ISSUE 99 | NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2018 | WWW.AFOODIEWORLD.COM
Winter Warmers INVENTIVE RECIPES FOR THE HOLIDAYS
Food Off the Grid
Countdown to Christmas
Explore the wild flavours of Alaska
Getting into the holiday spirit starts with festive food and drink
The ultimate crÃªpe cake contest
I NTROD UCTI ON
TIP OF THE ICEBERG CEO Lily Ng CTO Derek Kean COO Shirin Ong Editor-in-Chief Alicia Walker Editor-at-Large Celia Hu Digital Editor Stephanie Pliakas Art Director Jen Paolini IT Specialist & DPO Dale Foo Director of Business Development Jason Strickland Marketing & Community Leader Yanhan Tan Events Coordinator Carly Robert Contributors Cindy Lam, Laura Williams, Hannah Chung, Chris Dwyer, Lisa Cam
As well as our essential Christmas delights lowdown, in this issue we have continued the information deep dive into the future of new proteins; specifically going deeper into Impossible Foods and all that they stand for by going straight to the source—their head offices in San Francisco. Many are just starting to hear the whispers about this new ‘non-meat that bleeds‘, others have already fully embraced it, while some remain sceptical; either way you lean, it’s making an impact on food scenes far and wide, and we want to know more about it and what’s driving it. We also have a not-so-secret love affair with crêpe cake and decided to peel back the layers to find out Cover image which comes up top of the taste trials. courtesy of Cindy Lam Chris Dwyer heads north for a bit of mountain air and all the edible delights that come with it in Food Off the Grid: Alaska. We have some innovative recipes for the holidays from our regular kitchen wonders Laura Williams and Cindy Lam, along with a touch of zero waste helpfulness from Hannah Chung to finish and send you off into the holidays in a tasty, and no wasty, state-ofmind. Happy hols all!
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pleasure. I never ate before in this deep carnal way… I want to bite into life and to be torn by it.” — ANAÏS NIN
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22 02 afoodieworld.com
Photo Credit: Juno Kim
F O O D WA R : CRÊPE CAKES The love began with Lady M. Now hearts have been won, can any of the more recent rivals match the creamy layers of New York’s most decadent export?
THE IMPOSSIBLE F U T U R E O F M E AT The full story on the mission for Impossible Foods to tackle one of the planet’s biggest problems with their own disruptive product
FOOD OFF THE GRID: ALASKA Chris Dwyer heads north, far, far north, to discover the delights of Fairbanks and Anchorage in Alaska
L I TT L E H O N G KO N G K I TC H E N Laura Williams gives us inspiration for the holidays with this month’s wholesome recipes
M E AT L E S S M O N T H LY Cindy Lam takes our taste buds to a winter wonderland with her festive tiramisu with a twist
We round up where to find some of the best food and drink in Hong Kong come holiday time
Our zero waste hero Hannah Chung gives us some tips for keeping the holidays as green as pine
COUNTDOWN TO C H R I ST M A S
THE ZERO WA ST E D I A R I E S
30 afoodieworld.com 03
f or starters THE HOTTEST NEWS BITES CHINESE SOUP REALLY IS GOOD FOR YOU Bloomberg reports that Chinese scientists have created a formula based on traditional Chinese medicine designed to cure vascular dementia. There are no drugs on the market that specifically treat dementia, and current treatments for Alzheimer’s provide only moderate relief. This blend of ginkgo biloba, saffron, and ginseng—referred to as SLT—uses the combination to improve the brain’s blood circulation, increase brain cell communication, and reduce inflammation. SLT will head to late-stage trials in Australia this month with a larger study in China later in the year. The added benefit is the absence of any adverse affects given these ingredients are already used daily in Chinese soups and other cooking.
Thrive Algae Oil
Photo Credit: www.thrivealgae.com
ADD OIL There is talk that algae oil is the new cooking oil of the moment. Move over, sunflower, olive, and even coconut oils that dominate kitchen cupboards across the globe—these could be shunted aside for this health-giving newbie. Both good for you—containing less saturated fat than coconut oil— and good for the environment, Thrive Algae Oil is hitting shelves in Walmarts in the U.S. and is touted as an easy and versatile cooking oil that fries well, doesn’t smoke, and doesn’t have much of a flavour, making it the perfect neutral base. This feels like a whole new way to think about striking oil.
The latest and greatest ideas being cooked up in tech kitchens:
Photo Credit: Beyond Meat / Facebook
WHAT’S IN A NAME? The argument over what to call the new ‘meats’ heading for market made from animal cells, rather than from slaughtering animals, is heating up. Research undertaken by the Good Food Institute has found that people do not like the term cell-based meat or cultured meat, when given the option. Clean meat is generally the favourite term of the consumer, but there have been complaints from within the food industry that it implies normal meat could be thought of as dirty as a result. Other options include slaughter-free meat, craft meat, labgrown meat, in-vitro meat, meat 2.0, or even cultured tissue. On that note, anyone craving a juicy cultured tissue burger?
DITCHING THE ARTIFICIAL Fast food giant McDonald’s has removed all artificial preservatives from their famous hamburgers—with the exception of the pickles on top. This change involved removing the artificial ingredients from the buns, sauces, and cheese as more and more consumers are demanding that more care goes into their food. We can only delight in the knowledge that even the enormous global chains are starting to make changes that will filter down through the food industry for healthier and more thoughtful food products for the future.
Discover all the fun from our Foodie Club events. Join us by signing up on www.afoodieworld.com. It’s free!
Pizza workshop at FRITES
Food’s Future Summit
Mother’s Day at The Artist House
In a blink of an eye, it’s the end of another year. As we look back, we are flooded with hunger-inducing memories. We took a slightly different tack for Foodie Club events this year; instead of just sit-down dinners and mingling drinking sessions, we got our Foodies to lead, love and learn, and us along with them.
