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Friday, May 20, 2011

Adam Liaw - Two Asian Kitchens

"Before I was 18 I had lived in more than 20 different homes across four countries, and each of their kitchens has left me with unique memories. My family crossed three countries in as many generations, and yet my story is not unique in Australia. As a child, every week I would eat my way around the world.

For me, Hainanese chicken rice is not just a good lunch: it is the latest in a thousand delicious plates of chicken my grandmother has lovingly prepared for our family. When I cook siew yuk, I am replaying the memory of my father carrying roasted pork belly home from the market on any of a hundred Saturday afternoons in Adelaide. A plate of beef with oyster sauce reminds me of all the times my mother served it up next to an equally huge platter of beef stroganoff to feed eight hungry children around the dinner table.

The Two Asian Kitchens in my life are The Old Kitchen and The New Kitchen. The Old Kitchen represents the traditional dishes of my family history - hawker noodles, Japanese yakitori, sour and salty Malaysian laksa. The New Kitchen features modern dishes that draw on the memorable flavours and experiences of my own life as a migrant in Australia."

Adam Liaw, Australia's MasterChef 2010

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