Words from Carryl Potter Mentor & Counsellor
I first met Peggy Chan when she was a Grade 10 student at the Canadian International School of Hong Kong. In addition to being her counsellor, I also taught Peggy one class in Career Planning. She struck me then as being shy, somewhat introverted and very quiet. Over the years, Peggy and I managed to stay in touch, albeit sporadically. When I was back in Hong Kong for a wedding in 2015, we reconnected over a very nice meal at her new restaurant - Grassroots Pantry. I was stunned by the change in Peggy. This quiet, shy woman had become more than a force. Grassroots Pantry became a base for Peggy and her team to explore and initiate new ideas and processes that have made vegetarianism a word not to be dismissed. Marshall McLuhan once said that, “There are no passengers on spaceship earth. We are all crew.” This book identifies correctly that we humans are about to contaminate the nest that we have built. The affluence in our human world is being carried out on the backs of almost every other species on the planet. When the crash comes - and if we continue with our current practices, it will come - the surviving world will be very different from the one we now enjoy. This destruction is being exacerbated by a food industry that prides itself on the efficiencies provided by mechanical, technological and chemical innovations. However, these “efficiencies’’ are being actualised by ignoring their effects on spaceship earth. Provenance is not just a cookbook - it is a manifesto. It calls upon the food industry to engage in the process of reducing its complicity in our climate change crisis. In Provenance, Peggy suggests that not only can the restaurant industry be a part of the process, it can also be a leader. To have an effect on this planet, there needs to be a buy-in by many actors such as the affluent, agribusiness, consumers and perhaps most importantly, by the younger members of spaceship earth’s crew. Use this book’s recipes to enjoy their superb nutrition, tastes and flavours; embrace its manifesto for our very own survival.
Words from Terrence Tsang Mentor, Ex-boss, Partner
Peggy is a true visionary. From the time I first hired her into the management training program at the Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong, she was always pondering how to make the world better. Even back then, she was already the perfect candidate: a person with an international background, diverse work experience, fluency in multiple languages, who staged or interned at properties with international accolades and with a rare desire to be in the food and beverage division. Peggy’s work ethic and personality demonstrate what I refer to as the “QT” (quadruple threat) for the hospitality industry: passion, talent, mental toughness and perseverance. This formula works well for any high pressure working environment, especially in our line of work, facing the long and torturous working hours. She went through the programme with ease and stood out as one of the highest potential candidates, ready to take the baton and run towards the future. A few years on, Peggy reached out to talk about a big idea and new project she was working on. She was inspired by her mom’s cooking and wanted to create a dining establishment for people to enjoy locally sourced, sustainable, everyday dishes that were made from scratch - an environment authentic to vegetarians, vegans and people with dietary restrictions, with Asian ingredients! She ultimately wanted to create a safe place for “dietary-restrictive non-meat eaters.” The conversation led to the creation of the popular Grassroots Pantry, which was years ahead of its time, bringing innovative vegetarian cuisine to Hong Kong. After opening a few restaurants, serving thousands and thousands of customers, creating menu after menu, making TV appearances, giving magazine interviews and cooking demos and traveling the world as a panelist and visiting Chef, Peggy has stood by her core principles and determination. As a matter of fact, the years have made her a more focused and clear-minded entrepreneur! Peggy has always been willing to share her wealth of knowledge and wisdom regarding food, plant-based cooking and the global initiatives that drive the sustainable food movement. Besides being a celebrity chef and an influencer, she has made it her life’s mission to contribute to the ecosystem of food production to benefit the next generation, improving dining footprints and what and how to eat. This led to her new venture in Zero Footprint Asia. This book is the culmination of years of learning, experiences, heart and soul poured between the pages. We want the next generation to live better than us, and Peggy has created this glimpse of optimism dedicated to them. I personally have witnessed first hand all the hard work, tears and joy that resulted in these recipes, which I truly believe will be cherished by vegetarians and omnivores alike. What started as a simple idea over a coffee table has been nourished by Peggy into a grand vision that we hope will allow everyone to eat better and live better than ever before. Let’s all enjoy the cooking journey together!
Words from Sonalie Figueiras Eco-Warrior & Friend
Almost ten years ago today, I walked by a tiny little cul de sac in the then quiet residential neighborhood of Sai Ying Pun and found a small corner commercial space being renovated. I could tell it was a restaurant. No big deal. The city is home to thousands of them, with dozens opening every week. But the teal green wall paint, the wrought iron chairs, the vintage decor… something felt different. I had never come across a space like this before in Hong Kong. I felt drawn to it. I immediately went home and did some Googling until I unearthed a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it announcement about an upcoming eatery dubbed Grassroots Pantry led by one Peggy Chan, a formally trained chef born and bred in the SAR by way of Canada. I knew I had to eat there. I had just started Green Queen, and was desperate to find people who shared my values for a greener, kinder, healthier and safer world. As soon as I walked into Grassroots for my first meal there, I knew I had found kindred spirits and I knew then that owner-chef Peggy was destined for greatness. I still remember what we ordered: kale salad, creamy wild mushroom linguine, hedgehog mushroom “chicken” and Happy Cow vegan ice cream for dessert. My mind was blown. This was meat-free food for people who loved to eat. I could taste her formal training and yet the results were humble and understated. Who was this Chef, I remember thinking. Peggy Chan is a force of nature. Relentless in her vision and mission, she refuses to compromise on her ethos: to feed and educate her brood about the importance of plant-based eating, organic agriculture, zero waste cooking and sustainable food systems. The term chef is far too limiting for her talents. Peggy is the ultimate activist. She cannot help but spread the message of a new kind of global food system, one that will nourish the planet with dignity and compassion, one rooted in ethics and nutrition and one beholden to local farmers and communities. Her Earth Day 2019 12-course tasting menu was for me a highlight of her career, each course a culinary artist’s homage to every single action individuals could take to fight against the looming climate crisis. It was the embodiment of food activism, and a shining example of the responsibility Peggy feels to nurture, educate and inspire. She is a worthy role model for anyone in the business of food justice and policy. I have had the privilege of watching Peggy grow, evolve and transform into one of the world’s leading voices on circular eating and one of Asia’s foremost plant-based chefs. As someone who has written about her for a decade, I feel well-placed to speak about her core humanity, one that eschews moral slips of any kind, even when at great personal cost. Like many of us in the eco-activist world, her journey has been one filled with many obstacles - it’s not easy to see the future when no one else can. And yet, nothing will stop her. Of that I am sure.
INTRO What’s wrong? In the wake of the pandemic, people from all over the world have been trying to find meaning and create solutions in their everyday lives while battling simultaneously occurring global crises all at once. By now, many have woken to the realisation that the way we have treated our food value chain as infinite and dispensable is, in fact, the nexus of our predicaments in the food industry. And many would claim that the current system is blatantly broken. The problem is that this system has been working exactly the same way for the last 70 or so years - a system designed to cash in on all of our planet’s natural resources. Our relentless pursuit of efficiency and productivity has given humans an excuse to exploit everything that hang on the last rung of our society and planet’s ladder. Worst of all, we’ve looked up to this standard of GDP growth as the basis for success. Today’s industrialised food system subsidises practices that degrade soil, release carbon, deplete nutrients, and mistreat animals and resources. Processed food, livestock and dairy companies spend millions lobbying for a seat at the table, while politicians and food marketers are bought to continue spewing the same narrative about how meat helps us grow, how dairy keeps our bones strong and how omega fatty acids that our body cannot produce on its own can only be obtained by consuming fish. All of it has been a lie with motives fundamentally stemmed from greed and power. The pandemic has exposed various cracks in our society. Truth is, most jobs can actually be done from home now and many professions deserve more than what they’re being paid currently, such as farmers, cooks, nurses, supermarket employees, food and medical system workers; shouldn’t we at the very least think about how to reassign “occupational value” after what we have witnessed during these testing times? Maybe it is time to shift from an exploitative mindset to a more nurturing one. Our food system is now hanging on a thread. According to a recent study conducted by The Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), it is estimated that more than a third of global greenhouse gas emissions caused by human activity can be attributed to the way we produce, process and package food today. Meanwhile, knowing what we know now, shouldn’t we be taxing meat and animal dairy consumption on its carbon footprint? Why should we allow industries that exploit the earth’s finite resources take advantage of subsidies when they are contributing to the damage of our planet? A system that demands us to pay substantially more for the cleaner and more sustainable option is a system that not only isn’t viable for more than 90% of our global population, but also fails to protect our ecosystem. 6
We are an ecosystem. Everything is interconnected. Restaurants cannot operate without the help of suppliers who we trust in bringing us quality ingredients from the farms. While switching out single-use plastic for biodegradable plastic and turning food waste into compost are important first steps, we must face the imminent fact that checking off the list of best practices no longer matches the gravity of our climate crisis. And because of this realisation, I have spent the last year researching scalable solutions to help our industry meet carbon neutrality targets whilst shifting our dependence away from “fast, cheap, and convenient”. We need to make the wellbeing of chefs, farmers and soil our number one priority. Instead of using subpar ingredients that were mass produced, we should aim for better quality produce with higher nutritional values. Blind luxury is a fad of the past and the future lies in how we can shift away from archaic and patriarchical mindsets. I’ve always believed that restaurants aren’t just places of consumption - they are platforms for making a change on our planet where chefs can use the power of their voice to set trends and alter habits. No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it in the first place. I hope this book will inspire you to take action, to remind yourself that your decisions can make an impact on the health of humans and our planet. As Dr. Vandana Shiva would say, “Everyday’s act of eating is an act of creating freedom”. To Social Justice, Food Sovereignty and True Freedom. Peggy. 8
INDEX FOREWORD INTRO PROLOGUE HOW TO NAVIGATE LABELS
1 5 11 18 28
THE SACRED PANTRY
WHERE NUTRITION BEGINS MOTHER SAUCES A DRESSING A DAY FERMENTED FOODS ALL DAY CONDIMENTS
30 33 43 54 68
SEASONAL & LOCAL SHAKES & JUICES BREAKFAST DISHES DISSECTING TOFU BREAKFAST SWEETS
82 84 89 98 101
AN ALT-DAIRY WORLD
MAKE VEGETABLES SING
THE SECRET TO COOKING VEGETABLES ASIAN INSPIRED SOUPS THE HUMBLE SEAWEED SALADS APPETIZERS
121 122 145 153 154 162
NEVER MISS THE MEAT
THE SHROOM KINGDOM WHY TALK CARBON? MEATY MAINS THE COLLECTIVE’S TABLE INSPIRED DISHES THE CHEFS’ MANIFESTO SOMETHING FANCY
172 175 177 185 188 198 199
A DROP OF NECTAR
EARTH HOUR RAW DESSERTS DECADENCE & MORE
211 213 224
SUPPLY CHAIN TRANSPARENCY
SOURCING SUPPLIER MAP
PROVENANCE /ˈprɒv(ə)nəns / noun, the place of origin or earliest known history of something.
Where Less is More Pre-industrialised Wong Chuk Hang had some of the most arable land than any other district on Hong Kong Island. It was the hub for thriving farming communities where livestock were raised and city people would come to purchase locally grown produce. It was also where my maternal grandfather, Ah Gung, decided to sow his seeds and build a life on the farm with my grandmother and mother in tow. He grew everything himself, from cabbages to morning glory, bitter gourds to papayas. It was a farm where free roaming chickens and pigs chowed on leftover produce, and where nutrient-rich livestock manure was returned back into the soil as fertilisers. He took pride in tending to his farm and made sure his family and his neighbours were fed with his farm-fresh produce. This was in 1960. Two years later, Typhoon Wanda swept across Hong Kong in late August of 1962. The Royal Observatory hoisted the No.10 local storm signal, recorded maximum gust winds at 140 knots and warned coastal villagers and townsmen of the incoming high tides and imminent floods. After having sent my pregnant grandmother and mother to a safe house in their home village of Tai Hang, Ah Gung returned to the farm to do whatever he could to protect his crops and save his animals. But the storm was too strong for one man to handle. His chickens and pigs ran furiously across the fields, fearing for their lives. It was impossible for him to catch them all. At a nearby house, a young family who were stranded in their now flooded home cried for help. At that moment, Ah Gung rushed to the sound but when he came close to their home, he spotted a fallen electricity pole that dipped too close to danger, so he got creative and quickly gathered torn down tree trunks and wooden boards to build a track that guided the family out of their home. The family was saved but his chickens and pigs eventually drowned. Typhoon Wanda was one of the most destructive typhoons recorded in Hong Kong’s history, where 869 acres of farmland were flooded with sea water, 183 people were killed (or still missing) and 72,000 people were displaced. Late summer vegetables were severely damaged, rice production dropped by 20% compared to the previous year, and perennial trees growing bananas and lychees were entirely uprooted by the strong winds. The loss of all of Ah Gung’s hard work on the fields was devastating for him. Alcohol became a way for him to calm his anxiety and depression. But he wasn’t about to give up because he knew he had a family to feed. That same year, his brother, who owned a small BBQ meat shop in Tai Hang lost his chef. He asked Ah Gung to pick up the trade and gave him a job to help him rebuild his shop. My grandfather was no chef, but through months of observation and tasting, he taught himself how to roast geese, cook succulent barbecue pork, and eventually developed the first iteration of the “Pei Pa 11
Duck’’ using nam yue (red fermented tofu). The tiny shop didn’t last long, but Ah Gung made a name for himself in the village, where he was well respected by his peers and family members for his undying loyalty. Standing at 5’6” tall with simmering strength, Ah Gung carried the head of the fire dragon at every Mid-Autumn Festival.
Survival My dad, a great storyteller who is now close to 80, will happily describe his childhood in Guangdong, China in the 1950s. My paternal grandfather, Ah Yeh, was a Kuomintang lieutenant who ended up alone in Hong Kong at the end of the Chinese Civil War. He was forced to separate from his wife and seven children during a time when poverty and famine plagued the mainland. Whilst my grandma was incarcerated and eventually died in prison, my dad and his siblings roamed the streets as orphans and eventually escaped illegally into Hong Kong. It was a risky and dangerous trek and many people were sent to prison when they were caught mid-way. Death, hunger and scarcity surrounded my dad before he arrived in Hong Kong. Survival was etched so deep into his mind that even when he eventually made his first big break as a young businessman in the 70’s, that fear of not knowing when his next meal would arrive stuck with him throughout his life. His fear of scarcity and loss passed down as a generational trauma. He detached himself from love early on in his life for fear of losing everything around him. Despite this, he prided himself in making sure that his children received the best education and financial support that they could receive. My mom met my dad when she was just 18 and within a few years, they had my brother and I. The 80’s were, in general, pretty good times. However, through both my parents’ fear towards scarcity coupled with the patriarchal setting in which we were raised in (not to mention, an onslaught of personal childhood trauma I had experienced throughout the next decade), all of my bad subconscious memories escalated rapidly and manifested into some deep dark stuff by the time I turned 13. It was in my teens that I learnt how ugly money made people.
An Awakening Although I leaned towards the reserved and quiet side when I was young, I was also a complete nightmare to my parents - mainly to my mother as my father only spent several days every couple of months with us. Cigarettes and alcohol appeared early in my life, so did soft drugs, and I was almost sent to juvenile jail for shoplifting (twice). I ran away from home and school often and missed out on at least a third of my classes during the most important years of high school. The year my parents formally split up to start their own separate families was also the year that my Ah Gung passed away and my brother left for university. I was an angry 15-year-old, living in a broken home alone for long stretches of time. I took up a part-time job at the first Starbucks that opened in Hong Kong, which provided me with the structure, control and feeling of self-sufficiency I needed in order to stay sane and feel worthy. During this time, before I turned 16, was also when I had decided to quit red meat from my diet and adopt a vegetarian diet at least twice a month in conjunction with the Buddhist calendar. I sought comfort and consistency through art, music, journaling and poetry; through friendships as well as my first relationship then. I was elected as the Productions Planner of our high school’s Student Council during my final year, 13
and I actively trained in both the basketball and volleyball teams. But shame and guilt stayed with me after the ordeals I had put my parents through the previous years. Asking for anything from them always felt wrong and still feels that way to this day. As much as I was still suffering mentally, I cared a lot about doing things to keep myself busy and productive because it was the only way I could feel like I was part of something. By the time first year of university hit, I had skipped over half of the classes I was supposed to attend. An intervention happened when Mr Potter, my high school counsellor - a guardian angel and a father figure of mine - suggested that I try culinary arts as a career. It was something I had always loved doing with my mom as a child, and I would always bake trays of cookies for the school’s bake fair. However, while the structure of professional culinary worked well for me (who needed it and excelled at it), it was a different story for the 19-year-old me. It was the perfect gateway for me to do as much self-harm as I could by means of drugs, alcohol and rock’n’roll. Eventually, it threw me into a severe depression but until I could face what I was truly suffering from head on, I would continue to be trapped in that vicious cycle. I realised I had hit rock bottom when I hid my stash of drugs from my room-mate and locked myself in with the blinds closed for five days straight. On December 26th 2004, the Indian Ocean earthquake had created a series of massive tsunami waves around South East Asia. News channels broadcasted images of people being swept off the shore lifeless; orphaned young toddlers searching for their parents; cars, trees, animals and sheds all washed away into the ocean in just a matter of minutes. I watched the whole thing, crying for hours while I held onto my chest, experiencing an excruciating amount of emotional pain and suffering for all those lives lost and affected. It was one of the biggest natural disasters I had witnessed in my lifetime, albeit on television, killing close to 230,000 people in 14 countries. But somehow through this event, I finally understood that my own suffering was so minute and insignificant in comparison to the lives that would forever be changed by this single event. I reflected on my own pain and how lucky I was that I actually had the ability to make that choice to recognise and escape from my own suffering. I remember telling myself that I was done with my selfpitying and I had to do something quickly to change. Within a couple of days, I turned to yoga as my source of stability, cleaned up my diet, and began to read into Buddhist philosophies and teachings shared by His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Once I got to the point of achieving discipline, I vowed to actively turn all of my negative thoughts and emotions into positive actions. As a sensitive empath who was quick to acknowledge pain, I did a lot of work in my early twenties to finally learn how to bring acceptance, forgiveness and compassion towards myself and others. I learnt that one of the fundamental truths in life is impermanence, so holding onto any form of material objects, emotions or ego is a form of drug. Learning how to let go showed me true freedom. Only compassion, gratitude and acting on love and kindness will help us break out of the negative cycle. Over the years, I also travelled extensively on my own and even moved to Tokyo for work, only to eventually return to Hong Kong, having recognised that the layers of bureaucratic hierarchy and the politics involved in the hotel industry simply wasn’t what I was made for. However, one of those trips finally gave me the courage to realise my true calling. It was a month-long retreat in Dharamsala where I spent my mornings meditating and practicing yoga, and my afternoons teaching English to nuns, monks and Tibetan refugees. Student monks would tell me about their day and their experiences in wherever they came from - Myanmar, Cambodia or Tibet. While they practiced enunciation and putting sentences together in English, I not only corrected them from time to time, but also asked them questions, 14
absorbing their emotions and experiences, and the teachings of the Buddha. Many didn’t have much after escaping from their homeland, but I’ve never seen these students express anger, revenge, sadness or pity because the concept of faith and karma was so deeply ingrained in their blood. It was in Dharamsala where I learnt the concept of true contentment and selfish selflessness - where you could truly give wholeheartedly without expecting anything in return, but that you will be rewarded with good karma eventually. And it was a tonne of good karma that I had been gifted with 10 years ago when I decided to open Grassroots Pantry, as my way of giving back while also doing what I love. What gradually happened was that an idealistic, uncertain and trauma-burdened 27-year-old young lady had been transformed into a hopeful, driven and fulfilled grown woman. I can now take on roadblocks and challenges as opportunities, to fully accept the hurdles we must cross, and to see our enemies as our biggest teachers. Despite having lost my first business this past year, which is what made up a huge part of my “identity”, I now feel blessed to have the time to continue building on this community of sustainability advocates, farmers, chefs and environmentalists, where I get to witness the goodwill of people, spend time with my family, to read and research on all of the latest science around climate solutions. At the end of the day, it is only when we learn to cultivate love, acceptance and compassion in our hearts, that we are able to fully give ourselves to a greater cause. And that is when we can turn what seems scarce into abundance in our hearts. Times have undoubtedly changed over the last 20 years since I first started working in the hospitality industry. The sensationalisation of issues surrounding sexual harassment and gender bias in the food sector during the #MeToo movement was only the tip of the iceberg. We must not stop at victimisation. My goals for the next decade and onwards are to actively use my voice and to generate tangible changes and momentum around food sovereignty and climate solutions in the food and restaurant industry. I share this with excitement to the next generation of youth activists and food fighters - there is no better time than NOW to disrupt the way things have “always been done”. Stay vocal, remain hopeful, and focus on the solutions.
HOW TO NAVIGATE
WHAT’S IN A RECIPE Everyone that I’ve worked with in the kitchen will tell you how rare it is that I rely on recipes. This is likely true for many cuisine chefs where constant tasting and improvisation is demanded of them on the spot. Recipes are used as guides and especially when it comes to seasoning, but there is no need for you to follow our recommendations to the tee. With that said, I also believe that recipes are important when you’re building teams in restaurants - to ensure that there is consistency in the taste and textures of a dish; to pass on instructions easily; to help calculate food costs and nutritional content, as well as to allow for transparency across both front and back of house. The recipes in this book have been written, collected and improved over eight years at Grassroots, where the process often began with me writing out next season’s menu, breaking down the different elements of a dish for testing. Ingredients, basic quantities and instructions are passed on to the team members for them to test while I continuously tasted and provided feedback until we reached the level of quality we wanted to achieve. Finally, the different elements of each dish are then pulled together to form a cross-border, innovative, seasonal menu that changes twice, if not three times each year. Everybody who has ever contributed to our menu creations at Grassroots should be recognised for their effort in the development of this cookbook. I also hope that Grassroots continues to give each and every one of our past and present colleagues a platform to learn more about the myriad of techniques, ingredients, health benefits and opportunities that plant-based cuisine has to offer.
WHO’S IT FOR? The idea of a Grassroots Pantry cookbook filled with nostalgic dishes that people can replicate at home has been something that I aspired to create for some time now. While some recipes are pretty simple to follow as long as your pantry is set up per my recommendations, others will require extra labour time, such as soaking, sprouting and dehydrating. Along with the clean traceable ingredients that we source, the time spent on maximising and enhancing the nutrient quality of an ingredient is also where the added value goes for whole-foods plant-based cuisine. But sadly, I discovered over the years that sourcing local, adopting zero waste practices and utilising raw food techniques were not practices that gained traction in commercial restaurant settings. So as much as this book is for the general GP audience, it is also dedicated to the Chefs who have shown interest to begin their journey in sustainable plant-based cooking techniques.
EQUIPMENT & UTENSILS
• Vitamix Blender - A high speed, high-powered
• • • •
• • • •
blender will be the most used piece of equipment Food Processor Juicer Dehydrator Dehydrator Teflex Sheets
Scale Micro-scale Measuring Cups Measuring Spoons
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
• • • • • • • • •
Rubber Spatula Baby Rubber Spatula Baby Offset Spatula Glass Jars Fermentation Jars Air tight Glass Jars Air tight Containers Nut Milk Bag Strainers/Colanders Mixing Bowls Chef’s Knife Paring Knife Cleaver Scissors Cutting Board Whisk Ruler
KitchenAid Stand Mixer Spice Blender Mandolin Spiralizer Grater/Microplane Salad Spinner Citrus Juicer Thermometer Biodegradable Cling Film
SOAKING & SPROUTING
Grains, beans, and seeds are built to survive. They contain anti-nutrients and enzyme inhibitors that prevent them from germinating until the right conditions take place. This means:
shown how soaking and sprouting help increase protein content, the amount of fiber in the food and good HDL cholesterol while reducing the amount of gluten in certain grains and bad LDL cholesterol. A few studies suggest that it also helps control blood sugar levels but more studies on this are needed.
• They can remain dormant for long periods and • •
are perfect for long-term storage. They can be difficult to digest, causing stomach issues such as bloating and stomach aches. Their nutrients are not fully absorbed by our bodies, nor is their full nutrient potential realised.
• It changes the textures of some food, expanding their culinary applications. Soaking nuts and seeds softens and hydrates them so they are easier to blend and turn into plant-based milks, creams, pastes, and cheeses. Sprouting can also make some previously indigestible grains and beans edible and add an appealing raw crunch to dishes such as sprouted lentils.
Soaking and sprouting makes these foods easily digestible, improves their nutritional value, and makes their nutrients more bioavailable. It mimics the germination process that takes place when seeds are planted into soil. Soaking simply requires the full submersion of foods in filtered or de-chlorinated water over a period of time. Regular rinsing and draining provides the seed with the much-needed moisture and oxygen. Soaking and rinsing the beans also removes enzyme inhibitors, allowing them to germinate. Sprouting is the germination process that turns them into very young plants, usually exhibiting tails. The seed coat breaks open and a root (radicle) sprouts. Below are some benefits of soaking and sprouting:
• It makes the cooking time of harder ingredients quicker. Soaked whole grains also cook much faster compared to unsoaked grains, requiring less liquid when you are using boiling and simmering methods.
FOR BLENDING: Soaking for blending usually applies to nuts and seeds that will be turned into plant-based milks, creams, and cheeses. Dried fruits such as dates or apricots can also be soaked before being processed into fruit paste.
• It unlocks the enzyme inhibitors in grains, seeds, and nuts so that the nutrients they possess are better absorbed by our bodies, sometimes by up to 87%. Numerous studies have also 21
1. Rinse the food to be soaked and pick out any damaged or discolored ones. 2. Place the food to be soaked in a glass, ceramic bowl or a container large enough to contain water that is double, even triple, the amount of the food. Make sure there is enough water to keep the food fully submerged even after it has absorbed some of the liquid. 3. Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel or a colander so that the food can breathe while keeping out insects. 4. After the designated soaking time, drain with a colander and rinse thoroughly. The food is now ready for blending, dehydration, or sprouting.
• Check the soaking and sprouting chart for the
BASICS OF SPROUTING:
To sprout grains, beans, nuts and seeds, first follow the steps outlined under For Blending.
recommended duration of your soak. Mix the seeds/beans with a clean wooden spoon or clean hands to make sure that all the seeds have a chance to soak up water. Once soaking is done, transfer the seeds/ beans to a strainer or colander and rinse with cool running water at least 2 to 3 times a day or more frequently if you live in a place with higher temperature. Use high-pressure water when rinsing to provide them with the needed oxygen. Make sure to drain thoroughly. Check that no water is trapped between the seeds/beans or pooled at the bottom of your colander or strainer. Shake your colander if needed! Keep your sprouts covered with a clean damp cloth. Ensure good air circulation around your container and sprouts.
