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Beat the Heat with Invisible Kitchen’s Executive Chef Tom Burney

Summer is upon us and it’s getting harder to resist the temptation of cold, sugary treats. But it’s true that you are what you eat – we met with Tom Burney, founder and Executive Chef of gourmet catering company Invisible Kitchen, in the search of healthy alternatives to help you beat the heat.
Voted as Foodie’s “Food Hero 2019”, Burney is passionate about creating balanced dishes. Whether it was cooking for celebrities like Chris Hemsworth, Keanu Reeves and Lady Gaga as their private chef, or for private parties and corporate events through Invisible Kitchen, he’s committed to using only high-quality ingredients sourced sustainably and ethically. His company reflects this commitment by supporting local organic farms, growing their own vegetables, and filtering and carbonating water in-house. “We are doing all we can to encourage our industry to act in a sustainable way,” he says.

The result is a range of healthy options that are good not just for you but also for the earth, such as the Buddha Bowls and wraps that he will be serving at Invisible Kitchen’s Taikoo Place pop-up food truck from 17 June to 12 July.

The Buddha Bowl (one of his personal favourites) is a base of mixed grains with toppings of different colours, textures and flavours. “The great thing about these Buddha Bowls is they can be as filling or light as you like, which is great for the summertime,” he says, revealing that there will be something for everyone: from Japanese radish and seaweed with seared Impossible beef, to “deconstructed” Impossible beef Wellington with black truffle, mushrooms and pastry “chips”.

Can’t wait till the truck is here? Burney shares two healthy recipes to tide you over:

Super Green Juice

Packed with minerals – thanks to coconut water – this juice will revitalise you in the summer heat or during a long work day.

125ml coconut water, 20g ginger, 1 lemon, 2 banana, 1 cucumber, ¼ pineapple, 125g baby spinach, 15g parsley (roughly chopped). Serves two to four.

1. Cut ginger, lemon, banana, pineapple and cucumber into 1–2cm cubes.
2. Feed the ingredients into a juicer or blender, adding in baby spinach and parsley.
3. Add in coconut water, then blend again.
4. Filter juice through a sieve for a smooth finish.

Chef’s tips: Play around to get it to your taste – add more lemon or add honey to adjust sweetness, or add yogurt for a bit of tartness.

Cucumber Salad with Sustainable Shrimp

Cucumber has high water content to keep you hydrated. This salad offers a good balance of nutrients and is particularly refreshing.

Salad: 10 pcs sustainable shrimp, ¼ cucumber, 50g fennel, 30g broccoli, 10g bean sprouts, 50g lettuce, 10g roasted red pepper, 5g black and white sesame seeds. Serves two.

5ml honey, 2ml sesame oil, 5ml rice wine vinegar

1. Prepare the dressing by mixing honey, sesame oil and rice wine vinegar together.
2. Cook shrimp in boiling water for one to two minutes; remove and let cool in a bowl of cold water.
3. Chop cucumber, bean sprouts and broccoli into small pieces. Mix together with fennel.
4. Place lettuce into a bowl, then top with the mixed ingredients.
5. Add garnish of chopped roasted red pepper and sesame seeds and add dressing.

Chef’s tips: This is a great salad base for any protein, such as chickpeas, grilled chicken, or tofu. You can even add cooked grains such as barley or quinoa to make it more filling. You can get certified sustainable shrimp from supermarkets – look for the blue MSC label.

Need more healthy eating inspirations? We’ve prepared four easy-to-pack lunchbox ideas for you, here.

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