Thursday, May 31, 2012

Simple Sunday Supper: Roasted Black Chicken

Not sure what to make for dinner this weekend? TFT HK founder Steph Tan is here to help! See below for her easy, healthy, and delicious recipe

I’m in the middle of reading Salted: A Manifesto on the World’s Most Essential Mineral, by American food writer, entrepreneur, and salt aficionado Mark Bitterman. It’s interesting to consider how great an impact salt--something we’ve been making from the sea or mining from the land for thousands of years--has made on the cultures and cuisines of the world. To quote Bitterman, “[salt] is not only the only universal food, it is the most varied. Honoring salt is not only important for understanding the bounty of nature, it is vital to the understanding of cooking and eating.”  In an effort to honor salt, I use it as one of the only seasonings in this simple Sunday supper of roasted black chicken with baby potatoes, carrots, and a side of greens.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Local Buzz: HK Food Waste and Responsible Consumption

A recent wave of articles has revealed just how wasteful Hong Kongers are when it comes to food.  “The Food Chain,” in an April edition of HK Magazine, brought the appalling food waste levels in our city to public attention, and highlighted various local efforts to reverse this trend.  And just last week, Friends of the Earth (HK) did an exposé of the magnitude of the food waste generated by major HK supermarkets.  The FoE (HK) article revealed that the weight of the food supermarket chains throw away in a year is equivalent to 2,000 double-decker buses; and much of what is tossed out is undeniably edible food—food that has not expired and could have gone to those in need.

As a city, we pride ourselves on our vibrant dining industry—its diverse selection of cuisines, high standards of quality, and constant stream of new offerings.  But it’s clear that when it comes to the issue of food waste, we have nothing to brag about.

Global Food News: Meatless Monday

Have no fear carnivores!  Today, as you are probably aware, is Wednesday; so if today's post inspires you, you have plenty of time to gear up for once-a-week vegetarianism.  Meatless Monday is an international, non-profit campaign that encourages people to go one day a week without meat or meat products.  The initiative was begun in the US in 2003, by ad man (and philanthropist) Sid Lerner, in association with the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and has now spread to 23 countries around the globe. Here in Hong Kong, the movement's most visible advocates are our fine friends at Green Monday.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Food Hero Tuesday: "Alice Waters brings Chez Panisse experience to Beijing"

Note from the Editor: Every Tuesday, TFT HK will bring you a post or article from/about one of our local or global food heroes. These are people who inspire us, and whose visions align with the values that TFT espouses and promotes. This week's post is a reprint of a November 2011 article from the LA Times, detailing sustainable dining pioneer Alice Waters' experience catering a banquet in Beijing for the US-China Forum on the Arts and Culture. Waters is the owner of Chez Panisse (established in in Berkeley California in 1971, Chez Panisse is often listed as one of the best restaurants in the US), the founder of the Chez Panisse Foundation (a foundation that creates programs like The Edible Schoolyard Project, which teaches children about the importance of supporting local, sustainable agriculture, and engages them in the process of growing their own food), an author, and one of the world's foremost food activists. Alice, we at TFT HK salute you!

Alice Waters brings Chez Panisse experience to Beijing

The Berkeley restaurateur takes on the challenge of staying true to her philosophy of eating local and buying organic in cooking for 250 people as part of a U.S.-China forum.
November 22, 2011|By Barbara Demick, Los Angeles Times

 (Linda Cotton )

Reporting from Beijing — Here is a nightmare assignment for a restaurateur:
Cook for 250 people using all-organic ingredients procured locally in a country infamous for its tainted food supply. Create a romantic setting in a latter-day fortress, the fluorescent-lighted U.S. Embassy.
Alice Waters' celebrated Berkeley restaurant, Chez Panisse, was transported to Beijing last week as part of a four-day U.S.-China Forum on the Arts and Culture. Berkeley and Beijing don't have much in common except as food writer Michael Pollan, another delegate, sarcastically put it, "both are socialist paradises."
But to replicate the Berkeley experience in Beijing? It wasn't just a matter of flying the ingredients from California. Waters' philosophy centers on eating local and buying directly from the farm.
"Knowing the person who grows the food is the best way to find food you know isn't contaminated," said Waters, sinking into a chestnut-colored leather sofa in her hotel near Tiananmen Square.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

TFT HK Monday Update

Good morning and happy Monday!

