Food is part of culture so for posterity it's great that we are recording this.
How old were you when you started cooking? 9 years old
Personal wish related to cooking: I hope my children will treasure the recipes and always remember that I taught them how to cook.
Caroline Mok , The Tukang Dapur "Kitchen Slave"
It is simple to make. It reminds me of prayer days and other celebratory events. On such days, it won’t be just the usual pork, chicken or fish with white rice. We would have nasi kunyit, yellow rice made with turmeric. Udang Goreng Assam was always one of the dishes served with nasi kunyit.
Each family has their own “secret” recipe and that’s why Nonyas never agree whose is best. If you look at the cookbook written by Mrs Lee Chin Koon, one of the best around, you will see it’s different. It’s also this concept of agak agak or approximation that is passed down from mother to daughter so in the end the dish is what you remember of the taste and you improvise it according to your tastebuds.
My grandmother Seow Geok Bee kept recipes but she recorded it in terms of the dollar value during the time she wrote it. So it would 20 cents of onions, 30 cents of this and that! So when I cook her recipes today, I know the ingredients she used but the amount of each item is adjusted according to my food memories.