REFRIGERATION FOR STORAGE:
1. Place the food to be sprouted in a colander big enough to contain it. Place an appropriately sized tray or plate under the colander, then cover the colander with a breathable cloth so that the food does not photosynthesise, which can result in a bitter flavour. 2. Keep the food being sprouted moist by rinsing it at least twice a day or every 4 to 6 hours throughout the recommended sprouting period, especially in the summer to avoid spoilage. Make sure to drain well, tilting the colander at an angle for proper drainage. 3. Sprouts are ready when they grow a tail, although some will not grow one. Do a final rinse, then drain thoroughly. Use immediately.
It is ideal to use the sprouts immediately. But if you have already made a big batch, you can move them to cold storage. Make sure they are completely dry before refrigeration. Use a salad spinner or a centrifugal dryer/dewatering system. Transfer them to a glass or plastic container with an airtight lid. If you feel that your sprouts still contain a bit of moisture, place them inside a produce bag first or a container with holes and let them breathe inside the refrigerator. Move to a sealed container as soon as they’re thoroughly dry.
DEHYDRATION FOR STORAGE:
TIPS, TECHNIQUES & TOOLS:
Another option is to dehydrate the sprouts. Dehydration preserves the raw activated foods for a longer period of time and lets you use them in a greater variety of dishes. Just like in refrigeration, you need to make sure that the dehydrated foods are
• Always use a bowl big enough to contain water for soaking. For every portion of seeds/beans, use 2 to 3 times the cold water to soak. 22
completely dry before storage. Otherwise, moisture will invite mold growth.
CLEANING: • Always sterilise all the tools you will use for • •
soaking and sprouting to avoid bacterial contamination. Make sure to use clean drinking water throughout the entire process. Always drain your drainage tray. Keep in mind that the warm, humid sprouting environments can easily become breeding grounds for bacterial growth without proper care.
SOURCING & STORAGE (PRE-SOAK): • Buy grains, beans, and seeds from sources you • • •
trust. Buy organic if the sprouts will be served raw in dishes or made into raw milks and creams. Store foods in a cool, dark, and dry place to keep dormant. Extend the shelf lives of seeds by freezing them. Note that condensation affects the quality and shelf life of seeds.
SELECTION & PREPARATION: • Closely inspect the seeds and remove debris and damaged or discoloured seeds.
• Rinse the seeds using a colander or in a bowl of water before soaking. Remove seeds that float as it is a sign of bad seeds.
DEHYDRATING In raw food cuisine, we make crackers, granola, chips, wraps and sprouted crunchy nuts and seeds with a dehydrator. Though with anything that is dehydrated, just remember to supplement your diet with foods that are hydrating.
A dehydrator is much like a raw “oven” that keeps food temperatures below 118°F/48°C - the temperature for which good enzymes and nutrients naturally present in plants can be maintained. This is a trusty gadget that has expanded the possibilities in textures and flavours of raw plants. Moreover, it has also helped me develop gourmet-style cuisine elements such as my raw pepperoni, coconut squid and vegan cheeses over the years. By learning how to use a dehydrator, you instinctively get to understand your plants better. For example, by knowing how much liquid a carrot retains and how long it would take to dry them out to your desired texture, you also begin to discover the other elements within a carrot that gives it its umami flavour, or what to add to it to mimic the taste and texture of animal protein. The general rule for dehydrating is to set the dehydrator temperature to around 42-47°C to keep the enzymes intact and active. That said, maintaining low dehydration temperatures does not mean that the enzymes will be alive forever; the longer the dehydration period, the less life force remains. For mixtures that have a higher water content, I will set the temperature up to 57°C for the first 2-3 hours until most of the surface moisture is removed, then turn it back down to 46-47°C. This is still kosher because it takes a couple of hours for the circulating heat to affect the internal temperature of the ingredient.
MEASUREMENTS Most of the units shown in this cookbook follow the metric system. However, I will be first to tell you that I am not fussed about using metric or imperial units when developing recipes. I often prefer teaspoons/tablespoons for measuring spices and seasonings because milligrams of salt just don’t get detected on anything other than a microscale. Bear in mind though, recipes such as raw cakes somehow always come out better when measured in cups. Regardless, if you do happen to convert recipes from metric to imperial and vice versa, be aware that the weight of a cup of nuts will differ from the weight of a cup of oil. Look for reliable conversion calculators on the Internet for help!
BASIC CULINARY TECHNIQUES Like most cooking, learning to master basic culinary techniques will help you extract as much flavour as possible from the original ingredient. The following are some of my most used techniques in the kitchen.
Steaming is to cook ingredients over boiling water such that the ingredients are heated only by surrounding steam. Temperature and timing are everything when it comes to steaming and it takes a bit of skill to control them precisely. With little to no oil required, it’s the cleanest way of cooking an ingredient, where most of the liquids and nutrients can be retained within the vegetable (e.g., leafy greens, tofu).
Sautéing is to cook ingredients using a small amount of fat on a pan over high heat. This browns the surface of the ingredients and helps seal in moisture. Best used for ingredients that benefit from caramelisation to help intensify the meaty texture and flavours of vegetables (e.g., cauliflowers, mushrooms).
Blanching is when an ingredient is scalded in boiling water, removed after a brief, timed interval, and immediately plunged into iced water to halt the cooking process. Likely my favourite form of cooking as flavours and colours of the vegetables become extra sweet and bright (e.g., carrots, beans, purple cauliflower).
Stir-frying is a vigorous form of sautéing where high heat and a good amount of fat is used. Most of the vegetables in stir-fry will have been par-cooked either by blanching or steaming, and so the point of stirfrying is really to give it flavour, caramelisation and “wok-hei” or “heat”. Stir-frying is often used in Asian cuisine together with sauces that add an extra layer of flavour to vegetables, noodles and starches (e.g., fried noodles, stir-fried vegetables).
SWEAT Sweating is simply stir-frying with less oil and on low heat. It is sometimes useful to add a tad bit of liquid into the pan to help the vegetables cook through without browning. Once done, most of the liquid in the pan should be evaporated. Best used for ingredients that take less than 3-5 minutes to cook and retain a lot of liquid on their own (e.g., leafy greens, zucchinis).
DEEP-FRY Deep-frying is a cooking method whereby ingredients are submerged in hot fat and cooked until crisp and golden brown. Deep-frying has gained a bad rep but it doesn’t have to be that way. Just make sure the oils you use are non-hydrogenated, non-GMO and can sustain high smoke points. Oils that have been used for deep frying for long periods of time should not be used over and over again. So anytime you do deep-fry something, reserve the oil for regular sweating/sautéing so that you don’t waste the oil entirely. And finally, I only crave deep-fried foods maybe once or maximum twice a month, so everything in moderation!
CARBON CALCULATOR A little over three years ago was when I first learned about “Scope 3 Auditing” and how everything we do in the restaurant emits some form of measurable carbon emission. Through conducting a life-cycle assessment (LCA) of our restaurant’s operations, from supply chain to electricity use, from waste management to diversion, we were able to ascertain the greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) per diner. This was extremely revealing to me because although I had done many years of formal training in culinary, hotel and restaurant management schools, none of this was taught to us in our reporting or profit & loss (P&L) equation, which was nuts! From then on, I thought: if we all knew how and what to measure, then we can tangibly reduce our carbon emissions and improve together as an industry! I’ve gone down the rabbit hole of carbon auditing since then and identified ways we can help foodservice operators and chefs make more low-carbon, environmentally sound choices. While nutrition and health are subjective, toxic greenhouse gasses being released into the atmosphere is universal. Much like nutrition labels, carbon labels have their own system and require a whole new layer of knowledge. Thankfully we have LCA scientists and researchers who help trace ingredients from their sources and calculate their emission factors based on how the ingredients were grown and how far they’ve travelled to get to the kitchen. With the help of Eaternity, one of the first public carbon calculators in the world, you will be able to see how a small swap of ingredients can lower individual carbon emissions, as illustrated by some recipes in Provenance.
PROVENANCE PLAYLIST So many mornings prepping and nights scrubbing would not be the same without a rocking playlist. Each recipe here is accompanied by a song I chose that can either turn that frown upside down or inspire you to create! Scan the QR code here to access the full playlist!
LABELS THE SACRED PANTRY Velouté Cream Sauce
V, GF, BF, NF
V, GF, BF, NF
Cashew Béchamel Cashew Hollandaise Tahini Za’atar
Matcha Moringa Crème
R, V, GF, BF
Raw Buckwheat Granola
R, V, GF, BF, NF
Lion’s Mane Inasal
Chia Coconut Pudding
R, V, GF, BF, NF
Eggplant Tofu Bolo
V, GF, BF, NF
Whole Roasted Cabbage
V, GF, BF, NF
V, GF, BF, NF
R, V, GF, BF V, GF, BF R, V, GF, NF, BF
V, GF, NF
V, GF, NF
AN ALT-DAIRY WORLD
V, GF, NF
Lentil Mushroom Pâté
V, GF, BF
Topinambour St. Jacques
V, GF, BF, NF
V, GF, BF, NF
Shiitake Teff Gnocchi
V, GF, BF, NF
R, V, GF, BF
Vegan Spinach Pasta
V, BF, NF
Cashew Cream Cheese Cashew Browned Butter
Maple Mustard Dressing
V, GF, BF R, V, GF, BF
Apple Cider Vinaigrette
R, V, GF, NF, BF
R, V, GF, NF, BF
Raw Blueberry Cheesecake
Chinese XO Chilli Oil
V, GF, NF, BF
Vegan “Nuoc Cham”
V, GF, NF, BF
Chipotle Cashew Mayo
R, V, GF, BF
R, V, GF, BF, NF
Frothy Oat Milk
MAKE VEGETABLES SING
A DROP OF NECTAR
R, V, GF, BF
V, GF, BF
R, V, GF, BF
V, GF, NF
Mango Chia Seed Pudding R, V, GF, BF, NF
V, GF, NF, BF
V, GF, BF, NF
V, GF, BF, NF
Choco Tart Zucchini Cacao Nib Loaf
Salted Caramel Banana
Cold Soba Noodles
V, BF, NF
Purple Cabbage Kimchee
R, V, GF, BF, NF
Szechuan Stir Fried Rice Cake
V, GF, NF
R, V, GF, BF, NF
Brown Rice Noodle Pancit
V, GF, BF, NF
R, V, GF, BF
R, V, GF, BF
Thai Green Curry
V, GF, BF, NF
Coconut Chia Mochi
Cheesy Smokey Kale Chips
R, V, GF, BF
Rice Roll (Banh Cuon)
V, GF, BF, NF
Raw Cacao Buckwheat Barks
Raw Chia Seed Crackers
R, V, GF, BF, NF
TCM Pho Noodle Soup
V, BF, NF
Sprouted Tamari Seeds
R, V, GF, BF, NF
Nourishing Wild Yam Soup
V, GF, BF
R, V, GF R, V, GF, BF, NF R, V, GF, BF
Pozole Verde Jicama Seaweed Salad
Sesame Goji Protein Shake
R, V, GF, BF
R, V, GF, BF, NF
R, V, GF, BF, NF
Heritage Grain Porridge Teff Injera Crêpes Smoked Carrot Crêpes Scrambled Tofu Lemon Chia Seed Pancakes
R, V, GF, BF, NF R, V, GF, BF
Celery Root & Burdock Fries R, V, GF, BF, NF
V, GF, BF V, BF, NF, GF V, BF, NF
Tikka Flatbread Cauliflower-Potato Spaetzle
V, GF, BF, NF
V, GF, BF, NF
V, GF, BF, NF V, GF, BF
NEVER MISS THE MEAT
V, GF, BF
Sprouted Seed “Tuna” Mayo
V, GF, BF, NF V, GF, BF
R, V, GF, BF
V, GF, BF, NF
Grilled Baby Gem Caeser Berries & Banana
V, GF, BF, NF
V, GF, BF
Kudzu Carrot Soup
Curly Kale Salad BREAKING FAST
V, GF, BF, NF V, GF, BF
Nori Niboshi Crackers
R, V, GF, BF
Pumpkin Seed Pesto
Dehydrated Corn Nachos
V, GF, BF, NF
V, GF, BF, NF
Coconut Aminos BBQ Sauce V, GF, NF, BF V, GF, NF, BF
Shimeji Mushroom Bisque
R, V, GF, BF
V, GF, BF, NF
V, GF, BF, NF
THE SACRED PANTRY
WHERE NUTRITION BEGINS
The pantry is the foundation to not only good cooking, but healthier diets. Whatever you buy from the supermarket is what you will place in your cabinet, and whatever you place in your cabinet is what you will reach for, whether it’s a snack or a condiment like ketchup. And because so much of what we buy is conveniently doused with addictive fats, sodium and refined sugars, being cautious about something as simple as which soy sauce to purchase helps us prevent these nasty ingredients from entering our safe zone The Sacred Pantry. In this chapter, I will walk you through how you can put together condiments from scratch - void of additives, chemical preservatives, artificial food colourings, and E number chemicals. Vitamins, minerals, and nutrients get stripped away in white or refined pantry staples. By consuming less processed and refined foods, limiting intake of salts, sugars, and saturated fats, you can minimise the risk of non-communicable diseases.
BUILDING YOUR PANTRY Switching to clean pantry staples is a foundational step towards a healthier and more nutritious meal. Here are some essential ingredients you should start with when building your pantry whether at home or in a professional kitchen.
Choose unrefined salts as they’re generally lower in sodium and high in essential minerals
Pick whole grains and whole wheat flours that are filled with fibres and minerals
• • • •
• • • • • • • •
• • • • • • • • •
Celtic Sea Salt Pink Salt Black Salt Smoked Sea Salt
OILS/FATS Opt for unrefined, unhydrogenated, cold-pressed oils, as they are vitamin-rich and a great source of healthy fats
• • • • • • • •
Olive Oil Avocado Oil Cacao Butter Coconut Oil Tahini Nut Butters Sesame Oil Sunflower Seed/Grapeseed Oil (for deep frying)
SUGARS Select naturally occurring and minimally processed sugars over white refined sugar
• • • • •
Maple Syrup Monkfruit Coconut Sugar/Nectar Dates Honey
Brown Rice Buckwheat Sorghum Gluten Free Rolled Oats Organic Wheat Berries Barley Spelt Kamut
NUTS & SEEDS • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
Cashews Almonds Walnuts Pecans Macadamia Pine Nuts Pistachio Sesame Seeds Flax Seeds Chia Seeds Sunflower Seeds Pumpkin Seeds Hemp Seeds Quinoa
LENTILS/PULSES/BEANS • • • • • • • •
Chickpeas Green Lentils Kidney Beans White Beans Black Beans Adzuki Beans Mung Beans Edamame Beans 31
Miso Tempeh Fermented Tofu Natto Tamari Soy Sauce Sauerkraut Kimchee Coconut Aminos Nutritional Yeast
LEAFY GREENS • • • • • •
Collard Spinach Chinese Greens Endive Arugula Kale
HIGH CELLULOSE VEGETABLES • • • • • • • • •
Cauliflower Kale Swiss Chard Brussels Sprouts Cabbage Kohlrabi Turnip Broccoli Peas
HIGH CELLULOSE FRUITS • • • • • •
Avocado Berries Oranges Peaches Pears Apples
The Sacred Pantry
MOTHER SAUCES Velouté Cream Sauce Home-Roasted Marinara Mushroom Espagnole Cashew Béchamel Cashew Hollandaise
The start of my journey to creating delectable vegan/vegetarian dishes all began with taking what I had learnt through my classical training, then converting them into raw and plant-based equivalents. The five Mother Sauces, developed in the 19th Century by French chef Auguste Escoffier is where my adaptation and discovery began.
VELOUTÉ CREAM SAUCE Cooking Time: 30 minutes | Yields: 600g
In a saucepot, melt butter on low-medium heat. Add flour into the melted butter and whisk together to form a roux. Roux is typically made from equal parts of flour and fat by weight. Brown the roux for about 5 minutes until slightly browned. Deglaze with oat milk and whisk continuously until the milk and roux are well combined, and a creamy consistency is achieved. Add garlic cloves into the sauce and allow it to infuse and simmer on low heat for about 15 minutes. Season with soy sauce, salt, black pepper and nutritional yeast.
Vegan Butter Oat Milk All Purpose Flour Soy Sauce Garlic (optional) Black Pepper Nutritional Yeast
50g 500g 50g 15g 1 clove to taste to taste 36
HOME-ROASTED MARINARA Prep Time: 15 minutes Cooking Time: 35 minutes Yields: 1kg
Heat up a deep saucepan or saucepot with olive oil on low-medium heat; add garam masala and let the spices bloom until fragrant for about 2 minutes. Make sure the spices do not get too toasted and burnt! Add roughly chopped tomatoes and sauté on medium-high heat, occassionally stirring them around to ensure that they cook evenly. Let the tomatoes caramelize and wait for the liquid to partially evaporate for about 15 minutes. Olive Oil Garam Masala Tomato, rough chopped Tomato Paste Italian Basil Rosemary Thyme Salt Black Pepper Chili Powder Coconut Sugar
50ml 6g 2kg 130g 50g 5g 5g 20g 5g 2g 60g
Stir in tomato paste and caramelise further for about 5 minutes. Your marinara will become thicker and darker in colour. Add in picked herbs, salt, pepper, chili powder and coconut sugar to your preferred taste. Blend in a high speed blender until smooth if you like a puréed marinara sauce. If you like it more chunky, keep it as it is. Let the sauce cool to room temperature. Store and freeze in small batches. You can also keep it in an air tight container in the fridge if consumed within 5 days. 37
Prep Time: 15 minutes | Cooking Time: 50 minutes | Yields: 1.2L
Separate shiitake mushroom stems from caps. Place all stems into a sauté pan with oil and slowly pan roast on all sides until golden brown, tossing occasionally. Reserve on side. Alternatively, if you have a toaster oven/oven, toss raw shiitake stems in oil with a pinch of salt and roast them at 71°C for about 20 minutes until they are nice and golden brown. Slice shiitake mushroom caps and brown cremini mushrooms into 0.5cm slices. Pour approximately 15ml of oil to sauté pan and bring to medium heat. Add a layer of sliced mushrooms to the pan with the hot oil, making sure that the pan is not overcrowded. Otherwise, the mushrooms that are not touching direct heat will begin to sweat and get slimy. Let the mushrooms sauté on both sides until golden brown, being mindful to stay patient during this process. Season with salt and pepper and reserve on side. Repeat with the remaining sliced mushrooms. Once all mushrooms have been sautéed, place them in a medium-sized pot and add the tomato paste. Coat the mushrooms generously with the tomato paste and sauté to further the caramelisation. Add 2L of water into the mushroom mixture, cover with a lid and bring to a boil. On the side in a small bowl, make a slurry with the arrowroot powder with an additional 50ml of water. Once the stock boils, turn down heat to let the mushroom broth simmer for another 20 minutes. At this point, cool the stock down on the side for about 30 minutes, then return to pour the stock with mushrooms in a blender and pureé until smooth. The stock will no longer be a broth but a thickened sauce or even puréed soup if you’d like. Place mushroom espagnole into a clean pot and bring back up to heat. Season the espagnole with mushroom seasoning, salt and black pepper to taste. Finally, whisk in slurry to give the sauce a bit of sheen, as well as to thicken it further if needed. Turn off the heat immediately as soon as you see the liquid thicken slightly to ensure that the arrowroot powder doesn’t overcook. Allow the espagnole to cool to room temperature. Store and freeze in small batches or in an air tight container in the fridge for up to 7 days. Shiitake Mushrooms (split into caps and stems) Sunflower Oil Brown Cremini Mushrooms Tomato Paste Arrowroot Powder Dark Soy Sauce Mushroom Seasoning Salt Black Pepper Powder Water
350g 50ml 150g 50g 20g 20ml 1 tsp 1 tsp 1/2 tsp 2L 40
CASHEW Prep Time: 4 hours for soaking, 20 minutes to blend Yields: 580g
BÉCHAMEL Soak raw cashews with room temperature filtered water for at least 4 hours. Drain cashews and rinse through with filtered water once more.
Raw Cashews Nutritional Yeast Nutmeg Salt Filtered water
300g 15g 1/2 tsp 2 tsp 250-320ml
Place soaked cashews, nutritional yeast, nutmeg, salt into high speed blender with just enough filtered water to cover the cashews. Blend on low for 10-15 seconds until cashews and liquid are
somewhat well incorporated, then slowly turn the speed to high and blend for another 30-45 seconds until the cashew sauce reaches a super smooth, thick and creamy consistency. Adjust texture by adding more liquid if you want a thinner sauce. Adjust seasoning. Blend again until fully incorporated. Store in a glass jar or air tight tupperware container within the cooler parts of the fridge for up to 7 days.
CASHEW HOLLANDAISE Prep Time: 4 hours for soaking + 20 minutes to blend | Yields: 580g
Soak raw cashews with room temperature filtered water for at least 4 hours. Drain cashews and rinse through with filtered water once more. Place soaked cashews, vinegar, olive oil, salt, pepper and turmeric into a high speed blender with just enough filtered water to cover the cashews. Blend on low for 10-15 seconds until cashews and liquid are somewhat well incorporated, then slowly turn the speed to high and blend for another 30-45 seconds until the cashew sauce reaches a super smooth, thick and creamy consistency. Adjust texture by adding more liquid if you want a thinner sauce. Adjust seasoning. Blend again until fully incorporated. Store in a glass jar or air tight tupperware container within the cooler parts of the fridge for up to 7 days.
Raw Cashews Apple Cider Vinegar Extra Virgin Olive Oil Salt Black Pepper, ground Turmeric Powder Filtered Water
300g 70ml 115ml 1-2 tsp 1/2-1 tsp 1 tiny pinch 150-180ml 42
The Sacred Pantry
A DRESSING A DAY Tahini Za’atar Teriyaki Sauce Vegan Worchestershire Coconut Aminos BBQ Maple Mustard Dressing Apple Cider Vinaigrette Cilantro Chutney Chinese XO Chilli Oil Vegan “Nuoc Cham” Chipotle Cashew Mayo Pumpkin Seed Pesto
TAHINI ZA’ATAR Prep Time: 5 minutes + 5 minutes to blend Yields: 200ml
Place all ingredients (except fresh mint and za’atar) in a high speed blender. Blend on low speed for about 10 seconds, then slowly raise the speed up to high and blend for a further 15 seconds until ingredients are well incorporated. Alternatively, whisk all ingredients together in a large mixing bowl.
the bright rich blend of red capsicum and Kashmir chili peppers in deggi mirch powders! Some people may prefer a saltier or more tart dressing. And if you’d like a thinner sauce, add more filtered water to this base recipe. Feel free to adjust seasoning and texture as you wish!
Add za’atar and fresh mint into the dressing and pulse the ingredients in gently - about 3-4 times. You can easily replace deggi mirch with cayenne, chili powder or paprika but I particularly love
Tahini Paste Lemon Juice Deggi Mirch Za’atar Fresh Mint, rough chopped Garlic (optional) Sea Salt Filtered water
100g 15ml 1/4 tsp 1/2 Tbsp 1 sprig 1 clove 1-2 tsp 100ml 45
VEGAN COCONUT WORCHESTERSHIRE AMINOS BBQ
Prep Time: 5 minutes Cooking Time: 5-8 minutes Yields: 700ml
Prep Time: 5 minutes Cooking Time: 5 minutes Yields: 450ml
Prep Time: 5 minutes Cooking Time: 10 minutes Yields: 220ml
Place all ingredients in a saucepot and whisk continuously. Let it simmer for 5 minutes or until the sugar has dissolved and the sauce thickens.
Add all ingredients to small saucepot and cover with lid. Turn heat to low. Heat until the sauce just begins to simmer. Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature. Store in an air tight glass jar in the fridge for up to 3 months.
Bring all ingredients to a simmer for 3 minutes or until the sugars dissolve. Store in an air tight glass jar in the fridge for up to 2 months.
Coconut aminos - Made using fermented coconut nectar and salt, it is an excellent substitute for soy sauce and has 73% less sodium than soy sauce. Pro Tip: For people with allergies or food sensitivities, it’s a soy and gluten-free way to add a hit of umami to dishes.
Garlic, minced Ginger, minced Soy Sauce Water Coconut Sugar Coconut Nectar Brown Rice Vinegar Sesame Oil Cornstarch or Arrowroot Powder Black Pepper
3g 3g 250g 400g 175g 22g 15g 5g
Apple Cider Vinegar Soy Sauce Coconut Sugar Dijon Mustard All Spice Garlic Powder Onion Powder Black Pepper
236ml 78ml 3 Tbsp 1 tsp 1/2 tsp 1/2 tsp 1/2 tsp 1 small pinch
20g 1-2 tsp 46
Coconut Aminos Tomato Paste Smoked Paprika
200ml 30g 10g
MAPLE MUSTARD DRESSING
APPLE CIDER VINAIGRETTE
Prep Time: 5 minutes Yields: 150g
Prep Time: 5 minutes + 3 minutes to blend Yields: 200ml
Prep Time: 5 minutes + 8 minutes to blend Yields: 450g
In a high-speed blender, combine all ingredients and blend until smooth and creamy. Adjust flavours to taste.
Blend, or whisk all ingredients in a mixing bowl until well emulsified.
Wash and rinse cilantro and fresh mint. Swing or pat until semi-dry.
Store in an air tight glass jar in the fridge for up to 3 months.
Pick mint leaves and remove stalks. Roughly chop cilantro including the roots.
Store in an air tight glass jar in the fridge for up to 3 months.
Place all ingredients in a high speed blender and blend until well mixed.
When dressings are highly acidic and contain good quantities of oil, they can be kept in the fridge for over a year!
Pulse in coconut yogurt. This is entirely optional and is only suggested if you prefer a creamier chutney. At Grassroots, we always served without. Store in air tight sealed glass jars in the fridge for up to a month.
Dijon Mustard Apple Cider Vinegar Extra Virgin Olive Oil Maple Syrup Pink Salt Black Pepper
20g 50g 50g 30g 1-2 tsp 1 tsp
Lemon Juice Olive Oil Coconut Nectar Apple Cider Vinegar Salt Black Pepper
30ml 150ml 12ml 30ml 1 Tbsp 1-2 tsp
Cilantro Fresh Mint Ginger Green Chili Cumin powder Lemon Juice Coconut Yogurt (optional) Salt Black Pepper
250g 50g 70g 5g 1tsp 30ml 80ml 1tsp 1/2tsp
CHINESE XO CHILI OIL Prep Time: 10 minutes Cooking Time: 30 minutes Yields: 800ml
Toast spices in oil on low heat for around 5 minutes. Filter all spices out using a sift and leave the fragrant oil in the pot. Place around 5 tablespoons of red pepper powder in a bowl. Re-heat the oil in the pot until just hot and then pour half of the hot oil over the red chili powder. Rest the leftover oil for 5 minutes to cool, then add another 2 tablespoons of red chili powder, toasted sesame seeds and remaining sichuan peppercorn into the pot. Mix both the bowl of toasted red chili powder and the ingredients in the pot together.
