Michael Sophocles - Apprentice contestant

October 30, 2008

I'm a savoury rather than a sweet person, and I probably eat too much meat, but I do exercise five times a week to offset the excess.

Steak: I love a nice hunk of steak, particularly with a peppercorn sauce made with a drop of brandy in it.

Spinach: I'm a massive fan - I'm like a Greek Popeye. Spinach features majorly in Greek cooking. I particularly love it with a fried egg on top.

Fish pie: I've recently got into this. I make it with four types of fish, some spinach, and topped with potato and Parmesan cheese.

Smoked salmon: All Jews love smoked salmon and I'm no exception. It goes very well with avocado.

Pavlova: I'm not a massive fan of desserts but I like the combination of fruit and meringue.

Dietician Joan Wides writes:

Red meat is a rich source of iron, protein and B vitamins. If you eat it regularly, keep the saturated fat content low by choosing the leanest cuts, removing any visible fat and grilling.

Reduce your cancer risk by not exceeding 300g per week.

The real nutritional value of spinach lies, not in its iron content (which in fact is less well absorbed than iron from animal sources), but in the folate and cancer-fighting antioxidants lutein, beta carotene and vitamins C and E which it supplies.

Michael's fish pie is a balanced meal in one dish. Fish is an excellent source of protein, vitamins and minerals but is low in saturated fat, so try to have at least two portions per week. One of these should be oil-rich, such as mackerel, sardines or salmon, to provide heart-protective omega 3.

Eat smoked salmon in moderation - too many smoked foods increase your risk of cancer.

Although high in sugar, meringues can make a fruit-based dessert to help you meet your target of five fruits and veg a day.

Last updated: 3:32pm, September 23 2009