November 2014–Urban Health Newsletter

Mexicanmingle

What’s Up @ Urban Health Home Kitchen

Urban Health Chinese Cooking Class

Have you ever felt like you wanted to go to the local Hong Kong wet markets and get great deals on fresh food but didn’t even know how or where to start? Have you ever wanted to know how to prepare Chinese-style dishes in a gluten free way? Well now’s your chance! This month the Urban Health Home Kitchen is very excited to announce our first ever wet market tour and cooking course event on Saturday, November 22nd.

Students will get to take a private tour with Chef Andy through the Central wet market, learning how to buy all the essential ingredients for the meal. Next, they will head to the Urban Health Home Kitchen to learn how to prepare two delicious gluten-free Chinese dishes! These include: Hainanese Chicken with rice alongside delicious home-made garlic chill sauce as well as tantalizing Chinese Garlic Steamed Prawns. If you would like to sign up please email info@urbanhealth.hk

Urban Health Lunch Delivery

lunch Looking for a healthy option for lunch this week at work? You’re in luck because Urban Health is now offering lunch delivery. Your lunch will be completely personalised and Chef Andy will accommodate any special dietary requirements. These include gluten-free (of course!), low carb, vegetarian, pescatarian, and much more (just ask!). We already have people raving about our low-calorie cauliflower fried rice – definitely worth a try!

All lunches include one 1 main, 1 vegetable dish, 1 rice (can be changed to cauliflower fried rice for low carb diets) and a delicious homemade soup. Please email us at info@urbanhealth.hk for pricing options and to pre-order lunches. Orders must be made at least a day in advance.

Last Month’s Fun!

Last month Urban Health hosted a super fun Mexican Mingle Party on the Urban Health Home Kitchen rooftop. Over 20 guests enjoyed delicious gluten free Mexican dishes including: a 25 avocado strong guacamole batch (first to go!), vegetarian and beef tacos made using Spice Box Organic’s special Taco seasoning, and last but not least everyone got to beat the candy out of an enormous pink unicorn piñata! Needless to say, the event was a huge success. We hope to see you at our next rooftop gathering!

In addition to food, Urban Health Adventurers took an invigorating hike to Ng Tung Chai Waterfalls in Lam Tsuen Valley, Tai Po. Adventurers got to see 4 breathtaking waterfalls and an enormous and beautifully elaborate Buddhist temple, which is only accessible to the public on weekends. After the day-long hike we all chowed down on Schezuan cuisine. This is a hike we would highly recommend and we also suggest you come join our upcoming hikes over the winter months – stay tuned for more information coming soon! Join the Urban Health Hiking Group on meetup.com to stay in the loop.

A Guide to Understanding Diets

hunger-413685_1280 With all the different types of diets these days, it may be hard to grasp or understand just what the different diet terms mean. As we all know, people adapt certain diets for a list of reasons, such as health, allergies, or weight loss. It’s also important to understand, for example, what our friends mean when they say they are on a raw food, vegan, or gluten-free diet. This way, we can be respectful to dinner guests and also be more mindful when choosing restaurants to eat at.

On Urban Health’s latest blog post, we gave a simple explanation on the various diets to help you become more knowledgeable on what people do and don’t eat.

Read on to find out about ins and outs of the more popular diets.

Andy’s Corner

This month Andy shares how his journey in entrepreneurship has been with Urban Health.

Andy's Corner ~ Counting blessings ~

Since starting Urban Health, many friends have asked me: How is it going? What drives you and keeps you going every day, every morning… etc.?

To be honest, although I am lucky to be given the chance to pursue my passion, it has not been easy nor rosy at all!

Throughout the past year, I’ve had a vast amount of self-learning experiences, from leaving my job as a sales person at the world’s largest global conferencing company, to starting this new venture and connecting with people in a whole different kind of way. I have had the chance to get to know people from all walks of life through food. It’s always been my mission to create a little safe haven for friends and loved ones to dine in a comfortable, intimate environment–one that is dedicated to those living with allergies and gluten intolerance.

Having a mission in mind is not enough though; it actually took much longer than expected to anchor our mission and goals. Although establishing the foundation was a challenge, the hardest part turned out to be the practical aspects such as client/colleague relations, accounting, and taking on the everyday tasks that truly make a business thrive. As you can imagine, there is a big leap between being an employee for a well-established company and having to do it all on your own. It is certainly a huge responsibility!

Many times, I find myself getting distracted and overlooking the big picture and outcome that I have been striving for from the start. The company should be a resource, something that customers can lean on and trust. At times, I forget to count my blessings, even the little ones along the way–the partners I have, the friends around me, and of course the gift of cooking.