We paved the way towards the discovery
Quality time with loved ones is always precious. In
and design of what we will be eating in the
collaboration with Marriott Vacation Club, we did a
coming years with the second instalment
series of events that put couples to the test with our
of our Food’s Future Summit. Last year’s
highly popular 80s pop-quiz date nights, and partnered
Summit was a winner for ‘Best Event’ at the
with imaginative playgrounds and pizza workshops to
Spark Awards 2018, and we further pushed
create memorable days out for families.
the boundaries for this year’s by doubling the guest participation, increasing the line-up of thought-provoking speakers, and adding new
elements and insights to the entire event. We secured big players, such as leading
Earlier this year, we surveyed our Foodie Club members
American food tech company JUST, who
and over 70 per cent mentioned that they would
specialise in eggless eggs and mayo, with CEO
like more hands-on workshops. So, we delivered.
Josh Tetrick giving the keynote speech, and
With sustainable seafood organisation Choose Right
we also welcomed our first feature country:
Today as our partner, Foodies learned the differences
Sweden. The Consulate of Sweden supported
between shop-bought fish balls and those made with
the Summit with an amazing array of speakers,
sustainably-sourced fish, and how to make them, and
vendors, and products. Preparations are
they gained access to insider information on what goes
already underway for next year’s Summit; drop
into our favourite dim sum dishes at local restaurants,
us a line if you’re interested in being a part of it.
and even learned how to smoke their own salmon!
A New Go Green LIFEStyle
Plant-Based Coffee Vitasoy launches first Impactful and Successful Plant-Based Coffee Stall at Tong Chong Street Market Coffee Festival to promote a New Go Green Lifestyle to the public Plant-based milk is gaining popularity in recent years in
and home-roasted quality coffee beans from Ideaology,
the world. Made from raw materials such as soy beans,
a local café founded by Chester Tam, Hong Kong’s first
almonds and coconuts, plant-based milk’s texture is similar
authorised trainer recognised by the Speciality Coffee
to milk, hence the name. Vitasoy recently launched the
Association of Europe. The innovative hot drinks unveiled
product of Café For Baristas-Soya Milk, a collaboration
and enjoyed were the lush and refreshing Beet Root
with a team of baristas from Australia with the aim to
& Chocolate Soy Latte; the mellow and delicious Soy
develop a soya milk formula for barista-standard brewing.
Good Latte; and the multi-layered Okinawa Black Sugar
With no cholesterol and no trans fat, vegan-friendly
Almond Latte. They also debuted the thick and aromatic
Vitasoy Café for Baristas-Soya Milk contains 42 kcal per
Truffle Soy Milk Soup to quell the hunger pangs.
100ml, compared to 70 kcal per 100ml in regular milk; that’s a whopping 40% less!
To encourage the public to embrace the health benefits of
Vitasoy achieved a successful event with positive feedback
plant-based milks like soya in their coffee, specialty drinks,
from the public. The event was part of a campaign to
and to include as part of their daily diet, Vitasoy came
encourage customers to request plant-based milks, like
up with the theme “Be Good to Yourself” for their first-
soya or almond, when ordering their favourite drinks
ever stall at Tong Chong Street Market Coffee Festival
in cafés in Hong Kong. By introducing Vitasoy Café for
and created five different kinds of creative and delicious
Baristas-Soya Milk in your routine, you may be surprised
plant-based beverages using its latest products, Café For
by how much you enjoy plant-based coffee, which benefits
Baristas-Soya Milk & Café For Baristas-Almond Milk,
your health, the environment and an enjoyable lifestyle!
Price per serving: $34
Price per serving: $34
Price per serving: $28.50
This Japanese chain seems to have plans for world domination, with over 400 shops spanning across multiple countries in the Asian region. They also have an ever-expanding list of branches opening in Hong Kong. The crêpe cakes are supposedly flown in from Japan every day, but we can’t discern what makes them so special. We chose the most popular original flavour of layer cake and counted about 15 layers. The cream is sickly sweet and had an almost oily quality to the texture, making us wonder whether the shops in Hong Kong had ceased getting inventory from Japan altogether.
This little shop tucked away in Prince Edward sells out every day! If you want to ensure you get a piece of the action, you have to order a whole cake months in advance. LamLamLi dishes up the city’s first molten-centre crêpe cake, with signatures including chocolate and matcha tea. Dusted with a thick coat of matcha powder on top, the bitter notes of highquality green tea cut the cream well, and the bite was neither too creamy nor too sweet. We counted 17 layers of crêpe and loved the gooey molten centre. The variety caused an impasse among our Foodie testers, as not everyone was on board with the bittersweet combo.
You know a food trend has truly spread far and wide when you see it filter down into this fast food mecca. This very walletfriendly choice of crêpe cake comes in various flavours, and what’s dubbed ‘dinosaur cake’ as part of a Milo promotion. We’re glad we tried the special, because that was the only redeeming quality of the cake—the Milo. Coming in at only 10 to 12 layers, the cream was so flimsy that the cake was collapsing under its weight. Neither the cream nor the pastry was memorable.
Verdict: Eat anything else at this bakery. Anything.
Verdict: Given the geographic prominence of McCafé, you can grab one here to tide you over until you can get a proper fix.
Verdict: Worth the leg work. Foodie rating:
Foodie rating: Foodie rating:
bat tle of the ^ pe cakes cre
Price per serving: $45
Price per serving: $75
A relative newcomer to the crêpe cake game—and we’ll be honest—we were sceptical if anyone could bring anything new to the table, but we were proven wrong. Opened in November 2017, Shaz Creations is a cosy, full-service eatery that serves up a fantastic array of flavours. The crêpe layers totalled about 17 in this one, but if you consider the sponge cake lining along the bottom, the thinness of the pastry could rival Lady M. We tried the pandan and coconut flavour and were impressed. The tropical aromas were delicate and light, while the cream was fullbodied, yet had somehow escaped the pitfalls of being too rich. We are guessing the sponge base had something to do with it.
