This July, Chef Vicky Lau of two Michelin-starred TATE Dining Room and MORA continues her journey into the world of soy with a brand new concept. Introducing Ān, a 100% homemade soy-based collection of gourmet and lifestyle products.
This July and August, Ān will host its first ever public pop-up at date by TATE shop, located inside TATE Dining Room on 14-16, 21-23, 28-30 July and 4-6 August.
“Ever since I discovered the joys of soy, there was no turning back. I’ve been on an endless pursuit of finding the best ways to showcase soy in its myriad forms, from fine dining and pastries to even everyday products,” says Chef Vicky Lau. “Ān is a continuation of our work at MORA, which is first and foremost a study of soy.”
The Origins of Ān
Named after the Western Han Dynasty prince who invented tofu (豆腐) over 2,000 years ago, Ān is the latest soy-focused innovation by MORA. According to legends, Liu An first invented soy milk for his old and ill mother who wasn’t able to chew her food, by grinding soy beans into milk. One day, he accidentally mixed soy milk with gypsum powder, producing the first tofu-like substance in history.
Ān: The Concept & Story
Chef-proprietor Vicky Lau fell in love with soy after the “Ode to Tofu” single-ingredient lunch menu, which showcased various forms of soy products in a fine dining format. The menu was Chef Vicky’s first foray into applying classical French techniques upon humble soy products, drawing wide critical acclaim for its nostalgic, well-researched and impeccable East-meets- West execution.
A long-awaited sequel to “Ode to Tofu”, AN combines the thousands-years-old Chinese soy milk tradition with Japanese soy milk-producing technology, offering new and contemporary approaches to the way soy products are viewed and consumed. AN uses only non-GMO organic soybeans to create its collection of edible soybean products, which are available now at the date by TATE store.
Soy Products by Ān in July’s Pop Up at date by TATE
Through a marriage of time-tested traditions and modern technology, soy products including soybean milk and tofu are made in-house, using a carefully researched bean-to-pulp extractor specified to the culinary goals of our Chef. As the prime multi-faceted ingredient, soy acts as a shepherd for a wide variety of products– a carrier of subtle enhancements to flavors and textures.
Exclusive soy products by Ān that will be on offer at date by Tate includes Extra Thick Soy Milk, available in five different flavours: “Nature” made with trehalose, “Pistachio” made with natural pistachio paste, “Chinese Almond” made with almond powder, “Banana” made with banana puree, and “Black Sesame” made with black sesame paste; and Soy Cream Doughnut, a slow-proofed fried brioche dough with Chinese almond and soy-milk crème mousseline filling, rolled with roasted soy flour and sugar.
Other delectable soy milk-based pastries include Soy Milk Flan Parisien, a handmade, flaky puff pastry with soy milk crème pâtissier filling; Chocolate Chip Cookie , an indulgent chocolate chip cookie made with soy pulp, with crispy edges and a chewy interior; and Soy Sauce Caramel Soy Milk, a silky, slow-cooked soy milk pudding with umami-packed soy sauce caramel.
In addition to soy and soy milk-based gourmet products, Ān also reveals a collection of lifestyle products made with ever-versatile soy. Products on offer include Tofu DIY Kit which includes a traditional wooden tofu mold, 1 litre of Ān Soy Milk, and an e-recipe for creating the freshest tofu at home; Soy Blend Wax Candle, a customised scented candle by BeCandle with notes of roasted wood, an amalgamation of fresh spices and sweet vanilla; and Handmade Soy Milk Soap (HK$180), a hydrating and repairing all-natural soap made with virgin sweet almond oil, apricot kernel oil, virgin coconut oil, palm oil, shea oil, and organic soy milk.
Ān & Sustainability: A Modern Approach to Soy
Today, soy products are widely recognized as a healthy and sustainable dietary source of protein, containing all the essential amino acids of animal products. Dubbed the “Chinese cow”, soybeans come without the excessive cholesterol, calories, saturated fat, and environmental carbon footprint found in meat.
AN fuses sustainability with innovation to bring about the best possible culinary experience for our guests. Without trying to replace one diet for another, AN’s aim is to simply pave the path for progress, and to normalize sustainable dining practices in an industry that demands change. Crafted from careful research and trials and errors, AN provides a destination for discerning guests to discover a new world of culinary gems focused on soy products. From in-house soymilk creation to working closely with local suppliers and producers, AN is conscious about reducing greenhouse gas emissions, supporting the local community, and promoting cultural heritage preservation at a grassroots level.
Ān soy products are available for purchase for walk-in customers during the above mentioned dates in operation hours, and for pre-order (due to limited availability) on Tuesday–Saturday.