • Towel
  • Personal hygiene/medical kit (see suggested medical kit content list)
  • Sp 25UVA and UVB suncream
  • Platypus/camelback water bottle/s – at least 2 liters (4 pints) capacity
  • Head torch and spare batteries
  • Sunglasses
  • Spare prescription glasses
  • Pocket knife
  • Binoculars
  • Camera (and back-up disposable camera)
  • Notebook and pen wallet
  • 35 minimum and preferably 45-liter capacity daysack
  • Books and guide books (see suggested reading list)
  • Passport
  • Tickets
  • Insurance certificate
  • Money in U.S. dollars
  • List of emergency contacts
  • Trek details
  • Repair kit for equipment
  • Kitbag
  • Ziplock plastic bags (handy for keeping items dry)
  • Trekking Poles
  • A set of comfortable clothes which can be left in a spare bag at the hotel for return after the trek

MONEY AND CURRENCY EXCHANGE

Bhutan’s unit of currency is the Ngultrum (Nu.) 1Nu. = 100 Cheltrum. The Ngultrum is at parity with the Indian currency Rupee.

The most current exchange rate of US$ against the Ngultrum can be found at the Royal Monetary Authority website: www.rma.org.bt

Visa and American Express credit cards are accepted only at a few places. Visitors are advised to carry travelers’ cheques (preferably American Express) with some cash in US Dollars.

HEALTH INFORMATION

Currently there are no vaccinations required for travelling to Bhutan. However, visitors coming from an area infected with Yellow Fever are required to get a Yellow Fever vaccination which must be administered at least 10 days before arrival in the country.

Likewise, visitors arriving from Cholera infected areas should be vaccinated and anti-malarial medication is strongly recommended for travelers visiting rural areas bordering India.

Pure spring water, locally bottled from the high mountains is available at almost all shops.

Imported bottled water, imported from India, is also available at most stores.

SUGGESTED MEDICAL KIT CHECKLIST

  • The following medical kit has been developed over some 20 mountain and desert treks.
  • It should cover the everyday needs of a group of up to 10 people for up to 3 weeks. On the basis of 1 tube or package of each item, the kit should fit in 4 plastic boxes and a canvas bag of approximately 12”x12”x12”.
  • This medical kit should be packed as hold luggage and marked clearly as First Aid Medical Kit.
  • On a trek, it should be carried by the person at the rear of the trek at all times on the move, and returned to the same person each day on arrival in camp.
  • Medical advice should be taken prior to the use of any recommended medication on the list.
  • A range of non-prescription drugs and medical/personal supplies can be purchased in Bhutan.

SUGGESTED MEDICAL KIT

ITEM USE CHECK
COMPEED 71510 Blister plaster Instant pain & pressure relief. Repels water, dirt and bacteria. Stays firmly in place for up to 3 days. Suitable for larger blisters on the heel.
ELASTOPLAST Standard issue protective plasters
MICROPORE Micro porous tape, hypoallergenic
STERISTRIP First aid skin closure strips
DIAMOX Altitude tablet (seek doctor’s advice)
CIPROLOXACIN x 2 packets Antibiotic (seek doctor’s advice)
AMOXCYLLIN x 2 packets Antibiotic (seek doctor’s advice)
COMTREX/CONTAC Non-prescription cold relief
LOPERAMIDE Treatment for severe diahorrea (non-prescription)
SENOCOT Anti-constipation (non-prescription)
PIRITON Antihistamine (non-prescription)
BENADRYL Antihistamine (non-prescription)
ADVIL Ibuprofen (non-prescription)
PARACETAMOL
CODYDRAMOL
DIORALITE 8 Electrolytes
FISHERMEN’S FRIEND Sore throat lozenge
NITRADOS Sleeping pills
LIP BALM
SUN CREAM
NEOSPORIN Antiseptic cream
BROLENE Eye ointment
LAMISIL Fungal cream
ZAMBUK Burns
REXEME Severe dry skin
NEW SKIN Antiseptic liquid bandage
CREPE BANDAGES
KNEE ELASTIC
ANKLE ELASTIC
SCISSORS
TWEEZERS
THERMOMETER
POTASSIUM PERMANGANATE For hand washing before meals
WATER PURIFYING KIT

WEATHER

Schedule your trips to take advantage of Bhutan’s most favorable seasons – Nature, however, decides what the weather will be like during your trip!