New York’s Lady M dominated Hong Kong’s crêpe cake market when it launched in 2015. Lines are still out the door around tea time at its Central location, and it’s also the first name that comes to mind when you put the word crêpe and cake together. Boasting at least 20 layers of paper-thin pastry in each slice, you really can’t fault this bakery for its texture. The dispersion of cream and crêpe gives way to a perfectly springy bite. There are some who feel floral notes in cakes are great, and those who think it’s perfume better left for toiletries, thus the rose crêpe cake polarised the Foodie office. However, regardless of the particular flavour, the cream in the cake, while delightfully aromatic in the first bite, gradually built on the palate and became a tad too rich towards the end. We found it challenging to finish the whole slice.
Verdict: If crêpe cake is the food of love, then Shaz Confections has us infatuated. Foodie rating:
Verdict: It certainly lives up to the name, but with the eye-watering price, all that cream might not rest so lightly. Foodie rating:
Hongkongers have always liked lapis legit—Indonesian layer cake— but crêpe cakes didn’t become an obsession until Lady M shook up the scene. Now, even McCafé has introduced its version of the skyhigh treat, and we had to see how it measured up to the rest By Lisa Cam afoodieworld.com 09
The Impossible Burger Nishi-Style from Momofuku Nishi
FOOD FOR THOUGHT
ious Food for Thought The Impossible Future of Meat By Chris Dwyer In a green hoodie, creased t-shirt and jeans, Dr. Pat Brown, M.D. Ph.D, looks as far removed from a traditional CEO as it’s possible to imagine. But then again, we are in the heart of Silicon Valley, so a jacket—or God forbid, a tie—are totally alien concepts in this beating heart of global innovation, this tech wonderland where everyone looks like they could be a maverick genius or plain old billionaire. Dr. Brown—Professor Emeritus in Stanford University’s Biochemistry Department, co-founder of the Public Library of Science, fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and more—could conceivably pass for both. If his company, Impossible Foods, continues its meteoric rise, that billionaire status could well be imminent.
uncountable wealth is the absolute last thing that motivates the bespectacled 64 year-old. He has far bigger and more important goals in mind. Foremost amongst them, the passionate and profound desire that plant-based meats “... completely replace animals as a food production technology by 2035. We’re not going to stop until the global food system is truly sustainable.” That’s right. Farewell crispy bacon, sayonara wagyu, arrivederci salami. Or at least in their current form. Impossible Foods, the company he founded only seven years ago, has quickly taken giant leaps forward to become the key player vying to make animal meat history—and save the planet at the same time. Impossible’s meat—
One gets the distinct impression, however, that
We’re not going to stop until the global food system is truly sustainable. — Dr. Pat Brown, M.D., Ph.D.
In an Uber from the airport, pulling up at a stop
in tacos, meatballs, pizza, dumplings and more—
light, I spot my first ever Wahlburgers, the chain
looks, smells, and (largely) tastes like ground beef.
belonging to Donnie, Mark, and family. Prominent
It is, however, made entirely from plants. Vegan,
in the window, a poster proclaiming that they
kosher, and halal, with zero cholesterol, hormones,
proudly serve the Impossible Burger. They’re not
or antibiotics, it’s a mix of textured wheat and
the only one, as the brand has recently been added
potato proteins, coconut oil, natural flavourings,
to the menus of chains like iconic burger joint White
and the killer ingredient, an iron-containing
Castle, the Cheesecake Factory, and Applebee’s,
molecule called heme, which gives it both a unique,
America’s largest chain of sit-down restaurants.
rich, umami flavour, and a disconcertingly-effective
If they may lack a certain street cred, fear not,
as the Impossible burger first launched at David
Dr. Brown—although everyone calls him Pat—
Chang’s cooler-than-cool Momofuku Nishi, when
was in Hong Kong in April for Impossible’s global
the popular American chef said, “I was genuinely
launch, working with the likes of Uwe Opocensky
blown away when I tasted it.” Today, Impossible
and May Chow to get his burgers into the mouths—
count Michelin-starred chefs amongst some of
and consciousness—of Asia’s diners. It was obvious
those serving their products in more than 3,500
why Hong Kong was chosen. Not only for our
locations. That is, however, the tip of the proverbial
record of having more restaurants per square foot
clichéd iceberg and plans are well underway
than any other city, but also because 40 per cent of
to massively ramp up production and make
the world’s meat is consumed in Asia.
Impossible meats—as well as their fish and dairy
Five months on from the Hong Kong launch and
products—pretty much ubiquitous.
I’m in Palo Alto to learn more about the man, the
It’s one hell of a challenge. As Dr. Brown explains,
produce, and the vision, which seems unmatched in
Impossible currently produce “less than 1,000th of
ambition and scale. Palo Alto is the perfect base for
one per cent of the world’s meat supply”. To give
Impossible Foods. It’s home to Dr. Brown’s former
an idea of the scale of industrial meat production,
employer, Stanford University, while the streets
some terrifying figures are thrown our way. 47 pigs
seem to be largely populated by super-smart
are slaughtered every second of every day. Meat
people who care more than most about the fate of
demand, through soy and cattle, accounts for 90
per cent of Amazon deforestation. Ultimately,
Impossible Foods patties
mostly served as burgers, but also available for use
FOOD FOR THOUGHT
Impossible Foods ingredients
animal farming accounts for half of the planet’s land, 15 per cent of
more than most about flavour.
greenhouse gas emissions, and 25 per cent of our fresh water. To use
Minced beef was the first focus of
a decidedly non-scientific term, the need to quickly and massively
the crack team’s research. Why?