Sunflower Seed Oil Ginger, peeled and sliced into 1cm pcs Bay Leaves Star Anise Chinese Cinnamon Bark Sichuan Peppercorn Cloves Whole Cumin Seeds Fennel Seeds Red Pepper Powder White Sesame Seed, toasted Sichuan Peppercorn Shiitake Stems, roasted (pg.40) Dark Soy Sauce Salt
Fold in roasted shiitake stems (roasting procedure on pg.40), and season with dark soy sauce and salt to taste.
500ml 80g 2 pcs 3 pcs 1 large pc 1/4 tsp 4 pcs 1/4 tsp 1/4 tsp 7 Tbsp 1 Tbsp 1/2 tsp 300g 100ml 1 Tbsp
Store in air tight glass jars at room temperature (as long as shiitake stems are submerged in the oil) for up to 3 months, or in the fridge indefinitely!
VEGAN “NUOC CHAM” Prep Time: 5 minutes + 30 minutes waiting time | Yields: 280ml
Soak dulse/seaweed in filtered room temperature water for 5 minutes. Drain and squeeze dry. In a mixing bowl, stir and dissolve coconut sugar in brown rice vinegar. Add in garlic, bird’s eye chili, and soaked dulse. Let it infuse for at least 30 minutes before consuming. Store in an air tight glass jar in the fridge for up to a month. The longer you let the dulse infuse, the fishier the nuoc cham will taste.
150ml 50ml 80g 2 tsp 5-6 pcs 10g
Brown Rice Vinegar Water Coconut Sugar Minced Garlic (optional) Bird’s Eye Chili, chopped (optional) Dried Dulse or Mixed Seaweed 50
CHIPOTLE CASHEW MAYO Prep Time: 4 hours for soaking + 20 minutes to blend Yields: 480g
Soak raw cashews with room temperature filtered water for at least 4 hours. Drain cashews and rinse through with filtered water once more. Place soaked cashews, apple cider vinegar, nutritional yeast, chipotle, dates and salt into a high speed blender with just enough filtered water to cover the cashews. Blend on low for 10-15 seconds until cashews and liquid are somewhat well incorporated, then slowly turn the speed to
Raw Cashews Apple Cider Vinegar Nutritional Yeast Chipotle (in Adobo) Medjool Dates, pitted Filtered Water Salt Black Pepper
280g 20ml 6g 2 pcs 2 pcs 200ml 1/2 -1 tsp 1/4 tsp 52
high and blend for another 30-45 seconds until the cashew sauce reaches a super smooth, thick and creamy consistency. Modify texture by adding more liquid if you want a thinner sauce. Adjust seasoning. Blend again until fully incorporated. Store in a glass jar or air tight tupperware container within the cooler parts of the fridge for up to 7 days.
PUMPKIN SEED PESTO Prep Time: 20 minutes Yields: 700g
Add all ingredients, except olive oil, into a high speed blender. Close the lid of the blender but leave the feeding hole uncovered. Blend on medium and slowly stream olive oil through the feeding hole until the pesto has emulsified, around 30 seconds. If you prefer a smooth pesto, blend on high speed for another 20 seconds until the green specks and chunks are no longer visible. Store in an air tight glass jar in the fridge for up to 10 days.
Pumpkin Seeds Spinach leaves Italian Basil Nutritional Yeast Hemp Seeds Garlic, peeled (optional) Lemon Juice Lemon Zest, from 1 lemon Salt Black Pepper Extra Virgin Olive Oil
150g 150g 150g 30g 15g 1 clove 30ml 10-15g 2-3 tsp 1-2 tsp 200ml 53
The Sacred Pantry
FERMENTED FOODS Pickling Juice Pickled Vegetables Purple Cabbage Kimchee Kombucha
Fermented Foods in Diet
The use of fermentation dates back to Neolithic China (7000 BCE), where a fermented alcoholic beverage was made from fruits, honey, and rice. Fermentation of dairy, bread, vegetables, meat, tea, and legumes followed in various ancient civilisations. When utilising bacteria to convert sugar into lactic acid, foods have the ability to transform, preserve, and even provide medicinal benefits.
Fermented foods contain an increased amount of good bacteria (probiotics) that are beneficial for the gut, immune system and brain health. The fermentation process also enriches foods with amino acids, vitamins, minerals and bioactive compounds. They tend to be more easily digestible as some of the sugars and starches have already been broken down in the process. It is recommended to utilise a “food first” approach before resorting to probiotic supplements. The enzymatic activity is much higher in the actual food itself.
Types Fermentation/Fermenters: Lactic Acid fermentation (bacterial cultures), Ethanol/Alcohol fermentation (yeast), Symbiotic cultures (yeast and bacteria), Acetic Acid fermentation (starches and sugar from grains and fruit), Mold Products: Kimchee, Kefir, Sauerkraut, Nattō, Tempeh, Kombucha, Miso, Apple Cider Vinegar, Sourdough, Yogurt etc.
Environmental Impact Fermentation is a traditional method of food preservation and unlike modern methods (refrigeration, freezing, packaging, adding artificial preservatives etc.). It requires little to no energy to produce, does not emit greenhouse gases, nor does it reduce the nutritional content of food. Using fermented food waste as compost can also boost soil health with beneficial bacteria and increase crop growth. Additionally, it makes plants resistant to pathogens and helps reduce carbon release from farming.
PICKLING JUICE Prep Time: 5 minutes Cooking Time: 15 minutes Yields: 1000ml
Pro tip: Choosing the right acids for pickling is essential to producing flavourful and delicious pickles.
Combine all ingredients in a pot and boil until the coconut sugar and salt are dissolved. Let it simmer for about 10 minutes. Once cooled, pour into a jar with your choice of raw vegetables (e.g., kohlrabi, beetroot) and pickle for at least 48 hours. The longer the vegetables sit and pickle, the stronger the flavour will be.
Pickling involves soaking foods in an acidic liquid to achieve a sour flavour; when foods are fermented, the sour flavour is a result of the chemical reaction between sugars and naturally present bacteria. Using apple cider vinegar paired with its mother and less processed vinegars, as opposed to white distilled vinegars that are empty of nutritional benefits, will yield more nutritious pickles.
Apple Cider Vinegar Brown Rice Vinegar Mustard Seed Fennel Seed Black Peppercorn Salt Coconut Sugar Bay Leaves Water
150ml 150ml 3g 3g 3g 30g 95g 2 pcs 750ml 56
PICKLED VEGETABLES Prep Time: 20 minutes Yields: 2L jar
Peel kohlrabi and beetroot and Cut cucumbers into 2-inch sticks. cut into 2-inch sticks. Place cucumbers and sprigs of Place kohlrabi and beetroot in a fresh dill into a 2L picking jar. 2L pickling jar. Spread beetroot evenly. Pour cooled pickling juice into the jar and allow to pickle in the Pour cooled pickling juice into fridge for at least 48 hours. the jar and allow to pickle in the fridge for at least 48 hours. *Note: Pickling juice can be reused 2-3 times max.
Slice cherry tomatoes in half. Place halved cherry tomatoes, springs of fresh thyme and oregano into a 2L picking jar.
Kohlrabi Red Beetroot Pickling Juice (pg.56)
Cherry Tomatoes Fresh Thyme Fresh Oregano Pickling Juice (pg.56)
1000g 150g 1L
Israeli Cucumbers Fresh Dill Pickling Juice (pg.56) 57
1000g 20g 1L
Pour cooled pickling juice into the jar and allow to pickle in the fridge for at least 48 hours.
1000g 10g 10g 1L
PURPLE CABBAGE KIMCHEE Prep Time: 50 minutes Fermentation Time: 7-10 days Yields: 3.5kg
Wash and cut the purple cabbage in half, then into six seperate wedges. Slice each wedge horizontally into thin shreds, approximately 1cm thick. For the napa cabbage, cut them lengthwise in half, quarter, then slice horizontally into 4cm pieces. In a large mixing bowl, preferably glass or food grade reusal plastic containers, add salt to cabbage. Squeeze and massage the salt into the cabbage to release its natural liquids for about 5 minutes. 1000g Purple Cabbage 1500g Napa Cabbage 750g Daikon 45g Sea Salt 100g Ginger 80g White or Chickpea Miso 800g Pear 40g Korean Chili Pepper Flakes Scallions, cut into 3” sticks 500g (optional) 4 cloves Garlic (optional)
Press the cabbage down hard so that the liquids released could cover the cabbage. Put a mesh bag or cling film with holes on top over the mixing bowl and allow the ferment to breathe. Let the lactofermentation process kickstart overnight for at least 8 hours. 59
Check on the ferment the following day. By now the cabbage should be soft and a good amount of liquid should have been drawn out. It is not necessary to strain the cabbage or squeeze out the liquid excessively, especially if you want the final ferment to produce more kimchee juice. Most lacto-fermented foods do well at around 2-3% salt by weight and since our recipe uses a 1.3% salt by weight percentage ratio, the kimchee won’t end up oversalted. For the kimchee marinade: Peel and dice pear and ginger and add into high speed blender. Add miso and blend until puréed. This will take about 2 minutes. Pour marinade into the bowl with cabbage. Fold in Korean chili pepper flakes, scallions and garlic cloves. Scallions and garlic are entirely optional.
With clean hands, massage the marinade evenly into the cabbage. Pack kimchee tightly into four sterilised 1L glass jars, or a large 5L glass jar, ensuring that all the air holes are covered to avoid chances of odd mold growth. Leave at least 3 inches of space on the upper part of the jar for it to breathe in case it ferments quicker than expected. Plus, this avoids its chances of exploding! Wipe the sides and lips of the jars with a clean napkin or cloth, then place a sheet of cling film directly on top of the kimchee for extra protection. Close the jars tightly with a lid, and leave them in a dark pantry area for the next 7-10 days. Burp the kimchee! At least once a day for the next 7 days, burp the jar by opening up the lids and manually pressing down the vegetables to ensure that they are always fully
submerged in the brine. The point of burping is to release built-up CO2 from within the glass jars, so you can simply loosen up the lid when most of the kimchee have settled and stopped pushing up towards the top of the jar. The kimchee will be ready in 7-10 days. The longer you allow it to ferment at room temperature, the more sour the kimchee will get. Once you’ve achieved your desired taste from the kimchee, you may store them with the lid closed tightly in the fridge for up to a year, or almost indefinitely!
Feed your scoby, it’s alive!
In a jar of kombucha, the scoby contains a host of microorganisms that are hungry for glucose - in other words - sugar. When you combine the scoby, starter tea, and sugar and leave it to sit, this begins the fermentation process. The microorganisms eat the sugar in the brew, which in turns gives kombucha its wonderful flavour and carbonation. Without the microorganisms, the fermentation process can never happen. Good kombucha is very much dependent on the temperature during fermentation because yeasts are greatly affected by it. If it is too cold, they go dormant. If it is too hot, they indulge in an orgy of fermentation that often cannot be cleaned up. 63
KOMBUCHA Prep Time: 50 minutes Fermentation Time: 10-14 days Yields: 3L
Place water in a large pot and bring to a boil. Turn off the heat and stir in the sugar. Add tea leaves, cover the pot with a lid, and allow the leaves to steep until the water has cooled. This will take about 3-4 hours. Alternatively, to speed up the process, you can also place the pot in an ice bath.
Water Raw Cane Sugar Black Tea (Lipton bags/loose leaves) Starter liquid from last batch of kombucha Scoby
Once the tea is cooled, strain the tea leaves and stir in the starter tea. The starter tea will bring the pH level of the tea concoction down to an acidic level (pH4-6), which helps prevent unwanted bacteria from possibly growing, especially in the first few days of fermentation. Transfer the tea to a large 4-5L sterilized glass jar and gently slide the scoby into the jar with clean hands. Cover the jar with a thin mesh cheesecloth, holding it tight with a string or elastic band. It’s best if the scoby floats right up to the liquid surface to protect the batch of tea from unfriendly bacterias, but it’s not a problem if it doesn’t. With the right temperature, between 23-27°C, a new sheet of scoby will begin to form right on the surface of the liquid in just 2-3 days and it will usually attach to the mother scoby. Brown stringy yeast bits attached underneath the scoby, sediments at the bottom of the glass jar as well as bubbles forming around the scoby are all signs of a healthy fermentation happening! 1st Fermentation: Keep the jar out of direct sunlight and refrain from moving it around. Ferment for 7-10 days, checking the kombucha and the scoby periodically.
3.3L 200g 8 bags/12g 250ml 200g
After 7 days, give the kombucha a taste daily by either pouring a little out of the jar into a glass, or 64
scooping directly from the jar with a clean ceramic spoon. When it reaches a balance of sweetness and tartness that you desire, the kombucha’s first fermentation is complete and will be ready for bottling and second fermentation.
in each bottle. Alternatively, if you would like to flavour your kombucha, you may add in fruit juices, herbs, spices and fresh fruits to replace the cane sugar, depending on whether the ingredient you’re adding contains sugar. I find that adding that bit of sugar before bottling helps to activate the second fermentation and create even more fizz in your kombucha. Another way you can flavour kombuchas is to infuse the kombuchas with herbs and fruits while they are still in the first ferment jar, but without the scoby. Then, cover with cheesecloth and let it sit for another day or two, before straining and bottling it. This simply makes a cleaner kombucha without the edible bits in the bottle, much like what you get from store-bought kombuchas! If you’re reusing wine bottles to bottle the kombucha, make sure the corks are pushed in tight as any living fruits (especially ginger or turmeric) creates a lot of gas and could potentially explode if it gets too warm! Store the bottled kombucha at room temperature, away from direct sunlight and allow 2-3 days for it to carbonate. Refrigerate to stop fermentation and carbonation; it’s best to enjoy when chilled anyway. Consume your kombucha within a month but best
Before you start bottling, brew and cool another pot of black sweet tea for your next batch of kombucha. With clean hands, gently lift the scoby out of the kombucha and set it on a clean plate. During this time, you may want to clean the excess sediments off the scoby and check if any unfriendly molds began forming around the surface. The older the scoby gets, the weaker it will become, and the bottom layer will become weaker too as more baby scobies grow on top. You can remove the bottom layer if the scoby gets too thick or dark. Pour out your starter tea from this batch of kombucha and set it aside for the next batch. Label everything so you know which is which! 2nd Fermentation - Bottling the kombucha: Using a funnel, add about one big tablespoon of raw cane sugar into the clean sterilized 750ml/1L wine bottles. Strain the fermented kombucha in, leaving approximately one inch of head room 66
within two weeks. The longer it hangs around, the further it ferments and becomes vinegary.
Pro tip: Black or roasted green tea are best for brewing kombuchas.
Other Flavour Combinations:
DO NOT use herbal tea during the initial fermentation as herbs such as peppermint and lavender contain high levels of antibacterial essential oils, and our scoby is a bacteria after all! The anti-bacterial nature of herbs will inhibit the fermentation process. So even though the kombucha will still ferment over a longer period of time, your scoby will weaken very quickly, after one or two brews. I made this mistake years ago.
300g chopped mango, pineapple, strawberries etc 500 - 750ml fruit juice Small handful fresh herbs or spices 250ml ginger juice + 60ml lemon juice Pre-boiled herbal tea (8-12g of dried herbal tea leaves + 1L water)
Any natural herbal ingredients should be added during second fermentation for flavouring purposes only.
The Sacred Pantry
ALL DAY CONDIMENTS Nori Niboshi Crackers Cheesy Smokey Kale Chips Raw Chia Seed Crackers Sprouted Tamari Seeds Dehydrated Corn Nachos Shiitake Bacon Almond Crouton
Soaking & Sprouting To be able to properly understand the significance of soaking and sprouting, it’s important to first learn more about the role of anti-nutrients. Antinutrients are compounds found in certain foods that inhibit the body’s ability to absorb essential nutrients such as vitamins, minerals and proteins. Seeds, nuts, beans and grains all contain high levels of these compounds although they can also be found at lower levels in certain fruits and vegetables. Anti-nutrients are the cause of many nutrient deficiencies, digestive and gut-related issues, and the core reason for why many people have adverse reactions to certain grains and wheat products such as bread. Therefore, soaking and sprouting the seeds of these various foods is essential to enable proper digestion and nutrient absorption.
Long-soak nuts such as almonds, pistachios, and hazelnuts need at least eight hours. Medium-soak nuts such as pecans, walnuts, and Brazil nuts are oilier and swell up quickly, thus they require less soaking time. Short-soak nuts such as cashews, macadamias, and pine nuts have the highest fat content and require only two to four hours of soaking. Do not soak these nuts for longer than four hours. Soaking them for extended periods of time break down their health-promoting oils.
The first step in this simple yet crucial process is soaking the seeds in liquid. Most nuts don’t require sprouting but are more beneficial when soaked. Once the seeds and grains have been soaked, it’s budding time (no pun intended) to let them grow; this is called sprouting. This second step of the process is essential because once the seeds have sprouted, they will be in the optimal form for our bodies to extract the nutrients from them and absorb them. This process helps increase fibre content and protein availability, break down gluten and allergens found in grains, and potentially increase the amount of enzymes and antioxidants. The general rule with nuts: the harder the nut, the longer the soak.
Whether you’re soaking to activate your nuts, sprouting them, blending them for milks, creams or mayos, they all come with different instructions when it comes to soaking time. What is universal is that they are always soaked, rinsed, and blended with filtered water. 69
NORI NIBOSHI CRACKERS Prep Time: 8 hours for soaking + 20 minutes to blend Dehydrating Time: 24- 30 hours Yields: 1 dehydrator sheet
Soak raw cashews with room temperature filtered water for at least 8 hours. Drain cashews and rinse through with filtered water once more. Blend soaked cashews, vegetarian oyster sauce, coconut nectar, sesame oil and mushroom extract in a high speed blender until the mixture is smooth. On a dehydrator lined with teflex sheet, place two sheets of nori next to each other and brush lightly with vegetarian oyster sauce. Spread cashew mixture evenly over the nori sheets. Then press the remaining two sheets of nori over the top. Brush lightly again with vegetarian oyster sauce. Dehydrate at 51°C for 2 hours, then turn the temperature down to 46°C and dehydrate for another 6 hours until the surface is somewhat dry but still pliable. Flip the drier side of the nori niboshi sheet over to rest onto the mesh sheet, then peel off the teflex sheet that is stuck on the wetter side. Continue to dehydrate for approximately 12-16 hours or until the crackers are crispy. Once fully dried, take the crackers out of the dehydrator and allow them to cool for about 1520 minutes. They will crisp up further once the remaining heat within the crackers is released.
360g Raw Cashews 50g Vegetarian Oyster Sauce 40g Coconut Nectar 30g Sesame Oil 6g Mushroom Seasoning 100-150ml Filtered Water 8 pcs Nori
Store in air tight containers at room temperature if consumed within 5 days, or they can be kept in the fridge for up to 3 months. 72
CHEESY SMOKEY KALE CHIPS Prep Time: 8 hours for soaking + 25 minutes to blend & massage kale Dehydrating Time: 18 - 22 hours Yields: 1 dehydrator sheet
Soak raw cashews with room temperature filtered water for at least 8 hours. Drain cashews and rinse through with filtered water once more. Blend cashews with olive oil, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, smoked paprika, bell pepper, coconut nectar, salt and water together until the mixture is a smooth paste. The amount of water needed will depend on how hydrated the bell peppers are. So start with 180ml of water and then slowly increase if needed. Massage and coat kale leaves with cheesy cashew paste; the
thicker the coating, the tastier the chips will be. Toss in drained buckwheat and sunflower seeds and spread out evenly so that it makes it easier for the seeds to stick to the marinade. Lay them individually, not stacked, on top of teflex dehydrator sheets. Dehydrate at 47°C for 8 hours straight, then flip and remove teflex sheets. Continue to dehydrate for another 12-14 hours or until the chips are fully crispy. Store in air tight containers at room temperature if consumed within 5 days, or they can be kept in the fridge for up to 3 months.
Raw Cashews Olive Oil Nutritional Yeast Lemon Juice Smoked Paprika Red Bell Pepper Coconut Nectar Salt Water Buckwheat, soaked 4 hours Sunflower Seeds, soaked 4 hours Kale, washed & de-stemmed
360g 55g 20g 2 Tbsp 15g 80g 1 Tbsp 12g 180-250ml 85g 70g 1kg 74
RAW CHIA SEED CRACKERS Prep Time: 10 hours for soaking + 15 minutes to blend Dehydrating Time: 16-18 hours Yields: 1 dehydrator sheet
Soak flax seeds in filtered water overnight. For every cup of flax seeds, use double the amount of water for soaking. The next day, rinse the seeds off with purified water and drain. Fresh Basil Purée: Blend one large handful of basil, salt, pepper, soy sauce, maple syrup and filtered water together until smooth. Soak chia seeds with approximately 100ml filtered water. Mix soaked chia seeds and pumpkin seeds with the flax seeds. Fold in the fresh basil purée and cover the seed mix by a quarter to half inch. Let them soak for another 1-2 hours at room temperature.
becomes slimy, spread mixture on teflex dehydrator sheet thinly - approximately the thickness of 1-2 seeds. If it is too thick, they will take longer to dehydrate and may run into the risk of mold growth. And if it is too thin, the crackers will crumble. Dehydrate at 51°C for 2 hours, then bring the temperature down to 46°C and dehydrate for another 6 hours. Flip and peel off teflex sheet. Continue to dehydrate at 46°C for 8-10 hours or until the crackers are crispy. Store in air tight containers at room temperature if consumed within 5 days, or they can be kept in the fridge for up to 3 months.
When the water in the seed mixture is fully absorbed and
Flax Seeds, soak for 8 hours Chia Seeds, soak for an hour Pumpkin Seeds, soak for 4 hours Italian Basil Pink Salt Tamari Soy Sauce Maple Syrup Black Pepper Filtered Water
168g 84g 168g large handful 1 tsp 1 dash 20g 1 pinch 250ml 75
SPROUTED TAMARI SEEDS Prep Time: 15 minutes Dehydration Time:14-18 hours Yields: 1 dehydrator sheet
Rinse soaked pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds with filtered water. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together olive oil, tamari, coconut nectar, black pepper and ground ginger. Marinate the seeds with the dressing for about 30 minutes. Lay them over a teflex dehydrator sheet along with the excess marinade. Dehydrate at 62°C for 2 hours straight, then continue to dehydrate at 47°C for another 12-16 hours or until they are fully crispy and dehydrated. Store in air tight containers at room temperature if consumed within 5 days, or they can be kept in the fridge for up to 3 months.
Pumpkin Seeds, soak for 8 hours Sunflower Seeds, soak for 4 hours Extra Virgin Olive Oil Tamari Soy Sauce Coconut Nectar Black Pepper, ground Ground Ginger (optional)
250g 125g 10ml 20ml 20ml 1/2 tsp 1/4 tsp 76
DEHYDRATED CORN NACHOS Prep Time: 8 hours for soaking + 20 minutes to blend Dehydrating Time: 18-22 hours Yields: 1 dehydrator sheet
Rinse almonds and pine nuts with filtered water after they have been soaked. Place all ingredients except for ground flax seed into a high speed blender with just enough filtered water to cover the solids. Blend on low for 10-15 seconds until nuts and liquid are somewhat incorporated, then slowly turn the speed to high and blend for another 30-45 seconds if you’d like a bit more texture in your nachos. Otherwise, blend for another minute for a super smooth paste. Scrape nacho base into a large mixing bowl. Fold ground flax seeds in evenly and allow the
mix to sit for about 20 minutes to help the paste thicken. Spread nacho mixture onto dehydrator teflex sheets evenly. Dehydrate at 60°C for 2 hours, then turn the temperature down to 47°C and dehydrate for another 6 hours until the surface is somewhat dry but still pliable. Flip the drier side of the nacho sheet over to rest onto the mesh sheet, then peel off the teflex sheet that’s stuck on the wetter side. Continue to dehydrate for approximately 10-14 hours or until the nachos are crispy. Once fully dried, take the nachos out of the dehydrator
170g 320g 120g 570g 946ml 2 Tbsp 1 Tbsp 2 Tbsp 1 Tbsp 1 Tbsp 1/2 Tbsp 168g
Raw Almonds, soak for 8 hours Raw Hemp Seeds Pine Nuts, soak for 2-4 hours Frozen Corn Water Maple Syrup or Coconut Nectar Garlic Clove, minced or powder (optional) Turmeric Powder Cumin Powder Coriander Powder Smoked Paprika Flax Seeds, grounded 77
and allow them to cool for about 15-20 minutes. They will crisp up further once the remaining heat within the crackers is released. Store in air tight containers at room temperature if consumed within 5 days, or they can be kept in the fridge for up to 3 months.
SHIITAKE BACON Prep Time: 20 minutes Dehydrating Time: 12 hours Yields: 1 dehydrator sheet
Separate the shiitake mushroom tops from the stems. Reserve the stems for XO chili oil (pg.49) or shiitake teff gnocchi (pg.207). Slice the shiitake mushroom tops to approximately 0.75cm thick then set aside. Whisk maple syrup, soy sauce, smoked paprika, thyme and olive oil until well emulsified. Massage sliced shiitake mushroom tops into the wet ingredients until they are well incorporated. Set aside for 30 minutes so the sodium from the marinade continues to draw liquid out of the mushrooms. Dehydrate at 46°C for 10-12 hours, flipping over once in between. The desired texture should be pliable but dry to the touch. Store in an air tight container in the fridge for up to a month.
Shiitake Mushroom Maple Syrup Soy Sauce Smoked Paprika Thyme Olive Oil
200g 20g 20g 2 tsp 1 sprig 20g 79
ALMOND CROUTON Prep Time: 20 minutes Dehydration Time: 10-14 hours Yields: 1 dehydrator sheet
Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Place the mixture on a teflex sheet then put a second teflex sheet on top. Roll out the mixture to 0.5cm thick then remove the top teflex sheet. Score the mixture to create 0.7cm x 0.7cm squares. Dehydrate at 62°C for 45 mintutes then decrease the temperature to 46°C. Continute to dehydrate for 10-12 hours or until the croutons are completely dry. Store in an air tight container at room temperature if consumed within 5 days, or they can be kept in the fridge for up to 3 months.
Almond Pulp (derived from almond milk recipe pg.118) Olive Oil Nutritional Yeast Soy Sauce Mixed Italian Herbs 80
250g 50ml 60g 28g 2g
SEASONAL & LOCAL
Long before I began advocating for plant-based diets, I had always whole-heartedly supported and appreciated the hard work of farmers, growers, ranchers and fishermen. I believe that’s what differentiated me from other vegan/vegetarians in the first place. Truth is, those who have worked in the food industry long enough to recognise that expecting everyone to turn vegan just isn’t going to happen. So if anyone must eat meat, they should choose the highest quality of meat, meaning animals that are raised humanely and ethically (free-range with sustainably grown feed). For this reason, I’ve spent the last decade getting to know our farmers, build relationships with growers, and supported them consistently through purchasing directly and advocated for their work through our platforms. I believe that’s how we build a strong community in the long run. The seasonal produce grown in Hong Kong has always dictated the way we designed our seasonal menus. I’ve put together a produce chart here to hopefully help you prepare and design your seasonal menus moving forward. 82
HONG KONG VEGETABLE CALENDAR
SHAKES & JUICES Berries & Banana Sesame Goji Protein Shake Liveraid The Glow
SMOOTHIES Prep Time: 5 minutes + 2 minutes blending | Yields: 350ml
Place all ingredients in a high speed blender. Blend on high speed for about 30-45 seconds or until all ingredients are perfectly incorporated.