WINTER Noted for occasional snowfall only at higher elevations. Ideal time for trekking at lower elevations, generally below 3,000m December – February
SPRING Different varieties of wild flowers, specially the rhododendrons make the hillside a haunting paradise during this season. March – May
SUMMER (MONSOON) Warm and wet travel. Excellent time for keen botanists as the higher valleys and meadows blossom with flowers and lush vegetation. June – August
AUTUMN Excellent weather and tantalizing mountain views September – November

RECOMMENDED READING LIST

Maps: As visitors to Bhutan will be on guided treks, detailed maps are not needed – nor do they exist. The best planning map is Berndtson & Berndtson 1:500,000 Bhutan Road Map (ISBN 3-929811-21-9). Detailed agricultural survey maps are held in the Society’s map collection, together with some relevant older India Survey maps. The various guide books have maps of treks and towns which are of practical use.

Books: A selection of books recommended for study pre-trip. Many of these titles are available from the Society’s Collections, along with historic photographs taken in the early part of the 20th century. For more information, or to search the Collections catalog, please visit: www.rgs.org/collection

TITLE AUTHOR DESCRIPTION
An Introduction to the Traditional Architecture of Bhutan Bhutan Dept of Works A Detailed review of the iconography and design of dzongs, monasteries, chortens, and temples.
Bayonets to Lhasa Sir Francis Younghusband Description of the first expedition to Lhasa
Bhutan: A Trekker’s Guide Bart Jordans Popular Cicerone trekking guide
Bhutan – Footprint Travel Guide Gyurme Dorje
Bhutan – Lonely Planet Guide Richard Whitecross Most comprehensive guide for the main treks
Bhutan and its Natural Resources Sherubtse College, Bhutan A collection of essays on the environment of Bhutan
Bhutan and the British Peter Collister A comprehensive account of the relationship between the two countries
Bhutan – Mountain Fortress of the Gods Christian Schicklgruber Accompanied1998 Bhutan exhibition in Vienna
Bhutan, the Early History of a Himalayan Kingdom Michael Aris The most authoritative history of Bhutan
Birds of Bhutan Inskipp, Inskipp & Grimmett A comprehensive field guide
Divine Madman, The Keith Dowman Translation of the poems and works of Lama Drukpa Kunley
Dreams of the Peaceful Dragon Katie Hickman Traveller’s account of a walk across Bhutan in the 1970s
From the Land of the Thunder Dragon Diana K. Meyers Study of Bhutanese textiles
Geology of the Bhutan Himalaya Augusto Gansser Large format and comprehensive guide
In the Kingdom of the Thunder Dragon Joanna Lumley Book published to accompany the 1997 BBC series tracing her grandfather’s career on the North East Frontier
Indigo Jenny Balfour-Paul The definitive book on the study of indigo dye across cultures
Land of the Thunderbolt Earl of Ronaldshay Past RGS President’s account of a British Expedition to Bhutan
Raven Crow, The Michael Aris A definitive history of Bhutan’s monarchy
Treasures of the Thunder Dragon Queen Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck A portrait of Bhutan
Trees and Shrubs of Nepal Adrian and Jimmie Storrs The best available field book on the forests of Bhutan
Sikhim and Bhutan, 21 Years on the North-East Frontier J Claude White The Historical account of White’s 1905 expedition to Bhutan