change our approach to food and the environment is a no-brainer,
Because every American eats an
but having the experience, vision, and expertise to deliver is a
average of two hamburgers every
different matter. Step forward, Dr. Brown.
single week. No need to do the
He looks considerably younger than 64, a good advertisement for
veganism that he has embraced for 15 years. Back in 2009, he took
Dr. Brown’s vision and near-
an 18-month sabbatical. While you or I would maybe travel, sit on
a beach, or just appreciate not working, Dr. Brown took a different
scientific community quickly won
approach. He chose to change his career and try and solve the
support from exactly the sort of
problem of climate change. As you do.
people you’d hope. Bill Gates,
He started off trying to raise awareness of the need for plant-
whose foundation along with his
based meats in both academic circles and the corridors of power
wife Melinda has a key goal to
in Washington, but quickly realized that the way to truly move the
reduce global hunger, invested
needle was through creating consumer demand for food that was
genuinely sustainable—but also delicious. The team he assembled
to tackle the challenge was a world-class mix of scientists, farmers,
chipped in $114 million, while
chefs, and more. One chef, for example, was Kyle Connaughton
a certain Hong Kong billionaire
from Sonoma’s SingleThread farm and restaurant, a two Michelin-
by the name of Li Ka-Shing also
starred property, this year voted ‘One to Watch’ in the World’s 50
thought it could be worth a punt,
Best. Connaughton spent five years launching and running the
as did Google Ventures and UBS.
experimental kitchen at The Fat Duck—so it’s safe to say he knows
You get the picture.
Impossible döner kebab at Wursthall
Impossible Foods packaging
Armed with this backing and confident in their
frozen through a nitrogen tunnel to optimise
remarkable growth curve, they opened a manufacturing
shelf life. The plant currently manufactures
site in Oakland a year ago. It looks unremarkable and
all of Impossible’s meat produce, including
surprisingly compact from the outside and, apart from
the burgers you may be chowing on at Beef &
a mural that cutely proclaims, ‘Made in Oakland, not
Liberty, as shipments go from Oakland direct
Mars’, it passes for another nondescript warehouse.
to Hong Kong. Singapore is their next launch
Inside, however, is a different story. The 67,000 square
market, with others doubtless to follow. It’s far
foot facility currently produces around 500,000 kg
from surprising to learn that they are already
of meat a month, with the capacity to increase this
working on developing multiple new sites to
volume three or fourfold. Incredibly, only 60 people are
rapidly increase capacity.
employed there, led by a Frenchman, Julien Grascoeur.
Back at the Impossible HQ, with its open plan
He explained how state-of-the-art filtration systems,
offices, laboratory, and fully vegan catering
environmental monitoring, and eight hours of overnight
for staff, we hear from Director of Research,
cleaning ensure the space is laboratory-level sanitised
Celeste Holz-Schietinger, whose job it is to
before any meat is created.
understand meat at the molecular level,
Even if the equipment is at the cutting edge of hi-tech, the
namely its flavour, texture, and structure.
creation process is surprisingly simple, with ingredients
As she explains: “A cow is created by eating
going from tanks into vast paddle mixers. Coconut oil
plants. So yes, those molecular components
from south east Asia, textured wheat protein, the key
are also in plants.” She then demonstrates with
‘heme’ ingredient (leghemoglobin to give it its proper
different ingredients in a series of glass bowls,
name) and more produce a texture, colour, and aroma
like in any cooking class, just how simple it is to
which are frankly mind-boggingly close to beef mince.
construct a burger, making one in front of us
You have to stop for a second and remember that
before frying it in a pan. The sizzle, the famed
absolutely everything is vegan, including the drips
Maillard reaction of browning and crisping,
of ‘blood’ which occasionally escape that actually
and the aroma all combine to make you really
come from the roots of soybeans. The meat is formed
want to eat it. That’s some feat, especially
into quarter pounder patties, sliders, and five-pound
given that I’ve eaten only Impossible meat, in
bricks for use in other non-burger dishes, before being
various guises, for the previous 36 hours.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT
But its versatility is one big draw, one reason
As if that wasn’t reason enough to make you
why people seem likely to go back to it time and
seriously reconsider ordering those chicken nuggets
again. I had it as minced beef as a topping on an
or beef sliders, he lays out why the alternative is a
excellent Neapolitan-style pizza at Vina Enoteca,
much saner proposition: “If you look at the land,
a real-deal Italian in a converted barn. It was
water, and other requirements for our current
served at breakfast in a sausage patty with sage,
product, they’re vastly lower than producing the
maple syrup, a touch of allspice, and smoked
same product from a cow. The land footprint of the
peppercorns. Ridiculously tasty, especially paired
entire agricultural system will be vastly reduced,
with a mix of corn, mustard greens, red onions,
so we won’t need grazing land, which is its single
and sweet potatoes.
largest component. The total land area that would
Best of all was at Wursthall in San Mateo, a new
be required to produce the world’s entire protein
and decidedly hip spot from chef and writer Kenji
supply would be about 2 per cent of its land. It’s an
Lopez-Alt. The Impossible signature was his take
extremely high yield of protein per acre.”
on the döner kebab. No scary slices of mystery
From using 50 per cent of the planet’s land only to
meat shoved in a pita after pub closing time. They
feed our desire for meat, to just 2 per cent that could
pack Impossible meat onto a rotisserie, flavour
still feed us enough protein? It’s enough to give this
it with spices and serve it on real Turkish bread
committed carnivore serious food for thought.
with pickled cucumbers and chillies, arugula, red onions, coriander, and their secret döner sauce. Sensational eating. Somehow, smugly, guilt-free
For more of Chris Dwyer’s food writing, follow him on Instagram at @chrismdwyer
also tastes that little bit better. We finish where we began with Dr. Pat Brown, the visionary founder of Impossible. In a frank Q&A session he answers difficult questions on what his 2035 vision will mean for farmers and consumers alike, and whether he will ultimately share his unique technology with other companies (broadly, yes). Most of all, however, he reiterates the current state of play regarding the terrifying impact of animal agriculture:
biodiversity to catastrophic meltdown and wildlife populations are just absolutely plummeting.
