#WorldDiabetesDay: Easy diabetes friendly recipes you can try

Image: 123RF/ Oleksandra Naumenko

Today marks the sixth instalment of World Diabetes day. The purpose of the day is raise awareness and advocate for people who suffer from the illness. Staying balanced and healthy is difficult during December time. People tend to forget what health is and fall off the wagon. We give you three diabetes friendly recipes for the festive season.

Let's have a look:

Onion crunch soup
Image: Craig Scott. Circa November 2012. © Sunday Times

Onion Surprise Crunch

Serves 2


5ml (1 tsp) butter

5ml (1 tsp) olive oil

2 large onions, finely sliced

Handful almonds or macadamia nuts, chopped

5ml (1 tsp) mustard seeds

2.5ml (½ tsp) sugar

3 cloves garlic, crushed

500ml (2 cups) vegetable stock

15ml (1 tbsp) brandy (optional)

15ml (1 tbsp) sherry or white wine (optional)

1 large apple, cored and diced

1 baby marrow, coarsely grated


2 slices low-GI bread

5ml (1 tsp) butter

5ml (1 tsp) olive oil

1 clove garlic, cut in half


Heat the butter and oil in a deep pan and sauté the onions with the nuts and mustard seeds until the onions are transparent. Add the sugar and garlic and stir-fry for a few minutes. Add the stock, brandy and wine, if using, and simmer for 30 minutes. Add the apple and baby marrow and heat through (the apple and marrow should still be a bit crunchy).

For the croutons, spread the butter and oil on one side of each bread slice and rub with the cut side of the garlic. Place under a hot oven grill until sizzling. Remove from the oven, cut into little squares and return to the oven to crisp the croutons.

Serve the soup with croutons sprinkled on top, garnished with snipped chives or other fresh herbs. You could also add grated cheese.

Sweet 'n sour pork
Image: Circa November 2013

Sweet 'n Sour Pork


Hilary Biller gives a favourite dish a slender makeover

500g pork fillet, sliced

Salt and pepper

Dash of paprika

Olive oil

1 onion, sliced

1 red pepper, cored, seeded and cubed

2 large carrots, peeled and sliced into ribbons with a vegetable peeler

200g sugar snap peas, halved

2 garlic cloves, crushed

Dash of Chinese five-spice powder

15ml (1 tbsp) cornflour

60ml (4 tbsp) tomato purée

15ml (1 tbsp) white vinegar

60ml (4 tbsp) light soy sauce

150ml chicken stock


Toss the sliced pork in salt and pepper mixed with a little paprika. In a large, non- stick frying pan or wok, preheat a splash of olive oil till sizzling and brown the pork fillet. Remove pork and set aside.

Adding a little more oil to the pan if necessary, stir-fry the onion, red pepper, carrot, peas and garlic. Combine five-spice powder, cornflour, tomato purée, white vinegar, soy sauce and chicken stock. Return meat to the pan, pour the sauce over it, and cook for 3-4 minutes until the sauce has thickened. If your diet includes carbohydrates, serve this on rice or noodles. If not, it is delicious on its own.

Pear, cheese & nut strudel
Image: Murphy. © Sunday Times

Sweet Beginnings 

Serves 6

Pear, cheese and nut strudel


5-6 fresh pears (or apples), cored and chopped

Zest and juice of 1 lemon

5ml (1 tsp) ground cinnamon

45ml (3 tbsp) brown sugar (or sugar substitute)

80g low-fat cheddar cheese, grated

6 sheets phyllo pastry

45ml (3 tbsp) melted butter

45ml (3 tbsp) breakfast seed, nut and fruit mix

15ml (1 tbsp) icing sugar or sugar substitute, for dusting


Preheat the oven to 190ºC. Combine the pears, lemon zest and juice, cinnamon, brown sugar and cheese. Brush the sheets of pastry with melted butter and stack on top of each other. Spread the breakfast mix over the pastry, leaving a border of about 2-3cm. Spoon the pear mixture over breakfast mix. Fold in the short ends of the pastry, roll up into a log shape and place on a baking tray. Brush with remaining melted butter and bake for 45 minutes till golden brown. Dust with icing sugar, if using, and serve with a blob of crème fraîche or low-fat custard. 

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