Jill Fergus

I began cooking as a child and feeding family and friends has always been my passion. My kitchen is a busy one. I love to experiment and embrace the kitchen successes along with the accidents. I love to cook and collaborate with friends. I am seasonally driven (I love the farmer's market!), avoid processed foods and focus on whole and organic (mostly plant-based, but not exclusively) choices. In my home, my family has a variety of eating preferences from plant-based, gluten free, refined sugar free to full on omnivore. My goal is to create dishes to please all, either as is or with minor adjustments to the recipe. Where did "Feed the Swimmers" come from? When my kids began swimming competitively and growing into young adults, I realized, even more, how important nutrition is to performance, growth and overall health and emotional well being. Everyone (including the coach during travel meets) would ask "what are you feeding the swimmers?" This has become my mantra whenever I'm in my kitchen cooking for family and the friends I love.



Vegetarian “Tuna” Melt

Vegetarian “Tuna” Melt

My diet is mostly plant-based, and sometimes includes fish, eggs and goat milk based cheese. I’ve sworn off canned tuna as commercial fishing has caused immense damage to the ocean, the ecosystem and kills needlessly. But, every now and again, I crave the tuna salad sandwiches I enjoyed as a kid and in classic diners. I combined a few pantry staples and some fresh to create this vegan “tuna” salad. I developed it just yesterday, and I’m ready to make my third batch! On the “Tuna” Melt, I did use a goat Gouda- so the salad is vegan, the sandwich I created isn’t. Substitute a plant based cheese should you prefer!


•Salt cured capers have superior flavor to brine packed. Be sure to rinse them thoroughly.  

•I like using organic hearts of palm by Native Forest (not sponsored) as they are nice and crispy and not overly brined. When I can find them, I love and prefer fresh hearts of palm. If you can find fresh, poaching them is simple and takes all of 15 minutes- I prefer their flavor. 

Vegan “Tuna” Salad


1 cup cooked chick peas

1/2 cup drained artichoke hearts, chopped

1/2 cup hearts of palm, finely chopped

1/4 cup chopped flat leaf parsley

1/4 cup (vegan) mayo

2 tsp fresh lemon juice

1/2 tsp Dijon mustard

1/2 tsp salt cured capers, rinsed, drained and chopped

sea salt and fresh ground pepper to taste  



1- In the bowl of a food processor, pulls the chick peas until coursley chopped, do not purée (you may also do this by hand).

2- In a large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients and adjust seasoning. If you prefer, you may add extra mayo.

 To assemble the “Tuna” Melt-

Think grilled cheese!  

Using bread of choice, spread a thin layer of mayo on each slice on its “exterior” side. Place first slice mayo side down in a preheated heavy bottomed pan and cook until golden. Remove from heat and pile with “tuna” salad and top generously with cheeese of choice. Place under a broiler for 1-2 minutes, just until cheese begins to melt. Top with second slice of bread and place sandwich mayo side down in the heated pan until crispy and golden brown and cheese is fully melted. 


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Chocolate Hazelnut Babka

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