How do you react when you are told gently you won an award? Rozalind (my publisher) came one morning when the cooking class was on, to tell me this. (Me, in my working and teaching mode, I was just replying to whatever she tell me but in a daze. So I just say, “oh great” when you got the news? bla bla bla….as I need to get the class going.
So what did we win? We won for Malaysia, the best Chinese cookbook of the year 2016. What, we won for Malaysia! I am not into competitions and was never competitive, I cook for fun and am awesomely passionate about food and cooking. So how was I supposed to react?
It only sank in after the class when I sat down to contemplate and fully absorb the chat we had. Then a few days later, she told me, we are shortlisted for the top 6 Chinese cookbook of the world, together with China, Hong Kong, United Kindgom, United States of America and France.
I went to another roller coaster of feelings. You know what I mean if you have sat in a roller coaster. Up and down, swing left and right. Proudly, I saw our names, Rozalind for Clarity and Pearly Kee names in their website. And as I scroll down to check the reality, I found our names, my tears roll down. It is true, it is true, I pinch myself.
China: English – Travels Through Dali, Zhang Mei (Penguin RH)
France: Canard Laqué, Canard au Sang, William Chan Tat Chuen (L’Épure)
Hong Kong: Cooking by colors (Character)
Malaysia: Pearly’s Nyonya Pantry, Pearly Kee (Clarity)
UK: A Chinese Street Food Odyssey, Lisa and Helen Tse (Pavilion)
USA: All under heaven, Carolyn Phillips (Ten Speed)
Until today 4 months later, I am still in a happy daze. Now comes May and as I am writing, we are getting ready to go to Yan Tai for a cooking demo and proudly stands with all the Worlds” winner for 2017. 2017 has been a great year so far.
Things I never knew I can reached, I did. So it is true you worked hard and dream big, stay positive. And sometimes, leave it to God. (that is my mantra).
So we packed our bags and flew via Bangkok to Beijing. Spent a few days in Beijing and flew to Yan Tai where the Food and Wine festival is commencing on last week of May.
Cookbooks authors all over the world flew in for this festivals. We met authors from Guam, Guatamala, Norway, Finland, Prague, France, England and many others.
There were many events going on like wine tasting, cherry picking, authors meets and cooking demo. 10 tables long of all books received were displayed for us to read. I spent a whole day just browsing all the wonderful and colorful cookbooks. Make friends with some authors and exchange cookbooks with them was really fun.
We were invited to do a cooking demo which I feel so proud to do. To have an opportunity to cook our authentic Nyonya cooking was a dream.
Meeting the founder of Gourmand Award, Edouard Cointreau was another moment of excitement. Being announced the winners by the Founder is unexpected as I don’t expect him to work so passionately hard.
The ambiance meeting new friends with dinner parties were awesome. We made many new friends and we actually felt so close. The first week, we returned, we recd so many emails promising to be in touch.
With so much pride, I sat to watch the cooking demos by professional chefs. I was getting so nervous and hope to learn from the world class chefs. Luckily by the time it came to my turn, the reception was quite pleasing. Questions and head popping to see how we cooked was so heartening. I had a blast and after which things were not the same.
When you walked, many authors introduced themselves by saying that their friends told them they have missed a real good demo. I was on cloud nine. I was glad the interactive cooking demo was well received.
You would think I look so cool but in actual fact when I gave my thanks, I was so jittery as I did not expect to be called upon to receive the award being number 3. I was stammering and every words that came out was so wrong. But I remember to say thank you, ha ha.
This is for Malaysia!…ahhh Malaysia Bolih!
Ohhh dear….writing this post a few days ago, and in my excitement I did not share that Clarity Publishing and Pearly Kee won Top 3 for Chinese Cookbook 2017 in the Gourmand Award. Well, too excited and happy…..still.