mammals, birds, reptiles, and amphibians living on earth is less than half of what it was 40 years ago, almost entirely due to the environmental footprint of animal farming.” afoodieworld.com 15
Countdown to ChristmAs Getting into the holiday spirit starts with festive food and drink
Keep it Sweet
Go Green for the HolidAys Gift Hampers HK has over 100 eco-friendly baskets that range
The only thing better than a straight-up sweet treat is when
from the uber-affordable ($319) up to the super-luxurious ($4,000)
they look like Christmas decorations! Sweet Fashion House’s
and everything in-between, all in biodegradable packaging. From
holiday collection includes Christmas tree cakes, baubles, and
traditional Christmas treats like panettone, Abbey Lane Christmas
Santa hats ($68), along with Yule logs and holiday-themed
pudding, and chocolate truffles, to wines, shortbreads, candy canes,
chocolates. Available in-store at Lee Gardens Three and Ritz
and chocolate twigs, as well as unique items like chocolate Christmas
games and a giant liquorice wheel. www.gifthampers.com.hk
Feliz NAvidAd Take your taste buds to Spain for the holidays with this premium parcel of Jamón Ibérico. Bellota-Bellota’s Christmas offering ($950) includes the revered Iberian ham along with manchego cheese, artichoke hearts, and red piquillo peppers to truly impress the gastronome in your life. Or buy it for yourself, if that gastronome is you! Available at all city’super stores
CrAzy HAppy Hour Save your money for all those pressies you need to buy by enjoying one of the best happy hour deals on Hong Kong Island! Every single day, KonFusion Restaurant & Bar offers $128 free-flow for bottled beers, red and white house wine, house mixers, and mouthwatering snacks starting from $48. Located in the heart of Sai Ying Pun, opposite Queen’s Terrace, you can easily find them showing off their bright red exterior. KonFusion is an 88-seater restaurant serving fusion Italian and Mexican cuisine and their highlighted dishes include the Fall of the Rack BBQ Ribs, Lemongrass Risotto, Thin Crispy Pizzas, and Mexican Tacos. They are also showing Live English Premier League Matches, Tennis, and Motor Sports on a massive 84” screen. With their kitchen open until 1am on weekends, they happily serve their a la carte menu to party-goers until late into the night and early morning. KonFusion Restaurant & Bar, Lai Yan Lau, Queen’s Road W, Sheung Wan, 2388 3367
MAke it A Festive Green FeAst For a conscious Christmas with an indulgent yet responsible festive feast, Invisible Kitchen are the best in the biz. Hong Kong’s greenest caterer are experts at party catering with the finest, sustainable ingredients without compromising taste, flavour, or principles! Inventive dishes like the Beyond Beef Wellington is a veggie twist on the traditional, while the Prawn Marie-Rose Verrine uses sustainably-sourced Black Tiger Shrimp certified by the ASC. There’s the succulent free-range chicken wings from Australia served with blue cheese and bacon sauce along with delightful, locally-sourced vegetables, and the clever vegan scotch egg made with Omnipork—the plant-based pork—and JUST Egg—the eggless alternative product. Prices start from $225 per person. You can also indulge in a full Christmas dinner delivered direct to your door, with a show-stopping ‘bred to be wild’ Kelly Bronze turkey—recognised as the best free-range turkeys in the UK—along with all the trimmings, including duck-fat roasted potatoes. Starting at $3,400 for up to 12 people. www.invisiblekitchen.com
All Night Open Bar
Cocktail canapés • sumptuous dinner • Hangover Breakfast
Premium ticket $998 per person (prices before Dec 12: $898) Countdown ticket $698 per person (prices before Dec 12: $598)* *countdown ticket is only available at Tamarind
Tel: 2827 7777 2/F, Sun Hung Kai Centre, 30 Harbour Road, Wanchai, Hong Kong afoodieworld.com
Tel: 2739 1133 Shop G18, Empire Centre, 68 Mody Road, Tsim Sha Tsui East, Kowloon, Hong Kong
PR OMOT IO N
Twinkly Festive Gathering at Silverbox Ballroom Mark the most joyful date on the calendar and celebrate Santa’s arrival with a bountiful brunch buffet at Silverbox Ballroom on 25 December. The Christmas Day brunch features unlimited seafood on ice followed by a selection of antipasti, traditional Christmas favourites, main courses, enticing desserts with free-flow sparkling wine, draft beer, and juice. Festive decorations and supervised kids’ activities will ensure a fun-filled afternoon for the whole family. Priced at $620/adult and $380/child, Twinkly Festive Gathering takes place on Tuesday, 25 December 2018, from 11:45am-3pm.
Grilled beef tenderloin
Festive Feasts with Breathtaking Views Celebrate New Year’s Eve at the top with a dazzling dinner at Above & Beyond, featuring festive offerings including Baked Stuffed Crab Shell with Black Vinegar
PARTY LIKE IT'S 2019 Countdown to 2019 at Hotel ICON’s Level 9 pool deck with incredible views of the fireworks over Victoria Harbour. Sip free-flowing champagne, white
and Steamed Spotted Garoupa Fillet with Egg White
and red wine, juice, and soft drinks, and groove to
paired with a glass of G.H. Mumm Cordon Rouge Brut
DJ beats for a sparkling start to the New Year. New
N.V. and the panoramic views of Victoria Harbour. New Year’s Eve Dinner is $1,688/person for five courses.
Year’s Eve, Monday, 31 December 2018, from 10pm– 2am for $688/person. This is a ticket only event.
