Caponata with Baked White Fish to kick it off! This is a dish that absolutely celebrates the Mediterranean Diet which is well researched for it’s beneficial role in improving fertility and keeping hormones hummin!
Why the Mediteranean Diet for healthy hormones and fertility?
Being a dietary pattern that’s high in fruits, vegetables, fish, wholegrains, legumes, nuts and seeds, whilst limiting red meat, alcohol, and processed foods means there is an abundance of fertility boosting nutrients such as omega 3 fatty acids, vitamin D, antioxidants and plant derived proteins.
Omega 3’s are critical for the growth and development of a woman’s eggs, for healthy ovulation and a regular menstrual cycle, whilst also cooling inflammation in the body.
Vitamin D, which is surprisingly a common nutrient deficiency in Australia (the country drenched in sun!) supports the production of progesterone and oestrogen.
Antioxidants present in colourful fruits and vegetables, as well as extra virgin olive oil, olives – hello caponata! – help to reduce oxidative stress in the body. Oxidative stress + free radical damage can wreak havoc on the health of both a woman’s eggs and male sperm
CAPONATA WITH WHITE FISH
Gluten free : Dairy Free
4x 160g fillets white fish (we used barramundi)
Extra virgin olive oil
2 medium eggplant cut into 1cm cubes
1 medium brown onion, peeled and diced small
1 large red capsicum, seeds removed, flesh cut into 2cm chunks
1 cup chopped tinned tomatoes (look for BPA free tins)
2 tbsp capers
1/2 cup green olives, pitted
2 tsp honey
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup vegetable stock
2 tbsp fresh basil leaves, roughly torn
2 tbsp fresh parsley leaves
Heat oven to 200c (fan forced) and line a large baking tray with greaseproof paper. Spread the eggplant over the tray, sprinkle with salt and set aside for 10 minutes to extract the bitter liquid from the flesh. Pat dry with a paper towel after 10 minutes, then drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and toss to coat. Bake in oven for 30 minutes. Whilst eggplant cooks add 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil to a large frypan, on medium heat, with the onion and capsicum and cook stirring for 5-7 minutes. Add the chopped, tinned tomatoes, capers, olives, honey, oregano, vinegar and stock and cook stirring for 10 minutes. Lay the fish on a lined baking tray, drizzle with some extra virgin olive oil and bake for 12-15 minutes (depending on thickness). Once eggplant is cooked add it to the pan with the capsicum and tomatoes etc and stir to combine. Remove fish from oven and arrange on top of the vegetables, finishing with fresh basil or parsley (whatever is available to you) Season with iodised sea salt (preferable – for some iodine to support thyroid) and black pepper and serve with some crunchy bread or steamed white potatoes and extra green leafy salad.