Here's a brief round-up of last week's events, and a heads-up about what's going on with TFT HK this week:

1. We learned about sustainable viticulture and became "Tongue Explorers" with Eddie McDougall at the Flying Winemaker WineSkool:

Last Tuesday evening the TFT HK team and some of its supporters slipped on WineSkool lab coats, to be led through Eddie McDougall's Tongue Explorer class at The Flying Winemaker in Lan Kwai Fong.  Presenting us with a tongue map and four sustainable wines to taste, Eddie taught us to open our palates and our minds to the sweet, salty, sour, bitter, and umami flavors that combine to create the tastes we recognize as fruity, tannic, etc. He encouraged us to taste thoughtfully, and also to look beyond the bottle and be conscientious about the methods of farming used to produce the wine we drink.

A big thank you to Eddie, the Flying Winemaker team, chef Alexandre Talpaert (for the many delicious, wine-paired snacks!), and all those who came out to support TFT HK. It was a wonderful evening, and we look forward to future TFT events with Eddie!

A wonderful night for green oenophiles! 
Ready to taste

Thursday, May 24, 2012

A Few of Our Favorite Things: 5 Healthy Recipe Websites!

Photo by Erin Gleeson

If you're like the members of the TFT HK team, you're always looking for new cooking blogs and sites to stalk! Here are a few of our current favorite resources for healthy, delectable eats:

This gorgeous blog (see above photo!) is the creation of illustrator and photographer Erin Gleeson who,  “inspired by local, seasonal ingredients in her weekly CSA box, has created a series of photographic recipe illustrations that are mostly vegetarian and laid out visually." 

Eating Well
The Eating Well site is about as straightforward as it gets: simple, easy-to-follow recipes and menu plans that include full nutrition information.

101 Cookbooks
Heidi, this blog's creator, places heavy emphasis on the use of natural foods (be sure to check out the "Build a Natural Foods Pantry" link!), and includes lots of beautiful pictures.

Post Punk Kitchen
Fresh, tasty, fun recipes from vegan chef Isa Chandra Moscowitz.

Table for Two HK's Healthy Recipes from Celebrity Chefs
We'd be remiss if we didn't mention the tempting, guilt-free recipes supplied by TFT HK's celebrity chef friends!

Happy Friday and happy (healthy) eating!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Local Buzz: Obesity in Hong Kong

Most of us are aware, by now, that obesity has become a global epidemic. More and more of us are overweight and obese every year--and not just in the Western world. Rates of obesity are rising at an alarming rate in Asian countries as well, and are especially high in Hong Kong.

Global Food News: New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition Unveiled at 2012 G8 Summit

This past weekend, the 38th annual "Group of Eight" (G8) summit was held in Camp David, Maryland.  Food security was among the topics discussed at the summit--a forum during which representatives of eight of the world's economic powers (the current G8 core members are the US, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, and the UK) strategize toward the resolution of pressing world issues--and members of the G8 pledged their support of US President Obama's New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition. 

Monday, May 21, 2012

Food Hero Tuesday: Eddie McDougall, of the Flying Winemaker, teaches us about sustainable viticulture

Note from the Editor: Every Tuesday, TFT HK will bring you a post or article from one of our local or global food heroes. These are people who inspire us, and whose visions align with the values that TFT espouses and promotes. This week's post is from Eddie McDougall, creator of The Flying Winemaker (wine store and education center in Lan Kwai Fung). Eddie has partnered with TFT HK, to bring TFT supporters a sustainable wine tasting at The Flying Winemaker tonight, and he generously shares more of his knowledge with us here today. Many thanks to Eddie and the fine folks at The Flying Winemaker. We can't wait to sip and learn tonight!

Myth Buster: Organic, Biodynamic & Conventional Wines

Still to this day I get asked several questions about the integrity of organic and biodynamic wines. Most of these questions revolve around the value-added taste benefits and the notion of healthier drinking.

Sustainable viticulture which is what biodynamic and organic practices falls under, is a farming method used to preserve the natural environment with minimal intervention. Farming under these practices generally implies, minimal use of chemicals, building the natural population of micro-organisms in the soil and the use of natural composting fertilisers.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Welcome to the TFT HK blog!

Hi there world!

This is the official Table for Two Hong Kong blog, and I'm your blog editor, Miya. This blog is a way for the TFT Hong Kong team to stay connected to you, the TFT supporter (thank you!) or person interested in the TFT mission, global and local food systems, and food and nutrition in general. We at TFT HK want to be a source of food and food system news, and to keep you updated on our progress and events here in Hong Kong.