Christmas Afternoon Tea at GREEN Ring in the festive season with GREEN’s special Christmas Afternoon Tea. The experience begins with Taramasalata Blini, Tuna Tartare, and Game Truffle Ball as a prelude to sweet sensations like Raspberry Chocolate in Classic Christmas Colours, Mango Panna Cotta, Santa’s Favourite Creamy Chocolate Tart, and beautifully decorated Macaron. A platter of freshly baked scones served with jam, honey and clotted cream and a pot of your favourite gourmet tea or coffee complete the wonderfully warming afternoon. Available from 1–31 December from 3–5:30pm from Monday to Friday and 5–7pm on Saturday, Sunday and Public Holidays. From 1–21 December, $288/ person or $546/two people and from 22–31 December, $318/person or $588/two people.
GREEN’s Generous Festive Delights
Scan this QR code to find
From Christmas Eve through New Year’s Eve, jingle all the way to GREEN to experience
out more about GREEN's Festive Delights
mouth-watering dishes like Lobster Bisque, Josper Grilled Beef Rib Eye, Grilled Salmon with Escargot, and White Anchovy Chardonnay Sauce. Traditionalists will love their Roasted Turkey and Smoked Virginia Honey Ham with Sage Chestnut Stuffing, Giblets Gravy, and Clove Bread Sauce. Classic Christmas desserts like Gingerbread Cookies, Mince Pies, and Yule Log Cakes will light up your holiday dining.
Christmas afternoon tea
Scan this QR code to find out more about The Market's Festive Delights
Festive FeaSts at the Market From 17–28 December, spend your Christmas calories at The Market and satiate your cravings with European classics like succulent Roasted Turkey with Glazed Chestnuts, Apple Stuffing, and Mashed Potatoes, available during both lunch and dinner. Specialty desserts such as Christmas Plum Pudding with Vanilla Custard, Cinnamon Mince Pies, Chocolate Yule Log Cakes, and Panettone are sure to sweeten up your holiday season.
To book any and all of the above events, phone 3400 1388, or email firstname.lastname@example.org Hotel ICON, 17 Science Museum Road, Tsim Sha Tsui
Alaska Food Off the Grid
Chris Dwyer follows his nose to the north to discover the delights of Fairbanks and Anchorage, Alaska Glaciers and vast breathtaking wilderness, a rich and ancient indigenous culture, the U.S.’ highest mountain, wildlife and outdoor adventures, Discovery’s Deadliest Catch… many things spring immediately to mind when thinking of Alaska, but food is not necessarily top of the list. A fascinating summer visit showed, however, that the 49th state—to give it one of its many nicknames—is making a name for itself thanks to its unique terroir, remarkable produce, and an honest, unpretentious approach to flavour and customer service. If Alaska were a country, it would be the world’s 19th largest, so one thing you have more than anywhere is space. For busy, stressed Hong Kong travellers, it provides the perfect antidote to 24/7 city living. It allows time to pause, think, put the phone down, and just take in the majesty of nature. It also means that there’s a natural larder without parallel. While some places in recent years have stressed the importance of eating local, Alaska serves as a reminder that eating local has been their way of life for thousands of years. In fact, it just doesn’t get more local than incredible Alaska salmon, halibut, and king crab fresh from the frigid ocean, or sustainably-hunted game such as moose, caribou, reindeer, and more. Restaurants, breweries, food trucks, markets, and producers celebrate this unique natural bounty, while chefs in the U.S. and further afield are quickly cottoning on to the unique culinary draw of the Last Frontier. Here are some of the ways to celebrate the fascinating food culture of our friends in the north:
Photo Credit: Sherman Hogue Explore Fairbanks
FOOD OFF THE GRI D
Photo Credit: Nicole Geils
HooDoo Brewing Company
HooDoo Brewing Company In summer, parts of the state, including the second city of Fairbanks, get 24 hours of daylight for two months straight, while in winter Alaska becomes
arguably the world’s greatest location for viewing the Northern Lights. Indeed, for Asian students in
the lower continental U.S., it has become a hugely
One of the great surprises for visitors to Fairbanks,
popular destination, while some flights charter
especially as a visitor coming from Asia, is the
visitors from Japan and Korea to see them in all
remarkable range of Thai restaurants. In a
their glory. There’s no more fun spot in Fairbanks
metropolitan area with less than 100,000 people,
to catch them than the HooDoo Brewing Company
there are more than twenty to choose from. They’re
for eating and drinking al fresco—yes, even in
real-deal too, run by Thai families, nowhere more
winter. Their beers brewed on-site use water that
so than Lemongrass, commonly-seen as one of
doesn’t get any fresher, turning into a crisp German
the city’s best. The owners are from Chiang Mai,
Kölsch, Citra Pale Ale, or HooDoo Stout. The
meaning that their khao soi is sensational, that
thriving local food truck scene rotates offerings to
perfect heady mix of texture and flavours, warming
hungry patrons who gather around huge fire pits to
the soul and the body with garlic, lemongrass, lime
keep the cold out, meaning the cultural mash-up
leaves, turmeric, ginger, and much, much more. But
of blackened salmon tacos from Frostbite Foods or
wherever you head across the wide-ranging menu,
proper bratwurst and sauerkraut from Mein Diner
genuine spice and execution is guaranteed. Their
keep them coming back for more.
tagline? “Making Alaska hotter since 1996”.
951 Fox Ave, Fairbanks, (907) 459 2337
388 Chena Pump Plaza, Old Chena Pump Road,
Fairbanks, www.lemongrassalaska.com afoodieworld.com 23
Lavelle’s Bistro at Springhill Suite Springhill Suites by Marriott is a great choice of place to stay in Fairbanks, while handily it’s also home to one of the most buzzing places to eat.
