Thursday, October 31, 2019

Recipe: Stir-fried Beef with Tang Hoon (Glass Noodles) using Carbon Neutral Beef

Oh man, I love a good one-pot (wait, one-wok?) dinner.

Stir-fried tanghoon with beef and vegetables is one of the easier dishes I've been teaching my new helper. This is a minimalist version, using just two differently coloured vegetables and one meat. Sliced chillies for that perky red and spicy heat.

There are no hard and fast rules. Use whatever vegetables you fancy. Add your favourite protein. Mine tends to be red meat, especially beef. But I've come across a sustainable version: Carbon neutral beef certified by the Australian government. Far out! But sounds much more responsible, given the damage beef farming contributes to climate change.

Read more about this Five Founders beef and how they achieve this carbon neutral rating.

100g Tang Hoon or mung bean or cellophane "glass" noodles
200g beef (Five Founders carbon neutral beef stir-fry strips), marinated 20 minutes or so with a dash of soy and pepper
Cup of baby peas (warmed up in hot water if frozen)
1 carrot, julienned
Chopped onions (optional if you don't like)
Minced garlic (the more, the better!)
Sliced chillies ( I prefer chili padi, but you can use regular chillies)
Salt, pepper, soy sauce, sesame oil and fish sauce for seasoning.

1. Soak the tang hoon in warm water for a few minutes until softened. Drain and set aside.
2. Fry the onions in 1-2 tablespoons of oil for a couple of minutes and add garlic.
3. Add the carrots and peas to continue frying for another minute.
4. Add the marinated beef strips. Cook until
5. Toss in the tang hoon. Stir-fry and season evenly with salt, soy, fish sauce, pepper and sesame oil. You can also add oyster sauce or a splash of chicken stock if you prefer it less dry.
6. Sprinkle on the sliced chillies. Et voila. Dinner.

The meat is surprisingly lean although it looks so tender. So make sure you don't overcook it, or it may be too tough.

Five Founders beef is available on RedMart and Ryan's Grocery.

I have another quick and easy recipe for bolognese using Five Founders mince.

It was interesting experimenting with this "carbon neutral" beef. On the whole, it is much like regular beef except the taste seems milder and very clean-tasting somehow. It costs a little more but for something that's free of growth hormones and antibiotics, has net zero impact on the environment, and grass fed until the last 100 days (grain-finished)'s not too bad. 

Thanks to Alternative Selection for sending the beef samples.

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Recipe: Bolognese using Five Founders Carbon Neutral Beef Mince

Not a recipe really per se, but I just wanted to show you Five Founders Carbon Neutral Certified Beef mince used in a bolognese. I liked the chunky texture giving a pleasant meaty bite to the sauce. It seems more lean than the usual mince too. Season it well and it should shine.

But what's this about carbon neutral beef, you say? See my earlier post on how they attain carbon neutrality and practice sustainable beef farming and agriculture. quick and easy bolognese for busy moms.

Ingredients for a super easy bolognese
300g beef mince (Five Founders Carbon Neutral Beef Mince, S$2.88 per 100g)
300g pasta of choice
300g pasta sauce
100g grated cheese (I used aged Tasty cheddar for more tang)
3-6 cloves garlic minced
Half onion, chopped
Salt, black pepper, soy sauce for seasoning
Knob of butter for frying
Maldon smoked sea salt flakes (optional)
Chili flakes (optional for you, a must for me)

Bolognese bubbling away...smells so good!

1. Season mince with salt, pepper and a dash of soy. Let it marinate for half an hour or so.
2. Boil pasta in salted water til al dente and set aside.
3. Melt butter in a frying pan and sautée onions for a couple minutes on medium heat. Add garlic.
4. Slide all that mince into the pan. Break it up and let it cook evenly.
5. Add the pasta sauce and let it bubble. Season to taste. This is where the Maldon smoked salt will add a hint of bacon. Sprinkle on chili flakes for spicy kick. Or not (come on, learn to take some heat).
6. Add the grated cheese. Stir well and serve.

Easy peasy. The sauce makes a great dip for crudites too, as we discovered (see first pic).


The Five Founders carbon neutral certified beef comes in various types (ribeye, shabu-shabu, sirloin, rump, cubes, patties, etc) and is available on RedMart and Ryan's Grocery.

Thanks to Alternative Selection for sending the samples.

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Guilt-free Steak with Five Founders Carbon Neutral Certified Beef

Do you ever feel a tinge of guilt indulging in a steak? These days it's not so much cardiovascular disease we are concerned about but climate change. Beef and dairy production generates more greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions than all the world’s cars, threatening long-term climate targets. Cattle are responsible for 9% of all human-induced greenhouse gas emissions, or 4.7 gigatonnes a year (source: FAO).