BERRIES & BANANA
Oat Milk Date Paste Banana Strawberries Beetroot Juice Rolled Oats Hemp Seed Ice
SESAME GOJI PROTEIN SHAKE Oat Milk Date Paste Black Sesame Seeds Almonds Butter Goji Berries Cacao Butter Flax Seeds Ice
150ml 10g 1/2 pc 8 pcs a dash 1 Tbsp 1 tsp 1/4 cup 86
150ml 10g 1 Tbsp 1 Tbsp 1 Tbsp 1/2 Tbsp 1/2 Tbsp 3/4 cup
Prep Time: 8 minutes Yields: 350ml
Prep Time: 8 minutes Yields: 250ml
Place green apple, kale, and cucumber into juicer. Add lemon juice, burdock juice and pineapple juice then stir well. Consume within an hour.
Place carrot, beetroot and kale into juicer. Add lemon juice, ginger juice, orange juice and turmeric then stir well. Consume within an hour.
Lemon Juice Burdock Juice Pineapple Juice Green Apple Cucumber Kale, leaves with stems
Lemon Juice Ginger Juice Orange Juice Carrot Beetroot Kale, leaves with stems Turmeric Powder
10ml 10ml 15ml 1/2 pc 150g 2-3 pcs 88
10ml 10ml 60ml 100g 100g 2 pcs 2g
BREAKFAST DISHES Heritage Grain Porridge Teff Injera Crêpes Smoked Carrot Crêpes Scrambled Tofu
The “Porridge” is a widely recognised dish that has appeared in different variations all over the world.
Polenta from Italy, jasmine rice congee from Guangdong and traditional oat porridge from the UK are all forms of porridge that are easy to cook, packed with nutrients and affordable for the everyday household. In Hong Kong and most parts of China, a baby’s first bite of solid food usually begins with a spoonful of rice congee. We consider rice congee as the Chinese version of milk. Our version is entirely plant-based, gluten-free, protein and calcium rich. With the added sweet potatoes as prebiotics, coupled with miso and fermented vegetables as probiotic-rich condiments, this version of the porridge contains nutrient density levels that are fit for all meals throughout the day. For this specific recipe, I’ve used a combination of teff, rolled oats and quinoa. Teff is the smallest grain in the world but contains the highest amount of calcium per gram compared to any other grain in the world. Along with quinoa, they contain the most abundant sources of plant protein than any other grains found in the world. There are other heritage grains such as millet, amaranth and sorghum that have been grown for thousands of years since the beginning of agriculture. Not often subsidised, and unlike the four cash crops grown everywhere in the world, nowadays, only small shareholder farms will invest the time and money to preserve these native breeds along with the agricultural practices and traditions that favours the conservation of our ecosystem. Consuming these native grains will allow money to go into investment of livelihoods while ensuring that nutritious food can be accessible, available and affordable to all. 90
HERITAGE GRAIN PORRIDGE Prep time: 5 mins | Cooking time: 30 mins | Serving: 4
For Porridge: Place teff flour, oats, sweet potatoes and water in a medium sauce pot. Bring to a boil then immediately lower the heat and let it simmer for about 20-30 minutes or until the consistency becomes thick and gloopy. Stir occasionally and ensure that the porridge does not overboil especially when the liquid content has reduced as the porridge can burn easily at the bottom. Add cooked quinoa. Mix in miso and let it slowly dissolve. Finish with leafy greens and heat through for another two minutes. Season to taste.
Porridge Ivory Teff Flour Rolled Oats Sweet Potatoes, diced Water Quinoa, cooked White Miso Leafy Greens, washed Pink Salt White Pepper Powder
120g 100g 50g 1.5-2L 200g 45g 300g 2 tsp to taste
For Sweet Soy Dressing: Add tamari, water and sugar in a small saucepot. Let it simmer and reduce for approximately 5-8 minutes before adding sesame oil. The finished dressing should be a bit thicker than regular soy sauce. Garnish with suggested condiments.
Sweet Soy Dressing Tamari Soy Sauce Water Coconut Sugar Sesame Oil
30ml 30ml 35g 10ml
This porridge recipe is universal and the grains can be substituted by whatever is locally available (e.g, maize, sorghum, purple rice, brown rice etc). The trick is to ensure that you give it enough time and water to keep cooking the grains down until the starch releases so that the consistency of the porridge becomes thick and well emulsified without being overly gloopy. It is up to you if you want to serve the porridge rustic or blend it and serve as a puréed porridge.
Suggested Condiments Pickled/Fermented Vegetables Kimchee Wakame Seaweed Shredded Nori Sesame Seeds Sunflower Seeds Pumpkin Seeds Micro Herbs Edible Flowers 92
Prep Time: 2 hours 15 minutes | Cooking Time: 30 minutes | Yields: approx 16 x 9” teff crêpes
In a mixing bowl, mix dry ingredients together and then add olive oil and warm water. Allow batter to ferment at room temperature for about 2 hours, or until the batter becomes foamy and smells slightly of beer. Heat up a 9” non-stick pan and brush a dash of olive oil evenly onto the pan. Pour a ladle of the injera batter onto the hot pan. Swirl the pan immediately to allow the batter to cover the pan evenly. Cook on low-medium heat until the edges dry up for approximately two minutes, then flip the crêpe and heat through for another minute or two until it is fully cooked. Serve immediately or cool down before storing in the fridge for up to a week.
Yeast Coconut Sugar Teff Flour Gluten Free Flour Tapioca Flour Salt Baking Powder Olive Oil Warm Water
18g 36g 270g 270g 183g 9g 3g 54g 900g 94
SMOKED CARROT CRÊPES Prep Time: 25 minutes + 6 hours dehydrating | Cooking Time: 60 minutes | Serves: 4
Teff Crêpes (pg.94) Carrot, peeled Koji Coconut Sugar Sea Salt Olive Oil Liquid Smoke
16 crêpes 2kg 50g 25g 15g 180ml 20ml
Pine Nut Custard Pine Nuts Filtered Water Nutritional Yeast Lemon Juice Sea Salt White Pepper 95
210g 80ml 12g 3 Tbsp 1 tsp 1/4 tsp
For Smoked Carrots: Using a mandoline slicer, To Assemble Koji Carrot Crêpes: Place freshly shave carrots lengthwise into 0.5mm thick pieces. made teff crêpes onto a cutting board. Slather a heaping tablespoon of pine nut custard onto the Prepare a pot of boiling water and an ice bath on middle of the crêpe. the side. Lay out 6-8 pieces of smoked carrots in the Place shaved carrots into boiling hot water and middle. Leave about 1-2” space on the edges empty. blanch for approximately 1.5-2 minutes. Remove the carrots and place them into the ice bath to Fold the edges towards the center to make a stop the carrots from further cooking. perfect square shape. Drizzle with olive oil and bake for 3-5 minutes until the edges of the crêpes After 10 minutes, remove, drain and pat carrots dry. become crispy. Marinate carrots with koji, coconut sugar and salt. Serve with fresh dill, salad leaves, apple cider vinegar dressing and capers. Then, place them onto dehydrator mesh sheets, spreading them out to make sure they do not overlap. Optional: Crack an egg in the middle of the crêpe prior to folding the edges of the crêpe and bake for about 5-8 minutes or until the eggs whites are Dehydate at 46°C for approximately 4-6 hours. fully cooked. They should still be pliable but dry to the touch. Mix olive oil and liquid smoke in a mixing bowl. Add the dehydated koji carrots into the olive oil mix, and store in a glass tupperware or container. This can be kept in the fridge for up to 6 months. The oil will coagulate after being inside the fridge, so scoop out and defrost only what you need. For Pine Nut Custard: Place all ingredients in a high speed blender. Blend on low speed to start for about 10 seconds, then slowly raise the speed up to high and blend for a further 15 seconds until all ingredients are well incorporated. Store in an air tight glass jar in the fridge for up to 3 weeks.
Carbon Emission Per Recipe Scrambled Eggs / 424 gCO2eq Scrambled Tofu / 130 gCO2eq
Prep Time: 5 minutes Cooking Time: 20 minutes Yields: 250-300g Serves: 4
Preheat a non-stick pan on medium to high heat. In a mixing bowl, squeeze and crumble up the firm tofu. Add oil to the preheated pan and add in the spices to bloom. Give it a stir to distribute the spices. Toss in the crumbled tofu then season with salt and pepper. Do let the tofu take its time to sauté and form a nice golden brown crust. The longer you cook the tofu, the drier and crispier! Add diced mushrooms and spinach at the end. Season to taste. Serve with vegan butter and a slice of toast!
Firm Tofu Sunflower Seed Oil Cumin, ground Coriander, ground Turmeric, ground Shiitake Mushroom, diced Spinach
300g 1-2 Tbsp 1/4 tsp 1/4 tsp 1/2 tsp 100g 1 large bunch 97
Tofu is believed to have originated from Ancient China approximately 2,000 years ago. There are at least four theories concerning the origin of tofu. Its production techniques were introduced into Japan in the Nara period (8th Century) by Japanese monks who went to China to study Buddhism. It was eaten and treated as a valuable source of protein in their vegetarian diet. Gradually, tofu spread to other parts of East Asia (Vietnam, Thailand, Korea etc.) where it became a core ingredient, with subtle regional variations in methods of production, texture, flavour, and usage.
Silken, Soft, Medium-Firm, Firm, Extra Firm
Due to soy production, land is being converted from its natural state, endangering habitats and species and putting traditional and local livelihoods at risk, mostly in South America.
Tofu or “Bean Curd” is made by curdling or coagulating fresh soya milk. The liquid (whey) is discarded and the curds are pressed to form a cohesive bond. Coagulants used are typically nigari or calcium sulfate (gypsum).
The second largest amount of soy use is through fuel and industrial products, including soybean oil production. Human soy foods came in last at just 6%, which is mostly consumed in Asia and in less processed forms.
Fermented Tofu, Stinky Tofu, Dried Tofu, Frozen Tofu, Tofu Puff, Tofu Skin Population Reliance on Soy: We actually do not eat large quantities of soy directly but we happen to consume it through the animals, eggs, and milk we eat/drink. Almost 80% of the world’s soybean crops are fed to livestock, especially for beef, chicken, egg and dairy production.
Soybean oil is used for cooking and can also be found in margarine, chocolate, ice cream, baked goods, cosmetics and soaps.
Soybeans produce twice the amount of protein per acre (compared to other major vegetable or grain crops) - it is actually extremely land-efficient. However, soy is only considered as sustainable when based on direct consumption by humans and not farmed animals. The soy footprint from industrial animal agriculture is astronomically higher than that of soy foods grown for human consumption. It is important to note the difference between livestock that are soy-fed vs. livestock that are pasture grazed and regeneratively raised.
BREAKFAST SWEETS Lemon Chia Seed Pancakes Matcha Moringa Crème Raw Buckwheat Granola Chia Coconut Pudding
LEMON CHIA SEED PANCAKES
Carbon Emission Per Recipe Pancakes / 830 gCO2eq Lemon Chia Seed Pancakes / 395 gCO2eq
Prep Time: 15 minutes Cooking Time: 25 minutes Yields: 12 x 5” pancakes Serves: 4
Measure all liquid ingredients and place in a High speed blender. Blend until smooth and well combined.
add soy milk to adjust the consistency. The batter should pour easily but not be too runny.
In a separate bowl, combine all dry ingredients and mix well.
Preheat a pan or griddle to medium heat. Brush lightly with oil, preferably coconut, and scoop a spoonful of batter onto the heated surface. Flip when the surface of the pancake has formed mini air pockets and cook for another 1-2 minutes.
Fold in the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Whisk well and allow the batter to set for 20-30 minutes to ensure flax and chia seeds have time to soak up the liquid and become gelatinised.
Serve and enjoy with jam and nut butter.
Should the batter be too thick after the flax and chia seeds have worked its magic,
Soy Milk Apple Cider Vinegar Coconut Oil Vanilla Pods, seeds only Lemon Juice & Zest Water Rice Flour Coconut Flour Tapioca/Cornstarch Coconut Sugar Baking Powder Baking Soda Salt Flax Seed Chia Seed
500g 10g 52g 2 pcs 4 pcs 150ml 190g 70g 130g 32g 6g 6g 3g 40g 40g 103
Pro tip: This recipe is versatile in that you can use it for both pancakes and for waffles! When adapting the recipe for waffles, adjust the consistency by adding less oat milk for a stiffer batter.
MATCHA MORINGA CRÈME Prep Time: 4 hours for soaking + 20 minutes to blend Cooking Time: 5 minutes Yields: 500g
Soak raw cashews with room temperature filtered water for at least 4 hours. Drain cashews and rinse through with filtered water once more. In a sauce pot, bring coconut milk to a boil. Turn heat off and place the agar strips in. Stir well until nicely incorporated. Cool down to room temperature (approximately 20 minutes). Place all ingredients in a high speed blender. Blend on low for 10-15 seconds until cashews and liquid are somewhat well incorporated, then slowly turn the speed to high and blend for another 3045 seconds until the cashew cream reaches a super smooth, thick and creamy consistency. Add more lemon juice if you wish to brighten up the colour and flavour further. Store in an air tight container for up to 3 days. Serve best with coconut yogurt, raw buckwheat granola and berries.
Raw Organic Cashews Coconut Milk Agar Strips Filtered Water Lemon Juice Dates, pitted Vanilla Lecithin Matcha Powder Moringa Powder Coconut Oil, melted
100g 100g 15g 100g 5g 50g 1g 10g 30g 10g 52g 105
RAW BUCKWHEAT GRANOLA Prep Time: 4 hours for soaking + 20 minutes to blend Dehydration Time: 12-16 hours Yields: 750g
Soak buckwheat, sunflower seeds and walnuts separately in filtered water for at least 4 hours. Drain buckwheat, sunflower seeds and walnuts and rinse through with filtered water once more. Place pitted dates and walnuts into a food processor and pulse several times until dates and walnuts are well incorporated. Add the remaining ingredients and pulse until all ingredients are evenly blended. The mixture should still be chunky and sticky but shapeable. On a dehydrator mesh sheet, spread and lay mixture across using your fingers to form natural looking chunks of granola. Dehydrate at 55°C for 6 hours, then further dehydrate at 47°C for another 12-16 hours or until the chunks are well dried and dehydrated. Let it cool for approximately 15 minutes, then store in an air tight glass jar or container at room temperature for up to 5 days, or in the fridge for up to 3 months.
Buckwheat Groats Sunflower Seeds Walnuts Dates Raisin Coconut Nectar Cinnamon Salt
170g 140g 200g 180g 120g 15g 3g 3g 106
CHIA COCONUT PUDDING Prep Time: 8 hours for soaking | Serves: 8
In a high speed blender, blend maca powder, coconut powder, coconut sugar, vanilla seeds from a pod, and coconut milk until combined; there should be no lumps. Pour in chia seeds, mix well and store in an air tight container in the fridge. After 1-2 hours, mix the chia pudding once more to make sure the chia seeds are evenly dispersed. Store in the fridge and consume within 3 days.
Coconut Powder Maca Powder Coconut Sugar Coconut Milk Vanilla Pod Chia Seeds
25g 25g 50g 1L 1 pc 60g 107
AN ALT-DAIRY WORLD
Origin The earliest use of domesticated animals for dairy production was from 7,000 BC, with sheep being the first to be utilised. Archaeologists believe cheese was discovered when milk, stored in an animal stomach, was mixed with rennet and separated into curds and whey. Dairying is claimed to have started in Turkey and yogurt was likely to be the first dairy product ever eaten.
Types Dairy: Cow, Goat, Sheep, Buffalo, Camel, Donkey, Horse, Yaks, Ilamas, Reindeer Products: Milks, Butters, Cheeses, Yogurts and Creams (Kefir, Sour Cream, Clotted Cream, Skyr, Ymer, Greek, Ice-cream, Buttermilk etc.)
Dairy in Diet Grass-fed or pasture-raised cow dairy is said to contain more fat-soluble vitamins and beneficial fatty acids. Almost 90% of Asian adults develop lactose intolerance (at differing levels), as we lack the lactase enzyme needed to digest lactose as we age. Our bodies just weren’t made to digest milk on a regular basis.
We can get all of the nutrients for optimal health from a high-quality diet that limits or contains no dairy. Many scientists believe that we can actually get adequate amounts of calcium, potassium, protein, and fats from alternative food sources like whole foods — vegetables, fruits, beans, whole grains, nuts, seeds, and seaweed.
Environmental Impact • 144 gallons of water are used to produce 1 gallon of milk in the US. More than 93% of that water is used to grow feed for dairy cattle. • A dairy cow produces about 17 gallons of manure and urine daily - if managed improperly, it can produce a tonne of greenhouse gas emissions, leading to air and water pollution. However, if managed properly, it can fertilise crops and create energy. • 9% of available US cropland (about 34.1 million acres) is used to grow feed crops for dairy cows. • Pastured livestock systems operated on well-managed lands are climate friendly and energy efficient.
An Alt-Dairy World
NON-DAIRY RECIPES Vegan Butter Vegan Mayo Cashew Cream Cheese Cashew Browned Butter Almond Milk Frothy Oat Milk
Prep Time: 10 minutes Yields: 1.2kg
Prep Time: 10 minutes Yields: 620g
Place salt, lecithin and apple cider vinegar in a high speed blender. Add in warmed milk and blend to disperse. Gradually drizzle in oils while still blending on medium to high speed. Pour the mixture into baking trays and allow to set in freezer. Once set, portion butter into desired blocks. They can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 months, or in the freezer indefinitely.
Place all ingredients except oils into a pitcher. Using either a burr blender or high speed blender, blend base mixture on medium speed, then slowly drizzle oils in. Blend on med-high speed until all ingredients are emulsified and have thickened. Store in a glass jar or air tight tupperware container in the fridge for up to 1 month.
Carbon Emission Per Recipe Butter / 35052 gCO2eq Vegan Butter / 5718 gCO2eq
Oat/Soy Milk Apple Cider Vinegar Coconut oil, melted Sunflower/Olive oil Lecithin Salt
813g 50g 375g 163g 38g 10g 113
Avocado Oil Olive Oil Organic Soy Milk Apple Cider Vinegar Maple Syrup/Coconut Nectar Pink Salt White Pepper Dijon Mustard Lemon Juice
200g 200g 190ml 10ml 10ml 6-7g 3/4 tsp 2 tsp 1.5 Tbsp
CASHEW CREAM CHEESE Prep Time: 4 hours soaking + 20 minutes to blend Culturing Time: 24-48 hours Yields: 450g
Soak raw cashews with room temperature filtered water for at least 4 hours. Drain cashews and rinse through with filtered water once more. Blend cashews, water, non-dairy yogurt and salt in a high speed blender. Process until smooth and creamy. Culture the cheese: Transfer to a clean glass jar and cover with cheesecloth. Let it rest and culture at room temperature for 24-48 hours, depending on the ambient temperature (culturing will proceed quicker at warmer temperatures) and how tangy you want the cheese to be. Season as you wish with chives, herbs, onion, dill etc.
Firm Cashew Cream Cheese: To make a firm, block-type cream cheese, press the cashews after it’s cultured. Line a sieve or colander with cheesecloth, using enough cheesecloth that hangs over the edges. Put the colander over a mixing bowl. Put the cheese in the sieve and wrap the ends of the cheesecloth over the top. Then, put a couple of plates on top. Let it stand at room temperature for about 12-24 hours to press much of the liquid out of the cheese. The resulting cheese will be quite firm. Use as it is, or flavour with chives, herbs, or garlic. Wrap well with parchment in blocks and store in air tight containers. Keep it in a dry, cool area of the fridge and consume within 3 weeks.
Store in airtight glass containers in the fridge. The cream cheese will get firmer as it chills and can be stored for up to a month.
Raw Cashews Filtered Water Plain, Unsweetened Coconut/Soy Yogurt Pink Salt
300g 120ml 2 Tbsp 6-7g 116
CASHEW BROWNED BUTTER Prep Time: 20 minutes | Cooking Time: 20 minutes | Yields: 460g
Roast cashews at 140°C until golden brown, for about 15 minutes. Allow to cool to room temperature. If they’re too hot, they can easily split. Blend roasted cashews, miso, coconut nectar and balsamic vinegar together until the mixture resembles nut butter. Allow to cool to room temperature then add room temperature vegan butter and blend again until they are just combined, being mindful not to overblend. Store in an airtight glass jar in the fridge for up to 3 months.
Cashews Miso Coconut Nectar Balsamic Vinegar Vegan Butter
200g 25g 20g 20g 200g 117
FROTHY OAT MILK
Prep Time: 8 hours soaking + 10 minutes to blend Yields: 750ml
Prep Time: 4 hours soaking + 10 minutes to blend Yields: 800ml
Soak raw organic almonds with room temperature Soak organic raw cashews with room temperature filtered water for at least 8 hours. filtered water for at least 4 hours. Drain almonds and rinse through with filtered Drain cashews and rinse through with filtered water once more. water once more. Place all ingredients in a high speed blender. Start Place all ingredients in a high speed blender. Start blender on low speed and allow for liquids and blender on low speed and allow for liquids and solids to combine for about 15 seconds, then solids to combine for about 15 seconds, then bring the speed up to high and blend until the bring the speed up to high and blend until the milk is creamy and smooth for at least 30 seconds. milk is creamy and smooth for at least 45 seconds. Unlike almond milk, the oats here can get gummy Pass almond milk through a nut milk bag. Press and gelatinous if over heated so make sure not to and squeeze dry. Reserve almond pulp for almond overblend. croutons (pg. 80). Store pulp in the freezer if they are not used within 2 days. Pass oat milk through a nut milk bag. Press and squeeze dry but make sure not to oversqueeze. Store almond milk in a glass bottle with air tight Reserve pulp and add to recipes such as chia cap in the fridge for up to 10 days. seed pudding (pg.107) or use them to make your favourite overnight oats! Store in the freezer if they are not used within 2 days. Store frothy oat milk in a glass bottle with air tight cap in the fridge for up to 7 days.
Raw Almonds Medjool Dates, pitted Pink Salt Refined Coconut Oil Filtered Alkaline Water
140g 1 pc 1 pinch 1 tsp 750ml 118
Organic GF Rolled Oats Raw Organic Cashew Medjool Dates Vanilla Pod Pink Salt Refined Coconut Oil Filtered Water
100g 100g 2 pcs 1/2 pc 1 pinch 10ml 1000ml
MAKE VEGETABLES SING
THE SECRET TO COOKING VEGETABLES
Vegetables, made up of fibre, protein and water, contains a plethora of micro-nutrients and minerals essential for our body’s cells to regenerate effectively. However, truth is we truly don’t appreciate them enough. Today, of the 250,000 to 300,000 known edible plant species, only 150 to 200 are used by humans. And only three crops - rice, maize and wheat - contribute nearly 60 percent of calories and proteins obtained by humans from plants. Consuming a diverse range of plant ingredients provides our bodies with all of the living goodness while giving us a delicious way to preserve native plant varieties. So if you ask me what is my secret to cooking vegetables? Treat them as you would with a slab of steak or a filet of fish. Just as lobster would contain different layers of natural flavours from sweet to saline depending on whether they live in cold or warm water climates, cauliflower will also taste different depending on soil microbiology, whether companion planting changed or improved its flavour, and if it was grown free of chemicals. Think about it. What would the flavour of a steak be without seasoning anyway? Blood? Iron? 121
And because of that, understanding the make up of the type of vegetable you’re working with and seasoning every layer as you cook helps to amplify its individual flavours. For example, cabbage would need less salt compared to a carrot because of its porous nature in comparison to a root variety. If you’re pan frying or roasting, apply the science of the Maillard reaction, a chemical reaction between amino acids and reducing sugars that gives browned food its distinctive flavour. Thus, brown your mushrooms, let them sit in a hot oiled pan and get golden brown. Give them time to develop flavours, to allow sugars to surface and caramelise. In this chapter, you’re going to find little tips and choices of ingredients you would not have thought of to use otherwise in your own kitchen, especially in a commercial one. But once that door opens, an endless flow of creative derivatives will pour in. Have fun!
Make Vegetables Sing
ASIAN INSPIRED Pumpkin Curry Palak Paneer Cabbage Dumpling Cold Soba Noodles Szechuan Stir Fried Rice Cake Brown Rice Noodle Pancit Thai Green Curry Rice Rolls (Banh Cuon)
This recipe reminds me of the early days of running Grassroots.
The first 2 years of starting Grassroots were some of the most demanding periods. Waking at 6am to get to work by 7, then to end the day’s work between 1-2am was simply what I signed up for, and although it was intense, I also loved every minute of it. However, running a small business with limited skilled manpower also meant that I would put eating aside and often completely forget about it. After having caught on to my poor eating habits, my sous chef back then, Anil, made it his habit to ask if he could whip up some late dinner for me before he left every evening. There was a time when pumpkin curry cooked in cardamom and coriander, alongside long grain brown rice, palak paneer with some sautéed cabbage in szechuan peppers was simply my daily sustenance. Anil eventually became our head chef and retired from his position after 6.5 years with us. Even though very little time was spent on enjoyment back then, that thoughtful gesture always made me feel cared for and satiated, and that is something I will forever be grateful for. 123
PUMPKIN CURRY Prep Time: 20 Minutes Cooking Time: 60 minutes Serves: 4
Pumpkin Curry Pumpkin Sunflower Seed Oil Coriander Seed Coriander Powder Cumin Seed Cumin Powder Ginger, minced Water Lemon Juice Cilantro, chopped finely Salt Black pepper
Brown Rice Pilaf 800g 50ml 2 Tbsp 2 tsp 1 Tbsp 1 tsp 20g 100ml 1/2 pc 20g to taste to taste 124
Long Grain Brown Rice Almonds, toasted and chopped Cashew, toasted and chopped Pistachio, toasted and chopped Raisins Water Salt Mushroom Seasoning Black Pepper
400g 40g 40g 40g 40g 1-1.1L 1 tsp 1/4 tsp 1/4 tsp
For Pumpkin Curry: Peel and dice pumpkin into medium-sized cubes. Reserve on the side. In a deep skillet or a separate medium-sized pot, heat up sunflower seed oil on medium heat. First bloom cumin and coriander seeds. Then, bloom cumin and coriander powder until fragrant for approximately 45 seconds. Add minced ginger and diced pumpkin. Stir to combine and cook on medium-high heat for approximately 5 minutes. Top up pumpkin base with water, close the lid, bring to a boil and then let it simmer for about 35-45 minutes or until pumpkin has fully broken down into soft chunks. Using a wooden spatula, stir occassionally to break the pumpkin down even more. Season with lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste. Stir in finely chopped cilantro. For Brown Rice Pilaf: Wash and rinse brown rice thoroughly under running water then drain. Place rice granules with all other ingredients into a rice cooker or a medium-sized stock pot. Close the lid and bring to a boil, then turn the heat down to low and allow rice to simmer for approximately 35-45 minutes, checking and stirring occassionally towards the final 10 minutes to ensure the rice does not overcook. Garnish rice with more toasted nuts. Serve piping hot! 125
PALAK PANEER Prep Time: 20 minutes Cooking Time: 60-90 minutes Serves: 4
Complex, moreish and wholesome. Switch it up and serve this dish with some steamed quinoa!
