It’s almost properly summer in Asia’s world city. For those of us not jetting across the globe for delicious holidays in the country, there is plenty to keep you busy in Hong Kong.
Grassroots Pantry has just released their new menu and it is, in a word, fabulous. One avid meat eater told me he would happily go vegan if he could enjoy Chef Peggy Chan’s hedgehog mushroom concoctions every day. They are the best ‘meat substitute’ we have tried so far- move over tofu. Her ingenious showcasing of this mostly unknown fungus is a great illustration of how inventive and creative Peggy is as a Chef. Said ‘shrooms make an appearance in the restaurant’s new Vietnamese finger-licking bun chay salad. The raw nacho plate is to die for, maybe the best guacamole in the city and the Nepali Buddhist-friendly momos are delish. Peggy elevates vegan (and oftentimes raw) cuisine to gourmet heights without alienating the carnivores among us.
Which brings us to Green Queen’s newest foodie obsession: Happy Cow ice cream! Tried for the first at Grassroots Pantry, where they serve it, Happy Cow is coconut ice cream that is dairy-free, vegan, sugar-free (they use Green Queen’s favourite sweetener: coconut nectar), gluten-free, soy-free and really creamy and delicious. Isaac and his wife make the ice cream right here in Hong Kong. Our city’s very own coconut ice cream, can you believe it ? I am addicted! Plus the flavours are so much fun: I am partial to the Mint Chip but other yummy varieties are Cherry Almond Fudge, Pina Colada and Cinnamon Caramel Swirl amongst many others. Currently you can try Happy Cow when dining at the Grassroots Pantry or you can buy your own tub at the Jewish Community Centre. Otherwise, message Isaac and he will sort you out (check their facebook page).
Looking for more options for organic vegetables? Especially now that Island East Markets is closed for the summer! Well lucky us, there are two new organic produce delivery companies on the market: Eat Fresh, which was started by three Hong Kong moms who wanted to offer easier access to the myriad of organic farms in the New Territories and Green Little Frog, a French couple who imports organic produce from Thailand from the farm to your door within 36 hours. Both offer produce baskets, are friendly on the wallet and definitely worth checking out. Gosh- to think five years ago there was hardly an organic carrot to be found in the supermarket aisle and now we are spoilt for choice!
If you are looking for a quick lunchtime cafe in the Soho area, why not give Organic 21 on Staunton St a try? It is an effort by the Hong Kong Federation of Youth Groups; it offers young locals a chance to learn about hospitality and organic farming/eating. The social enterprise locale serve simple pastas, salads and breakfast dishes and use local, organic ingredients wherever possible. They also have a handy shop next door where you can stock up on organic groceries- we all need to support these kind of initiatives so check them out!
More on the foodie side: have you heard that you can now buy homemade organic pink sauerkraut in Hong Kong? That’s right, forget probiotic capsules and get the real thing at Kitchen in the Sky, a new online store that promises to bring local, organic and nutritious health foods to us. We are starved in this area so Green Queen is totally thrilled. Order yours now before it runs out!
Lastly but certainly not least, get to know Save The Date HK, a brand new charitable and eco-friendly endeavour that makes it super simple to send invitations to your guests while fundraising for your favorite charity! No matter the occasion, you design your e-vite on their easy-to-use site (the card designs are lovely) and then guests are able to open the invite, RSVP and contribute to a cause of their choice. No more useless gifts and an easy-way for everyone to give back! Plus, it’s environmentally friendly! What’s not to love?
That’s it for this roundup on what’s new in the green scene, hope you find some helpful tips in here.
All the latest green additions mentioned above have been added to the Green Queen Guide to Hong Kong which we update almost daily so make sure to keep checking in for new green gems in the city!