5 Secret Health(ier) Recipes from the World’s Top Chefs

Vivian Vassos | May 15th, 2017

Canadian super chef Mark McEwan puts the final touches on a dish

Lighten up for summer! Here, five health(ier) recipes from chefs at some of the world’s best hotels.

We love to eat. And we love to cook. And we like to think we’re eating healthier. But sometimes, it just tastes better when somebody else does the cooking. So, we’re bringing the best of both worlds to you with a few healthier recipes from some of the world’s top chefs at some of the world’s best hotels. The best part? It’s a full day’s menu and then some, for breakfast, lunch, teatime and dinner, all right here.

We asked top chefs from some of the world’s coolest culinary capitals and destinations – Hong Kong, London, Bali and Toronto – to weigh in on how to make some of our favourite things. Can you say a healthier grilled cheese sandwich? Okay, full disclosure here: we must admit it’s hard to say grilled cheese is healthy, but when you throw in Kimchi, a fermented super food of the moment that’s typically a combination of shredded napa cabbage and daikon radish, it’s hard to resist sharing the recipe from our friends at the Cordis, Hong Kong. Luckily we’ve redeemed our selves with the addition of a fresh take on a smoothie by Canadian super chef Mark McEwan and his crew at One Restaurant at the Hazelton hotel in Toronto that will help jump start your day and have your body firing on all cylinders.

Speaking of fiery, Bali is a destination that’s blazing on many a travellers’ radar this year. The Fairmont Sanur, in a glorious old-school fishing village on the southeast coast of Bali  and just off Sanur Beach, steams up delicious fare, and we’ve got one of their favourites to share with you.

And, of course, we threw in cocktail inspiration for good measure from one of our favourite London Secret addresses, Manetta’s bar at Flemings hotel in Mayfair (plus a scrumptious recipe for scallops from Ormer Mayfair, the hotel’s fabulous resto headed up by the Michelin-starred chef Shaun Rankin). Because if you can’t drink to your health, what can you drink to?

Click through for our pick of Secret Health(ier) Recipes of Top Chefs. Bon appetit!


Cool Culinary Destination: Hong Kong

Kimcheese Toastie

From Paul Mcloughlin, Culinary Director, Cordis, Hong Kong

Okay, full disclosure here: we must admit it’s hard to say grilled cheese is healthy, but when you throw in Kimchi, a super health food of the moment, it’s hard to resist. Serve it cut up in bite-size triangles as a comfort-food accompaniment with Tomato Soup or go add a little low-level luxe: try it with Negronis or Martinis.

Cheese béchamel sauce

90g flour

100g butter

1L milk

100g Manchego cheese

2 slices of bread, suitable for toast

30g good quality kimchi (chopped)

5g butter



Melt butter and mix in flour until well incorporated in a pot on low heat stirring to ensure proper mixture; slowly add in milk and simmer whisk to ensure no lumps, strain though fine sieve/strainer, return to heat, slowly add in Manchego cheese until melted, stirring all the time).

Butter bread on both sides, lay kimchi on one side, spread Manchego cheese sauce on the other and make a sandwich. Toast on dry frying pan at medium heat to colour and heat through. Serve warm.


NEXT: Grilled fish in banana leaves

Cool Culinary Destination: Bali

Pepes Be Pasih (grilled fish in Banana leaves)

Note: prepare Base Be Pasih basic fish paste sauce, below, first

Courtesy of the chefs at the Fairmont Sanur Beach Bali

Bali is a destination that’s blazing on many a travellers’ radar this year. The Fairmont Sanur, located just down the way from a glorious old-school fishing village on the southeast coast of Bali and just off Sanur Beach, features all-suite rooms, along with villas, set among leafy tropical gardens and soothing water features. A respect for the village’s mix of Balinese history, art and tradition can be found everywhere on the property, from the public art installations to the smiling service. The hotel’s Layang Layangwhich specializes in authentic Indonesian cuisine, steams up delicious fare, and we’ve got one of their favourites to share with you. And don’t forget to head to the bar by the 200m of sandy beach – the perfect spot for people-watching, as the “boardwalk” pathway is just steps from the hotel and for sundowners, where the happy hour specials encourage lingering.

