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Cathay Pacific’s New Gourmet Plant-Forward In-Flight Menu

Cathay Pacific Partners with VEDA by Ovolo to Offer Passengers a Unique Plant-Forward Gourmet Experience

Cathay Pacific Partners with VEDA by Ovolo to Offer Passengers a Unique Plant-Forward Gourmet Experience

Taking a significant step forward in wellness dining, Cathay Pacific presents a meticulously crafted new plant-based in-flight menu

Cathay Pacific is set to delight its customers with a modern, plant-based in-flight menu. Through its collaboration with VEDA by Ovolo, a renowned plant-forward restaurant based in Hong Kong, the airline has crafted a unique culinary experience. 

This inventive alliance further enriches the wholesome dining selections available to customers aboard Cathay Pacific flights. Patrons traveling in Premium Economy and Economy class on selected long-haul flights departing from Hong Kong can enjoy meticulously curated plant-forward dishes. These offerings emphasize nutrition and taste while drawing inspiration from diverse global culinary traditions. 

Cathay’s Culinary Collaboration with VEDA and Ovolo Hotels

Moreover, this collaboration seamlessly integrates with VEDA’s and Ovolo Hotels’ ongoing Plant’d pledge geared towards ethical eating and conscious cuisine. The partnership proudly propels the group into the global spotlight. It is the first hotel brand worldwide to commit to a vegetarian-focused menu.

Cathay Pacific General Manager Customer Experience and Design Vivian Lo said: “It gives us great pleasure to announce this new partnership with VEDA, a Hong Kong restaurant that shares our commitment to providing fantastic cuisine while being more sustainable.

“For Cathay, the difference is in the detail. We know in-flight dining is something that is extremely important to our customers, and we carefully work with partners to bring them memorable experiences by sourcing ingredients, designing menus and preparing dishes with great attention to detail.

“Drawing inspiration from the breadth and variety of VEDA’s dishes, we have collaborated with VEDA and Ovolo Hotels Executive Chef Raul Tronco to develop a reimagined selection of plant-forward creations that reflect our brand values of thoughtful and progressive, and go beyond the norms of airline vegetarian meals.”

A Joint Commitment to Sustainable Dining in the Air

Ovolo Hotels Founder and Executive Chairman Girish Jhunjhnuwala said: “VEDA and Ovolo Hotels pride ourselves on being an industry leader. We believe that the world changes. Therefore, we continue to evolve.

“We want to ensure we are doing our bit to help preserve our environment, promote healthy eating, and enhance the image of amazing vegetarian and plant-based dining. Our collaboration with Cathay Pacific aligns perfectly with this mantra, our Plant’d pledge, and our wider ‘Do Good. Feel Good’ sustainability commitment.”

Executive Chef Raul Tronco said: “As a vegetarian, I am very excited to see businesses such as Cathay Pacific embrace wellness and sustainability. When I embarked on this journey, I approached each dish just as I would when creating an item for VEDA.

Cathay Pacific Partners with VEDA by Ovolo to Offer Passengers a Unique Plant-Forward Gourmet Experience
Source: Cathay Pacific

“Designing a meal to be enjoyed at 30,000 feet comes with its challenges. I had to consider everything from how taste buds are affected at altitude, to cooking techniques. After countless hours of recipe testing, I am really pleased with the result and am confident that the curated VEDA inflight dishes offer travellers variety, vibrancy and incredible flavor.”

Cathay Pacific’s Sustainable Leap Forward in In-Flight Dining 

Cathay Pacific is refining its operations and introducing sustainable measures to deliver a superior dining experience. The airline is not just experimenting with plant-based alternatives. Cathay also leans towards an eco-friendly use of resources in its catering equipment. The goal is to offer passengers a more sustainable dining journey, inspiring them to embrace greener choices together. In a noteworthy accomplishment, the airline successfully reduced its single-use plastic consumption by 56% in 2022, compared to its 2018 baseline. 

