Review: Wen’s Whitebait Powder

About

Though newly set up in March 2018, Su Wen, the founder of Wen’s Whitebait Powder, is no stranger to the industry. Her family has been importing seafood from their family-owned fisheries into Singapore since the 1960s. Wen’s Whitebait Powder is a combination of her experience dealing with fisheries and the aim to provide a healthy and convenient fish supplement for busy parents. 

Wen’s Whitebait Powder specialises in whitebait powder, which is ground whitebait that can used to supplement our daily nutritional requirements. Its newly launched product is the Crunchy Whitebait, a healthy snack that’s baked and unsalted. 

Quick Facts

  • Wen’s is the only food powder company that has control over its source as it harvests whitebait from Wen’s family-owned fisheries in Senayang, Riau Islands in Indonesia
  • Only one ingredient – whitebait. As Wen’s has no added seasoning or preservatives, it can be safely added into food for babies 6 months and up
  • Whitebait is not ikan bilis – whitebait is fish fry that can be eaten whole (Wen’s uses herring) and ikan bilis are anchovies which must be gutted before consumption
  • Wen’s is processed and packed at its SFA-certified food factory 
  • “Fresh” whitebait sold in the local wet markets with a whitish appearance actually contain a lot of sodium due to the preservation process of salting, drying and freezing. At Wen’s, salting and de-salting is done within hours to maintain maximum freshness.
  • Fresh guarantee – made fresh with whitebait imported weekly

Process

Wen’s has documented the journey from fishery-to-fork in a video for everyone to have a clearer understanding of what a pack of whitebait powder exactly contains. There is only one ingredient listed on the packaging – whitebait. 

Harvesting, salting & drying
– Catch is harvested from a kelong in the open waters 
– Catch is cooked in salted water for 3 minutes and left to dry. Small fishes must be salted to maintain freshness. 
– Fishes are sent to nearby Senayang to be sun-dried for half a day
– Whitebait is carefully separated from the other fishes by hand
– Whitebait is desalted by rinsing several times with warm water and a secret technique
– Rinsed whitebait is sun-dried for a day

Further processing
– Exported into Singapore for further processing at its SFA-certified food factory 
– Whitebait is baked for a few minutes 
– Ground, sieved and packed into tamper-proof packaging

Nutritional Value

The nutrition facts displayed by Wen’s Whitebait Powder have been tested and proven by a Singapore Accreditation Council approved laboratory. 

  • More DHA and essential minerals than formula milk 
    Wen’s Whitebait Powder has been tested to contain more DHA (2010mg vs 30mg/100g), calcium (1590mg vs 620mg/100g), magnesium (282mg vs 43mg/100g) and phosphorus (1400mg vs 390mg/100g) than X brand formula milk.
  • High in calcium
    Just one 2g serving fulfils 12% of the daily calcium requirements (260mg) of a 6-12 month old baby 
  • Contains essential minerals 
    Potassium – keeps muscles working right, keeps heartbeat regular
    Phosphorus – filters waste, repairs tissue and cells
    Fun fact: Phosphorus from animal origins are more easily absorbed by the body than phosphorus from plant origins
    Magnesium keeps muscles, bones and nerves healthy
    Zinc – regulates immune system
  • Low in sodium
    In every 2g serving, Wen’s Whitebait Powder has a negligible 0.007mg of sodium compared to a well-known ikan bilis seasoning powder sold commercially that contains a staggering 305mg of sodium! 
knorr ikan bilis

Texture, taste and Smell

Wen’s Whitebait Powder is marketed as a fish supplement especially suitable for babies older than six months old as well as pregnant women. It can be added to the meals of people who require soft diets to boost their calcium intake.

Appearance: Fine, sand-coloured powder
Taste: Not salty. No lingering after-taste. It may taste bland because adults have duller taste buds. Babies have extremely sensitive taste buds, therefore they do not require added salt, sugar or soy sauce in their meals. 
Smell: Light smell of the sea

Usage and Recommended Amount

Wen’s Whitebait Powder can be sprinkled on top of cooked food, mixed into soups or included into marinades. The simplest way is to add it to porridge or into fried rice. 

You can easily increase the nutritional content of the meals by adding a serving of Wen’s Whitebait Powder. There is a small wooden spoon provided for you to easily measure out one serving. 

The risk of over-consumption is low, as the limit is 80 grams (2g*40 scoops) of powder.

Commitment to Quality

Wen’s is committed to providing the best quality, and it’s not purely a marketing phrase that’s thrown around. 

They sent out samples of a mushroom powder which received favourable feedback but they decided against launching the product, simply because they have decided to focus on improving on the quality of their fishery and improve control on the source. 

Where to Purchase

Wen’s Whitebait Powder can be purchased directly from their online store, baby fairs that they participate in and in-store retailers in Singapore

Disclaimer

This is a paid collaboration with Wen’s Whitebait Powder. As such, care and caution has been taken to provide only factual information. 

Giveaway

WIN a Refill Pack (70g) of Wen’s Whitebait Powder & 1 pack of Crunchy Whitebait! 

To enter the contest, follow the details below.

