Roasted Beets and Pea Salad with Shrimp and Fish Cakes


Every time I take a trip out of the country, and step into a foreign supermarket, I get sad because locally our selection of produce and products is so limited in our markets and supermarkets. Take a brand like Gardenia for example (the breads), they have such an amazing wide ranging variety of breads in Singapore (wraps, wholemeal, wholegrain…) but locally they only sell more or less 4 varieties (when they are in stock). People will complain that we don’t have the climate to grow certain vegetables or fruits, or that certain products are too expensive to bring in, I say that all of that is a load of crap.

After talking to some farmers and international consumer good/product managers, I realised that we do have the technology, we do have the capacity, the retail space, the production lines and the talent, but we are missing one major key player: The Consumer.

It makes sense, why would they supply products if there are no consumers who are interesting in buying it? And how will consumers know about these products if they aren’t locally available. A terribly vicious circle, but it really does come down to us. The Filipino culture, though one of the most eclectic and interesting in the world, having gone through so many different stages and influences, is now scared of change.

In food, when I ask a question like “what recipes do you guys want to learn next?”, the majority of the answers I receive is “Chicken  Adobo with a twist”…..

So maybe somewhere somehow, I can contribute to opening some spirits and helping people to try different things, and eventually create a demand for all these products a lot of us do want to have locally, through this blog and that’s what I aim to do.

So please, when you see a supplier making an effort to bring in a new product or a farmer growing something not so common (I saw some local rhubarb the other day and just as quickly it was discontinued), promote it and try out, turns out it could be your new favourite ingredient.

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Roasted Beets and Pea Salad with Shrimp and Fish Cakes

Wrap your washed beet (without the stem) in aluminium foil with olive oil and leave in the oven for 45mins-1hour at 200c, defrost your frozen fresh green peas.

Clean and devein about 2 large handfuls of shrimp (maybe 300 grams?) and 1 filet of cream dory, chop up and place in a food processor with 2tsp of fish sauce, 1 tbsp. of flour, 1tsp of brown sugar, 4 chopped baby onion leeks (white part), 1 chopped red chilli, 3 chopped cloves of garlic, 2 tsps. of chopped ginger, cracked black pepper, one egg and some chopped basil. Blast it and make a paste out of it. Take a little of the batter and cook it, taste it, and modify the seasoning to taste. Before frying in hot canola oil, make a ball (2 heaped tbsps) and dredge it in flour, without working in, then place it in the hot oil on medium high, turning it when nice and brown (it’ll get fluffy).

When the beet is ready you will be able to pierce it through. Peel and slice in rounds and place on the plate, topped with the thawed green please, wet with Japanese sesame dressing (can be store bought or homemade – your call) and place the cooked cake in the middle. Top the whole thing with a nice mesclun salad.



    1. Rubin Tan August 22, 2012 at 10:25 am

      I’m a newcomer here, and I wonder if it would be possible for you to
      provide the nutrition info like number of calories, total contents of fat, cholesterol,sodium, sugar, etc. of the recipes that you introduce each time. It would certainly be a big help for us who are really health conscious and trying lose weight. Thank you very much. Like your website very much and more power to you.

      1. Erwan September 11, 2012 at 8:08 am

        hi Rubin, i might not have time to do all of that. but you can use online tools to calculate that info since i list down all the ingredients anyways.

    1. Belle August 22, 2012 at 11:10 pm

      Hi Erwan,
      I’m always drawn to your recipes, because like you, I love food but know the importance of eating healthy. (I’ve tried your almond pancake btw & used almond milk. Delicious!) But, I do have my free days to splurge. Since I live in Las Vegas, we don’t get the freshest of seafood around but we do have readily available products/produce. So you have me on that! I’m curious to see what you can come up with if you do have those available for you. Why not ask family or friends from abroad to mail you those ingredients that won’t be easily spoiled, so you can make your creations & share your amazing recipes! Keep up the good work!

      1. Erwan September 11, 2012 at 8:07 am

        Thanks Belle! If i had a whole foods in front of me i think i would cook 6 times a day haha! count yourself lucky!

    1. ara August 23, 2012 at 6:16 am

      looks absolutely delicious erwan :D

      1. Erwan September 11, 2012 at 8:06 am

        thanks Ara! much love

    1. Levon Frilles August 23, 2012 at 8:43 am

      I love beets. <3 I buy them from Shopwise Alabang. very versatile ingredient. Started to get fascinated with beets after watching 4 seasons of Masterchef Australia. :)

      1. Erwan September 11, 2012 at 8:05 am

        they are amazing

    1. Jigo Reloj August 24, 2012 at 3:35 am


      Huge fan of your blog bro. I used to do what you were doing; blogging about my little discoveries at home with food and healthy food. I then ventured out into bread business sometime last year and currently stopped it for a while to do something else. Your dishes inspire me to go back to blogging and also going back to the industry. I whole-heartedly agree with you, especially when it comes to diversifying food choices which in turn would spur the demand for a wider variety of food and healthy foods in the country. Awesome job, keep up the good work!

      1. Erwan September 11, 2012 at 8:05 am

        thanks bro!

    1. Aien August 25, 2012 at 7:36 am

      Hi. where do you buy your ingredients like rhubarb?

      1. Erwan August 30, 2012 at 8:25 am

        sometimes in Rustans




I gained weight because of a sedentary lifestyle and overly indulging in foods I knew were bad for me, eating out too often, taking the easy route (microwavable dishes) and not caring what went in my body, before I knew it reached 240 lbs. I lost weight through pure dedication, tireless hours of hard work and yes, food. I cooked my way to fitness, making sure to only feed myself tasty well prepared dishes with all the right stuff, the perfect fuel, taking me down to 150lbs. Of course I indulge from time to time, as the fat kid still lurks inside of me; here you will find a little bit of everything for the sole purpose of sharing my passion for food and life.





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