Exciting Updates to In-flight Cuisine with VEDA Collaboration 

The partnership with VEDA signifies the dawn of a series of enhanced experiences for Cathay Pacific’s customers. These enhancements will span from in-flight meals to beverages, adding an invigorating touch to the midair gastronomic journey. Cathay Pacific is all set to reveal more exciting improvements to the in-flight dining experience in Premium Economy and Economy classes in the near future.

Highlights of the Menu

Cathay vegetable masala with green pulao rice
Vegetable masala with green pulao rice. One of Cathay’s new plant-forward dishes. Source: Cathay

Cathay Pacific’s Premium Economy and Economy class customers traveling on selected long-haul flights departing from Hong Kong. From now until June 2024 passengers can enjoy the new plant-forward in-flight menus. Cathay will offer a rotating selection of dishes throughout the year.

Premium Economy

The refreshed dining experience begins with the appetizer. A selection of dishes include Bombay carrot salad with cashews, raisins, and cherry tomatoes (孟買腰果甘筍沙律). Thin Indian-inspired slaw that features a fragrant dressing infused with lime juice, coriander powder, and ginger. Another appetizing treat is the Hummus with harissa roasted cauliflower and picked red onions (鷹嘴豆蓉配烤椰菜花及醃紅洋蔥). The North African red chili paste harissa provides a bold and smoky flavor.

A selection of flavor-rich main dishes follows these. The Keralan-style coconut curry with mushrooms, red bell peppers, and cumin rice (南印度椰香雜菌咖喱配小茴香飯) is a comforting, warming dish. Infused with coconut milk, tomatoes, and a delicate blend of spices, including turmeric, curry leaves, and mustard seeds, this dish has depth and complexity.

Another main highlight is the roasted vegetable tagine with halloumi cheese and pearl couscous (摩洛哥燴雜菜配羊奶芝士及北非珍珠米). This dish is a vibrant, fragrant, plant-forward version of the versatile North African stew. It features eggplants, carrots, zucchini, and pumpkin, slowly cooked with a warming mix of spices. Meanwhile, the airline also introduces a unique take on a Thai classic, Panang dry curry tofu. Served with cashews and coconut rice (泰式乾炒紅咖喱腰果豆腐配椰香飯). This starts with a base of green chili peppers, lemongrass, shallots, ginger, and vegetarian oyster sauce tossed with seared tofu. Green beans offer a balance of sweetness and spice.

Cathay’s Coach Class Cuisine

Panang dry curry tofu with cashews and coconut rice in Cathay's new plant-forward menu.
Panang dry curry tofu with cashews and coconut rice in Cathay’s new plant-forward menu. Source: Cathay Pacific

Revitalized Appetizers 

A renewed selection of tantalizing appetizers is available even in the Economy class. Purple Quinoa Tabbouleh (中東紫藜麥小米沙律) puts a unique spin on the conventional Middle Eastern salad, boasting an aromatic blend of fresh parsley and mint, cucumber, cherry tomatoes, and onions. Mediterranean Potato Salad (地中海式薯仔沙律), on the other hand, revamps an age-old classic with a delightful mix of potatoes, hard-boiled eggs, and baby pickles all tossed in a creamy dressing melding Dijon mustard, mayonnaise, and a hint of vinegar. 

Main Course Delights 

For the main course, patrons now have an array of sumptuous options. Khao Soi – Northern Thai-style coconut curry noodles with mixed vegetables (泰北椰香咖喱雜菜麪) features a vibrant medley of vegetables steeped in a creamy, spicy-sweet coconut curry, enhanced with lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, green chilies, turmeric, and ginger. 

Adding a twist to a Northern Indian staple, Paneer Makhani is the Paneer Cheese in Creamy Smoked Tomato Gravy with cumin rice (煙燻番茄芝士咖喱配小茴香飯). This dish stars soft cubes of paneer, cooked in a rich tomato cream sauce with mushrooms, green peas, and an array of spices. Smoked paprika lends the dish its distinct flair.

Alternatively, customers can relish the Vegetable Masala with Green Pulao Rice (咖喱雜菜配薄荷香飯). It is prepared by cooking basmati rice with various vegetables and aromatic whole spices. The additional touch of mint and coriander chutney provides a herbaceous note, with turmeric adding a pleasing kick.

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