Oven Roasted Mushrooms on Toast

This delicious roasted mushroom breakfast is a great way to start your day with a serve of vegetables.
Serves: 2
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • 4 large flat mushrooms, stems trimmed
  • 1 lemon, rind finely grated, juiced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ¼ cup flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • 2 tbsp chives, chopped
  • 2 slices wholegrain bread, toasted
  • 2 tsp margarine

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 220°C (fan forced).
  2. Place the mushrooms, stem side up, in a lightly greased roasting pan.
  3. Combine 2 tbsp of the lemon juice and all of the oil in a small jug and whisk to combine.
  4. Drizzle lemon juice and oil mixture over the mushrooms and season them with freshly ground pepper.
  5. Roast the mushrooms for 10 15 minutes, or until tender.
  6. While the mushrooms are roasting, mix the lemon rind and herbs together in a small bowl.
  7. Spread each slice of toast with 1 tsp margarine and put it onto a serving plate.
  8. Top each slice of toast with two mushrooms and sprinkle over lemon rind and herb mixture.
  9. Season with freshly ground pepper. Serve immediately.

Healthier Food Choices for Breakfast

Breakfast food Healthier choices Nutritional value Handy tips
Bread and bread rolls Wholegrain, wholemeal multigrain, added fibre, soy
and linseed, high-fibre white, focaccia, Lebanese, pita, pocket, mountain and fruit or raisin loaf, bagels, baps, wholemeal crumpets, hot cross buns
Contains dietary fibre, carbohydrate, minerals and B vitamins Wholegrain or wholemeal breads are more nutritious because they contain all of the natural parts of the cereal grain, including the bran and germ
Cereal High-fibre, wholegrain, wholemeal flake or puffed cereals, porridge (rolled oats), wholewheat breakfast biscuits, untoasted muesli Contains dietary fibre, carbohydrate, minerals and B vitamins Avoid toasted muesli because it is usually higher in energy
Margarine Margarine spreads made from canola, sunflower or olive oil,
or dairy blends that have earned the Heart Foundation Tick
Source of vitamins A, D and E, and essential fatty acids Use margarine or margarine spreads instead of butter
Muffins English-style, wholegrain or spicy fruit Contains dietary fibre, carbohydrate, minerals and B vitamins Commercial cake-style muffins may be higher in energy and contain little dietary fibre
Savoury crispbreads Wholemeal varieties of crispbreads, crackerbread, rice crackers and rice cakes Contains dietary fibre, carbohydrate, minerals and B vitamins Choose no added salt and wholegrain varieties
Pikelets and scones Wholemeal, savoury or fruit pikelets and fruit scones Contains carbohydrate and dietary fibre Try making your own using wholemeal flour
Fruit Any fresh fruit is a great choice. Canned or tubs of fruit in natural or unsweetened juice is also
a good option. Dried fruit and 100% fruit juice (with no added sugar and served in small glasses) is another alternative
Contains water, dietary fibre, carbohydrate, vitamins and minerals Dried fruit contains dietary fibre, but be careful how much you eat because it can also be high in natural sugars that contribute to energy intake
Drinks Tap water, plain mineral water, diet soft drinks, tea (black or green) and coffee (filtered, instant or café style) Water is essential for life and needed for sustained performance
Milk Reduced, low or no fat milk or added calcium soy beverages Reduced, low or no fat milk is lower in saturated fat and often contains more calcium than full fat milk
Yoghurt Reduced, low or no fat yoghurt (plain or fruit flavoured) Contains protein, riboflavin and calcium Reduced, low or no fat yoghurt often contains more calcium than full fat yoghurt

Scrambled Eggs With Smoked Salmon

This delicious and easy-to-make breakfast will keep you full of energy all morning.
Serves: 2
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 5 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 tbsp reduced, low or no fat milk
  • 2 tsp margarine
  • 2 slices wholegrain bread, toasted
  • 20 g spinach leaves
  • 30 g smoked salmon, sliced
  • 1 tbsp chives, chopped

Instructions

  1. Beat eggs, egg white, and milk together with a fork until well combined.
  2. Heat a small non-stick frying pan over low to medium heat. Add the margarine.
  3. When the margarine is almost melted, add the egg mixture and cook for 40 50 seconds
  4. When the egg starts to set around edges of the pan, gently push the set egg into the center and tilt the pan to let uncooked egg to run to edges.
  5. Cook 10 15 seconds, then remove from the heat and push the set egg into the center again.
  6. Season cooked egg with freshly ground black pepper.
  7. Place toast on serving plates and top with spinach leaves and smoked salmon.
  8. Spoon the scrambled eggs over the toast and sprinkle it with chives. Serve immediately.

