As Bangkokians go through another round of lockdown, they have creatively adapted their homes to function as offices, gyms, art studios, and so much more. In our Lockdown Lowdown series, we talk to professionals from different areas of life to discuss how they are keeping on with their careers, what they are doing to stay sane during the new normal, and give us tips on how to live a better life at home.

Though eating healthy is something most of us associate with home cooking, it’s not something that everyone has the time to do. For those who work long hours, it’s not unusual to order something quick and easy after coming home from the office.

But instead of the usual pizza and burgers (which we occasionally love), a new wave of health food restaurants like Plantiful has made it possible for busy bees to have a time-saving dinner that’s both delicious and healthy. As a delivery-first restaurant, Plantiful’s advantage over the current dine-in restrictions gives them the opportunity to promote convenient and health-conscious eating right to people’s doorsteps. We spoke to Plantiful founder and certified plant-based chef Prima Pattaropong for some insights on plant-based cooking and tips on eating healthier at home.

[Hero/featured image credit: Plantiful]

Plantiful founder Prima Pattaropong

What have you been cooking at home?

I’ve been whipping up very simple stuff at home, and I just fell in love with roasting Brussels sprouts during this lockdown. I’ve also been making a lot of other roasted vegetables and sautéed kale for breakfast lately. Compared to kale salad, sautéed kale is much more mellow, soft, and easy to chew.

Have you developed any new recipes during the lockdown? 

I haven’t been developing food recipes lately, but I have been getting a lot of inspiration on how I want to lead Plantiful. I’m very happy to have a highly capable kitchen team, and they’re now the ones helping me develop new recipes.

Nonetheless, I have spent the past six months developing an oat milk recipe for our new sister brand, MYLK by Plantiful. We just soft-launched the brand this May 2021 and we’re still developing a few more recipes for new products like our soon-to-launch Barista Mylk.

MYLK by Plantiful is the restaurant’s newly launched oat milk brand
What are some of your favourite healthy snacks?

My favourite healthy snacks will always be fresh fruits like blueberries and dark chocolate. Generally, I don’t eat a lot of snacks because I’m more of a big meal person! I’d normally just have coffee for “snack” time.

How has the lockdown changed or shaped your eating habits?

Lockdown has definitely made me order more food deliveries because we can’t really go out to places. I have been cooking much more too because I’m home pretty much all the time now. To be honest, I haven’t cooked for myself or my family since I started Plantiful, which has been almost a year now. It feels great to be reminded of how amazing it is to cook for fun and not for business. I’ve gained a lot of inspiration that I will use for my work with Plantiful too!

Prima Pattaropong (left)
Any tips on eating healthier at home?

I recommend eating natto – it’s definitely an easy fridge fill. They’re delicious and healthy, and pack a lot of protein and fibre in a single serving. It has become my recent staple at home during the lockdown. Additionally, I suggest stocking up on vegetables like broccoli, carrots, Brussels sprouts, kale, and tomatoes. Just roast them in the oven all at once to meal prep for the entire week, and they’ll last up to five days in the fridge.

How has Plantiful evolved through this time and what are your future plans after the new normal?

Plantiful has become stronger ever during this lockdown period. Although May has been the hardest month for us due to the restrictions on in-person dining, we’re still managing to get through as a team. We’re very lucky that our business is mainly based on delivery service. We definitely have plans to double down on e-commerce and delivery service going forward, and we’re also working on further refining and strengthening our brand.

Minnie Ongsricharoenporn
Managing Editor, Bangkok
Minnie is a distance runner and fitness junkie who is always on the lookout for her next runcation destination. Gyms, spas, and hotels are her natural habitats. She hopes to complete all six World Marathon Majors one day.