This is one of my favourite evening meals, filling and nourishing after a day with a long or hard training session. The mackerel is a great source of both protein (19g/100g) to help repair muscle and healthy omega 3 fats to support heart, joint, immune and brain function. Sweet potato provides carbs (20g/100g – a serving is 200g) to replenish glycogen stores together with fibre to maintain a healthy gut and a range of vitamins such as beta carotene, which is important for eye health. I’ve added tenderstem broccoli and leeks for additional plant nutrients, so this recipe provides 3 servings of vegetables. I’ve also included maple syrup for flavour and some additional carbohydrate (10g/tbsp)
Serves 2. Preparation and cooking time: 40 minutes
2 large sweet potatoes, chopped into thick slices
160g tenderstem broccoli
2 large leeks, chopped
1 tsp chopped chilli (optional)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tbsp maple syrup
Juice and zest of half a lemon
- Heat the oven to 200 degrees C/gas mark 7
- Line a baking tray with a foil. Place the chopped sweet potato on it, then sprinkle with the cumin and smoked paprika and drizzle with the olive oil. Place in the oven to cook for 25-30 mins.
- Zest a lemon, then juice it.
- Place the mackerel on another foil sheet. Drizzle with the maple syrup and the lemon juice. Sprinkle with the lemon zest and chilli (if using). Wrap the foil into a parcel. Place in the oven 10 minutes after the sweet potato.
- Place the broccoli and leeks in a steamer and cook for 5-7 minutes until tender. Alternatively, use a microwave. Boiling vegetables leads to more nutrient loss.
- Take the sweet potato and the mackerel out of the oven and place the three vegetables on a plate. Unwrap the mackerel parcel and place the fish on top of the vegetables. Drizzle over any remaining maple syrup and lemon juice from the parcel.
Jo Scott-Dalgleish BSc (Hons) is a BANT Registered Nutritionist, writing and giving talks about nutrition for endurance sport. Based in London, she also works as a Registered Nutritional Therapist, conducting one–to–one consultations with triathletes, distance runners and cyclists to help them eat well, be healthy and perform better through the creation of an individual nutritional plan. To learn more about these consultations, please visit www.nutritionforendurancesports.co.uk