1. Search for this post on Instagram @bibimbubs

2. Follow both @bibimbubs and @wenswhitebaitpowder

3. Tag your friends who might be interested in this, one friend per comment

4. Share the post on your IG stories and write why you wish to win this. Tag both @bibimbubs and @wenswhitebaitpowder in that IG story so we can read! 

Contest ends 3rd November 2019 2359H. This contest is not affiliated with Instagram.  

Tian Wei Signature Confinement Catering (+ Discount Code!)

UPDATE JAN 2018

Tian Wei Signature has refreshed their menu and introduced MORE unique dishes to its already extensive menu! You know a brand values its customers when it constantly strives to make improvements and always replies to feedback humbly. 

I’ve had comments that it doesn’t resemble traditional confinement food. I find the incorporation of dishes from other cuisines refreshing as the ingredients of each dish are carefully selected to aid in recuperation after birth and promote lactation. I was pleasantly surprised when offered a chance to try their new menu because I’m no ~*influencer*~ and there will not be carefully posed photos of me in makeup, smiling as I put a spoon to my mouth. ANYWAY. 

“These dishes will be in smaller portion than usually what you will be receiving, just so that you can have more varieties to taste” I WAS STUFFED. Each meal comes with their standard 1L of red date tea.
Yes, I carefully plated them 😀
Fortune Herbal Chicken, Stir Fried French Beans with Egg and Tomato. Thai Lemongrass Salmon

It’s been such a long time since I’ve been pampered with nutritious lunches! THIS MENU IS SUPER TASTY. Please try it for yourself if you suspect I’m being paid (no I’m not) to write this. The fortune herbal chicken broth had more herbs than water and it tasted rich and flavourful. The french beans with egg as well. I didn’t expect myself to like it that much. My favourite dish of all was the Thai Lemongrass Salmon because this reminded me of my #1, perfect last meal dish, Teochew Steamed Pomfret. I can easily eat this over and over again! 

Sweet potato Longan Ginger Soup. Green Papaya Fish Soup

Before you think I’m going to rave about every single dish…. there was too much ginger in the sweet potato soup, making it too spicy for me to handle. My personal preference is for sweeter desserts. I also got to taste their signature milk boosting soup again, the green papaya milky fish soup. Ultimate milk booster, this one. 木瓜牛奶! 

Braised Sesame Chicken with Sweet Potato Vermicelli, Cumin Garlic Pork, Miso Ginger Threadfin

Every single dish here had black fungus. Black fungus aids in preventing blood coagulation, thrombosis and embolism as well as prevent heart disease. It’s rich in iron, cellulose and plant collagen! The vermicelli was made from sweet potato and was not overwhelming on the palate. The pork did not have a gamey smell and the carrots and black fungus gave the dish an added crunch. The miso threadfin was panfried. Threadfin is one of the more expensive fishes in the market as it has a lower mercury content. 

This is why I don’t have time to put on makeup and take an Instagram worthy photo of me smiling at food. Should I stuff him back inside and pop him out again so I can order another month’s worth of confinement food? #joke #sorrydidi

If you’re still undecided on your confinement caterer, maybe you can purchase a trial meal before deciding. Check out their menu here! If you have decided, here’s a Discount Code!

Enjoy $148 OFF! Use TWBIBIMBUBS when placing your order.
Only applicable for 28-day lunch & dinner package.
Valid till 30th June 2018.


ORIGINAL SEP 2017

 

1. ABOUT TIAN WEI

A new entrant to the confinement catering market, Tian Wei Signature provides another choice to mothers in confinement, offering Mediterranean fusion and Japanese dishes in addition to traditional confinement meals.
Head chef Eugene Tan has more than 10 years’ experience in cooking and has participated in many culinary competitions. Managed by the same people behind PEM Confinement Agency, Tian Wei Signature has a carefully thought out menu with emphasis on breastmilk boosting ingredients. 

2. HOW TO ORDER

The website is cleanly designed with necessary information prominently displayed. Click on your preferred package and a checklist pops up, allowing you to omit ingredients you do not want in your meals. I didn’t want any kind of insides in my meals, so I clicked on “No Liver” and “No Kidney”. If there are any ingredients not in the list, email them.

A deposit has to be made in order to confirm your package booking. The remaining payment can be made on the first day of food delivery via cheque or internet banking.
Their 28 day package (lunch & dinner) costs S$1,688 with an early bird discount of $128 if the booking is made at least 1 month before EDD.

3. CUSTOMER SERVICE

I’ve been on both sides of customer service and I’m very impatient, so I hate waiting or making people wait for replies. I reply to emails almost instantly if I see it. Tian Wei does an EXCELLENT job at customer service. The team goes over and beyond to impress customers. I have lots to learn from them.  

  • Service recovery is TOP NOTCH. I wasn’t satisfied with a particular dish and left them an email. Almost immediately, I received a call from Charles saying he would follow-up with the kitchen to see how the dish could be improved on. He then offered a complimentary meal (which I wasn’t expecting). The team prioritises customer satisfaction and it’s evident in how they treat their customers.
  • They pick up calls and reply to emails promptly, even during weekends
  • They ensure that I am aware when the food is delivered, either by ringing the doorbell, calling out loud at the door OR calling me on my phone if I’m out
  • Their staff is polite and responsive to feedback, never defensive or argumentative
  • They remember my food requests
    >> I emailed them when I was served pig’s stomach soup and thought that I’d already opted out of it but realised after they called that there was no such option in the special request menu. They ensured that there will not be innards in the following meals.