Tofu Paneer Tofu Turmeric Powder Sea Salt
100g 1/6 tsp 1/4 tsp
Spinach Curry Base Spinach Sunflower Seed Oil Cumin Seed Cumin Powder Coriander Powder Ginger, minced Garlic, minced (optional) Kasoori Methi, toasted Tomato, diced Green Chili Oat Milk Salt Black Pepper Vegan Butter Mushroom Seasoning Cilantro, chopped Ginger, julienne
1800g 30ml 2 Tbsp 1 Tbsp 1 Tbsp 15g 10g 2 Tbsp 280g 3-5 pcs 350-500ml 1-2 tsp 1/2 -1 tsp 30g 10g 5g 2g 126
For Tofu Paneer: Dice tofu into small cubes. Marinate with turmeric powder and salt for approximately 20 minutes. Sauté tofu in a nonstick pan with some sunflower seed oil until golden brown on all sides. Reserve on the side. For Spinach Curry Base: Wash spinach and remove roots. Cut spinach in half where the stems and leaves connect. In the meantime, bring water to a boil in a medium stock pot. Prepare an ice bath on the side. Once the water is rolling, dunk spinach into the hot water for approximately 15 seconds just to allow the spinach to wilt slightly, then strain them into an ice bath to shock spinach and stop the cooking process. Using your hands, wring out excess water from the blanched spinach and reserve on side. After blanching and wringing, you will yield approximately 800g of spinach. Give the spinach a rough chop through to help quicken the cooking process. In a deep skillet or a separate medium-sized pot, heat up sunflower seed oil using medium heat, bloom cumin seeds, coriander and cumin powder until fragrant for approximately 45 seconds. Add ginger, garlic, kasoori methi and diced tomatoes and sauté on low-medium heat until the liquid in tomatoes have reduced by half, approximately 5-6 minutes. Add the blanched spinach into the fragrant tomato base and stir to combine. Cook out liquids as much as you can for another 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add just enough oat milk to cover the spinach and allow to reduce on lowmed heat for approximately 20-25 minutes with the lid covered. At this time the spinach will keep softening while releasing its natural liquids, keeping the curry base moist. 127
By now the spinach will be overcooked, and it should have soaked up the oat milk, resembling a thick green curry paste. Top up with a bit more oat milk to allow the curry to reduce again on medium heat, approximately 8-10 minutes. The tip here is to allow the spinach to really soak up all of the spices and seasoning through the slow absorption of the oat milk by adding oat milk in intervals and not all at once, similar to how cooking a risotto works. Allowing the water in the spinach to fully evaporate and the fat in the oat milk to get completely absorbed into the curry will prevent the liquids from splitting, which results in a lovely, creamy palak curry. Add tofu paneer. Adjust seasoning and spice. Garnish with cilantro and julienne ginger. Serve piping hot with whole wheat chapati, naan or brown rice pilaf!
CABBAGE DUMPLINGS Prep Time: 45 minutes Cooking Time: 40 minutes Serves: 36 dumplings
Dumpling Filling (1000g)
Use up carrot, celery or green juice pulp for a zero-waste filling! Whatever you decide to stuff them with, I assure you it’s the combination of dressings that hits the spot!
For Dumpling Filling: Soak wood ear mushrooms, rinse then drain. In a food processor, process all ingredients separately into fine, granule sizes. In a large sauté pan, place sunflower seed oil and combine all vegetables and mushrooms together. Sweat on low-med heat, stirring occasionally until liquids have evaporated, approximately 20-25 minutes. Season with sauces and let the vegetables fully absorb the seasoning. Reserve on the side to cool.
Rice Bran Oil Wood Ear Mushroom Lion’s Mane Mushroom Chinese Celery Carrot Shiitake Mushroom Chinese Napa Cabbage Tamari Soy Sauce Vegetarian Oyster Sauce
25g 200g 100g 100g 400g 200g 400g 20g 50g
Almond Dan Dan Dressing (280g) Almond Butter Tamari Soy Sauce Brown Rice Vinegar Coconut Nectar Sesame Oil Fresh Bird’s Eye Chili, chopped Chili Powder Filtered Water Almonds, toasted and chopped
100g 15g 10g 53g 5g 1 pc 1.5g 50-80ml 25g
Szechuan Peppercorn Vinaigrette (340ml) Szechuan Peppercorn Chinese Black Vinegar Sunflower Seed Oil Tamari Soy Sauce Sesame Oil 128
3g 150g 150g 20g 20g
For Almond Dan Dan Dressing: In a high speed blender, blend together almond butter, tamari, brown rice vinegar, coconut nectar, sesame oil, chili powder and 50ml of filtered water to start. Adjust the amount of filtered water added to meet desired consistency. It should be thick but still spreadable.
Cooking the dumplings:
Fold in fresh bird’s eye chili and chopped almonds. Store in air tight glass jars in the fridge for up to 1 month. For Szechuan Peppercorn Vinaigrette: Toast szechuan peppercorn until they are fragrant, approximately 3 minutes on medium heat. Whisk together all of the remaining ingredients with the szechuan peppercorn until the vinaigrette is well emulsified. Alternatively, blend in a high speed blender. Store in air tight containers or bottles in the fridge indefinitely. Wrapping the dumplings: Prepare a tray lined with a non-stick teflex sheet, a damp cloth and a small bowl of water. Place a dumpling wrapper onto the middle of your left palm (if you’re right handed). Using a spoon, scoop up a tablespoon of filling right into the middle of the dumpling wrap. Brush the edges of the dumpling wrap with water. Fold opposite sides of the wrap together, making sure that the filling is enclosed and edges are pinched tightly. Place dumpling on tray, then creating a cupping motion with the pinky end of your palms, lightly cup the bulk filling away from the edges, creating a nice and defined dumpling with a flat back. 129
Pan-Fry then Steamed: In a non-stick pan, heat up one tablespoon of sunflower seed oil. Place dumplings flat side down, making sure they do not touch each other. Allow the dumplings to sear on medium heat for approximately three to four minutes or until they are light golden brown. Prepare a lid on the side then carefully add approximately 100-150ml of water into the pan and cover with the lid immediately as the oil will splatter as soon as water hits the pan. Turn down to low-medium heat and allow dumplings to cook thoroughly until most of the liquid has evaporated, approximately 10 minutes. Towards the end, remove the lid and allow the golden brown side of the dumpling to crisp up again on medium heat. Serve with almond dan dan dressing and szechuan vinaigrette. Boiled/Served in Broth: Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add the dumplings into the water and turn the heat down to medium so that the boiled water is still rolling but not vigorously. On the side, prepare a simple broth of mushroom seasoning, soy sauce, miso and white pepper powder. Once dumplings are fully cooked, approximately 10-15 minutes, serve with simple wonton broth with chopped scallions and sesame seeds if desired.
COLD SOBA NOODLES Prep Time: 25 minutes Cooking Time: 15-20 minutes Serves: 4
Cold Soba Buckwheat Soba Water
Seared Organic Tofu Organic Silken Tofu Sunflower Seed Oil Salt Black Pepper
300g 20ml 1/2 tsp 1/4 tsp
Tahini Miso Dressing Tahini Miso Lemon Filtered Water Salt Black Pepper
110g 10g 15ml 40-50ml 1/2 tsp 1/4 tsp
Ponzu Vinaigrette Tamari Soy Sauce Coconut Sugar Brown Rice Vinegar Ponzu Sesame Oil Black Pepper Powder Black Sesame Seeds, toasted
115ml 70g 75ml 60ml 10ml 1/2 tsp 1/2 tsp
Ponzu Vinaigrette Salad Greens Dried Seaweed Mix
120g 20g 130
For Cold Soba: Bring water to a boil. Place dried soba noodles into boiling water, turn heat down to medium-high heat, then blanch soba until they are al dente for approximately 2-3 minutes. The cooking time differs depending on the size, cut and ratio of buckwheat vs wheat flour. Pass soba through a colander, then run cold water through to stop soba from further cooking. Reserve on the side in a colander. Alternatively, this can be stored in a tupperware container in the fridge for up to 3 days. For Seared Organic Tofu: Cut organic silken tofu to 1cm-thick triangles. In a non-stick pan, heat up sunflower seed oil on medium-high heat, season tofu on both sides, then place tofu directly on the pan and sear for approximately 3-4 minutes on both sides or until they are golden brown. Careful not to move tofu around too much or flipping them over before they turn golden brown. Much like animal protein, a proper sear will ensure all sugars and liquids are locked inside the tofu and will avoid it from sticking onto the pan, especially if you are just using a regular pan. Reserve on the side. For Tahini Miso Dressing: Whisk or blend tahini, miso, lemon juice, filtered water and seasoning together. Adjust the amount of filtered water required depending on the consistency you want to achieve. The dressing should be on the thin side and could easily squeeze through a squiggy bottle. 131
For Ponzu Vinaigrette: Place tamari soy sauce and coconut sugar in a small pot and slowly allow sugars to melt and reduce on low-medium heat for approximately 5 minutes. Be very careful when the concoction is being brought to a boil as it will bubble up and spill over. Turn the heat down to low and remove the pot away from direct heat if that happens. Add brown rice vinegar, ponzu juice (or a 1:1 mixture of lemon and grapefruit juice) and sesame oil and simply heat through lightly for approximately 20 seconds. There is no need to further reduce the vinaigrette here. For Seaweed Salad: Wash salad greens and pat dry. Soak dried seaweed mix with filtered water for no more than 10 minutes. Run through with filtered water and squeeze out the excess liquid. To Assemble: Dress soba noodles and seaweed salad with ponzu vinaigrette. Plate into serving bowl. Place organic tofu over the top, dress with tahini miso and garnish with toasted sesame seeds. Serve fresh as you wish or store in a tupperware container to be consumed the next day!
SZECHUAN STIR FRIED RICE CAKE Prep Time: 50 minutes + 2 hours for pickling Cooking Time: 25 minutes Yields: 600g Serves: 4
Scallion (optional), cut into 2” sections Sunflower Seed Oil Ginger, sliced Szechuan Dry Red Chili Red Bell Pepper, cut into 2cm x 2cm dices Round Cabbage Fresh Lion’s Mane Mushroom, sliced Rice Cakes Szechuan Sauce (below)
2 pcs 15ml 20g 5 pcs 100g 100g 100g 80g 80-100g
Szechuan Sauce Dou Ban Jiang Soy Sauce Chinese Vinegar Coconut Sugar Sesame Oil
100g 80ml 80ml 65g 15ml
Pickled Cloud Ear Mushroom Dried Cloud Ear Mushroom Soy Sauce Brown Rice Vinegar Sesame Oil Chili Flakes Chinese Chinkiang Vinegar
80g 220ml 80ml 80ml 2 Tbsp 105ml 133
For Szechuan Sauce: In a sauce pot, mix ingredients together and bring the dressing to a boil, just to allow the sugars to melt. Reserve on the side or in glass jar as part of your pantry staple for noodles and stir fries! For Pickled Cloud Ear Mushroom: Soak cloud ear mushrooms for approximately 30 minutes. Rinse through with filtered water to ensure sediments are removed. Squeeze dry. Mix all liquids and chili flakes together. Immerse mushrooms in the vinegary dressing to allow them to fully absorb all of the pickling sauce. Allow to marinate for at least two hours, or they can be kept in air tight glass containers for up to a month. Prepare rice cakes first by partially cooking them in a pot of hot boiling water. Boil for approximately 3-4 minutes or until they are approximately 70% cooked. Immediately strain into an ice bath. Cut round cabbage in half, then again into wedges. Cut wedges across horizontally into 2cm slices. In a large skillet or wok, heat up oil on mediumhigh heat. Add scallion, ginger and dry red chilis 135
and allow flavours to bloom for around a minute, making sure that the aromatics do not burn. Add lion’s mane mushrooms and stir fry until golden brown. Add bell peppers, stir fry for a further 2 minutes, then add cabbage and the partially cooked rice cakes. Toss in Szechuan sauce and allow vegetables and rice cakes to absorb the flavours from the sauce, while continuously stir frying on medium-high heat to give the stir fry more “burn” or “wok hei”, which literally means wok’s heaty air in Chinese. The burning and caramelisation of the different vegetables will give the stir fry more complex flavours and textures. Serve piping hot with steamed brown rice and pickled cloud ear mushrooms.
BROWN RICE NOODLE PANCIT Prep Time: 15 minutes | Cooking Time: 20 minutes | Serves: 4
Sunflower Seed Oil Ginger, sliced Carrot, peeled Shimeji Mushroom Green Beans Round Cabbage Bean Sprouts Brown Rice Noodle Dark Soy Sauce Tamari Soy Sauce Mushroom Seasoning White Pepper Powder Sesame Oil
30ml 20g 80g 80g 60g 80g 50g 200g 30ml 20ml 2 tsp 1 tsp 20ml 136
Julienne carrots, section green beans into 2” sticks and separate shimeji mushrooms. Cut round cabbage in half, then again into wedges. Cut wedges across horizontally into 1cm-shreds. Bring water to a boil in a medium-sized pot and blanch brown rice noodles to soften for approximately 45 seconds to a minute. Then, run cold water through the noodles to stop it from further cooking. Reserve on the side in a colander. In a large skillet or wok, heat up oil on mediumhigh heat. Add ginger and carrots then stir fry for approximately 2 minutes. Add shimeji mushrooms and further toss until they are golden brown. Add green beans and cabbage, stir-frying constantly, for approximately 2 more minutes then add in blanched brown rice noodles. Season with dark and tamari soy sauce, mushroom seasoning and white pepper powder while tossing with a chopstick to ensure that the noodles do not clump together and that the seasonings are evenly dispersed. Finally, drizzle sesame oil and add in bean sprouts. Taste and adjust seasoning to your liking. Serve immediately or cool down, then store in a tupperware container for next day consumption!
My mother is the greatest chef I know. The best memories I’ve had as a child always revolved around cooking food with my mother in the kitchen. Whether it was soy sauce chicken wings with scallions for a simple home cooked meal, or an elaborate seafood casserole in a creamy white sauce with homemade puff pastry for special occasions, I was always there observing and absorbing her joy. I would watch her bring home a new recipe with excitement (like an apple strudel!) that she learnt from her culinary class at Towngas, or her becoming increasingly nervous while preparing a 17-course banquet menu for my father and his guests. The positive reinforcements and compliments she received from the meals she served others and her genuine hospitality were what I lived for (and perhaps subconsciously set my own standards for years to come!) In 2007, my mother turned vegetarian. And what does a glutton like her do when you strip her away from all of the sins in this world? Recreate the hundreds of dishes she has learnt and convert them into vegetarian/vegan alternatives, of course! This Thai curry dish served with short grain brown rice, with my addition of lion’s mane mushroom, is one of the first dishes presented on the Grassroots menu. It’s a nice warm, motherly hug just when you need it. 137
THAI GREEN CURRY Prep Time: 20 minutes Cooking Time: 60 minutes Serves: 4
20ml 150g 300g 150g 150g 80g 60g 8 leaves 1 bunch
Sunflower Seed Oil Firm Tofu, diced Lion’s Mane Mushroom, diced Eggplant, roll cut Spinach Purée (pg.209) Zucchini, diced Long Green Beans, cut into 2” sticks Kaffir Lime Leaves Thai Basil
Curry Base 20ml 80g 25g 800ml 1-2 tsp 1-2 tsp
Sunflower Seed Oil Green Curry Paste Coconut Sugar Coconut Milk Sea Salt Mushroom Seasoning Coconut Brown Rice Short Grain Brown Rice Coconut Milk Water Salt Shredded Coconut, toasted
150g 100ml 200ml to taste for garnish
Add pan-fried tofu, lion’s mane In a non-stick sauté pan, pan allow to simmer on medium mushrooms and eggplants and fry tofu with sunflower seed oil heat for approximately 10 continue to simmer for another until golden brown. Reserve on minutes. 10 minutes. The curry base the side. should have reduced by a third For Coconut Rice: Wash and by now. Repeat with lion’s mane rinse brown rice thoroughly mushroom, and separately with under running water then Add in spinach purée, zucchinis, eggplants as well. drain. Place rice granules with green beans, kaffir lime leaves all other ingredients into a rice and lime leaves. Season with For Curry Paste: In a large cooker or a medium-sized stock salt, mushroom seasoning and casserole, heat oil on medium pot. Close the lid and bring Thai basil. Cook vegetables heat with the curry paste and to a boil, then turn the heat through for approximately stir fry for five minutes to get the down to low and allow rice to another 5-8 minutes. flavours going, stirring regularly. simmer for approximately 35-45 minutes, checking and stirring Serve hot with coconut rice Turn the heat down to lowoccassionally towards the final topped with toasted shredded medium, then add in coconut 10 minutes to ensure that the coconut. sugar until they are well rice does not overcook. incorporated into the curry paste. Add coconut milk, then Return to the pot with the curry bring curry base to a boil, and base now partially reduced. 140
RICE ROLLS (BANH CUON) Prep Time: 30 minutes Cooking Time: 80 minutes Yields: 18-20 rolls Serves: 6
Rice Roll Filling Dried Wood Ear Mushroom Firm Tofu, crumbled Shiitake Mushroom Jicama Chinese Celery Sesame Oil Vegetarian Oyster Sauce Mushroom Seasoning Galangal powder White Pepper Powder
50g 200g 100g 100g 100g 10g 20g 10g 3g 3g
Rice Roll Batter Rice Flour Tapioca Flour Water Rice Bran Oil/ Sunflower Seed Oil Salt
100g 112.5g 700ml 55ml 4.5g 141
Carbon Emission Per Recipe Banh Cuon / 531 gCO2eq Banh Cuon (V) / 202 gCO2eq
For Rice Roll Filling: Soak cloud ear mushroom for approximately 30 minutes. Rinse through with filtered water to ensure sediments are removed. Squeeze dry. Julienne then dice them finely and reserve on the side. In a food processor, pulse shiitake into fine granules and reserve on the side. Repeat with jicama and Chinese celery. Add oil to a non-stick pan. Toss in crumbled tofu then season with salt and pepper. Leave to sauté on medium-high heat until they are golden brown on all edges. The longer you cook the tofu, the drier and crispier! Add the rest of the ingredients into the pan. Turn the heat down to low-medium heat and allow the sauces to be absorbed by the vegetables. Reserve on the side. For Rice Roll Batter: In a mixing bowl, whisk all ingredients together. Make sure they are fully incorporated. Lightly oil a non-stick pan on medium heat. Pour a ladle of thin batter onto the pan and swirl the pan to allow for an even rice roll. The rice roll will steam as long as the heat is controlled to 143
below medium. It will only take approximately 1.5-2 minutes to cook each rice sheet through. Remove the pan away from the heat, let it cool for approximately 20 seconds, then tilt the pan upside down to tap the rice sheet onto an oiled tray or a cutting board. Scoop two tablepoons of rice roll filling onto the middle of the rice sheets. Fold each rice sheet from bottom up to cover the filling, then fold the sides into the middle. Finally, gently roll the rice sheet with filling from bottom up to close off the rice packet. Serve with chopped cilantro, vegan nuoc cham (pg.50), and fried shallots (optional). Note: In between batches of rice sheets being cooked, make sure that the batter is evenly whisked together from time to time. Otherwise, the flour will sink to the bottom of the bowl and the rice sheets will fail to form properly.
Make Vegetables Sing
SOUPS TCM Pho Noodle Soup Nourishing Wild Yam Soup Kudzu Carrot Soup Pozole Verde
TCM PHO NOODLE SOUP Prep Time: 10 minutes Cooking Time: 30 minutes Yields: 1.5-1.6L Serves: 4
Slice ginger and white onion into thin slices. Prepare stock pot. Bring heat to medium-high. Add sunflower seed oil/avocado oil, then sliced ginger and white onion. Sauté for 3 minutes. Add all remaining ingredients (except soy sauce and pink salt) into stock pot for the TCM Soup Base. TCM Pho Soup Base Cover stockpot with a lid. Bring stock to a boil and Ginger White Onion (optional) then reduce to a simmer for 20-25 minutes. Daikon, peeled, roll cut Water Season soup broth with soy sauce and/or salt to Sunflower Seed Oil/Avocado Oil taste. Add bok choy, tofu puffs and noodles into Shiitake Mushroom the soup and let simmer for 2-3 minutes. Cinnamon Bark Star Anise Cloves Galangal (dried) Black Cardamom Angelica Sinensis Goji Berries White Peppercorn Soy Sauce Pink Salt
Drain noodles and vegetables and place them into a bowl. Add soup broth, garnish with mung bean sprouts, cilantro, Thai basil and lime. Serve alongside vegan nuoc cham.
50g 50g 200g 2L 10ml 150g 1 pc 3 pcs 1 tsp 2 tsp 2 pcs 1 pc 2 Tbsp 1tsp 50-80ml to taste
Others Rice Noodles (fresh or dried) Fried Tofu Puff Bok Choy Mung Bean Sprouts/Sunflower Shoots Cilantro Thai Basil Lime (Thai) - cut into wedges 147
200 or 300g 100g 100g 50g 20g 20g 2 pcs
MOTHER’S SEASONAL TONIC
NOURISHING WILD YAM SOUP Prep Time: 10 minutes Cooking Time: 2 hours Yields: 1.2-1.5L Serves: 4
Wash all dried ingredients, rinse through and drain. Place all ingredients in stock pot and top up with water. Bring broth to a boil, then simmer on low-medium heat for approximately 2 hours. Season to taste.
Astalagus Root Codonopsis Root, cut into 2” sticks Chinese Wild Yam Goji Berries Longan Meat Lotus Seed Red Jujube, pitted Lion’s Mane Mushroom/ Vegan Soy Protein Chicken Water Salt 149
3 pcs 1 pc 4 pcs 20g 10g 10g 6 pcs 100g 4L 2-3 tsp
MOTHER’S SEASONAL TONIC
KUDZU CARROT SOUP
Prep Time: 20 minutes Cooking Time: 2.5 hours Yields: 1.5-2L Serves: 4
Soak white lentils, adzuki and cashews separately for approximately 2 hours. Rinse through and drain. Soak mandarin peel with cold water for 20 minutes. Clean off sediments and drain. Peel kudzu and dice into 1”x1” blocks. Similarly, dice carrots. Portion sweet corn and cut horizontally into 1.5” sections.
Kudzu Red Carrot, peeled Sweet Corn Shiitake Stems Sunflower Seed Oil White Lentils Adzuki Beans Raw Cashews Honey Preserved Dates Dried Mandarin Peel Water Salt
600g 250g 1 pc 10 pcs 5ml 30g 20g 50g 2 pcs 1 pc 5L 2-3 tsp 151
In a large stock pot, fry shiitake stems with sunflower seed oil on medium-high heat until they are roasted and fragrant for 3 minutes. Place all remaining ingredients into the stock pot and top up with water. Bring broth to a boil, then let it simmer on low-medium heat for approximately 2-2.5 hours, until the vegetables are soft, and lentils and beans are cooked through. Season to taste.
Carbon Emission Per Recipe Pozole Verde / 1066 gCO2eq Pozole Verde (V) / 520 gCO2eq
POZOLE VERDE Prep Time: 20 minutes Cooking Time: 60 minutes Yields: 1.5-1.8L Serves: 6
Preheat oven to 180°C. Soak guajillo chilies. Halve tomatoes, place on baking sheet and roast with olive oil and thyme for 30 minutes. Alternatively, pan roast on medium-high heat for approximately 10 minutes, then bring the heat down to medium and slowly reduce the liquids expelling from the tomatoes. After roasting, purée tomatoes with soaked guajillo chilies in a high speed blender. Place all remaining ingredients into a medium stock pot, bring to a boil, then allow soup to simmer and thicken for another 20 minutes. Season to taste. Serve with diced avocadoes and blue corn chips!
Green/Red Tomato Olive Oil Thyme Spinach Purée (pg.209) Basic White Stock Bay Leaf Guajillo Chili Chili Powder Coconut Sugar Salt Pepper 152
1kg 50g 5 sprigs 1/2 cup 2L 2 pcs 4 pcs 1 tsp 1-2 tsp 1-2 tsp 1 tsp
One of my favourite ingredients to cook with in the kitchen is seaweed - for both its umami flavour and nutritional benefits. It contains an abundant variety of micronutrients, a rich source of zinc and iron, as well as anti-oxidants that help neutralise free radicals. Adding seaweed to vegan dishes is a great trick to naturally mimic the same delicious fishiness that would often require chemical additives to achieve. Because let’s face it, I don’t NOT miss the oiliness of mackerels, the sweet-saline balance of mussels, and the fattiness of wild sockeye salmons. Why should I forgo the pleasure of appeasing my taste buds if I can do so cautiously and without harm to our ecosystem? Seaweed is fantastic both in fresh or dried forms; as kombu to replace bonito in a clam chowder, or nori powder in banana blossom “fish” sticks. But it was only recently that I realised how magical and incredible the algae family actually are.
THE HUMBLE SEAWEED They help shelter marine life, protect coastlines, and they are responsible for half of all oxygen production on Earth. Pretty much all aquatic ecosystems depend on them. Algae and kelp farms are the fastest way to sequester atmospheric carbon. In coastal areas where these varieties thrive, they are able to sequester up to 20 times more carbon per acre than land forests. As we decrease our use of fossil fuels, carbon sinks - anything that absorbs more carbon than it releases as carbon dioxide - such as kelp forests, will play a key role in getting us to net zero emissions.