[blockquote align=”left”]She said to me, “Your food makes me so happy, it’s like a party for me to be able to enjoy Cantonese food.”[/blockquote]A few weeks ago, while delivering lunch to a visiting celiac traveler, she came down from her hotel room and thanked me for the wonderful gluten-free Asian foods I had been preparing for her that week. She said to me, “Your food makes me so happy, it’s like a party for me to be able to enjoy Cantonese food.” Now THAT is absolutely what gets me up every morning and pushes me to work even harder. Her words gave me encouragement and confirmation that I am working toward the outcome I envisioned. At times, it’s challenging to see this through, but without a doubt, moments like this are very inspiring. I would strongly recommend everyone to count the blessings in your world. I truly believe that doing this would enable you to welcome even more blessings into your life.

Restaurant: Brickhouse

Brickhouse_Exterior 02 Last month Urban Health was given the opportunity to come try popular dishes from the very popular restaurant, Brickhouse, in Central. Located at the back of a hidden alley, it’s not the easiest place to find. However, it is always jam-packed with patrons ready to try out their mouthwatering Mexican cuisine.

Brickhouse’s menu creations are inspired by Mexican street food and their expert chefs make every effort to provide a list of gluten free dishes. We got the chance to ask a Brickhouse chef how he makes gluten free food and what his recommendations are for gluten free eating at Brickhouse.

From start to finish, what are the methods that your kitchen uses to prepare gluten free cuisines?

When preparing gluten free items we take all the necessary precautions, [exclusively] using gluten free materials such as bowls, sheet pans, tongs etc. Everyday we go over our gluten free items [and store] them away from gluten items. When preparing gluten free [dishes] we cook the gluten free items first then go into gluten items to prevent cross contamination.

What cocktails at Brickhouse are gluten free?

Most cocktails in Brickhouse are gluten free except from our Horchata and Pisco Sour.

Would you consider Brickhouse to be celiac-friendly (not a trace of gluten in requests for gluten-free dishes, as celiacs will have very serious reactions) or more suitable for those with a gluten sensitivity (may have small traces in some rare cases)?

The Brickhouse kitchen is very small so its hard to guarantee that there will be no traces of gluten, but we are confident that we operate a very clean and efficient kitchen and any celiac should know that we do our utmost to ensure that a gluten-free item is indeed free of gluten.

What tips would you give to gluten-sensitive or celiac customers who plan to dine at Brickhouse?

We always assist customers with dietary requirements and would point them in the right direction if needed. We also offer a vegetarian set menu by candlelight every Monday, which is very popular. Finally, we would suggest them to order an award-wining cocktail, and hope they enjoy their Brickhouse experience.

* * * * *

As we can see the Chefs at Brickhouse do their best to prepare gluten free dishes to the best of their capability. However, since the kitchen is small you may need to be careful when eating here if your reaction to gluten is extremely severe.

Some great gluten-free dishes that we would recommend include:

Guacamole and Salsa
Guacamole and Chips

Freshly made daily guacamole and salsa organic stone ground chips – gluten-free and magnificent!

Give A Cluck Taco
Give a Cluck Chicken Tacos

Chicken, black Beans, salsa verde, fresco, manchego cheese all combined on exquisite gluten-free soft taco wraps – definitely a winner!

Urban Health Store Feature: Anything But Salads

abs-logoAnything But Salads (ABS) is one of our favorite new faces this year. Located in Sheung Wan, they are dedicated to offering all sorts of healthy foods to the local HK community.

ABS is a vibrant Hong Kong-based health foods company, specializing in synergistic functional foods upgraded with superfoods, adaptogens and medicinal mushrooms. They are a unique blend of East and West, contemporary science and ancient wisdom. At ABS, they never cut corners and aim to give you the best that you deserve.

Their mission is to revolutionize the way the world eats by democratizing wholesome, nutrient-dense and synergistic foods.

Their vision is to empower a better tomorrow with Mother Nature today.

Three items we recommend are:

abs

1) Life Rawnola
2) Spirulina Honey
3) CACAO Reishi

Also be sure to try their best selling almond butter!

This month, first-time customers to Anything But Salads may show them a picture of the Urban Health logo to receive a 10% discount.

Address:
ShopB, G/F, 14 Tai Ping Shan Street
SheungWan, Hong Kong
(Nearest MTR Station: Sheung Wan)

Tel: +852 6743 5000 | +852 9523 7816

Hours:
Mon–Fri: 9:30am – 7pm
Sat & Sun: 10am – 6pm
Public Holidays: 11am – 5pm

Post Series: Newsletter
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