Saturday, 21 March 2015

Singapore Signature Food Challenge SSFC 2015 at ITE College West

The Singapore Signature Food Challenge aims to create greater awareness among our youth of Singapore's hawker food and to help preserve our culinary heritage. The inaugural SSFC 2015 was organised by ITE West, curated by Makansutra, and sponsored by Unilever Food Solutions and Lau Choy Seng Pte Ltd.

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Fifteen out of 37 youth teams from ITE, the polytechnics and SHATEC made it to the Grand Final held at ITE College West's beautiful campus in Choa Chu Kang on 21 Mar 2015.

The theme of the Grand Final is "Traditional Modernity".

At the event, the competing teams were required to cook a traditional, and a modern version of:
  1. Carrot cake
  2. Salted egg yolk crab
  3. Burbur cha cha.
Two teams of judges comprising renowned chefs, food industry experts and food bloggers were led by KF Seetoh and Chef Edmund Toh respectively.

The teams' prepared dishes were scored on taste and presentation. In addition, the traditional version is judged on it's authenticity and the modern interpretation on it's creativity. The teams were also judged on their kitchen hygiene and safety.

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I got a peek at the contestants in action ;-D

Their concentration was intense. The finalists had been practising hard for weeks for this big day.

Six dishes in 3 hours.

Very stressful ;-p

Here's some examples of the contestants' creations.

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Black and white fried carrot cake as we know it.

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Fried carrot cake of the new generation.

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Traditional salted egg yolk crab.

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A modern interpretation of a favourite classic.

Glazed shelled crab claw, garnished with spiced burnt butter crumbs, dressed with smoked paprika mayonnaise with crab brendade, glazed pumpkin, blanched bak choy greens, and salted egg espuma whip.

Applause.

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Burbur cha cha according to grandma's recipe.



Burbur cha cha?!

Yes, we can't even imagine the possibilities until we free our minds ;-D

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Judges of the traditional segment in action:
  1. KF Seetoh
  2. Chef Eric Teo
  3. Chef Malcolm Lee
  4. Catherine (Camemberu blog)

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Judges for the modern interpretations:
  1. Chef Edmund Toh
  2. Chef Yen Koh
  3. Mr Kwan Lau
  4. Tony Johor Kaki
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Ms Low Yen Ling, Mayor of South West District and Parl. Sec. Min. of Culture, Community and Youth highlighted that our food culture is part of our identity as Singaporeans. She was impressed with the contestants' skill in capturing the essence of traditional Singapore food and in taking it into the future.

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Ms Low is very supportive and encouraging of our next generation of F & B professionals.

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KF Seetoh, the chief judge, summed up the judges' impressions of the food. The judges were full of praise for the contestants' creations describing the food as "trend setting", "futuristic" and "imaginative". KF Seetoh encouraged the contestants to persevere in their learning journey as the future possibilities of street food is boundless and expanding.

Now, for the much anticipated results.

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It was a very tight race.

The judges had a very hard time deciding among all the excellent creations. The top teams that emerged:

Third runner up - Team Asian Persuasion (ITE)
Second runner up - Team KL (Temasek Polytechnic)
First runner up - Team MFL (ITE)

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After much deliberation among the judges, the winner's trophy was awarded to Team DJ from Temasek Polytechnic.

Congratulations to all finalists and winners!

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Judging by the creations today, I feel the future of Singapore signature food is in good hands.

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Let's put our hands together behind the plough with our young food culture warriors to keep the flame of our culinary heritage burning brightly in the years to come.

May I humbly wish all our young chefs (humbly because I am humbled by your dedication), all the best as you follow your passion.

Date: 21 Mar 2015

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1 comment:

  1. This is great! I love seeing young passionate chefs :)

    ReplyDelete

I firmly believe that taste is subjective and so, warmly welcome differing viewpoints :-D But, I disapprove negative comments that are anonymous or hide behind fake identities. I feel that that is the same as speaking ill of others behind their backs. I look forward to all your comments :-D Thank you. (Date: 18 Dec 2015)

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