Lavelle’s Bistro is a revelation, a thriving and
energetic spot that is always filled with diners—
The Alaska Railroad is simply one of the world’s
and those waiting to eat. Cutely, appetisers are
great journeys. The 470 miles from Fairbanks to
called ‘prospects’ and include a scandalously good
Anchorage takes almost 12 hours, but you’ll wish
king crab and artichoke dip. Richer and thicker than
it took longer. The iconic blue and yellow cars
the cast of Downton Abbey, it’s the very definition
wind their way through jaw-dropping scenery that
of cheesy seafood indulgence. Pan-seared Alaskan
includes skirting Denali, the highest mountain in the
halibut (a vastly underrated fish) is topped with a
U.S. You’ll see moose and bald eagles, doll sheep,
honey and apple cream sauce and served with the
and Arctic foxes (if you’re lucky). Their Goldstar
sort of mashed potatoes you dream about. And the
Service feeds and waters you pretty much the
best bit? Eight ounces of wild caught Alaskan king
whole way, in serious style. At 9:22am on my visit,
crab legs can be added to any entrée. You know it
a 78 year-old ordered a mimosa. It’s that kind of
experience. Breakfast could start with local cream
575 1st Ave, Fairbanks, (907) 450 0555
of barley from the Alaska Flour Company, before
moving on to the seriously-hearty Aurora Breakfast with eggs, potatoes, bacon, and brilliant reindeer sausage from the local Indian Valley Meats. The
DID YOU KNOW? Alaska is reachable (with connections) via American Airlines, and their business class product serves the best sundae in the skies. www.aa.com For trip planning and other inspiration, visit www.travelalaska.com
best side order is the views, which almost stop you from eating. It continues with liquid lunches that are lubricated by local craft beers, American wines, or freshly-prepared cocktails. www.alaskarailroad.com
FOOD OFF THE GRI D
Photo Credit: Justin Frazier
Pizza throwing at 49th State Brewing Company
Simon & Seaforts
Simon & Seaforts It’s remarkable that arguably the most famous Alaskan produce, king salmon, is yet to get a proper mention. Salmon is everything in Alaska, more than a food, but a way of life. It is also the Burger at 49th State Brewing Company
best salmon you’ll ever eat—after a few days in its terroir, it’s clear why. Some of the best comes
49th State Brewing Company Anchorage is the big smoke, at least by Alaska standards. The name of the 49th State Brewing Company is a reminder to visitors that it only became a state as recently as 1959. This friendly ‘brewpub’ overlooks the waters of the wonderfullynamed Turnagain Arm inlet and serves many of their own pours to hungry local and international visitors. On the menu, wood-fired pizzas are very popular, but we were steered towards some signatures. Their Bavarian handmade pretzel is called ‘our brewers’ favourite’, understandably
from the hilariously named Ship Creek—just be careful how you pronounce it, especially after a couple of ales. Simon & Seaforts may be one of the poshest dining spots in town—but this being Alaska, there’s not even a hint of superiority. For 40 years, they have been welcoming diners for a menu celebrating the finest local eats. None are finer than Alaskan ceviche that includes king crab, halibut, sidestripe shrimp, avocado in lime juice and tequila, served with crispy tortilla chips. But save room for that salmon, beautifully blackened and cooked on a cedar plank.
so when dunked in cheese sauce made with
420 “L” Street, Anchorage, (907) 274 3502
their 49er beer. King crab ravioli was tossed in a
tarragon créme with roasted shitake mushrooms and a mound of Parmigiano-Reggiano, but for lighter appetites, their reindeer sausage hot dog is another popular draw. 717 West 3rd Ave, Anchorage, (907) 277 7727
Chris Dwyer stayed at the Sheraton Anchorage (www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/ancsisheraton-anchorage-hotel-and-spa) and Fairbanks’ Springhill Suite (www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/faishspringhill-suites-fairbanks)
www.49statebrewing.com/anchorage afoodieworld.com 25
little hong kong kitchen Recipe blogger and home-cook extraordinaire Laura Williams shares her recipes for wholesome dishes to get you inspired in the kitchen www.mylittlehongkongkitchen.com
THE ULTIMATE WINTER SALAD Serves: 3–4 | Prep time: 10 mins | Cooking time: 30 mins For salad • • • • • • •
12 medium-sized heirloom carrots 150g pearl barley 4 tbsp olive oil ½ tbsp Dijon mustard 1 large lemon 1 large bunch parsley 150g pomegranate seeds
For pesto: • • • • • • •
1 large bunch basil 30g walnuts 100ml olive oil 50g grated Parmesan 1 clove garlic 1 lemon Yoghurt to serve
Begin by making the pearl barley according to packet instructions. Cook until al dente, rinse with cold water, and set aside. Slice the carrots in half lengthways and place onto a lined baking sheet. Drizzle
with 1 tablespoon olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Slice a lemon in half and rub in the residual oil. Place the lemon on the tray with the carrots, ensuring the insides are facing upwards. Place into a pre-heated oven at 200°C for 20–30 minutes until the carrots are softened and the lemon is beginning to char around the edges. Once cooked, remove from oven and set aside. To make the dressing, place 3 tablespoons of oil into a lidded jar and add in the mustard, seasoning and the juice from the roasted lemon. Place the lid on the jar and shake to combine. Pour the dressing into the pearl barley and stir. Add in the pomegranate seeds—leaving a few aside—and plenty of freshly chopped parsley. Season to taste. To make the pesto, place the basil, garlic, walnuts, Parmesan, and lemon juice into a food processor. Blitz whilst pouring in the olive oil until the pesto is smooth. To serve, place the pearl barley onto a large serving platter and top with the roasted carrots. Drizzle with the pesto and some fresh natural yoghurt and finish with a scattering of pomegranate seeds.