Strawberry Yoghurt Cups

These tasty fruit and yogurt cups make a filling breakfast.
Serves: 4
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 8 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup reduced, low or no fat yogurt
  • 1 cup Kellogg s® All-Bran® Wheat Flakes Honey Almond cereal*
  • 375 g strawberries, hulled, sliced
  • 375 g other seasonal fruits, sliced
  • 1 tbsp honey

Instructions

  1. Spoon ¼ cup yogurt and ¼ cup cereal into the base of the four serving glasses.
  2. Top with strawberries and fruits.
  3. Drizzle with honey. Serve immediately.

Healthy Breakfast Tips

You’ve probably heard people say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Eating a nutritious breakfast can help to reduce your risk of coronary heart disease (CHD) and diabetes. It also contributes to a healthier diet overall by adding important vitamins and minerals, such as thiamine, riboflavin, calcium, magnesium, and iron. However, about 23% of adults and 10% of children skip breakfast, so miss out on this nutritional advantage.

What is a nutritious breakfast?

A nutritious breakfast includes a variety of foods, such as high-fiber whole grain bread and cereals, vegetables, fruit, eggs, and reduced, low or no fat milk and dairy foods.

Eating two serves of fruit and five serves of vegetables every day contributes to good health. Breakfast is a great time to include fruit and vegetables in your diet to help you reach this goal.

Eggs are also an ideal breakfast food. A healthy balanced diet can include a serve of eggs (two eggs) in two to three meals a week. Remember that how you cook them is important. The healthiest cooking methods are scrambled (using reduced, low or no fat milk), poached and boiled.

Dairy foods contain calcium, which is essential for strong bones and teeth. They also include protein, vitamins A, D, and B2. There is a wide range of dairy foods that you can include in your breakfast, such as milk, yogurt, and cheese. Choose healthier reduced, low or no fat varieties.

BREAKFAST IDEAS FOR HOME

Quick fixes for people on the go

  • Keep a supply of healthy whole grain cereals and reduced, low or no fat milk in the house.
  • Prepare breakfast the night before by setting the table and getting out bowls, plates, cutlery, and cereals.
  • Have a back-up plan of fast, inexpensive options. For example, fresh fruit; reduced, low or no fat yogurt; a handful of plain, unsalted nuts and/or seeds; small boxes of sultanas; and cereal bars that have earned the Heart Foundation Tick.
  • Pre-cook a batch of savory muffins, for example with carrot, onion, zucchini, and cheese, and eat one for breakfast.

Bread, crisp breads and rice cakes

  • Spread margarine onto spicy fruit loaf or fruit muffin and top with sliced banana, and a sprinkle of cinnamon.
  • Toast whole grain bread and grill with melted reduced-fat cheddar or mozzarella cheese.
  • Halve a wholemeal pita bread or flatbread and fill with berries (or other seasonal soft fruit) and reduced, low or no fat yogurt. Roll up and serve as a wrap.
  • Spread 100% fruit jam on wholemeal toast and top with ricotta cheese.
  • Top wholemeal toast with salt-reduced baked beans and a splash of Worcestershire sauce.
  • Cut whole grain toast in thin slices and serve with a soft boiled egg or scrambled eggs made with reduced, low or no fat milk.
  • Add a healthy savory topping, such as avocado or hummus and tomato, to crispbread.
  • Top rice crackers with a spread of margarine, sliced tomato, and black pepper.

