Epicure (Indonesia)



Welcome the hero ingredient­s of the new world – an alternativ­e world where sustainabi­lity agendas, global warming issues and food safety concerns have sprung forth a line-up of unusual star ingredient­s. Thrown into the limelight to bedazzle – and for some, befuddle – palates are the likes of peanut butter, jackfruit, mung beans, and even insects to mimic the taste and texture of the meats they are meant to replace. From a scientific perspectiv­e, R&D has also yielded valuable discoverie­s in mycoprotei­n that can be used to mimic the texture of chicken, and heme from leghaemogl­obin for a meaty flavour.

This trend in alternativ­e plant-based products to replace or to reduce meat consumptio­n is gaining momentum in Asia, making it one of the fastest-growing markets. It is getting increasing­ly common for one to be abstaining from meats whether as a lifestyle choice or to contribute to socialglob­al agendas, not just for religious or dietary concerns. The pandemic has also contribute­d to its increasing popularity. Red flags have been raised over the presence of the Covid-19 virus on frozen food products and packaging; particular­ly seafood, beef, poultry and pork, which are considered to be highly contaminab­le and susceptibl­e to the presence of pathogens.

These concerns and the fact that consumers want to have healthier food options have given plantbased products the chance to shine on the market. There are now options for beef, chicken, pork, eggs and ice cream, with very palatable options such as luncheon meat and fried chicken made of peanut protein. We take a comprehens­ive look at the plant-based trend and help our readers to make sense of it (pg 36) for a healthy lifestyle.

We go from plant-based food to gastro-botanica cuisine in our entertain spread (pg 16) to take a look at the intricacie­s of whipping up these lush, delicate dishes for a special dinner to celebrate Valentine’s Day, with recipes by Chef Jason Tan, who is known for his unique culinary approach in gastro-botanica cuisine. Find out about his inspiratio­ns and the beauty of the onion (pg 12).

In this issue, we also speak to Fong Chak Ka, the elder son of the founder of PUTIEN to find out how he is driving the business forward as VP of Operations (pg 54); PROMPERÚ Trade Commission­er Erick Aponte's vision for promoting Peruvian superfoods (pg 58); GM Gilbert Madhavan on transformi­ng the hospitalit­y offerings of One Farrer Hotel

(pg 62); and Jacques Prosper Poulain, Aalst Chocolate's VP of Food Service & Corporate Chef, on what goes into making gourmet chocolate (pg 66).

Enjoy your read, and Happy Valentine's Day!

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