Make Vegetables Sing
SALADS Jicama Seaweed Salad Curly Kale Salad Grilled Baby Gem Caeser
JICAMA SEAWEED SALAD Prep Time: 20 minutes | Serves: 4
Soak dried seaweed mix with filtered water for no more than 15 minutes. Run through with filtered water and squeeze out excess liquid. Wash and peel jicama. Slice jicama into thin 0.25cm-sheets, using a knife or a mandoline. Once sliced, cut sheets crosswise into julienne sticks. In the meantime, mix together chili, ginger, coconut sugar, ponzu vinegar, chinkiang vinegar, vegetarian oyster sauce, sesame oil and black pepper. Marinate seaweed and jicama with dressing. Toss evenly and serve cold. Dried Red Euchema Seaweed (optional) Dried Seaweed Mix Jicama Bird’s Eye Chili, chopped Ginger, minced Coconut Sugar Ponzu Vinegar Chinese Chinkiang Vinegar Vegetarian Oyster Sauce Sesame Oil Black Pepper Powder
50g 50g 450g 1 pc 1” knob 1 tsp 2 tsp 2-3 tsp 2 tsp 2 tsp 1 tsp
Tossing a salad takes skills.
Which variety of salad leaves to use? Which dressings to pair with? What condiments to top them with to add colour and crunch? All of this matters. Although this curly kale salad went through several iterations, it stood its test of time. A combination of citrus in the cashewbased dressing and the fresh citrus in the vinegar helps break down the fibres from the kale, making the leaves palatable and extra tasty. Toasted (or sprouted) seeds add a layer of texture with every bite, while boiled sweet beetroots and cranberries balance out the tartness and bitterness from the other ingredients. 156
CURLY KALE SALAD Prep Time: 35 minutes + 4 hours soaking | Serves: 4
100g 1 pc 400g 200g 20g 20g 20g 20ml 150-180g 2 tsp 1 tsp
Quinoa Beetroot Kale, washed & de-stemmed Mixed Greens (lolla rossa, arugula, baby chard) Sunflower Seeds, toasted Pumpkin Seeds, toasted Cranberry, chopped Apple Cider Vinaigrette (pg.47) Orange Cashew Dressing (below) Salt Black Pepper Powder Orange Cashew Dressing
280g 1 orange 1 pc 1.5 tsp 1/2 tsp 20ml 2 Tbsp 1.5 tsp 1/2 tsp 200-250ml
Raw Organic Cashews Orange Zest Dates, pitted Coriander Powder Pink Peppercorn Lemon Juice Apple Cider Vinegar Salt Black Pepper Powder Orange Juice 157
For Orange Cashew Dressing: Soak raw cashews with room temperature filtered water for at least 4 hours.
properly cooked when their white “tails” have split from the seed granules themselves. Strain and pass through with filtered water to Drain cashews and rinse through with filtered allow for the quinoa to cool. Reserve on the side. water once more. Wash beetroot with skin on, place in a mediPlace soaked cashews, orange zest, dates, coriander um-sized pot and top with 600ml of room temperpowder, pink peppercorn, lemon juice, vinegar, ature water. Ensure that the beetroot is submerged salt and pepper into a high speed blender with just underwater. enough orange juice to cover the cashews. Bring to a boil, then turn heat down to medium Blend on low for 10-15 seconds until cashews and and allow to simmer until beetroot is thoroughly liquid are somewhat well incorporated, then slowly cooked, approximately 30 minutes. turn the speed to high and blend for another 30 45 seconds until the cashew sauce reaches a super Once beetroot is cooked, pass through with smooth, thick and creamy consistency. filtered water and by this time, the skin of the beet root will slip off easily just by using your fingers. Modify texture by adding more liquid if you want a thinner sauce. Adjust seasoning. Blend again Dice beetroot into 1 x 1 cm cubes. until fully incorporated. To Assemble: Place kale, mixed greens, quinoa, Store in a glass jar or air tight tupperware contain- half of the sunflower seeds, half of pumpkin seeds er within the cooler parts of the fridge for up to 7 and cranberries into a large mixing bowl. days. Add apple cider vinaigrette, orange cashew dressSeparately, rinse quinoa through with running ing, salt and pepper and begin to gently massage water through a fine sieve. Place quinoa in small dressing into the salad, ensuring that every kale stock pot and top up with 200ml water. leaf is covered with dressing. Bring quinoa to a boil on high heat, then turn Plate salad and top up with boiled diced beetroot heat down to low-medium to allow quinoa to cook as well as the remaining seeds and chopped cranfor about 20 minutes. You’ll know that they’re berries. 158
GRILLED BABY GEM SALAD Prep Time: 40 minutes + 6 hours soaking Yields: 1000g Serves: 4
Baby Gem Lettuce Olive Oil Salt Black Pepper Powder Cashew Caesar Dressing Shiitake Bacon (pg.79) Almond Crouton (pg.80)
800g 30ml 1-2 tsp 1/2-1 tsp 160g
Cashew Caesar Dressing Faw Cashews Fermented Tofu Nutritional Yeast Apple Cider Vinegar Dates, pitted Garlic Powder (optional) Salt Pepper Filtered Water
280g 100-120g 10g 30ml 1 pc 1 tsp 1/2 tsp 1 tsp 280-300ml
Pine Nut Pecorino Raw Pine Nuts Lemon Juice Nutritional Yeast Filtered Water Salt
250g 90g 90ml 130g 1/2-1 tsp 159
Flip over, peel off teflex For Cashew Caeser until fully incorporated. sheet and dehydrate for Dressing: Soak raw another 6-8 hours or until cashews with room Store in a glass jar or air temperature filtered water tight tupperware container fully dry and crisp. for at least 4 hours. within the cooler parts of the fridge for up to 7 days. Allow to cool for about five minutes and store in air Drain cashews and rinse tight glass jar containers. through with filtered water For Pine Nut Pecorino: once more. Soak pine nuts with room To Assemble: Cut baby temperature filtered water gem lettuce in half, then Place soaked cashews, for at least 2 hours. drizzle the inside with olive fermented tofu, nutritional yeast, vinegar, Drain pine nuts and rinse oil. Season with salt and dates, garlic powder, salt through with filtered water pepper. and pepper into a high once more. Heat up a grill pan or sauté speed blender with just pan. Grill the inside of the enough filtered water to Place soaked pine nuts, gem lettuce on mediumcover the cashews. nutritional yeast, lemon high heat until they are juice, salt and filtered nicely charred and golden Blend on low for 10-15 water into a high speed brown. seconds until cashews and blender with just enough liquid are somewhat well filtered water to cover the incorporated, then slowly pine nuts with. Plate gem lettuce grill side up, drizzle cashew caesar turn the speed to high and dressing over it, then blend for another 30-45 Spread 0.2cm thin of the garnish with pine nut seconds until the cashew pine nut mixture onto a pecorino, shiitake bacon sauce reaches a super dehydrator teflex sheet. and almond crouton. smooth, thick and creamy consistency. Dehydrate at 62°C for 2 hours, then decrease the Modify texture by adding temperature to 46°C and more liquid if you want continue to dehydrate for a thinner sauce. Adjust 6 hours. seasoning. Blend again 161
Make Vegetables Sing
APPETIZERS Celery Root & Burdock Fries Tikka Flatbread Cauliflower-Potato Spaetzle Daikon Pancake
Sometime in my mid-20s, I had the opportunity to work in Tokyo for a luxury hotel group and it was there that I sharpened my samurai katana (figuratively speaking) and learned the ropes of the Japanese’s impeccable hospitality. The culture of collectivism in Japan is so strong and ubiquitous that it forces one another to be better. I absolutely loved it and felt that kind of work ethic fitted me best out of all the places I’ve worked at previously.
Having nine days off per month meant that we were working at least 12-14 hours a day. On my days off, I explored the capital, and made friends with colleagues who took me to the quaintest hidden izakayas where they served cold beer and fried gobo - lightly crusted sticks of fried burdock. That was one of my highlights while working in the corporate world. I loved fried gobo so much that I decided to put it on my menu - but with a twist, coupled with celery root fries. Several years later, after I had opened Grassroots and Prune, a group of Tibetan Lamas who were nomading through Hong Kong came in to dine. They ended up returning a few more times during that short period of two weeks. That was an immense blessing for me and helped me through some rough times managing my restaurants - times when I felt like I had failed because I couldn’t retain staff, or that I had taken too much on my plate and couldn’t spare time for any rest at all. When Rinpoche said to me, “Thank you for the work you are doing. For providing us with this beautiful food. For saving all of the sentient beings and keeping all of the animals unharmed,” I felt my spirit lifted instantly. It was all I needed to hear. This recipe is one of Jigme Khyentse Rinpoche and Tulku Pema Wangyal Rinpoche’s favourite dishes on our menu. 164
CELERY ROOT & BURDOCK FRIES Prep Time: 30 minutes + 12 hours marinating Cooking Time: 30 minutes Yields: 800g Serves: 4-6
Wash and peel burdock and celeriac. Cut celeriac into 0.8” x 3” sticks and soak in water. Cut burdock into 0.25” x 8” sticks and soak in lightly salted water to ensure they don’t turn grey. In the meantime, mix together tamari and vinegar and reserve on the side. Drain then marinate burdock and celeriac in the fridge for at least 12 hours. The longer it marinates, the tastier it becomes, but after 2 days, the vegetables will start to release liquid and therefore they will become more “chewy” due to the salt-vinegar brine. Mix chickpea flour and water to create a wet batter.
Prepare hot oil for deep frying and bring temperature up to approximately 170°C. Dab the marinated vegetable stick dry with kitchen paper towels, then toss them into chickpea batter, and coat with breadcrumbs. Carefully slide burdock and celeriac fries into oil and fry until golden brown, and make sure that the root vegetables cook through. The celeriac will take a bit longer compared to the burdock. Drain and set aside on kitchen paper towels. Serve with a sprinkle of shichimi togarashi and a wedge of lemon.
300g 300g 60ml 40ml 1/2 tsp 1/2 tsp 100g 100-120ml 100g 500-800ml 10-20g 1/2 pc
Burdock Celeriac Tamari Soy Sauce Apple Cider Vinegar Curry Powder Garam Masala Chickpea Flour Water Bread Crumb Sunflower Seed Oil Shichimi Lemon, cut in wedges 165
Carbon Emission Per Recipe Chicken Tikka / 1537 gCO2eq Lion’s Mane Tikka / 347 gCO2eq
Prep Time: 1 hour 45 minutes + 2 hours soaking Cooking Time: 45-50 minutes Yields: 600g Serves: 4
Grilled Lion’s Mane Mushroom Tikka Lion’s Mane Mushroom (pre-brined) Deggi Mirch Garam Masala Coriander Powder Cumin Powder Smoked Paprika Sunflower Seed Oil
600g 1 tsp 1 tsp 1/2 tsp 1/2 tsp 1g 50ml
Naan Bread All Purpose Flour Whole Wheat Flour Baking Powder Salt Yeast Warm Water Maple Syrup Sunflower Seed Oil
225g 52g 2g 1/2 tsp 1.5 tsp 70g 40g 1 Tbsp
Pine Nut Curry Cream Raw Organic Pine Nuts Curry Powder Salt Filtered Water
260g 40g 1-2 tsp 200-250ml 166
Pro tip: The pre-brined lion’s mane mushroom, also called hedgehog mushroom from Vegelink, produces a different texture to the fresh lion’s mane mushroom and is an excellent substitute to replace the textural aspects of white meat. This was an ingredient we used religiously at home, and was inspired by the creative applications of it through Vegelink’s private kitchen in North Point - owned and operated by our temple and family friends.
For Grilled Lion’s Mane Transfer the flour to a flat filtered water to cover the pine Mushroom Tikka: Rinse lion’s nuts. surface and make a well in the mane mushroom through with middle. Add the yeast mixture warm running water for about as well as the oil, then knead the Blend on low for 10-15 seconds 30 seconds, squeeze excess oil dough until the surface becomes until pine nuts and liquid are and liquids out of the pre-brined smooth and shiny, about 10 somewhat incorporated, then ingredient. slowly turn the speed to high minutes. Cover the dough with and blend for another 30-45 a damp cloth and let it rise in a Marinate lion’s mane with deggi warm place for approximately an seconds until the pine nut cream mirch, garam masala, coriander hour until it has doubled in size. reaches a super smooth, thick powder, cumin powder and and creamy consistency. smoked paprika. Divide the dough into four To Assemble: Preheat your oven equal portions. Roll the dough Heat oil up in a pan until broiler to 180°C. out to 10” circles or if you have slightly smoking. Immediately a grill/skillet big enough to pour oil over the marinated cook it, to 12” long ovals using a Spread curry cream onto a lion’s mane mushrooms to piece of cooked naan, top with rolling pin. bloom and seal spices into the sliced lion’s mane tikka, cilantro mushrooms. chutney (pg.47) and sliced stalks Heat up a skillet (cast-iron of green veggies if you have them preferred) over high heat and Grill or sauté mushroom tikka (asparagus, kai lan stems etc). lightly grease the surface with until they are nicely charred and some oil to avoid the dough golden brown. from sticking to the skillet. Place Drizzle with a bit of olive oil and bake for approximately 2-3 the dough on the skillet. When Reserve and cool on the side. it puffs up and burnt spots begin minutes just so it has warmed through and the top of the to appear, flip it over and cook Once cooled, slice them into flatbread is nicely charred. the other side. Repeat with the 0.5cm pieces. Alternatively you can eat the remaining dough. tikka, naan and curry cream For Naan Bread: In a small separately. For Pine Nut Curry Cream: bowl, add the maple syrup, Soak pine nuts with room warm water, and yeast together. Serve with mango or tomato temperature filtered water for 2 Stir to combine well. The yeast chutney for that extra sweet and hours. should be activated when it sour kick! becomes foamy, about Drain pine nuts and rinse 10 minutes. through with filtered water once more. In a separate bowl, mix all purpose flour, whole wheat Place soaked pine nuts, curry flour, baking powder and salt powder and salt in high speed together. blender. Add just enough
CAULIFLOWER-POTATO SPAETZLE Prep Time: 30 minutes Cooking Time: 30 minutes Yields: 650g Serves: 2 dozens
Preheat oven to 185°C. Wash potatoes and cauliflower. Peel potatoes. Cut both vegetables into bite sized chunks and place them in oven. Bake for approximately 25-30 minutes or until they are nicely golden brown and fully cooked. Allow vegetables to cool. In a food processor, pulse cauliflower into very fine granules, almost puréed. Mash potatoes using a ricer or food mill. Fold in remaining ingredients. Using an ice cream scoop, portion spaetzle evenly (approximately 25-27g each) and form them into log-shaped balls, like tater-tots. Prepare hot oil for deep frying and bring temperature up to approximately 170°C. Carefully slide spaetzle into oil and fry until they are golden brown, approximately 5-6 minutes. Drain and set aside onto a kitchen paper towel. Serve piping hot as is or with chipotle cashew dressing! Note: This is definitely not spaetzle in the traditional sense but a crossover between boiled then fried spaetzle and the Brazilian cheese bread - Pao de Quiejo. Just all around delicious chewy goodness! Potato Cauliflower Tapioca Flour Nutritional Yeast Salt Sunflower Seed Oil
300g 450g 32g 8g 2-3 tsp 500-800ml 168
DAIKON PANCAKE Prep Time: 20 minutes Cooking Time: 20 minutes Yields: 650g Serves: Approx. 12-16 pancakes
Sorghum Flour Tapioca Flour Potato Starch Salt Five Spice Powder White Pepper Powder Daikon Water Rice Bran Oil Mushroom Seasoning Soy Sauce Scallion, chopped and optional Vegan Lap Cheong, diced finely Shiitake Mushrooms, diced finely Sunflower Seed Oil
150g 40g 20g 2g 1 tsp 1/2 tsp 200g 250g 12g 2g 1 tsp 1 Tbsp 2 pcs 6 pcs 1/2 Tbsp 170
Mix sorghum flour, tapioca flour and potato starch together. Whisk in salt, five spice powder and white pepper powder. Grate daikon and drain out excess liquid. Mix water, rice bran oil, soy sauce and mushroom seasoning together. Whisk into dry mixture. Add grated daikon, shiitake, vegan lap cheong and chopped scallion. Whisk and fold until well combined. Heat up a non-stick pan with sunflower seed oil on medium-high heat. Using a ladle, scoop a big spoonful of batter on to the pan and allow the components within the dough to spread evenly. Bring the heat down to medium and allow the pancake to crisp up for approximately 6-8 minutes. You will see that it is ready to flip once the edges have dried and turned golden brown. Flip onto the other side and allow to cook through for a further 5-6 minutes until golden brown. Serve with Chinese XO chili oil (pg.49) or Hong Kong-style chili sauce.
NEVER MISS THE MEAT
THE SHROOM KINGDOM
ORIGIN Mushrooms have been foraged since pre-historic times and there are evidence that fungi first appeared in the diets of early settlers in Europe. Mushrooms, including truffles, were prized in ancient Greece, Rome and Egypt. Some experts claim that mushrooms, namely shiitakes, were probably first cultivated in China and Japan as early as 600 AD. TYPES There are over 10,000 species of mushrooms. Categories: Cultivated, Wild, Medicinal, Psychoactive, Poisonous, Useful (Saprotrophic / Mychorrizal / Parasitic / Endophytes) Popular Edible & Medicinal: Button / Cremini / Portobello / Oyster / King Oyster / Chanterelle / Porcini / Hedgehog / Morel / Black Trumpet / Enoki / Shimeji / Maitake / Shiitake / Matsutake / Lion’s Mane / Reishi MEDICINAL MUSHROOMS Top 7: Lion’s Mane / Reishi / Cordyceps / Chaga / Turkey Tail / Shiitake / Maitake Mushrooms are packed with nutrients and health benefits. They are anti-inflammatory, full of anti-oxidants, and positively impact blood sugar, brain health, respiratory congestion, the nervous system, the body’s energy and stamina. 172
Medicinal mushrooms are unique as they have the ability to adapt, in order to support the resiliency and health of human beings. These organisms were used in Asia thousands of years ago, lauded for their immunity and longevity support. MYCORRHIZAL IN SOIL These mushrooms have a symbiotic relationship with trees and other plants. The roots of mushrooms attach themselves into the roots of other plants. The mushrooms give extra moisture and nutrients to the plants they are paired with. And in return, the plant gives them sugars to grow as well as nourish our soil. Common mycorrhizal mushrooms include: Truffles / Porcini / Chanterelles / Matsutake. ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT Mushrooms produce relatively high yields from a very small physical footprint. Mushroom growers are ultimate recyclers, they can take waste from other sectors of the agriculture industry and compost it into substrate, which is the organic matter mushrooms grow in. Serious mushroom cultivation can be a fairly energy-intensive operation, requiring high-tech climate and humidity control.
Carbon has been labeled as the enemy and given a bad rep due to its role in climate change (namely excess carbon dioxide and methane in the atmosphere). However, the much overlooked fact is that carbon is also the backbone of life on Earth. It is in everything and life without it would not be possible. Every organic life form, including the cells in our body rely on it. Carbon has the unique ability to form several types of bonds with a wide variety of elements and it happens to be a very stable element too. No other element is capable of forming such large and complex molecules. To give you an idea, without carbon, DNA and protein structures would not be able to form and fats and sugars would not exist.
Carbon is also present in Earth’s natural cycle. It flows between the atmosphere, oceans, trees and the soil. The balance of carbon in these global reservoirs is vital for life. Organisms can use organic, carbon-containing molecules for energy production. For example, organisms like plants, rely on photosynthesis to grow. That means they require carbon dioxide, water and sunlight to survive and thrive. But due to our reliance on burning fossil fuels for energy, we release carbon in the air 100 times faster than natural processes can return it back to Earth. However, not all hope is lost. Carbon can in fact be seen as an opportunity. By sequestering carbon in the soil, we are actually feeding a healthy microbial life underground and in turn, we can mitigate the harmful impact carbon has when it is released into our atmosphere. This practice is also known as “carbon farming” or “regenerative farming” and it provides humanity a chance to rehabilitate our farming systems by rebuilding soil organic matter and restoring degraded soil biodiversity. A few examples of its conservation methods are compost application, cover cropping, and ethically managed animal grazing. Regenerative agriculture is an approach that is gaining worldwide attention due to its potential role in reversing climate change - a topic that the recent Netflix documentary “Kiss The Ground” explored. As a result, every farm that practices “carbon/regenerative farming” is not only producing better food but is now an active player in drawing down carbon and reducing greenhouse gases in our atmosphere. 175
Never Miss the Meat
MEATY MAINS Sprouted Seed “Tuna” Mayo Popcorn “Chicken” “Lamb” Stew
Food is more than flavour. Back in the 1960s, my maternal grandfather used to be a BBQ meat chef in Tai Hang village, where the annual fire dragon dance is held. He created the initial version of the “Pei Pa Duck” - duck marinated with fermented red bean curd, five spice, hoisin sauce and honey, then bathed in oil. The end result is a layer of super crispy skin with juicy and tender flesh. My mom and her siblings grew up poor, like many people from that generation, and they would scavenge the village for food. Once, she dropped a half-eaten popsicle in the sewer and didn’t even think twice to retrieve it. Being a BBQ meat chef was my grandfather’s way of earning an income to survive in the city. Similarly, my paternal side of the family moved from Canton province down to Hong Kong in the 1950s. They were also poor and would scavenge for food when they were growing up. As time went by, most people in Hong Kong became more affluent yet their mindset had stayed the same. Poverty is not that distant of a memory. My dad would still eat meat 3 times a day because eating meat is tied to his identity. For that generation, meat equates to surviving and thriving. It is a symbol of wealth. Thus, it is difficult to alter the mindset of those who grew up deprived of these foods. Beyond the ethical and environmental issues related to the cultivation of meat, meat consumption remains a cultural and societal issue. The latter is often more difficult to
challenge. We need to acknowledge the reasons behind why meat is essential to us that goes beyond just flavour. By respecting people’s choices and cultural identities before gradually changing their mindsets through creating flavours and textures equivalent to, or even better than meat, we can then slowly shift people towards consumption that is more sustainable for our planet and future generations. The question I pose is: how do we move forward with the scientific knowledge that we have now and redefine affluence? Today, the meaning of affluence is the ability to distinguish what is reasonable for sustainable consumption. Raising animals for human consumption is extremely carbon intensive and has proven to contribute to at least 18% of global emissions (FAO, 2006). Coupled with the increase of mass deforestation, factory farm runoff leading to ocean dead zones, as well as marine wildlife and habitat loss, the way that we have raised animals for human consumption is undeniably detrimental to our planet. The way we have allowed industrial agriculture to deplete a third of our earth’s topsoil has sped up climate change and thrown two thirds of all living species out of kilter. In an average diet, animal products make up 60% of emissions despite accounting for just a quarter of the caloric energy it provides. While the world’s population has more than doubled since the 1960s, our planet’s natural resources have shrunk and depleted over time mainly due to the way we grow food. Acknowledging that a diet high in animal protein is twice the carbon footprint of a vegetarian’s, or 2.5 times that of a vegan diet, may just be the first step to owning our wealth and affluence in the age of the Anthropocene. 179
SPROUTED SEED “TUNA” MAYO
Carbon Emission Per Recipe Tuna Mayo / 2265 gCO2eq “Tuna” Mayo (V) / 933 gCo2eq
Prep Time: 8 hours soaking + 20 minutes to blend Yields: 400g
Soak raw almonds for at least Combine cashew cream base 8 hours in filtered water. with the bowl of almonds, seeds Separately, soak sunflowers seeds and mushrooms. for 4 hours and cashews for at Adjust seasoning to taste. least 2 hours. Store in an air tight tupperware Drain nuts and seeds and rinse in the fridge for up to 7 days. through with filtered water once more. In a food processor, separately pulse almonds, sunflower seeds and white button mushrooms to a finely minced consistency. Set aside in a large bowl. In a high speed blender, blend cashews and the remaining ingredients until creamy.
140g Raw Almonds 120g Raw Sunflower Seeds 90g Raw Cashews 500g White Button Mushroom 90ml Filtered Water 60ml Tamari Soy Sauce 30ml Apple Cider Vinegar 30ml Lemon Juice 1.5 Tbsp Liquid Aminos 1-1.5 tsp Salt 1/2 tsp Pepper 180
Carbon Emission Per Recipe Popcorn Chicken / 523 gCO2eq Popcorn “Chicken” (V) / 86 gCO2eq
Prep Time: 20 minutes Cooking Time: 8-10 minutes Yields: 600g Serves: 4-6
For Gluten Free Popcorn Deep fry until they are golden Batter: Whisk flour, corn brown for approximately 8-10 starch, baking powder and water minutes. Then drain them on together. Allow mixture to sit at kitchen paper towel. Toss them room temperature for at least an in a mixing bowl with galangal hour. powder. Serve with your choice of dressing like vegan mayo Whisk in oil when it is ready to (pg.113), chipotle cashew mayo be used. (pg.52), truffle mayo etc. Cut lion’s mane mushrooms into 2-3 bite-sized pieces. Pro tip: Different GF mixes Coat them with popcorn will understandably affect batter, making sure to shake the outcome of your recipes. off the excess batter from the Many GF flour brands rely on mushrooms. a mixture of rice, soy, corn flour as well as an additional Fry them evenly at 165-170°C amount of modified starches and always in batches so you and raising agents to mimic the won’t bring the temperature too same leavening effect that wheat far down. flour provides. Read the labels to look for cleaner substitutions
Lion’s Mane Mushroom (pre-brined) Gluten Free Batter Galangal Powder
and adjust the amount of rising agents needed yourself to make your recipe work. Here are a couple of my favourites:
500g 200g 2 tsp
Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 Baking Gluten Free Flour
Gluten Free Popcorn Batter Gluten Free Flour Corn Starch (Non-GMO) Baking Powder Water Oil
Bob’s Red Mill GF All Purpose Baking Flour
150g 2g 8g 220g 40g
Doves Farm GF Plain White Flour
Carbon Emission Per Recipe Lamb Stew / 8356 gCO2eq “Lamb” Stew (V) / 729 gCO2eq
Prep Time: 20 minutes Cooking Time: 2 hours Yields: 4-5kg Serves: 8-10
“Lamb” Stew Sunflower Seed Oil Fermented Tofu Red Bean Tofu Ginger, peeled and sliced Chinese Cooking Wine Water Chestnut Bamboo Shoots Dried Shiitake Mushroom, soak for 8 hours Water Kaffir Lime Leaf Dried Wood Ear Mushroom Bean Curd Puff Bean Curd Sheets Tamari Soy Sauce Coconut Sugar Mushroom Seasoning Seasonal Leafy Greens Salt
120ml 750g 96g 500g 160ml 350g 170g 300g 8L 8 leaves 150g 200g 200g 60ml 120g 5g 1kg to taste
“Lamb” Stew Dipping Sauce Fermented Tofu Kaffir Lime Leaf Coconut Sugar Toasted Sesame Oil
375g 7g 48g 60ml 183
For “Lamb” Stew: In a large approximately 45 minutes. stock pot, heat up oil over medium-high heat. Add sliced By now the stock would have ginger to bloom, stirring reduced by a third. Add in frequently, approximately 3 remaining ingredients except minutes. salt. Bring stock back to a boil, then allow to simmer again for Add fermented tofu and red another 30-45 minutes or until bean tofu and sauté them to the stew has thickened and all further caramelize and allow ingredients have absorbed the flavours to develop. flavours from the stew. Adjust seasoning to taste. At this point, deglaze with chinese cooking wine, then For “Lamb” Stew Dipping add in water chestnut, bamboo Sauce: Finely slice kaffir lime shoots, soaked shiitake leaf. Blend together fermented mushroom and kaffir lime tofu, coconut sugar and toasted leaves. Top with water. sesame oil. Fold in half of the kaffir lime leaves and use the rest Cover with a lid and bring to garnish. stock to a boil. Then turn down the heat to medium and Store in an air tight container in allow the stew to simmer for the fridge for up to 3 weeks.