I was pleasantly curious when Australia’s First Carbon Neutral Certified Beef by Five Founders launched here in Singapore. How do you get beef to be carbon neutral?

The carbon neutrality is certified by the Australian government to entities meeting rigorous criteria and achieving zero net greenhouse gas emission.

Five Founders engaged Earnst & Young to independently evaluate its chain-of-production carbon footprint (livestock farming, operations, production and transportation). They reduced carbon emissions as much as possible and also purchased Australian Government-approved carbon credits to offset remaining emissions, leading to net zero emissions. Ah, credits. So handy.

They do spearhead sustainable beef farming and agricultural initiatives like ensuring full traceability within the supply chain, forest-friendly grazing (no trees are cut for pastures), securing protected land for nature refuge and conservation, and participating in industry carbon sequestration trials, like testing legume-based pastures for cattle feed to lower methane emissions. Nice.

The Five Founders carbon neutral beef is brought in by Alternative Selection, Singapore’s first wholesaler and retailer of alternative gourmet, organic, allergen, and preservative-free specialty foods.

So it's no surprise it's got no added hormones. The cattle roam free on the grasslands of the northern Australian outback, but are grain finished for 100 days. The entire carcass is used, and nothing goes to waste.

They've sent me some samples to try.

These two slices of ribeye (300g) don't need much time in the pan. Bit of salt and pepper, and you have a guilt-free tasty steak to enjoy at home.

Sorry I didn't do any fancy food styling. I had hungry people and we didn't want to eat this steak cold! The meat tasted pretty mild; it was not too gamey and had a pleasant balance of lean and fatty content.

I loved learning about sustainable practices and knowing that we have choices that can reduce our impact on the environment. Five Founders beef is available on RedMart and Ryan's Grocery. It's also served in restaurants like Cheek Bistro, Kitchen by Food Rebel, La Strada, Lino, Outback Steakhouse, SaLe Marino, Tatsu Sushi, Tatsu Teppanyaki, The Market Grill and VENUE by Sebastian.


Friday, October 18, 2019

Thermomix TM6 with 20-in-1 Functions: King of Kitchen Appliances

Just when you thought it couldn't do more...Thermomix just launched its latest and the ninth-generation model, the TM6, that now adds sous vide, browning and sugar caramelisation abilities to its already staggering repertoire of functions.

More than multi-purpose
The Thermomix has always been a juggernaut of kitchen functions and now it boasts 20: stirring, mixing, grinding, kneading, whisking, chopping, weighing, cooking, steaming, simmering and emulsifying to name a few. The auto-cleaning and weight sensing are probably two of the most valuable functions as well.

The new features are probably the most exciting now. Take a look.

Sous vide anything here!
You can also cook meat, fish and vegetables sous vide style by the degree for up to 12 hours.

You can make your own yoghurt and cheese?!? I have made yoghurt before (see this post - but cheese which I love so much...this is a whole new world.

Sure, it can't do deep-frying yet, but turning meats a lovely golden brown is now a possibility.

Cooking with sugar from 110-170 deg C makes many sweet treats possible.

Fat die me. I'm trying to stay away from sugar but I love making stuff. How to make and don't eat? Haha. Hmm. Sell! :D

Choose from a library of downloadable recipes

If you're still not sure of what to cook, get some inspiration from the award-winning Cookidoo recipe platform that comes pre-installed on the TM6. It gives you access to a constantly updated cloud library of 50,000 recipes.

It's no secret that many chefs love the Thermomix. It helps them cut down the hassle in the kitchen, and helps automate various cooking tasks. We had the pleasure of meeting MasterChef 2015 winner Woo Wai Leong who is chef-owner of Restaurant Ibid.

"Having a Thermomix adds real versatility to a professional kitchen: it's akin to having an extra set of hands to handle delicate tasks," says Chef Woo.

Chef Woo and the Thermomix team demonstrated two dishes live. The cod wrapped in lotus leaf, as well as the sesame honey brittle.

Feast by Chef Woo Wai Leongst Restaurant Ibid
Chef Woo also presented a feast of various dishes, each made with some element using the Thermomix.

The Thermomix TM6 costs S$2,520 and is available directly from Thermomix at an initial order price of S$2,320. Units are expected to arrive in November, to be delivered just in time for Christmas.

You can view more details about Thermomix and their Experience Centre here:

Many thanks to Thermomix for the invitation.
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