Serves 1


180 g 
Mahi Mahi, cut into 4 slices

50 g 
Bumbu Be Pasih (see recipe, above)

1 medium tomato, sliced

10 g 
Kemangi (local or Asian basil)

1 Banana leaf, sized to wrap around size of fish fillet

Salt and pepper to taste

Bamboo stake or long toothpick



Mixed all ingredients in mixing bowl and seasoning well. Place fish on banana leaf, then coat fish with mixture. Roll until leaf is “stuffed” by the fish. Pierce packet with a bamboo stake to hold together. Place on pre-heated grill and cook until fish flesh is just firm.


Base Be Pasih (basic fish paste sauce)

YIELD: Enough for following recipe, Pepes Be Pasih (grilled fish in banana leaves)



150 g Red chili halved and seeded

16 g Garlic, peeled

75 g Shallots, peeled

58 g Fresh turmeric, peeled

34 g Ginger, peeled

Tomato medium sized halved seeded

42 g Candlenuts

1/4 tbsp Coriander seeds, crushed

1/4 tbsp Shrimp paste

50 ml Coconut oil

1/4 tbsp Tamarind pulp

84 ml Water

1 Salam leaf

1 stalk Lemon grass


Combine all ingredients except tamarind pulp, salam leaves, salt and water. Grind coarsely in food processor. Place ground ingredients in heavy saucepan, and add remaining ingredients. Simmer over medium heat for approximately 60 minutes.



NEXT: Exotic Smoothie Bowl

Cool Culinary Destination: Toronto

Exotic Smoothie Bowl by Chef Mark McEwan and Chef de Cuisine Darby Piquette, from The Hazelton Hotel’s One Restaurant Health & Wellness Menu

The Hazelton Hotel is celebrating the arrival of sunnier weather with the introduction of the “Meditation and Rejuvenation” package. According to the hotel, it’s “Designed to incorporate the importance of mindfulness in our daily lives, and the package aims to help guests disconnect from the stresses of day to day life while reconnecting with mind, body and soul.” In-room meditations are led by a yoga practitioner, curated healthy food options designed by Chef McEwan and the rejuvenating Valmont signature hydration facial at one of the most exclusive spa sanctuaries in Toronto tie it all up nicely.

“Mindfulness studies have increased in recent years,” says Hani Roustom, General Manager of the Hazelton Hotel, “many people seek to find the same inner peace while away as they do while at home. The Hazelton Hotel is proud to partner with leaders in the mindfulness and wellness space, like lululemon ambassador Tara Good, to bring mediation and rejuvenation to our guests allowing them to experience the same inner peace and tranquility during their stay as they strive for in their daily lives.”

Here’s Chef McEwan’s suggestion for a healthy breakfast – or any time of day: Green mango lassi, coconut chips, goji berry, mint and tropical fruit compote. The great thing about this “bowl” is that you can enjoy these elements separately as well: a healthy smoothie or a rich fruit compote or both together, as pictured above!

Serves 4



4 ripe Ataulfo mangos

2 cups coconut milk

2 cups coconut water

2 cups ice

1 tsp minced ginger

1 tbsp honey

2 cups packed baby spinach



Peel and dice mangos. Add all ingredients into a heavy-duty blender (Vitamix works perfectly!) and blend on high until smooth.



1 cup dragon fruit

1/2 cup Ataulfo mango

1 cup papaya

1 tbsp sugar



Cut each fruit into large cubes. Toss with sugar and let macerate until ready for use.


INGREDIENTS to prepare the full dish:

4 cups green mango lassi

2 cups tropical fruit compote

½ cup goji berries

1 bunch fresh mint

1 cup coconut chips



Pour the green mango lassi into coconut bowls. Garnish the smoothie with a line of each tropical fruit compote, goji berries and coconut chips. Finish with fresh picked mint leaves and enjoy!


NEXT: Chef McEwan and Chef de Cuisine Darby Piquette’s healthier take on the classic Club Sandwich.