To Assemble: As a hot pot stew, prepare seasonal leafy greens on the side and blanch them as you eat the warming stew with steamed rice and dipping sauce.
THE COLLECTIVE’S TABLE
The initial years of operating Grassroots was truly a testing phase for me, both as a chef and business owner. I made many mistakes that I learnt quickly from and we kept evolving as the years went on. The fact that we opened in one of the only non-gentrified locations on Hong Kong Island in 2012 meant that most of the restaurant industry back then didn’t really take us seriously. But then, when we moved to 108 Hollywood Road with a doorfront that spanned 6-7 metres wide, I was determined to have our message heard. So in 2016, as I was discussing with my PR agent about what more I can do to encourage people to take plant-based offerings and its ethos more seriously, the idea of hosting guest chef pop-ups developed. This eventually became the series “The Collective’s Table”. The idea was to give chefs the chance to explore innovative plant-based cooking, while we prepared a multi-course vegetarian/ vegan menu served for one night only. This exchange and open transfer of knowledge was still rare 5-6 years ago, but that was exactly what I needed to bridge the gap between what people viewed as a “Chef” vs. a “Female Plant-Based Chef”. Within the span of three years, we had done 11 pop-ups with a line up of some of the most well-respected chefs in Asia, where we would often travel to cook with vacuum bags of powder and frozen shrooms in our luggages.
Today, I see “The Collective’s Table” as a foreshadow of what we now as an industry could achieve - Collective action and Activism. I have faith that the world can do more, and do better, if we do it together. 186
Briefing with Chef Nate Green for TCT4: ‘Roots to Fruits’, 2017
Pink Oyster Mushroom Ceviche TCT9: ‘7-chakras’, 2018
The most decorative set up to invite Chef Margarita Forés to TCT5: ‘Homegrown Roots’, 2017
Our first overseas TCT at Hey Handsome, Manila 2017
First TCT with Chef Richard Ekkebus, 2016 187
Never Miss the Meat
INSPIRED DISHES Shimeji Mushroom Bisque Lion’s Mane Inasal Eggplant Tofu Bolo Whole Roasted Cabbage
SHIMEJI MUSHROOM BISQUE
Carbon Emission Per Recipe Lobster Bisque / 13150 gCO2eq Shimeji Bisque / 1012g CO2eq
Prep Time: 25 minutes Cooking Time: 3 hours Yields: 500g Serves: 6-8
Roasted Shimeiji Mushrooms Sunflower Seed Oil White Shimeji Mushroom
Sunflower Seed Oil Carrot, peeled and diced into 1”x1” cubes Celeriac, peeled and diced into 1”x1” cubes Fennel, diced into 1”x 1” cubes Red Bell Pepper, de-seed and cut into 1”x1” squares Tomato Paste Organic Tapioca Starch White Wine Brandy Basic White Stock or Water Bay Leaves Thyme Rosemary Annatto Seeds Black Peppercorn Saffron Salt Pepper Mushroom Seasoning
50ml 500g 500g 300g 250g 500g 125g 180ml 125ml 5L 4 leaves 20g 20g 2 Tbsp 2 Tbsp 1 Tbsp 2-3 tsp 1/2-1 tsp 1-2 tsp
For Roasted Shimeji Mushrooms: Preheat oven to 150°C.
must be reduced first. In the meantime, stir and scrape the bottom of the pot with a wooden spatula to remove “le suc” - the solid sugar elements left Separate shimeji mushrooms and toss with sunon the pan when the liquids from ingredients such flower seed oil. Spread evenly across several baking as vegetables or meat have evaporated. This suc sheets and slow roast for approximately 1-1.5 hours, adds tons of flavour to the stock and is an essential stirring around every 15-20 minutes to allow for step to how we build up flavours to everything we even roast. Cook until mushrooms are almost fully cook. dried to the touch. You will realise that the drier it gets, the more its flavours will resemble prawn Once the base stock has reduced by a third, add or lobster shells. basic white stock and a “bouquet garni” of bay leaves, thyme, rosemary, annatto seeds, black peppercorn and saffron. Coat large stock pot with oil and bring to medium-high heat. Add carrot, celeriac and fennel then roast on medium heat and stir occassionally, allow Cover pot with lid and bring stock to a boil. Turn the “mirepoix” (a French culinary term to describe heat down to medium and allow stock to simmer flavour base made from cooked diced vegetables) to for approximately 45 minutes until stock has reduced by a third. brown for approximately 10 minutes. Pass stock through a "chinois" or a fine sieve. The Add red bell peppers, roasted shimeji mushrooms bisque should be thicker than broth. Reserve inand roast further for another 5 minutes. side a medium-sized stockpot separately. Add tomato paste and “pincer la tomate”, a classic Cool 500ml of the broth to room temperature, French culinary technique that cooks the tomato paste on direct heat, which concentrates the flavor then add into a high speed blender with approxiof the tomato paste and caramelises it. This adds a mately a cup each of the stewed mirepoix, shimeji and bell peppers. Blend until puréed. Pour into the layer of umami and gives the sauce/stock a darker stockpot with bisque and bring back to a boil. Adcolour. just density of bisque with a dash more liquid, or Add tapioca starch and stir through into the mire- keep reducing to produce a thicker bisque. Season with salt, pepper and mushroom seasoning. poix to “singer” - sprinking flour over ingredients that were cooked in oil/fat. This helps thicken the Serve with a drizzle of olive oil and toasted sourbisque. dough. Turn the heat up to medium-high and deglaze with white wine and brandy. Anytime wine or an acidic ingredient is added to a base stock, the mixture
LION’S MANE INASAL Prep Time: 2 hours 10 minutes Cooking Time: 35 minutes Yields: 450g Serves: 4
For Annatto Oil: Place all ingredients in a medium-sized stock pot. Bring oil to a simmer on medium heat. Allow to infuse and cool down before transferring to an air tight glass container. Make sure fresh ingredients are submerged into the liquids. Keep in room temperature. Annatto Oil Lemongrass, bruised Galangal, cut into 1” knobs Annatto Seed Sunflower Seed Oil
2 sticks 30g 10g 300ml
Infused Vinegar Apple Cider Vinegar Brown Rice Vinegar Red Bird’s Eye Chilli, cut in half lengthwise Coconut Sugar Lemongrass, bruised Galangal, cut into 1” knobs Ginger, cut into 1” knobs Garlic, smashed (optional)
115ml 115ml 2 pcs 30g 3 sticks 30g 30g 2 cloves
Lion’s Mane Mushroom Fresh Lion’s Mane Mushroom Infused Vinegar Lime Juice Annatto Oil Salt Black Pepper Annatto Oil Vegan Butter
500g 150ml 50ml 45ml 2-3tsp 1-2tsp 30ml 30g
For Infused Vinegar: Place vinegars and sugar in a small-sized pot. Bring vinegar to a boil or until the sugar has melted. Add remaining ingredients. Allow ingredients to infuse into the vinegar and cool down before transfering to an air tight glass container. Make sure fresh ingredients are submerged in the liquids. Keep at room temperature. For Marinating Lion’s Mane Mushrooms: Marinate lion’s mane mushrooms with vinegar along with some of the infusion ingredients, lime juice, annatto oil and black pepper evenly. Set aside at room temperature for at least 2 hours, up to 6 hours. In a grill/cast iron sauté pan, melt vegan butter in annatto oil. Keep heat on medium-high. Add the marinated mushrooms and sear them to golden brown on all sides, basting generously with the annatto and vegan butter. Turn the heat down to low-medium and allow the mushrooms to heat through and become crispy and slightly charred, approximately 15-20 minutes. Serve with sinamak - Filipino spiced vinegar, or homemade pickles!
One of Grassroots Pantry’s outstanding features were the lion’s mane mushrooms we served on our menus. Until most recently, these mushrooms (which were often known as ‘hedgehog mushroom’ to the regional market) were seldom served in commercial restaurants, let alone Western-style restaurants. GP put them up front and centre for the world to cherish this humble plant ingredient. Lion’s mane is a superfood mushroom and an adaptogen which helps to balance brain functions and the hormone system. They are generally best consumed seeped in teas, elixirs or tonic broths but due to their meaty, stringy and fibrous nature, I think it would be a waste to not take advantage of their textures. From popcorn chicken to schnitzel, smoked reuben to sweet and sour ‘pork’, these lion’s mane mushrooms have travelled the world with us, allowing more people to truly appreciate the myriad of culinary applications and healing benefits they offer. 193
EGGPLANT TOFU BOLO
Carbon Emission Per Recipe Beef Bolognese / 2049 gCO2eq Eggplant Tofu Bolognese / 710 gCO2eq
Prep Time: 15 minutes Cooking Time: 60 minutes Yields: 1.5kg Serves: 4-6
Eggplant Tofu Bolo 50ml 300g 3 pcs 3g 5g 8g 40g 600g 50ml 5g 250-500ml 1 tsp 2 tsp to taste to taste 20g 15g
Extra Virgin Olive Oil Eggplant, diced Firm Tofu, crumbled by hand Garlic, minced (optional) Fennel Seeds Chili Flake Tomato Paste Organic Tomatoes, chopped Red Wine Fresh Oregano Water Coconut Sugar Mushroom Seasoning Pink Salt Black Pepper Vegan Butter Fresh Italian Basil Whole Wheat Rigatoni
Whole Wheat Pasta Water 194
Heat a large-rimmed skillet or Crueset style pot (as large as possible to give room for browning) over medium heat. Once hot, add oil and eggplants and sauté for 4-5 minutes until they are translucent and soft, stirring frequently. Add minced tofu and garlic, making sure that the tofu is spread out across the pan to ensure that all surfaces get browned. Add fennel seeds and chili flakes. Sauté for 8-10 minutes on medium heat, stirring frequently, until everything is golden brown. Turn down the heat if browning becomes too quick. Add tomato paste and brown. Deglaze with red wine and let it reduce by half. Add chopped tomatoes, stir frequently and allow to simmer and reduce for about 8 minutes. Top Bolognese base with just enough water to cover the solids. Stir to combine, bring to a boil and let it simmer for 15-25 minutes, until the Bolo sauce thickens. Bring 2.5L water to a boil, add whole wheat rigatoni (or any pasta of your choice). Stir occassionally and check that pasta is only 70-80% done. Using a sieve, sift pasta out of the cooking liquid directly into the bolo sauce. Stir and let pasta finish cooking in the Bolo sauce, absorbing all of the flavours while it thickens the sauce further. If the sauce becomes too thick, thin it out with half a ladle to a ladle of pasta cooking water. Season with mushroom seasoning, coconut sugar, salt and pepper. Stir in vegan butter and fresh basil. Serve al dente with a drizzle of olive oil and a shaving of vegan parmesan if desired.
WHOLE ROASTED CABBAGE Prep Time: 15 minutes Cooking Time: 25 minutes Yields: 700g Serves: 4
enclose the cabbage within. Repeat with Preheat oven/toaster oven to 180°C. remaining wedges. Mix olive oil, nutritional yeast, salt and Place on baking sheet and bake for 20-25 pepper together in a small mixing bowl. minutes. Cut cabbage lengthwise and divide into Open up foil paper and serve this meaty, 6-8 wedges. cheesy cabbage as is or with pasta or rice. Massage nutritional yeast marinade into the cabbage and in between the leaves. In a non-stick pan, sear flat surfaces of cabbage over medium-high heat until golden brown, approximately 2 minutes on each side. Prepare 18cm x 18cm aluminum sheets for each wedge of cabbage. Place cabbage in the middle of aluminum with a knob of vegan butter. Fold foil paper to
Extra Virgin Olive Oil Nutritional Yeast Salt Pepper Round/Flat/Sweetheart Cabbage Vegan Butter, cut in knobs
120ml 30g 1.5 Tbsp 2 tsp 800-1000g 40g 196
THE CHEFS’ MANIFESTO
Chefs’ Manifesto is facilitated by the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 2 Advocacy Hub, which brings together global organisations to campaign for ending hunger, achieving food security and improved nutrition, and promoting sustainable agriculture by 2030. The community consists of more than 900 chefs from 80 countries, striving to progress towards solving food system issues and inspiring change in kitchens, eateries, local communities, relevant companies and even governments. The “8 Thematic Areas” framework (tied to the UNSDGs), empowers chefs to bridge the gap between farm to table by following a set of simple yet impactful actions. 198
Never Miss the Meat
SOMETHING FANCY Coconut Squid Lentil Mushroom Pâté Topinambour St. Jacques Shiitake Teff Gnocchi Vegan Spinch Pasta
Growing up in Montreal was where my love for food really began. The city is a beautiful blend of European and North American manners, a melting pot of immigrants from all over the world. I remember how diverse the neighbourhoods were. There were rows of Italian streets, adjacent to the Lebanese, Greek, Vietnamese and Chinese quarters. As a result, authentic cuisine was readily available to us while growing up there. We were spoiled. Crescent Street was a downtown prime spot lined with eateries where one fancy resto called Les Halles (no, not related to Anthony Boudain’s in NYC) lived. I vividly remember the gold rimmed ceramic plates served on starched white table cloths with silver cutleries and polished candle stands. The waiters wore black trousers with matching vests and bow ties. That was my first encounter with finedining. There we were - my mom, my eight-year-old brother, me and my baby cousin - seated at a round table next to an old European bay window. I had no idea why they would even let us into the restaurant. My six-year-old self had foie gras pâté and raspberry sorbet for the first time. We always knew what ice cream was but eating that sorbet just elevated my perception of what ice cream could be to a whole new level. In the following years, we discovered so much fancy food and had meals at “adult tables”, even though we weren’t eating properly most of the time. But the biggest lesson I learnt from those experiences was to truly appreciate beautiful things - the time and effort it took for these creations to manifest, especially ones that reside in people’s stomachs and memories.
Carbon Emission Per Recipe Squid / 1659 gCO2eq Coconut Squid / 467 gCO2eq
Prep Time: 20 minutes + 8 hours to marinate Dehydrating Time: 2-4 hours Cooking Time: 20 minutes Yields: 450g Serves: 4
Drain and reserve young coconut water for personal consumption. Scoop coconut flesh out of young coconut. Section into fillet slices. Bring a small pot of water and kelp sheets to a boil. Simmer coconut meat in dashi for 10 minutes. Keep in mind here that younger coconut flesh will have a softer silkier texture, which will only require approximately 2-3 minutes of simmering time. Older coconut flesh will require a longer simmer of up to 10 minutes. Dunk into ice bath to stop its cooking immediately. Drain young coconut, pat them dry, then lay them out on dehydrator mesh sheets to dry at 46°C for 2 hours on each side. Younger and softer flesh will only require an hour on each side. Alternatively, allow to air-dry for 6-8 hours. Mix avocado oil, kombu powder, salt and pepper together. Marinate young coconut with the oil overnight or at least 8 hours. Turn on broiler function in oven/toaster oven. Place young coconut sheets on baking sheet and broil on both sides until crispy, charred and golden brown. Alternatively, you may use a blow torch, or simply pan fry coconut squid.
Green Sauce and Aji Amarillo Cashew Mayo made this outstanding on the Nectar menu.
Young Coconut Water Kelp Kombu Powder Avocado Oil Salt Pepper
500g 1L 5 x 2” sheets 1 tsp 100ml 1/2 tsp 1/4 tsp 201
Be as creative as you’d like with coconut squid!
Stir-fry with black bean sauce or deep fry in batter then serve with a cashew remoulade or chipotle mayo. The preparation here is time-consuming but it’s definitely worth the wait! 202
LENTIL MUSHROOM PÂTÉ
Carbon Emission Per Recipe Pork Pâté / 2598 gCO2eq Lentil Mushroom Pâté / 685 g CO2eq
Prep Time: 30 minutes Cooking Time: 20 minutes Yields: 580g
Rinse green lentils in running water. Place in a small saucepot and top up with triple the amount of water. Bring to a boil, then turn down heat to allow lentils to simmer for approximately 20-25 minutes. Once they are cooked, drain and pass through running cold filtered water. Reserve on the side.
Green Lentils Extra Virgin Olive Oil White Button Mushroom, sliced Salt Pepper Sage leaves, leaves picked, finely chopped Shallot, minced (optional) Cognac or Brandy Walnut, toasted Lemon Juice Soy Sauce Mushroom Seasoning Rosemary, leaves picked, finely chopped Thyme, leaves picked Coconut Sugar Cayenne Pepper
220g 30g 80g 1/2 tsp 1/4 tsp 1 sprig 20g 15ml 35g 12-15ml 10ml 10g half sprig half sprig 7-8g 2.5g
Coat sauté pan with oil and turn heat on to medium-high. Sauté sliced button mushrooms, making sure not to crowd the pan. Allow mushrooms to turn golden brown. Toss in sage leaves and shallots then sauté until fragrant and that shallots are caramelised, approximately 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Deglaze with cognac or brandy and then reduce on medium heat, until the alcohol has evaporated and that the jus has reduced and fully absorbed by mushroom mixture. Place mushroom mixture and all other ingredients into food processor. Process until a chunky paste is formed. If you wish to achieve a smoother texture, continue to process until a smooth paste is formed. Store in an air tight glass jar in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. Serve with sourdough toast or any other creative way as you wish!
TOPINAMBOUR ST. JACQUES Prep Time: 25 minutes Cooking Time: 50 minutes Yields: 480g Serves: 4
Pan-fried, basted, then slow roasted, Jerusalem Artichokes gives off some of the most complex flavours.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil Shallots, finely diced Italian Parsley, finely chopped Tarragon, finely chopped Dry Vermouth/White Wine Cashew Béchamel (pg.41) Chickpea Miso Nutritional Yeast Fresh Lemon Juice Salt Black Pepper
20g 15g 10g 5g 180ml 50g 10g 3g 15ml to taste to taste
Roasted Jerusalem Artichokes Jurusalem Artichokes Sunflower Seed Oil Vegan Butter Salt Black Pepper
500g 60g 50g 23g 5g 205
For Jerusalem Artichokes: Wash and peel Add cashew béchamel, miso, nutritional yeast and jerusalem artichokes. Once peeled, cut horizontally lemon juice. Whisk and allow sauce to emulsify. into 1” thick pieces, resembling scallops. To Assemble: Place roasted jerusalem artichokes Score them on both sides with criss-cross markings. in a gratin dish or baking tray, slather with the the cashew herbed sauce. Bake for another 5-10 minutes until gratinated. Finish with a sprinkling of Coat sauté pan with oil and turn heat on to fresh herbs and season to taste. medium-high. Sear artichokes on both sides until golden brown, approximately 3-4 minutes on each side on medium heat. Turn heat down to low, add 50ml of water into pan, cover with lid and allow to steam for 5-10 minutes or until cooked through. This will depend on the sizes of the artichokes. The smaller they are, the less time it will take to cook them through. But essentially, if they’re thoroughly cooked, they should no longer be crunchy but a texture that’s between cooked cauliflower and boiled potatoes. Baste with vegan butter and season with salt and pepper. In a deep skillet, sweat shallots in olive oil on lowmedium heat. Add parsley and tarragon. Cook for approximately 5-6 minutes until fragrant. Turn heat on to medium-high for a minute, then deglaze with vermouth or white wine. Let it simmer and reduce by half then turn heat back down to low-medium. 206
SHIITAKE TEFF GNOCCHI Prep Time: 75 minutes Cooking Time: 45 minutes Yields: 800g Serves: 4
This recipe represents an honest and ingenious take on some lesser known and often forgotten ingredients. Prepare for umami-in-your-mouth.
Teff Flour Mix Ivory Teff Flour White Rice Flour Tapioca Starch Sorghum Flour Xanthan Gum
88g 35g 18g 35g 1g
Russet Potato, washed Sunflower Seed Oil Shiitake Stem, roasted Teff Flour Mix Nutritional Yeast Salt Pepper Extra Virgin Olive Oil Nutritional Yeast Broccolini Cashew Béchamel (pg.41) Pumpkin Seed Pesto (pg.53) Salt Pepper
600g 60ml 100g 175g 25g 1/2 tsp 1/2 tsp 30ml 2-3g 200g 200g 120g to taste to taste 207
fork, roll downwards to create ridges on the dough. Sprinkle with a little bit of teff flour and toss, so they don’t stick together. Bring salted water to a boil, turn heat down to medium and boil gnocchi. Stirring occasionally to make sure none of the gnocchis get stuck to the bottom of the pot. They are ready when they float to the top. Drain gnocchi and reserve on an oiled tray. Heat olive oil in a non-stick frying pan over high heat and add the gnocchi. Add nutritional yeast and season to your liking. Fry until crisp on the outside and warm all the way through, about 3 minutes. Remove from the pan and leave to drain on kitchen paper towel. On the same pan, add washed broccolini and sauté with an extra drizzle of olive oil, salt and pepper, about 3 minutes. Serve gnocchi with sautéed broccolini, cashew béchamel, pumpkin seed pesto or any sauce as you wish!
Preheat oven to 180°C. For Teff Flour Mix: Whisk flours together well and reserve in a mixing bowl. Place russet potatoes with skin on baking sheet, drizzle with oil and bake for 25-30 minutes or until they are fully cooked. Remove from oven, cool off and peel off potato skins. Place potato flesh in a stand mixer. Add shiitake stems, teff flour, nutritional yeast, salt and pepper, then blend using the paddle attachment, or mash together with a potato masher, until shiitake stems have broken up and the flour and potatoes are all evenly mixed together. The remaining steam from the potatoes will help moisten up the dough so try to avoid adding any extra water. Knead until well incorporated. On a lightly-floured surface, cut small amounts of dough to form 2cm wide ropes and cut into 2.5cm pieces, then slide each piece against the back of a
VEGAN SPINACH PASTA Prep Time: 25 minutes Cooking Time: 5 minutes Yields: 1.5-1.7kg
For Spinach Purée: Wash spinach and remove roots. Cut spinach in half where the stems and leaves connect. In the meantime, bring water to a boil in a medium stock pot. Prepare an ice bath on the side. Once the water is rolling, dunk spinach into the hot water for approximately 15 seconds just to wilt the spinach slightly, then strain them into an ice bath to shock them, which will stop the cooking process. Using your hands, wring out excess water from the blanched spinach and reserve on the side. After blanching and wringing, you will yield approximately 350g of spinach. Finely chop spinach and add to a high speed blender. Blend until well puréed and add a touch of water to help the blender going, if necessary. Reserve in an air tight container in the fridge until ready to use.
This is an inspired take on Crossroad’s vegan pasta recipe. We’ve made various derivatives since then using extra firm tofu as the ‘egg’-binding base.
In a clean high speed blender, mix spinach purée, salt and firm tofu together, then blend until a smooth paste is achieved.
Spinach Purée Spinach Water Spinach Purée Firm Tofu Organic All Purpose Flour Salt
800g 2L 250g 2 pc 1100g 1 tsp 209
Place flour into stand mixer with the paddle attachment. Alternatively, place flour onto countertop and create a well in the middle. Add purée into the well and begin incoporating the flour into the purée. Knead for approximately 8-10 minutes or until fully incorporated. Let dough rest in the fridge for approximately 15 minutes before rolling them out to your desired pasta shapes.
A DROP OF NECTAR
At Grassroots, Earth Hour became a ritual. It was a day where we could dedicate an entire meal towards discussions around how we can improve our best practices so not to further harm our planet. What started out as a 5-course all raw menu plated in the dark with just a flicker of candlelight, gradually turned into a full blown 12-course Edible Solutions menu in 2019. Still done in the dark. It was a fun way to get our staff to recognise how reliant we are on our planet’s natural resources and to inspire them to better conserve and restore them. Earth Hour also took me to places I’d never thought I would venture to as a part of my culinary repertoire. It’s where I first began to learn methods to produce dishes that could retain most of the nutrients of ingredients within. From green gazpachos to zucchini lasagnes, nut mayos to raw cakes - working with raw food techniques expanded my knowledge tremendously. I began combining raw food techniques with my classical french training to create dishes that were not only complex and textural, but also nutrient-dense. With that said, the quality of your ingredients matter immensely when treating raw foods because no heat is present to the point where you can hide any hints of flaw. By quality, we also mean the ability to obtain a higher value of nutrient-density per calorie, while taking environmental and health impact into account. In other words, consuming sugar isn’t simply for the sake of satisfying your sweet tooth. Go for high quality, least-processed, fairly-traded and organic/ regeneratively harvested sugars. I assure you that your appreciation for well-designed and consciously-grown ingredients will increase vastly and ultimately, it will prove to you the concept that “Less Is Truly More”. 211
Setting up the restaurant for Earth hour was like Christmas to me - a celebration I looked forward to annually.
Many special zen moments cooking under candlelight.
Faux Gras: a raw, plant-based and sustainable take on Foie Gras using raw cacao butter and tahini. 212
A Drop of Nectar
RAW DESSERTS Raw Blueberry Cheesecake Raw Passionfruit-Chocolate Mousse Cake Raw Tiramisu Mango Chia Seed Pudding Salted Caramel Banana Choco Tart
This cheesecake is my debut to the raw food universe. It is amongst the first batches of recipes I made using merely raw, nutrient-dense, plant-based ingredients with the help of some useful kitchen gadgets like a high speed blender and dehydrator. Where I had always acquainted desserts with eggs, sugar, butter and milk, this cashew and coconut base blew my mind the first time I tried it. Not only was the texture just as good, but I honestly felt better, spiritually and physically, eating it. And that alone motivated me to learn more about how we as chefs can continue to prepare foods that not only tastes delicious, but that are nourishing and nutritious for our customers. One of the initial challenges we had though with raw cakes was that it would melt or leak easily as the only stabilizing ingredient in those recipes were coconut oil. Many hours were spent figuring out what the ratio of solids to liquids should be and how long the cakes should sit in the freezer before transferring it to the fridge that it cuts perfectly. Eventually, we found out how to use the magical irish moss - a type of seaweed which acted like a gelatin and stabilizer and have since used it as a setting agent in several of our dessert recipes. 214
RAW BLUEBERRY CHEESECAKE Prep Time: 40 minutes + 14 hours soaking +16 hours dehydrating Setting Time: 10-12 hours Yields: 1 x 8” cake Serves: 8
Irish Moss Paste Filtered Water Dried Irish Moss Seaweed
2cups 2 cups, packed
Sprouting & Activating Raw Almonds Raw Almonds Pink Salt Filtered Water
2 cups 2 tsp 4-6 cups
Crust Raw Almonds, sprouted & activated Medjool Dates, pitted Shredded Coconut, fine Pink Salt
2 cups 1cup 1/2 cup 1 pinch
Vanilla Coconut Filling Raw Cashews, soak for 4 hours Coconut meat, approximately 2 coconuts Irish Moss Maple Syrup Coconut Oil Lemon Juice Nutritional Yeast Vanilla Pod Blueberries Blueberries (for garnish)
1/2 cup 2.5 cups 120-140g 1/3 cup 1/3 cup 3 Tbsp 1 tsp 1 pc 150g 30g 215
Mistakes in the process makes for some good storytelling. I likely failed more times than I succeeded with this raw cake in 2012.
