Who doesn’t know tempeh? From Indonesia, until foreign countries such as London, Australia, Germany, etc, everyone knows it. From traditional tempeh, fried tempeh, tempeh crispy, tempeh steak, tempeh brownies, and many others modern tempeh cuisines, it is always favored by many people.
When you are buying tempeh, you must ever see tempeh which is wrapped traditionally using leaves, especially banana leaves. You can easily find this tempeh when you are in the rural areas. In Indonesia, it is very easy to get tempeh wrapped in leaves in traditional market. Besides, there is also tempeh which is wrapped using transparent plastic. In big city or urban area, we will more easily find tempeh which is wrapped using plastics, especially in a big manufacturers of tempeh. They will choose to use plastic as it is more easy to get. Both tempeh wrapped using banana and leaves are the same, but which one is better?
Well, if you are asking which one is better from both, many will answer tempeh wrapped using leaves is better. But is it true? Either using plastic or leaves, they have positive and negative sides.
Wrapping tempeh using banana leaves
The advantage of using leaves to wrap tempeh is on the taste. It will produce tempeh with better taste. Besides, banana leaves or maybe other kind of leaves also do not contain chemicals. This leaf is easy to fold and can give delicious smell to the tempeh. Banana leaves also have cavities to let the tempeh circulates. Moreover, the polyphenol content contained in the leaves has similar function with the tea leaves as an antioxidant. This content helps reduce the risk of heart disease, blood vessels, and also cancer. Besides, due to this content, the smell of tempeh will be more fragrant and odorless.
Nevertheless, using banana leaves as tempeh wrapper also has disadvantage. Food packaging plays an important role to control the microorganism contamination of a product. The packaging or the wrappers should be really clean and hygienic. When it is contaminated by microorganisms it can cause food damage which is dangerous for human health. This is why if you decide to use leaves to wrap tempeh, make sure that it is already cleaned well.
Furthermore, the inconsistent leaf availability can be an obstacle. In the village, tempeh craftmen will more easily get a good stock of banana leaf, while in the city, it only exists most in the rainy season. As a result, tempeh wrapped using banana leaves is more difficult to find in the city, isn’t it? Tempeh with plastic will be more easily to find there.
- Wrapping tempeh using plastic
Well, tempeh that uses plastic as the wrappers usually comes from a more modern and cleaner tempeh producers. So, in the terms of hygiene, this is more secure than banana leaves. Besides, the packaging of plastic has advantages such as it is strong, lightweight, and not rusty. It is also waterproof and airtight. Different with using leaves which is easily torn, plastics is not easily damage or leaking.
However, the packaging of plastic also has disadvantages. First is the presence of some chemicals which possibly can move the the product. Of course, this will endanger humans health. Under certain conditions, the contact between plastics and food will cause migration of chemicals to the food. It happens because of the influence of the heat of the food, the storage, or the processing. The higher the temperature, the higher the probability of migration. As a result, the longer the contact between food with plastic packaging, the higher the amount of chemicals which migrate to the product. It it happens continuously, it can increase the risk of cancer.
Then, plastic packaging is not environmentally friendly. Plastics which is not used will become garbage. If we cannot manage plastic wisely, it will not good for our environment, right? Moreover, as we know that plastic is a kind of material which is hard to unravel. It is very difficult to decompose on the ground by microorganism. It needs hundreds to thousands of year to have plastic decomposed. Just imagine what happens to our environment if we just keep pounding this kind of material?
As the conclusion, if we talk about taste and health, tempeh which is wrapped using leaves is better than wrapped using plastics as long as you use fresh and clean leaves. But if it is about the cleanness, tempeh wrapped using plastic is better.
For Indonesian people, many of them will choose tempeh wrapped using leaves rather than using plastics. They believe that this traditional tempeh is fresher, more fragant, more organic, and more delicious when cooked. Nevertheless, tempeh in leaves aren’t always available in supermarket, so they sometimes also buy tempeh in plastics which is easier to get. So, no matter which one you chose, tempeh is always rich for its nutritional value. That is the important point!
Well, we are tempebumbung, an online seller of tempeh starter. If you are looking for information related to tempeh, we are here to help you. For more detail you can contact us at:
+62 857 4849 1242
Maron, Donoharjo, Ngaglik, Sleman, Yogyakarta, Indonesia 55581
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