Updated: Mar 10
Sustainability, Natural, Real-Food have become buzz words, but how many of these do really address the cause? Who am I to question, but these are things that are very close to my heart, philosophy and therefore this cause, mission, menu will always remain special.
Having done a few restaurant pop-ups, this is a great opportunity to do a private dining pop-up, at Ms. Amala's.
She is the founder of SaveAGram, a social enterprise that believes in fair trade and was formed to support the farmers who toil in remote Indian villages and produce food using indigenous, traditional farming methods followed by their ancestors.
Saveagram sources exceptional organic produce, from these small farmers and sells these products online in Singapore.
Her passion, drive to create an impact by helping you appreciate the upside of simple lives led in villages she set up SaveAGram, a pun intended on the "Gram" that means grain in English and (ग्राम meaning) village in Hindi.
First, she set up a homestay to provide a stable revenue stream to the villagers and a chance for people to stay, experience and eat sustainably produced food grains that the villagers grew around their houses.
From Garhwal, the foothills of the Himalayas to Wayanad, in the South of India, SaveAGram became this umbrella body saving one farmer at a time. These farmers grow food mostly for subsistence and store what they need for the whole year. They are conscious about not using any chemical pesticides and/or fertilizers in their farms and grow very unique strains of grains and spices, then sow the soil with the seeds harvested.
All SaveAGram produce collected for sale from these farmers is all organic and available in Singapore on their online marketplace.
Ms. Amala built a beautiful home in Singapore and opened it for people by way of dining. Living in one of the oldest condos of Singapore, that prides of spacious homes with a balcony and a backyard. Curated with artifacts from her home town, her home reflects her keen sense, taste for art and beauty. Therefore the dining venue, our table in Singapore is set at her home.
As show of support all things done old school and preserve skills with our hands, our poster and menu for the dining session is illustrated and painted by @illustr8_by_sujitha
The edible flowers and micro greens used across the 5 course are all grown in a Singapore farm, Pocket Greens by @engtingting who is an authority in the field!
The 5 course menu for the dining is inspired by the cuisines of Uttarakhand, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka, and Andhra Pradesh to represent the regions from where the farmers of SaveAGram produce.
Each course curated to help taste the quality of this amazing produce, the meal includes a non-alcoholic drink inspired by a street fruit food experience.
The Amuse Bouche is based on a street food favourite in India, the bhel. Bhel usually made of puri (puffed rice flakes) and therefore goes by the name Bhel Puri. It is essentially puffed rice mixed with chopped onions, tomatoes, coriander, some Coriander-Mint Chutney and Date-Tamarind Chutney served with some chick pea floss like crisps. This dish showcases the humble millet, usually used as a substitute for rice across India when the Rice was only affordable by the affluent. To give a texture contrast it is served with a helping of the puffed Amaranth, again from SaveAGram with the same signature flavours sauces and presented with some pea shoots.