BEETROOT RISOTTO Serves: 2–3 | Prep time: 10 mins | Cooking time: 45 mins For risotto: • • • • • • • • •
1 tbsp olive oil 1 tsp butter ½ onion 80ml white wine 1 clove garlic 700ml vegetable stock 150g arborio (risotto rice) 200g cooked beetroot 50g grated Parmesan
For serving: • •
2 raw beetroot 1 tbsp olive oil
Peel the raw beetroot and cut into wedges. Place onto a lined baking tray, drizzle with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Place into a pre-heated oven at 200°C and roast until soft for around 45 minutes. Set aside.
Place the vegetable stock in a pan over a low heat and keep warm. Place the cooked beetroot into a food processor and blitz, adding in around 100ml of the stock to create a purée. Set aside. Add the oil and butter to a pan and warm through. Chop the garlic and onion finely and soften for 5 minutes in the melted butter and oil mixture. Once the onion is softened, add the rice to the pan and stir to coat. Add the white wine to the rice and stir through. Keep the pan over a medium heat. Keep stirring the rice until it has absorbed the white wine. Next, add a ladleful of stock to the rice and stir slowly and constantly until the stock has been absorbed by the rice. Repeat this process until all the stock has been absorbed and the rice is al dente. Add in the beetroot and Parmesan cheese and season to taste. Stir throughly until well combined. Serve the risotto topped with roasted beetroot wedges and a final sprinkling of Parmesan.
meatless monthly Cindy Lam of Olive Oly Kitchen cooks delicious vegetarian recipes that support local farms. Try her tiramisu with a twist that adds mixed berry compote to achieve a tiramipiù—Italian for “lift me up more”. www.oliveolykitchen.com
TIRAMIPIU Serves: 4 | Prep time: 4 hrs For tiramisu base: • • • • • • • •
4 egg yolks 4 tbsp brown sugar 250g mascarpone ½ tsp saffron powder 8 ladyfingers, halved 10 Amaretto biscuits, crushed into crumbs 1 cup espresso, chilled Dark chocolate shavings for garnish
For mixed berry compote: • • •
250g mixed berries 2 tsp brown sugar ½ lemon, juiced
Whip the egg yolks and brown sugar until it becomes a thick mousse. Mix in mascarpone and saffron and whip until smooth. Crush Amaretto biscuits and sprinkle Amaretto crumbs as the base in each dessert glass. Dip the halved ladyfingers lightly into the espresso, one at a time, then quickly assemble so that they are laying next to each other in the dessert glass. Layer a tablespoon of the saffron mascarpone cream on top of the ladyfingers evenly. Sprinkle more Amaretto crumbs and top each tiramisu with grated dark chocolate. Cover with wrap and refrigerate for 3–4 hours. To serve, cook the mixed berries with lemon juice and sugar in a small saucepan on medium heat until the berries break down and reach a jam-like consistency. Top each tiramisu with berry compote. Garnish with fresh berries.
Photo Credit: www.thewhimsicalwife.com
the zero waste diaries Hannah Chung is on a zero waste challenge. She seeks eco alternatives and green solutions for everyday living and aims to achieve a zero waste life. Follow her journey on Instagram @thezerowastechallenge. A pile of unwanted presents on Boxing Day, wrapping paper strewn on the floor, tinsel drooping off trees of plastic, hangovers, gout. If this is reminiscent of your Christmas’s past, remember, it doesn’t have to be this way! Life can be so much simpler without all the stuff that we’ve been conditioned to believe as ‘festive tradition’. Make new traditions, set yourself free from the faff, and get creative this holiday with waste-free alternatives.
Gifts that last a lifetime Photo Credit: www.buymeonce.com
Reducing waste does not necessarily mean going cold turkey. You can invest in quality items such as cast iron pans, kitchen knives, or bakeware sets. Check out www.buymeonce.com for a long list of well-researched and tested products.
Think outside the box (from www.now-nowaste.com), useful tote bags, old newspapers, music sheets, or different fabrics. Put your bad jokes in edible Christmas crackers in the form of homemade fortune cookies. Fashion your own Christmas tree with upcycled materials: wooden branches, wine bottles, your existing potted plants. There’s nothing fairy lights can’t make pretty. 32 afoodieworld.com
Photo Credit: www.now-nowaste.com
Whatever the gift, consider wrapping in reusable cloth
THE ZERO WASTE D I ARI ES
Edible gifts Fill up reusable glass jars and give the gift of homemade treats such as candied nuts, chocolate truffles, granola, or dehydrated fruits. Here’s an all-time favourite recipe of mine:
Bublé and Biscotti Perfect dipped in hot chocolate (both the biscotti and Michael Bublé), these addictive snacks keep well over the holidays and are always a crowd pleaser. All dry ingredients, plus glass jars, can be found package-free at Live Zero (stores in Sai Ying Pun and Sai Kung).
210g plain flour
2 large eggs
150g caster sugar
3 tbsp vegetable oil
45g rolled oats
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp baking powder
Zest of 1 lemon
1/2 tsp baking soda
Zest of 1 orange
Pinch of salt 100g dried cranberries 100g pistachios (shelled) 100g whole almonds
Method 1. Pop on a bit of Michael Bublé Christmas cheer and get in the mood for holiday baking. 2. Pre-heat your oven to 170°C and mix all your dry ingredients in a bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk the wet ingredients together. Add the egg mixture to the dry mix until all combined and transfer to a floured surface. The dough will feel quite sticky here. Cut the dough into two pieces and roll into wide logs, about 2 inches thick. Place on a baking sheet lined with baking paper. Bake for approximately 30 minutes until logs are slightly golden. 3. Take the logs out of the oven and reduce the heat down to 120°C. Let the logs cool for around 15 minutes. With a very sharp knife, slice the biscotti on the diagonal into pieces around an inch thick and lay them face up on the same baking sheet. Bake for a further 40 minutes to dry them out. Your edible presents are now ready!
For more zero waste tips and green solutions to try at home, visit www.afoodieworld.com/users/hannah
Photo Credit: www.realfood.tesco.com