About this module
Healthy eating or clean eating is here to stay, with good reason! Here, we explore the subject of incorporating healthy alternatives to your menu with 3 quick tips so that your customers will be eating well. This module also touches on plant-based recipes that have been gaining popularity amongst health-conscious foodies and consumers with dietary restrictions.
With the world ever changing and rushing, people are always on the go with their hectic lifestyles.
Malaysians are becoming more aware and conscious of their health, as people are choosing a more holistic approach to health, by changing their lifestyle and food intake.
Food is one of the pillars of health – we are what we eat. So it is no surprise that we find our customers, or sometimes even ourselves asking for less sugar in our food, enquiring for a healthier option, or even eating more of certain foods that we do not usually eat – just for nutrition.
This is a growing market, and as a forward thinking home baker, we should know what healthy choices are available and what methods we can use to implement healthy alternatives to our products and menu.
Let us share 3 quick tips with you on implementing ‘health’ into your products: Reduce, Add or Substitute.
Firstly, REDUCE OR ELIMINATE. Malaysians will be most familiar with this method by the term kurang manis or kosong when ordering drinks, which carry the meaning of less sugar and no sugar respectively.
Reducing sugars, fats and synthetic ingredients in your products can give customers a healthy alternative to the regular products in the market.
The idea is to prevent the over-consumption of certain nutrients, and home bakers may refer to the Recommended Nutrient Intakes for Malaysia released by the Ministry of Health for more information.
When catering for dietary restrictions, then ingredients such as sugar, gluten, dairy or animal products will need to be eliminated.
In contrast, another method to create a healthier alternative is to ADD. This is good for consumers looking to add value to their food choice, to improve their health and immune system.
There are healthy ingredients like nuts, seeds, oats, dried fruits and superfood powders can be added into baked products.
These ingredients not only naturally enriches the product vitamins, fiber, protein and other nutritious elements that improve one’s general health, it also adds flavours and texture.
Lastly, home bakers can SUBSTITUTE ingredients to create different products for consumers.
A good and widely available alternative is wholemeal bread, which is an alternative to white bread with its higher fiber, vitamins content and lower calories.
Home bakers can also try whole ancient grains in place of fully refined wheat for a more nutritious and wholesome bread.
Another example is to replace synthetic ingredients such as artificial colouring with natural ingredients such as beetroot powder for a red velvet, matcha powder for green, turmeric for yellow, and so on.
The product will benefit not only from the vibrant colour but also enriched by the nutrients contained in the ingredients.
In order for home bakers to successfully develop a healthy alternative by reducing, eliminating, adding or substituting ingredients, understanding of each ingredients’ function is essential.
And by doing so successfully, home bakers can express their creativity and supply the increasing demand for healthy alternatives stemming from the awareness and lifestyle changes of many people.