Musings of a bon vivant in Hong Kong

Homegrown Foods- Recipe madness!

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I’m a bit of a slap-dash, fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants kind of cook. I’m the sort of person who out of desperation and starvation, will try to make a meal out of the meagre contents of my fridge and store cupboard, and pray that the ingredients somehow work together so I can declare it a work of genius. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy cooking and baking, but I’m not a fan of slaving over the stove or following recipes, so when I was asked to come up with some recipes for a Homegrown Foods/ Sassy collaboration, I was slightly panicked.Homegrown Foods is a company that delivers fresh organic produce that have been grown on farms in the New Territories and across into China – namely vegetables and fruit, to anyone in Hong Kong. You can build your own box of veg to be delivered or simply order a pre-bundled basket of the season’s picks. It’s all very handy and convenient, especially for the harried professional. Prices start at around $200 for a 2-2.5kg box and you can have them deliver on a regular basis too.

When I received my lovely box of organic goodness, I found the following inside:

Multi-colour carrots, Cabbage, Beetroot, Multi-colour cherry tomatoes, Potatoes, Romaine lettuce, Strawberries, Kai lan, Green beans, Choi sum, Large tomatoes.

Bear in mind that as the produce is organic, they are at their optimum freshness when you get them, so I recommend getting through your veggies asap before they spoil, as they don’t keep long!

The first recipe I’m going to post is the chicken and carrot stew which was put up on the Sassy Mama website. You can of course modify to your liking- you can substitute the evaporated milk for full fat cream if you like, or use other vegetables. Here, I used the multi-colour carrots from Homegrown Foods.

Chicken and carrot stewIngredients

  • 2 cups 1/4-inch-thick rounds multi-colour carrots
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced celery
  • 1 1/4 pounds skinless boneless chicken thighs, cut into 2-inch cubes
  • Sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1/2 cup low-salt chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup evaporated milk
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley


  • Cook carrots in large saucepan of boiling salted water 3 minutes. Add celery to pan with carrots and cook until carrots are tender, about 3 minutes longer. Drain; set aside.
  • Sprinkle chicken with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Whisk flour, thyme, and paprika in medium bowl. Toss chicken in flour mixture. Heat oil in heavy large nonstick skillet over medium- high heat. Add chicken to skillet and cook until browned, about 2 minutes per side. Add wine; boil until reduced by half, 2 to 3 minutes. Scatter carrots and celery over chicken. Add broth, cover, and simmer until chicken is cooked through, about 15 minutes. Add evaporated milk and mustard. Stir until sauce thickens slightly, about 2 minutes. Season sauce to taste with sea salt and pepper. Transfer to large shallow bowl. Scatter parsley over and garnish with thyme sprigs.
  • Serve with mixed grain rice, pasta or potatoes.

Author: chopstixfix

Michelle Ng is a Brit born Chinese-Malaysian who has loved food since time immemorial. She is a firm believer in "Live to Eat, not Eat to Live".

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