Vegan Vanguards: Three healthy food heavyweights team up for Jeh festival dinners at Haoma
In celebration of the upcoming Buddhist Jeh festival, three of Bangkok’s big names in healthy-eating are teaming up for a two-day feast featuring all jeh foods — that means no meat, dairy, or animal products.
Titled as Vegan Vanguards, the tasting menu will be served at Phrom Pong’s Haoma on Oct. 10 and 11 and is the brainchild of the chefs at Haoma, Broccoli Revolution, and Barefood Bangkok.
Chef Deepanker “DK” Khosla of Haoma, alongside Broccoli Revolution’s Naya Ehrlich-Adam and Barefood Bangkok’s Chef Edoardo Bonavolta and Taksina Nuangsri-Anttila, have created new and innovative vegetarian dishes heavy on ingredients from Haoma’s own aquaponic, hydroponic and compost farm.
Since part of the jeh festival means abstaining from alcohol, they’ve also enlisted Ehrlich-Adam to come up with a juice pairing for the meal, including one brand new juice made solely from herbs from DK’s garden.
We stopped by to try some highlights of the 7-course meal and were pretty surprised at the level of detail and thought that went into the gastronomy.
We started with a small deconstructed dish that looks — to be honest — quite strange. The Bloody Mary Soup arrives as a covered soup bowl arrived with a small flax cracker, blob of green tomato jelly and small leaf on top. Then a spoon covered in, what appeared like, pico de gallo, was placed the the side. It was actually “all the contents of a bloody mary,” according to DK. Next, he came around and took the lids off our bowls, revealing a tiny lime-colored frozen microscoop of celery sorbet over which he poured a few tablespoons of clear, viscous, but very strongly tomato-smelling, liquid. We were told to eat the cracker with the jelly and mix the spoon of ingredients into the soup, which was chilled but also quickly meling the celery sorbet. Then, we were told to eat the soup. Though only a few mouthfuls, this was a memorable refreshing summer soup, with an odd but pleasant perfume quality. It’s made with Chiang Mai tomatoes and hidden somewhere in the recipe, beyond sight or perception and perhaps what is responsible for the perfumy quality, is blueberry.
Next up was a filling, comforting course. Half of a Local Hassleback Potato with Ragout of Poi Lentils, a large amount of flavor was packed into the course. DK explained that the potato was completely covered in thin slits to allow more flavor to penetrate it during cooking. It sat on a puddle of spicy lentil and tomato stew and was cooked with homemade miso and topped with dehydrated mango . Dotting the plate were bits of fermented banana paste that we were advised to try to incorporate into each bite. Dill and scallion were also used for flavoring
A showman’s kind of course arrived next, the kind that everyone oohs and ahhs at when it arrives from the kitchen. A wedge of baked and Charcoal Grilled Butternut Squash was cooked with pesto and chimichurri treated with fermented buckwheat and held in place with a velvety pile of purple potato purée. Sitting over the top and looking like some kind of exotic sea fan, was a large piece of curly kale that had been battered and fried. Over the top was poured Madras curry powder sauce. This multi-textured dish tastes indulgent and thoughtful.
We finished up with chunks of Barefood Bangkok’s vegan nut cheeses on bits of yeast-free bread. The three-ingredient cashew cheese tastes surprisingly complex for something with few ingredients. The secret to it is time. The cheese, which is made with probiotics, and takes four weeks to ripen has a texture of a soft cheese and a dense, nutty flavor.
Guests who go for the full 7-course meal will also have a a cabbage course with apples, sunchoke confit and pickled radish, a red pepper and chia seed fettuccine with peppers, pickled fennel, and basil; and a coconut dessert featuring the fruit in its’ pure, jellied, iced, and kafir forms.
The 7-course meal is THB1,700 with an optional juice pairing for THB499. The regular menu will be available on the 10th and 11th as well.
Vegan Vanguards Jeh Festival Pop Up at Haoma
Oct. 10-11, 6:30-11pm
231/3 Sukhumvit Soi 31