4. PACKAGING

Meals are served individually in plastic containers with a layer of cling wrap in between to prevent spillage. It is rather wasteful if you don’t wash and recycle the containers, but if you have your own tingkat containers, you can place them in the thermal carrier and they’ll use it for your meals.

5. FOOD

Portions are generous and nutritionally balanced with A. LOT. OF. VEGETABLES and chunks of meat. No MSG is used. The longan and red date tea is vacuum sealed like bubble tea so you can close your eyes and imagine that it’s cold milk tea you’re drinking. Don’t get me wrong, Tian Wei’s red date tea is the real deal with its ingredients (dangshen, red dates, longans) clearly visible in the drink. It’s just that drinking only red date tea for an entire month makes you crave for other beverages. If you’re bored of only drinking tea, you can swop your drinks to dessert

  • Variety of carbohydrates
    The extent to which Tian Wei plans its menu can be seen in the type of rice/noodles they serve. Instead of serving plain white rice for 30 days, they have:
    – Brown rice

    – Pumpkin rice
    – Mixed millet rice
    – Tri colour rice
    – Five grain rice
    – Barley millet rice
    – Quinoa mixed rice
    – Calrose rice
    – Fried rice
    – Vermicelli
    – Spaghetti

A) Traditional Dishes

The amount of green vegetables (milk booster!) they provide with each traditional meal is probably more than what I cook for my family but the vegetables are served in a light broth with toppings like carrot, wolfberries, white bait and lotus root slices to add crunch and flavour. While most of the meat dishes are boneless, certain cuts of fish and meat contain bones which you should remove before eating. 

Stir Fried Egg With Amaranth And Silver Bait Fish, Braised Pork Trotter In Black Vinegar, Yin Nourishing And Kidney Tonification Soup

The quintessential confinement dish – vinegar pork trotters. This dish appears twice in the monthly menu. There’s a mix of fatty pork bits if you’re the type to slurp up the collagen as well as meaty bits for those who prefer meat to fat. 

Stir Fried Pork With White Beehoon And Kailan, Sweet And Sour Fish Slices, Heart Calming Soup

Mee sua with pork slices in place of kidney with kailan and sweet and sour fish. I enjoyed this meal as the portion was more appropriate for me. 

Stir Fried Chicken With Capsicum In Pumpkin Sauce, Stir Fried Lotus Root And Snow Pea With Fish Slice, Slicde Fish With Egg In Ginger Broth
French Beans With Shimeji Mushrooms, Baked Fillet Fish With Ginger Mirin Sauce, Pork Ribs Soup With Black Beans
Stir Fried French Beans With Sliced Fish, Steamed Chicken With D.O.M, Mind Calming And Lung Nourishing Soup
Steamed Pork Ribs With Wolf-berries And Red Dates, Stir Fried Egg With Amaranth And Silver Bait Fish, Mind-Soothing And Hair-Protecting Soup

B) Fusion Dishes

A unique selling point that Tian Wei possesses is their unique and innovative menu. I’ve never seen any other confinement caterer deviate from traditional Chinese confinement cuisine. This was what made me choose Tian Wei for my second confinement. 

Tian Wei Signature COQ Au Vin, Papaya White Fungus Dessert

A French dish of braised chicken in red wine, this is a dish likelier to be seen in a restaurant. The sauce went well with the rice and there were potatoes, broccoli and carrots which added dimension to the meal. Instead of herbal soup, the papaya white fungus dessert provided a sweet ending. 

Seared Salmon With Cauliflower Cream, Tri Colour Grains

Look at the presentation and the colours of this meal! The tri colour grains included basil rice, quinoa with bits of carrot and corn as well as mashed cauliflower (tasted just like mashed potato). Cauliflower cream may sound weird on paper but the sauce was light and not overpowering. There was no fishy smell from the salmon as well. This was served with a dessert of red bean puree with orange peel.  

Kurobuta Pork Loin With Apple Mirin Sauce, Spaghetti, Ginger Mushroom Kombu Soup
Goma-ae Grilled Chicken With Spinach, Ginger Miso Soup

There’s Japanese cuisine as well! The creativity of the head chef shows in this dish. Flavourful yet healthy (boneless and skinless) with lots of greens. 


Spaghetti Pomodoro And Caponata, Stir Fried Pork With Black Pepper And Basil, White Fungus Apple Barley Dessert

The fusion menu really adds a new dimension to confinement catering. Combined with their service staff who are ever so ready to accommodate changes and special requests, your confinement will be a lot easier to handle if you engage Tian Wei! It seriously feels like I’m being pampered every meal.   

Here’s a Discount Code!

Enjoy $148 OFF! Use TWBIBIMBUBS when placing your order.
Only applicable for 28-day lunch & dinner package.
Valid till 30th June 2018.