Don’t Buy Bird’s Nest Without Reading This
When I was pregnant, my MIL kept telling me to eat some bird’s nest. However, I was not a fan. The first time I tried it, I did not like it or understand all the hype. Quite frankly, I thought it was tasteless. And I was not a fan of it being cooked in sugary water, which isn’t healthy or appetising. Also, I kept reading opposing opinions on whether one should consume bird’s nest during pregnancy. And since I wasn’t too fond of that stuff, I didn’t have any.
Recently, I was invited to attend an information session with Superior Foods Asia and I learnt that a good quality bird’s nest makes a big difference. When you choose a good quality bird’s nest, you can enjoy its many benefits. After hearing about the great medicinal properties of bird’s nest, I thought it might be worthwhile.
For example, bird’s nest is said to be able to treat illnesses as well as enhance immunity in expectant mothers. That ship had sailed but, as a mum with little ones, good quality bird’s nest can help with energy and reduce fatigue, I was more than willing to give it another go. I need all the extra energy I can get! Then, I learned it is also a beauty food and is wonderful for your skin complexion. Even if my first experience was not that appetising, these benefits were enough to make me want to try it again.
At the information session, I learnt a thing or two about what to look for when it comes to buying bird’s nest (because they aren’t cheap!). If I am going to spend the money, I want to know I am buying the best quality product for the price.
How to choose good-quality bird’s nest?
I learnt that there are five things to look for to help identify a good quality bird’s nest. Now that I know the five criteria, I feel more empowered to spend the money knowing I am getting a high-quality product.
1. Cleanliness – Let’s be honest. You should start by making sure the bird’s nest is clean. If you see any visible hairs or particles, you shouldn’t purchase it. I certainly do not want to eat anything that looks dirty! With the popularity of bird’s nest, some companies are mass producing their products. However, Superior Foods ensures their bird’s nest is clean by manually cleaning and processing them. This process takes more time and effort, but it means that their products are HACCP (Food Safety According to Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point System) certified. As a mum, it’s important to me that the food I am feeding myself and my family is safe.
2. Colour – This one can be a little tricky; you need to look for a pale beige coloured bird’s nest. Superior Foods explained that if a bird’s nest has zero colouration, it probably means it has been bleached. On the other end of the spectrum, if it has an excess of yellow colouration, it means there may be a high quantity of nitrate and nitrite in the bird’s nest (which you do not want!). So, for me, it means I should look for the bird’s nest with the colour in the middle – not without colour and not too much colour. In other words, pale beige.
3. Nitrate and Nitrite Levels – An alarming thing I learned in the information session is that Nitrates and Nitrites are harmful to our bodies and can accumulate in the bird’s nests from its surrounding environment. This is why you should look for bird’s nests with low levels (<5ppm). Thankfully, Superior Foods produces bird’s nests that are good quality with low levels.
4. Taste – A good quality bird’s nest should have a very slight eggy taste. This lets you know there are high levels of crude protein. It is a distinguishable taste, but not overwhelming.
5. Texture – When eating the bird’s nest, you should be able to feel the strands of the bird’s nest.
In addition to learning about the criteria for selecting a good quality bird’s nest, I also heard about the many wonderful things that make Superior Foods Asia an outstanding company. For example, Superior Foods uses the most natural ingredients, practices ethical sourcing, and is environmentally responsible. Their natural premium foods include no artificial colouring, commercial glue, additives, preservatives, or bleach. This makes this mum very happy. I was also glad to hear that their swiftlet house is frequently maintained and cleaned.
After attending the information session where we were presented all this information, I feel confident that I will be able to choose good quality bird’s nest. But, even more exciting, I discovered that I liked it! At the information session, we tasted bird’s nest served in a refreshing coconut water and paired with ice cream. I found that a good quality bird’s nest, when cooked well, has a nice gelatinous texture. It was a luxurious meal. I now understand why it is expensive and why people are willing to pay for it.