Save The Planet, Eat Less Meat By Biting Into The Tasty New Burgers At Green Pastures
Chef Robby Goco’s farm-to-table, sustainability-thinking restaurant just came out with its less-meat and plant-based burgers and trust us, you won’t miss the meat
With the fires currently raging in the Amazon rainforest—and with no signs of them abating anytime soon—netizens around the world have been lamenting the setback this latest tragedy will bring to the uphill battle to combat climate change. Among the many calls to action, one gaining traction is to simply eat less or no meat (on the evidence that the livestock industry contributes significantly to climate change). Just recently, famed restaurateur and author Eddie Huang declared on Instagram that he was going vegan due to the Amazon fires.
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After watching videos of the Amazon on fire this week, Ive decided that this corned beef I ate at Junior’s last week will be the last piece of beef I ever eat. I love beef, I love ox tails, I love Peter Luger’s, I loved growing up in a steak house cutting NY Strip on xanax. It was soothing but beef is fucking us. Actually, we are fucking ourselves on multiple levels and we need to make changes. Im going to go vegan because it takes 20 times less land to feed a vegan than a meat eater and over 90% of the land cleared in the amazon rainforest since 1970 is used for grazing livestock, but if all of us just stopped eating BEEF it would solve huge problems. Eat fish, eat chicken, eat pork until the next crisis but if all u can do now is quit beef, please do it. I know a lot of ass backwards people think vegetarianism or veganism is some uppity white girl thing to do but its not. There have been Asian Buddhist Vegetarians for thousands of years, Ital Rasta, Hindu as well, this is not some new age thing to laugh at. We are getting back to roots, healing the Earth, and ourselves. Ive eaten my last bite of meat. I wish I had planned this better and ate my mom’s ox tail soup but fuck it. There really isnt time to waste. Some things have to start today. I started to get these feelings shooting the last season of Huang’s World and fasted for 5 days because my producer David’s mom said I looked sick. She was right. The 5 days not eating fundamentally changed me and I shot the second half of the season while intermittent fasting. Ive made a lot of food videos because I love food but more than anything because food was fertile ground for exploring difference, but I dont love what food tv and more importantly what food has become in our culture: a drug. I had a really rough 2018- early 2019, got high and just ate myself to sleep watching Harry Potter a lot lol but Im getting back on my shit. Take a moment, think about it, and reexamine your relationship with food because it’ll make the Earth and ourselves very very sick if we keep abusing it.
While the meat-loving Huang made this drastic move, other restaurateurs have taken more gradual steps to lessening meat consumption, going for “less meat” rather than “no meat.” One such chef is Robby Goco, the enterprising chef behind such successful Greek food concepts as Cyma and Souv. But it’s his other baby, Green Pastures, that best puts forth his ideas about consciously eating better, not only for the body but for the planet as well.
The menu at Green Pastures champions farmers and producers and their sustainably produced, mostly organic products that Chef Robby puts to good use, with dishes such as the millennial-friendly Avocado Toast and the aptly named Sustainable Seafood Paella using adlai instead of rice, that yes, taste really good, too.
But don’t be fooled into thinking Green Pastures is a “healthy” or vegetarian restaurant. You’ll find hefty dishes like Braised Oxtail, Steak Frites, Organic Porchetta on the menu, with no apologies for the extra calories. But everything is made using all-natural, mostly organic ingredients, without any overly processed products in sight.
What about the meat? Chef Robby says Green Pastures isn’t going vegetarian any time soon, but, he is conscious of the fact that too much meat can wreak havoc on your body, not to mention the earth’s environment. With that in mind, he recently came out with his less-meat and no-meat burger options.
The principle is simple. He reduced by 50% the amount of meat (whether chicken, pork, or beef) he puts into what he calls his “blended” burger patties, replacing them with a mix of vegetables and fruits instead, and no extenders please! Of course, there is also a meatless burger, using the new plant-based Beyond Meat, which does not disappoint either.
It takes a talented chef to reduce the meat content without sacrificing on flavor, and if he hadn’t told us, we actually wouldn’t have noticed. Each of the blended burgers are extra tasty, featuring juicy patties and an ingenious combination of flavors that usually make or break a burger. Think sriracha mayo or garlic aioli, sautéed mushrooms or caramelized onions, not to mention the usual cheese, pickles, tomatoes, and lettuce. All the burgers use sweet potato buns and are served with sweet potato fries, plus red cabbage and apple slaw on the side.
For those who prefer to have no meat at all in their burgers, Chef Robby created his Beyond Burger, using Beyond Meat, the exciting new plant-based “meat” that is taking the world by storm. From the United States, Beyond Meat is the next generation in meat alternatives, using simple plants (like green peas) and other ingredients, but with no GMOs, soy, or gluten products. The result is surprisingly tasty with a texture that can best be described as “meat like.” The Beyond Meat patties, when cooked medium rare, even “bleed” thanks to beetroot juice in the product.
Green Pastures may not be a “healthy” restaurant in the traditional sense, but Chef Robby is eminently conscious about giving his customers better options. “It’s all about getting fiber in your system,” says Chef Robby, and that means less meat, more vegetables and whole grains, one burger at a time.
Green Pastures branches at G/F Net Park Building, 5th Avenue, Bonifacio Global City and East Wing, Shangri-La Mall, EDSA, Mandaluyong City