For Irish Moss Paste: Rinse and soak irish moss with filtered water for at least 12 hours. Rinse again to ensure no salt or impurities remain. Place soaked Irish moss and equal amount of filtered water in a high speed blender until super smooth. The irish moss paste will gelatinise further once set. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a month. For Sprouting & Activating Almonds: Dissolve salt in filtered water. Soak almonds in salt water for 12-14 hours. Rinse almonds through with filtered water and ensure impurities/enzyme inhibitors are washed off. Place almonds on mesh dehydrator sheets and dehydrate for 12-16 hours at 115°F degrees until crisp. Cool off for 5 minutes before storing in air tight glass jars in room temperature for up to 3 weeks. For Crust: In a food processor, pulse medjool dates until broken to pastelike, approximately 30 seconds. Add activated almonds, shredded coconut and a pinch of pink salt and pulse until a sticky crumble is formed. Press crust tightly onto the base of an 8” ring mold. Freeze.
For “Cheese” Filling: Place soaked cashews, coconut meat, irish moss, maple syrup, coconut oil, lemon juice and the seeds of a vanilla pod into a high speed blender. Blend on low for 10-15 seconds until well incorporated, then slowly turn the speed to high and blend for another 30-45 seconds until the cashew coconut base reaches a super smooth, thick and creamy consistency. Pour half of the blended filling into the 8” ring mold. Using an offset spatula, spread and flatten filling aross the mold to ensure there are no air pockets. Place in freezer and set for at least 1 hour. Add 150g blueberries to the remaining cashew coconut base and blend until smooth. Once first layer is set and dry to the touch, gently pour the blueberry filling layer on top. Spread and flatten filling across mold, cover the mold with a lid or cling film, then place in freezer to set for 2 hours, before transferring to the fridge to set for another 6-8 hours. When the cake has set, and is ready to consume, dry off the edges of the ring mold with a kitchen towel to remove all possible condensation. Lift cake off of the ring from the bottom. To Finish: Garnish cake with fresh blueberries and divide into 8 equal pieces. Store cake in an air tight container/cake tupperware for up to 5 days.
RAW PASSIONFRUIT-CHOCOLATE MOUSSE CAKE Prep Time: 40 minutes + 4 hours soaking Setting Time: 10-12 hours Yields: 1 x 8” cake Serves: 8 Raw Brownie Crust Medjool Date, pitted Walnuts, sprouted & activated Almonds, sprouted & activated Coconut Flour Cacao Powder Pink Salt
185g 70g 40g 30g 21g 1g
Passionfruit Mousse Raw Cashews, soak for 4 hours Irish Moss Oat Milk Coconut Oil Passionfruit Purée Coconut Nectar Dates Lecithin Turmeric
160g 45g 140g 52g 180g 35g 1pc 7.5g 1g
Cacao Mousse Oat Milk Coconut Oil Irish Moss Cacao Powder Coconut Nectar Lecithin Medjool Dates, pitted Vanilla Pod Pink Salt
240g 52g 60g 50g 25g 1tbsp 3pcs 1pcs 1/4tsp
Baobab Gelée (optional) Baobab Powder Turmeric Powder Agar Agar Powder Coconut Sugar Water 217
10g 2g 3g 1tbsp 1cup
For Crust: In a food processor, pulse walnuts and almonds into fine granule pieces. Reserve on the side. In the same food processor, pulse medjool dates until broken to pastelike, approximately 30 seconds.
Once the first layer is set and dry to the touch, gently pour the cacao mousse filling layer on top. Spread and flatten filling across mold, cover the mold with a lid or cling film, then place in freezer to set for 2 hours, before transferring to the fridge to set for another 6-8 hours.
Add in coconut flour, cacao powder and pink salt and blend to combine. Blend half of the activated almonds and walnuts until it forms a dough. Add the remaining nuts and pulse to combine.
For Baobab Gelée: In the meantime, place baobab gel ingredients into a small stock pot, bring to a boil then simmer on low-medium heat while whisking to ensure that everything is dissolved, approximately 5 minutes.
Press crust tightly onto the base of an 8”x8” square mold. Pour into a tray/tupperware. Let it set in the fridge For Passionfruit Mousse Filling: Soak raw for at least 2 hours. Dice and reserve for garnish. cashews with filtered water for at least 4 hours. Rinse and drain. To Finish: When cake has set, and is ready to consume, dry off the edges of the mold with a Place passionfruit mousse filling ingredients into kitchen towel to remove all possible condensation. a high speed blender. Blend on low for 10-15 Lift cake off of the edge from the bottom. seconds until cashews and liquids are somewhat well incorporated, then slowly turn the speed to Garnish cake with baobab gelée and divide into 8 high and blend for another 45-60 seconds until equal pieces. the mousse base reaches a super smooth, thick and creamy consistency. Store cake in an air tight container/cake tupperware for up to 5 days. For Cacao Mousse Filling: Place cacao mousse filling ingredients into a high speed blender. Blend on low for 10-15 seconds until well incorporated, then slowly turn the speed to high and blend for another 30-45 seconds until the mousse base reaches a super smooth, thick and creamy consistency. 218
Prep Time: 40 minutes + 4 hours soaking Setting Time: 10-12 hours Yields: Makes 1 x 8”8” square cake Serves: 8
The appreciation for nuts’ versatility is highlighted in this Raw Tiramisu, where the fat in both cashews and macadamias makes for excellent flavour carriers.
Crust Macadamia Almond Flour Cacao Powder Date Espresso
100g 50g 10g 50g 40g
Macadamia Mascarpone Macadamia Raw Cashews Water Coconut Oil Maple Syrup Nutritional Yeast Irish Moss Vanilla, seeds only Salt
100g 125g 100g 100g 75g 3 Tbsp 40g 1/2 pc 2.5 tsp 219
mold to ensure there are no air pockets. Place in freezer to set for 2 hours, before transferring to the fridge to set for another 6-8 hours.
Soak raw cashews with filtered water for at least 4 hours. Rinse and drain. Short-soak macadamia nuts in filtered water for approximately 2 hours, then rinse and drain. This will help moisten the nut and make it easier to blend into a smooth cream. For Crust: In a food processor, pulse walnuts and almonds into fine granule pieces. Reserve on the side. In the same food processor, pulse medjool dates until broken to paste-like, approximately 30 seconds.
To Finish: When cake has set, and is ready to consume, dry off the edges of the mold with a kitchen towel to remove all possible condensation. Lift cake off of the edge from the bottom. Portion tiramisu into 8 equal pieces. Dust each with cacao powder. Store cake in an air tight container/cake tupperware for up to 5 days.
Add in almond flour, cacao powder and espresso to combine. Blend macadamia in until it forms a dough. Press crust tightly onto the base of an 8” ring mold. Freeze. An optional step is to sprinkle a bit more espresso onto the crust after pressed, then spread a thin layer of raw cacao sauce (pg.222) directly onto the crust before freezing. For Macadamia Mascarpone: Place mascarpone filling ingredients into a high speed blender. Blend on low for 10-15 seconds until cashews and liquids are somewhat well incorporated, then slowly turn the speed to high and blend for another 45-60 seconds until the mascarpone reaches a super smooth, thick and creamy consistency. Pour filling into the 8” x 8” square mold. Using an offset spatula, spread and flatten filling aross the
MANGO CHIA SEED PUDDING Prep Time: 20 minutes | Setting Time: 8 hours | Yields: 1kg | Serves: 4-6
Blend mango flesh with maple syrup and coconut milk in a high speed blender until fully puréed. Fold chia seeds into mango coconut purée. Place in the fridge to set, mixing every hour or so for the first 4 hours to ensure that the chia seeds are evenly distributed and do not sink to the bottom. Set for approximately 8-10 hours. Serve with raw granola, coconut whipped cream, quinoa puff or snow fungus. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Mango, skinned and pitted Maple Syrup Coconut Milk Chia Seeds
1000g 40g 200ml 40g 221
SALTED CARAMEL BANANA CHOCO TART Prep Time: 50 minutes Setting Time: 4-5 hours Yields: Makes 1 x 9.5” rectangular tart Serves: 6-7
Crust Raw Almonds, sprouted & activated Medjool Dates, pitted Shredded Coconut Pink Salt Cacao Powder Coconut Oil
1cup 4pcs 1/3 cup 1/4 tsp 1/4 cup 1.5 Tbsp
Raw Cacao Sauce Coconut Nectar Cacao Butter, melted over double boiler Cacao Powder Vanilla Pods Pink Salt Filtered Water
100g 20g 100g 1/2 pc 1/2 tsp 80ml
Banana Ripe Banana, slice horizonally to 1.5cm thick rounds
Salted Almond Caramel Almond Butter Coconut Nectar Pink Salt Flaky Sea Salt
1 cup 1 cup 1/2 tsp for garnish 222
Entirely guilt-free and cruelty-free was the motto for which we carried all the way through to the dessert course.
For Crust: In a food processor, pulse medjool dates until broken to pastelike, approximately 30 seconds.
Using an offset spatula, spread raw cacao sauce over the top of the mold, and mask the edges being exposed on the top as well, creating a smooth and even layer on the top. Add activated almonds, shredded coconut, cacao powder, salt and pulse until a sticky crumble is Set in the fridge for at least 6 hours, then once formed. ready to consume, garnish with a sprinkling of flaky sea salt before portioning into desired sizes. Press crust tightly onto the base of an 9-10" rec tangle fluted mold, pushing the crust towards the side in order to cover the sides of the mold as well. Freeze for at least 1 hour. For Raw Cacao Sauce: Place all ingredients into a high speed blender. Blend on low for 10-15 seconds, then slowly turn the speed up to high and blend for another 20-35 seconds until the chocolate sauce is no longer lumpy. Add 80ml of filtered water or as needed. The texture should be thick but spreadable, much like a mayonnaise texture. For Salted Almond Caramel: Place all ingredients into a high speed blender. Blend on low for 10-15 seconds, then slowly turn the speed to high and blend for another 20-35 seconds until the oils and solids are emulsified and creamy smooth. To Finish: Spread a thin 0.5cm layer of the raw cacao sauce evenly onto the crust. Arrange sliced bananas above the cacao sauce. Pour salted caramel over the layer of banana, all the way near the top of the mold, leaving just approximately 0.5cm of space for the final step.
A Drop of Nectar
DECADENCE & MORE Zucchini Cocao Nib Loaf Hummingbird Cake Coconut Chia Mochi Raw Cocao Buckwheat Barks
ZUCCHINI CACAO NIB LOAF Prep Time: 30 minutes Cooking Time: 40-50 minutes Yields: Makes 1 x 8” loaf
Preheat oven to 180°C. Line an 8” loaf pan with parchment or coat with coconut oil.
They’re great baked as a loaf but feel free to divide batter and bake them in individual muffin liners for 25-35 mins instead!
Soy/Barista Oat Milk Apple Cider Vinegar Olive Oil Coconut Sugar Zucchini Gluten Free Flour Baking Soda Baking Powder Chocolate Chips Cacao Nibs Flax Seed
60g 15g 55g 160g 250g 270g 2g 3g 50g 20g 20g 225
In a small mixing bowl, mix together soy milk and apple cider vinegar. Let it sit and curdle for approximately 20 mintues. In a separate bowl, whisk together coconut sugar and olive oil. Reserve on the side. In another bowl, grate zucchini with skin on using a cheese grater with the largest holes. Press some of the liquid out. It is not necessary for the zucchini to be fully dried. Finally, in a large mixing bowl or a stand mixer with the paddle attachment on, mix together flour, baking soda and powder. Add all soy mixture, oil mixture and zucchini into the bowl of dry ingredients and incorporate well. Fold in chocolate chips, then half of the cacao nibs and flax seeds. Pour into loaf pan and sprinkle the remaining cacao nibs and flax seeds over the top. Bake at 180°C for 40-50 minutes. Use a cake pin to check how well done it is. Let it cool for 10 minutes before removing the cake from the loaf pan. Serve as is or with almond butter, jam and coconut whipped cream!
HUMMINGBIRD CAKE Prep Time: 30 minutes Cooking Time: 30-40 minutes Yields: Makes 1 x 8” cake Serves: 8
Soy/Barista Oat Milk Apple Cider Vinegar Sunflower Seed Oil Coconut Sugar Flax Seeds, ground Water Gluten Free Flour (GFF) Cinnamon Baking Soda Baking Powder Pink Salt Banana, mashed Walnut, toasted & chopped Shredded Coconut, toasted Fresh Pineapple, diced Dried Pineapples
1/4 cup 1/2 tsp 1/4 cup 1/3 cup 1/4 cup 1/2 cup 1 cup 1/2 tsp 1/2 tsp 1/2 tsp 1/4 tsp 1/4 cup 1/4 cup 1/4 cup 115g for garnish
Macadamia Sour Cream Frosting Macadamia, soak for 2 hours Pine Nut, soak for 2 hours Lemon Juice Lemon Zest Medjool Dates, pitted Pink Salt
1/2 cup 1/2 cup 1-2 tsp 1 pc 2 pcs 1/4 tsp 227
If I could choose two words to go with this Southernstyle cake, it would be elegant and quaint. Dressing and decorating it with edible flowers was the best part!
Preheat oven to 180°C. Line an 8” ring mold with parchment or coat with coconut oil. Mix soy milk and apple cider vinegar. Let it sit and curdle for approximately 20 mintues. In a separate bowl, mix together sunflower seed oil and sugar. Reserve on the side. In another bowl, mix together ground flax seeds and water. Reserve on the side. Finally, in a large mixing bowl or a stand mixer with the paddle attachment on, mix together flour, cinnamon powder, baking soda, baking powder and pink salt. Add all wet mixtures and mashed banana into the bowl of dry ingredients and incorporate well. Fold in diced pineapples, walnut and shredded coconut. 228
Pour into cake mold and bake at 180°C for 30-40 minutes. Use a cake pin to check how well done it is. Let it cool for 10 minutes before removing the cake from the loaf pan. For Macadamia Sour Cream Frosting: Soak macadamia and pine nut in filtered water for at least 2 hours. Rinse and drain. Place frosting ingredients into a high speed blender. Blend on low for 10-15 seconds, then slowly turn the speed up to high and blend for another 45-60 seconds until frosting reaches a super smooth, thick and creamy consistency. To Finish: Coat the top of cake with frosting and garnish with toasted shredded coconut and dried pineapples.
COCONUT CHIA MOCHI Prep Time: 30 minutes + 8 hours freezing time Cooking Time: 30 minutes Yields: 2 dozens
For Coconut Chia Filling: Mix coconut sugar, coconut milk, chia seeds and rolled oats together and allow to hydrate in the fridge overnight. Set in small half round silicon molds and freeze until they are solid. For Mochi Skin: In a large mixing bowl or stand mixer with the whisk attachment on, whisk together dry ingredients, then add in water and oil. Mix well. Pour onto an oiled tray, cover with cling film, then steam at 100°C for 30 minutes. Allow steamed mochi skin to cool completely. To Assemble: Portion mochi skin into 16g pieces. Place set filling into the middle of the mochi skin, then pinch the mochi skin and enclose the filling within.
Coconut Chia Filling: Coconut Sugar Coconut Milk Chia Seeds Rolled Oats Maple Syrup Water
20g 420g 20g 36g 20g 40g
Mochi skin: Glutinous Rice Flour Raw Cane Sugar Cornstarch Olive Oil Water Kinako Powder/Fine Oat Flour
125g 50g 10g 15g 200g for garnish 229
When ready to serve, coat with kinako powder or fine oat flour.
RAW CACAO BUCKWHEAT BARKS Prep Time: 20 minutes Yields: 12”x 9” tray
White Cocao Bark Cacao Butter, melted Cashew Butter Coconut Butter Coconut Cream Coconut Nectar Vanilla Extract Sea Salt
3/4 cup 1/4 cup 1/4 cup 1/4 cup 3 Tbsp 2 tsp 1/4 tsp
Dark Cocao Bark Quinoa/Brown Rice Puff Shredded Coconut Cacao Butter, melted Cacao Powder Maple Syrup Sea Salt
20-30g 40g 160g 130g 100-120g 1/4 tsp
Toppings: Dried Fruits (Cranberries, Goji Berries) Freeze-Dried Fruits (Strawberries, Mixed Berries) Pumpkin Seeds, Sprouted & Activated Almonds, Sprouted & Activated Pistachios Rose Petals Chia Seeds Hemp Seeds 230
For Dark Cacao Bark: Place in fridge to set for at For White Cacao Bark: Line a tray that will fit into Line a tray that will fit into least 6 hours. Snap into smaller bark-sized pieces your fridge with cling film your fridge with cling film then store in air tight and reserve on the side. and reserve on the side. containers. Snack on them Toast quinoa or brown anytime your body needs a Place all ingredients rice puffs on top of a quick endorphin fix! except cacao butter in a high speed blender. Blend pan over medium heat. Toss frequently and make until smooth. Drizzle still warm cacao butter into the sure they are all nice and mixture and blend on high dry. Reserve on the side speed until mixture is well to cool. They should be crunchy and not soggy. emulsified. Whisk together cacao Pour onto lined tray and powder, maple syrup, sea garnish with your desired salt and still warm cacao toppings. Be mindful to butter together. Add work fast here especially shredded coconut, then during cooler days as the cacao butter will set pretty fold toasted rice puffs into the mixture. Work fast as quickly. the chocolate will set pretty quickly! Adjust sweetness Place in the fridge to set to your liking using maple for at least 6 hours. Snap syrup. into smaller bark-sized pieces then store in air tight containers. Snack on Pour onto a lined tray and garnish with your desired them anytime your body toppings. needs a quick boost of healthy fats!
SUPPLY CHAIN TRANSPARENCY
Over 80% of greenhouse gas emissions from food production occur between land use, crop production, livestock and fisheries, way before the goods even arrive in your home kitchen or a restaurant kitchen. The food supply chain can be defined by silos of activity, making it easier to ignore what actually happens, including the impact that this system has on the environment, economically, socially, and health-wise. In other words, we typically do not take the true cost of food into account in everyday decision-making. How can we eliminate avoidable intermediaries and bridge the gap between producers and consumers? 232
Let’s start by increasing our awareness by reading labels, sourcing local as much as possible, getting to know our suppliers and farmers, and asking questions! A short, traceable, and transparent supply chain is needed to create trust, strengthen relationships and loosen the unnecessarily complex food system that exists today. I've pulled together some of my favourite go-to-suppliers and farms I've frequented over the years. Whether you're a professional chef or simply want to source better at home, this list will come in handy when you get into creating your own local, lowcarbon, plant based conversion dishes!
VEGETABLES/FRUITS Luen Kee Ho
HK Farmer’s Pride
MUSHROOMS Luen Kee Ho
DRY GOODS/SPICES/CONFECTIONARY Vegelink
Family Farm Organics
NON-DAIRY Garden Hill
Eat the Kiwi
OILS Eat the Kiwi
NOODLES & RICE Vegelink
Green Dot Dot
FARMER’S MARKET/BEST WET MARKETS Star Ferry Market
HK Farmer’s Pride Stall
Tsing Yi Market Hong Kong Farmers Market (Tai Po)
Wan Chai Market Kowloon City Market Sai Ying Pun Market Tong Chong Street Market
HEALTH FOOD STORES iLiving
Food For Life
One Vegan Shop
FARMS Zen Organic Farm
Au Law Farm
Yi O Farm
HKFYG Organic Farm
Somewhere Organic Farm
Kam Pok Farm
Hung Yat Farm
HYDROPONICS/AEROPONICS Common Farms
Full Nature Farms
FARMER’S MARKET/BEST WET MARKETS
Luen Kee Ho
Star Ferry Market
HK Farmer’s Pride
HK Farmer’s Pride Stall
Tsing Yi Market
Hong Kong Farmers Market (Tai Po)
Wan Chai Market Kowloon City Market Sai Ying Pun Market
Tong Chong Street Market
Luen Kee Ho Lyfegreen HEALTH FOOD STORES iLiving DRY GOODS/SPICES/CONFECTIONARY
Family Farm Organics
Food For Life
One Vegan Shop
Live Zero Slowood Yuen Heung
Zen Organic Farm Mapopo Farm Au Law Farm
Yi O Farm
HKFYG Organic Farm
Somewhere Organic Farm
Eat the Kiwi
Mushroom Initiative Living Farm Greening Farm
Kam Pok Farm
Hung Yat Farm
Green Common Batata Greens Natures Charm
HYDROPONICS/AEROPONICS Common Farms Farmacy
Full Nature Farms
Eat the Kiwi
NOODLES & RICE Vegelink Green Dot Dot O Farm 236
Global kisstheground.com/find-your-path/ savory.global eatforum.org/eat-lancet-commission/the-planetary-health-diet-and-you/ Fermentation lhf.org/2014/03/beyond-sauerkraut-a-brief-history-of-fermented-foods/ rockedu.rockefeller.edu/component/biochemistry-fermented-foods/ foodandnutrition.org/winter-2012/history-health-benefits-fermented-food/ fermentingforfoodies.com/the-10-main-types-of-fermentation/ abqstew.com/2015/04/08/fermentation/ fermentationassociation.org/tag/sustainability/ All Day Condiments (Soaking and Sprouting) theblendergirl.com/infographic/how-to-soak-nuts-seeds-grains-fruit/ movenourishbelieve.com/nourish/everything-you-need-to-know-about-activating-nuts/ The Chefs’ Manifesto sdg2advocacyhub.org/chefmanifesto
The Problem with Animal Dairy homestead.org/homesteading-history/a-brief-history-of-milk/ healthline.com/nutrition/is-dairy-bad-or-good#nutrition self.com/story/is-dairy-bad-for-you worldwildlife.org/magazine/issues/winter-2019/articles/milk-s-impact-on-the-environment sph.umich.edu/pursuit/2019posts/cows-milk-human-health.html drhyman.com/blog/2010/06/24/dairy-6-reasons-you-should-avoid-it-at-all-costs-2/ foodprint.org/issues/raising-animals-sustainably-on-pasture/ Why Talk Carbon? blogs.scientificamerican.com/observations/why-carbon/ acs.org/content/acs/en/pressroom/reactions/videos/2019/why-is-carbon-the-key-to-life-on-earth-anyway.html ecoliteracy.org/article/carbon futurelearn.com/info/courses/the-biology-of-bugs-brains-and-beasts/0/steps/68848 youngzine.org/news/science/why-all-life-carbon-based eaternity.org/ Meaty Mains fao.org/3/a0701e/a0701e00.htm drwillcole.com/functional-medicine/the-power-of-adaptogens-from-a-functional-medicine-expert Reports: Drawdown: Farming Our Way out of the Climate Crisis Living Planet Report KTG Eat for Climate Guide
I’ve experienced both the pleasure and headache of hiring, managing and seeing hundreds of people come and go. But those that stand out really do stick. They stick to their values and work ethics of producing good work consistently. They aren’t afraid to reveal their vulnerabilities, raise their hands when they don’t know something, or admit that they aren’t perfect. But most importantly, they are inherently good people who care more than just a simple transaction or a pay cheque. They care about giving back and building a community. There are dozens of people I’d like to thank for supporting me throughout this journey. My family, first and foremost, for literally investing the past 9 years into helping Grassroots grow while keeping me grounded. Through the thick and thin, the many mistakes I stumbled onto and the decisions I have made, they placed their trust in their daughter, wife, sister, cousin, niece, to always do the right thing. That may not always be the most economical thing, but I remained kind and fair in my intentions. I would also like to thank my mentors, Carryl Potter and Terrence. Carryl pretty much decided my fate for me while I was still a rambunctious teenager. I still don’t think he understands how the depth of his guidance has positively impacted me and how he was able to change the entire course of my life. Terrence, my first corporate boss and mentor, became my business partner and never failed to lend his (broad) shoulders to cry on. As he would say, “There rarely goes a meeting with me where Peggy doesn’t shed a tear.” This has been true since 2008. My family can vouch for me that when I decided to study hospitality, they thought I would never survive. I was (and to an extent, still am) soft-spoken, anti-social and terrible at communication skills. I was selective with what I wanted to say, so it only made sense that what I felt was my weakness, was what I needed more support with. 241
This is where I want to take this chance to thank my first marketing manager and childhood friend, Chevonne, for helping me communicate what GP in that tiny cul de sac back in 2012, was trying to achieve. And Jason Black who first took me under his wings and put me on the map with the small handful of Female Chef-Entrepreneurs in Hong Kong. Not to mention, the Catch On team for nurturing and guiding us through what we were attempting to do. They always managed to make us look good and took a huge risk in putting plant-based and wellness on the global stage. Without these people who appreciated my authenticity, and did their best to draw out the voice in me, I do not believe GP and I would have gotten this far. I want to thank all of the investors and partners from the past to present, for their many years of support, and for taking a chance in me on this small social business I founded. They have all helped me (and the plant-based movement) achieve more than one can ever imagine. I remember vividly the Sunday brunches at Fuk Sau Lane, seated at their usual tables, the little cafe that was just buzzing with close friends, regulars and families, and we would casually catch up on the week’s joys and struggles. I lived for Sundays and that routine. And together, we created a community. Trust that this movement is here to stay and I will continue to nurture it with every ounce of my energy. Lastly, I want to acknowledge my team here with Provenance: Maggie, Christie, Meiji, Kevin, Fiona, Tarana, Shannon and Crystal, whom at one point or another, helped to pull all of this together. Self-publishing a cookbook is no easy feat. This was an experience of a lifetime and one that I’d gladly embark on again. I certainly would not have been able to achieve this momentous task without the 508 backers, private donors, volunteers and cheerleaders who helped make this happen. For this, I thank you tremendously. 242
Copyright © 2021 Peggy Chan. All rights reserved. First hardcover edition June 2021. Editor: Maggie Tan, Crowdfunding Campaign: Christie Lo, Graphic Design & Layout: Meiji Ip Graphic Design & Editorial Assistant: Shannon Yeung, Research & Copy: Tarana Bhargava, Illustrations: Crystal Ho Chinese Translations: Kevin Lui, Chinese Layout: Fiona Leung Photography: Amanda Kho, Meiji Ip, Ken Wu & Peggy Chan Printed by Xource Hong Kong Limited.