The Sarawak Ethnic Kitchen Culinary Challenge is looking to go international this November
By Jude Toyat
Sarawak Cultural Village (SCV) is looking to raise the Sarawak Ethnic Kitchen Culinary Challenge to a higher level this year with an even bigger competition this November.
Due to the lack of platforms in Sarawak to expose talents and skills of the younger generation from the culinary community, World Harvest Festival director Zaini Zainuddin said the committee members decided to hold an international level event.
“Beginning this year, looking at the encouraging response from local and international chefs, we will come together to organise a much bigger competition, known as the ‘Sarawak Ethnic Kitchen International Culinary Challenge’ to be held this November,” he said when met during the first day of the World Harvest Festival 2016 at SCV on April 29.
So far the Sarawak Ethnic Kitchen Culinary Challenge has been running for its third consecutive year with participants from various higher learning institutions that offers culinary courses, as well as hoteliers.
Hoping that that the culinary field will become one of the major attractions in Sarawak, the competition’s organising chairman Peter Abdul Rahim said that the countries looking to participate in this upcoming event include Singapore, Brunei, the Philippines, Indonesia, and Peninsular Malaysia.
“It is hoped that this competition will then become a major platform for those who practice the arts of culinary in the state to showcase their talents and skills,” he said, adding that they will be expanding to many other countries in future, starting with other Asian countries like Thailand and Vietnam.
“It surely will be a dream come true for us, because it is very hard for us to go out to compete in the world stage due to some complications. Thus, we have decided to bring the world to us instead. We also want Sarawak to be known as one of the major players in the culinary industry,” he added.
The first day of the culinary challenge saw over 50 participants competing individually and in teams in various categories including artistic food displays of ‘pulut kuning’, cake ‘hantaran’, fruit and vegetable carvings, bread, as well as a traditional ethnic ketupat and rendang challenge and traditional cuisine.
Zaini added that the competition this year saw an encouraging response with an increase of participants from 30 last year to 50 this year.
Among the higher learning institutions that had participated in this year’s challenge include SATT College, Giatmara, Vocational Kuching, Vocational Bintulu, as well as various hotels namely Imperial Hotel, Riverside Majestic Hotel, Grand Margherita Hotel, and Damai Beach Resort.
The winners will be announced at the grand finale to be held at Sarawak Cultural Village on May 1.
This year’s World Harvest Festival 2016 is being held at Sarawak Cultural Village from April 29 to May 1, 2016. Highlights of the three-day, three-night festival besides the Miss Cultural Harvest Festival grand finals include the live staging of ‘Dayang Bulan – The Moon Princess’ adapted from Kelabit legend; the Ironman WHF 2016 finals, a Sape Concert and many more.
Visitors are invited to be part of this colourful celebration to be held at Sarawak Cultural Village from April 29 to May 1. It’s the perfect festival for those wanting to savour traditional music, dance, action and cuisine.
For more information, contact SCV staff Grace or Arnida at 082-846411 or 082-846108.