Cool Culinary Destination: Toronto

Green goddess sandwich with sprouted grain toast, balsamic chicken breast, sliced avocado, cucumber, pea shoots and pumpkin seed hummus by Chef Mark McEwan and Chef de Cuisine Darby Piquette, from the Hazelton Hotel’s One Restaurant Health & Wellness Menu

Serves 4


INGREDIENTS: Balsamic chicken breast

2 boneless skinless chicken breast (about 6oz each)

1 cup basil

½ cup balsamic vinegar

2 tbsp honey

1 tbsp salt

6 cloves garlic

¼ cup thyme

1 lemon

1 cup water



In a shallow baking dish, combine water, garlic, thyme, sliced lemon, salt and chicken breast. Cover with tin foil and bake at 300F for 20 minutes. Let chicken cool completely in liquid overnight. In a small sauce pot combine balsamic, honey and basil. Slowly reduce the liquid until it becomes a thick glaze. Cool in fridge overnight. To serve, thinly slice the chilled chicken, and brush with balsamic glaze.


INGREDIENTS: Pumpkin seed hummus

2 cup canned chickpeas

½ cup pumpkin seeds

1 tbsp tahini

2 tbsp lemon juice

1 tsp garlic

4 tbsp olive oil

2 tbsp parsley

1 tsp salt

1 tsp black pepper



Add all ingredients in blender, and blend until smooth.



8 slice sprouted grain toast (preferably Ezekiel bread)

Sliced balsamic chicken breast

2 ripe avocado

Pumpkin seed hummus

1 english cucumber

1 tbsp dill

2 tbsp white vinegar

1 package fresh Pea shoots, or alfalfa sprouts





Peel avocado, slice in 1/8 slices, and Season with a pinch of salt. Thinly slice cucumber and mix with chopped dill, white vinegar and a pinch of salt. Toast Ezekial bread until golden brown. Place half an avocado on 4 pieces of toast. On the other four pieces of toast spread a generous amount of pumpkin seed hummus. Divide the sliced chicken on to each toast with avocado. Lightly drain the cucumbers from the vinegar and place on top of the chicken. Put a small handful of pea shoot on top of the cucumber. Dress the pea shoots (or alfalfa sprouts) with a drizzle of the dill-cucumber vinegar. Put the piece of toast that is spread of hummus on top. Cut in half and enjoy.


NEXT: A Michelin-starred chef’s recipe for Scallops and Avocado

Cool Culinary Destination: London

Roast Scallops with Avocado, French Beans and Hazelnut Dressing

Just off Piccadilly in the always-au-courant Mayfair neighbourhood, you’ll find Flemings, a member of Small Luxury Hotels, its super-chic restaurant Ormer Mayfair, and Manetta’s it’s subterranean jewel-box of a bar. Why super chic? The service is brilliant, the food is imaginative and flavourful and the lower-level room feels intimate yet unfussy. Here, an easy and healthy recipe, courtesy of Shaun Rankin, the Michelin star chef who heads up the kitchen at Ormer Mayfair, direct to you from one of our favourite London Secret addresses, Flemings Mayfair hotel!

Makes 4 servings.



12        large scallops

Olive oil

20 g     unsalted butter

45 g     roasted hazelnuts

Juice of ½ lemon



45 g     cooked French beans

2          avocados, thinly sliced

85 g     lamb’s lettuce



2 tbsp  hazelnut oil

3 tbsp  olive oil

1 tsp    whole grain mustard

1 tbsp  white vinegar

Salt and freshly ground black pepper



Vinaigrette: In glass jar with lid, combine hazelnut and olive oils, mustard and vinegar. Screw lid on tightly and shake well to emulsify. Set aside.

Slice cooked beans in half lengthwise and place in bowl. Add lettuce and avocados and enough vinaigrette to dress. Season with salt and pepper.

Wash scallops in cold water and pat dry. In non-stick skillet, heat oil and fry scallops for 1 minute on each side or until golden. Add butter and hazelnuts and warm through. Finish with lemon juice and remove from heat. Serve immediately.


And, of course, we threw in cocktail inspiration for good measure from one of our favourite London Secret addresses – and a member of Small Luxury Hotels, Manetta’s bar at Flemings hotel in Mayfair, a subterranean jewel-box of a bar, complete with its speakeasy vibe. Here, the ingredients for the rum- and hibiscus liqueur-spiked Rose is a Rose is a Rose. Because if you can’t drink to your health, what can you drink to?

Ingredients: Plantation 3Stars Rum, Hibiscus Liqueur, Lime Juice, Grapefruit Juice, Egg White

“It is what it is!” – The name derives from Gertrude Stein’s first short story. A portrait of Stein adorns the wall of Manetta’s bar, painted by British artist Kate Boxer.