Cereal

  • Serve layered wholegrain cereal, reduced, low or no fat yogurt and fresh fruit pieces in a bowl or drinking glass.
  • Serve wholegrain cereal with slices of fresh seasonal fruit or fruit canned in natural or unsweetened juice.
  • Cook porridge with a touch of cinnamon and add stewed fruits, such as apple, quince or rhubarb.

Fish and eggs

  • Try canned fish, such as tuna, salmon or sardines, on wholegrain toast with a touch of reduced, low or no fat mayonnaise and ground black pepper. Choose fish canned in spring water or oil, or look for the Heart Foundation Tick on the label.
  • Scramble eggs with a little olive oil, red and green capsicums, onions and black pepper. Serve with wholegrain toast.
  • Make an omelet with tomato and mushrooms, or add some pieces of smoked salmon and chives.

Fruit

  • Serve fresh fruit salad in a tall glass and top with reduced, low or no fat fruit yogurt and crunchy untoasted muesli.
  • Try half a grapefruit with a light sprinkle of sugar.

Milk

  • Make a smoothie using reduced, low or no fat milk and yogurt, fresh or frozen fruit, ground flaxseeds and a touch of raw cocoa powder and cinnamon.

Toasty breakfast treats

  • Use a sandwich maker to make toasted sandwiches, using wholegrain or wholemeal bread where possible. For sweet fillings, fruit loaf also works well.
  • Experiment with different fillings, such as:
    • Banana and sultanas
    • Apple, cinnamon, and sultanas
    • Pineapple and banana
    • Reduced fat cheese and tomato
    • Lean ham and tomato
    • Salt-reduced baked beans.

BREAKFAST AT WORK

  • Keep wholegrain cereal, wholegrain bread and reduced, low or no fat milk at work.
  • Try instant oat sachets and cook in the microwave. Add fruit, such as banana, sultanas or grated apple, nuts or seeds for variety.
  • Keep tubs or cans of fruit at your desk to eat by themselves or add to cereal.
  • Choose varieties in natural or unsweetened juice.
  • Create a small snack pack of mixed dried fruit and plain unsalted nuts and seeds.
  • Look for cereal bars with the Heart Foundation Tick.
  • If you are having trouble bringing in suitable breakfast foods from home, walk to your local supermarket at lunchtime and buy some breakfast foods. Walking and carrying groceries is a good way to get some physical activity in your day.

BREAKFAST MEETINGS

  • Serve a fruit platter of fresh seasonal fruits in bite-sized pieces.
  • Put glasses half-filled with plain reduced, low or no fat yogurt next to dishes of fruit salad and muesli so guests can serve themselves.
  • Offer guests savory or fruit mini muffins. Ask your caterer to make them using olive or canola oil, or with margarine instead of butter, and 50% wholemeal flour or added bran. Large muffins can be cut into halves or quarters.
  • Frittatas can be eaten at breakfast warm or cold. Choose one filled with vegetables.
  • Make turkey stacks by putting a cube of lean turkey meat, a cherry tomato and a cube of reduced fat cheese on a toothpick. Serve with a thick slice of rye bread or wholegrain rolls.
  • Serve fresh rye bread or wholegrain rolls with a platter of lean roast meats and slices of tomato and reduced fat cheddar cheese.
  • Offer guests individual containers of wholegrain cereals and reduced, low or no fat milk.
  • Serve pikelets with 100% fruit spread and reduced, low or no fat yogurt or ricotta.
  • For busy sit-down meetings, start the morning by serving everyone a fruit smoothie in a tall glass with a straw.

At breakfast meetings, avoid serving:

  • Fatty sausages and bacon
  • Deli meats, such as salami and devon
  • Croissants and pasties
  • Sweet biscuits
  • Full-fat milk for tea and coffee or cereal, or in egg dishes, such as scrambled eggs or omelets use reduced, low or no fat milk instead
  • Butter and salt use margarine, and herbs and spices instead.