Sunway City.18 April 2018 – Sunway University’s School of Hospitality recently hosted the Fox Networks Group Asia (FNGA) original production “Celebrity Chef: East vs West” featuring Hong Kong superstar, Nicholas Tse, and Canadian celebrity chef, David Rocco. The show saw the chefs travel around Asia as they uncover the best dishes in the region and share their culinary knowledge.
Airing on Fox Life, Fox+ and Nat Geo People, this five-part original series took the chefs to different Asian cities to learn of the local food, culture and prepare dishes handpicked by a local Chef, pitting their differing culinary skills to a fiery test.
Sunway City Kuala Lumpur and The Banjaran Hotsprings Retreat are the official destination partners for the series in Malaysia, and hosted the chefs during their stay in Malaysia. Over the course of five days, the chefs undertook their first challenge in Malaysia amidst the lush limestone hills of The Banjaran Hotsprings Retreat in Ipoh, Perak, before taking on their second challenge in Sunway City Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia’s premier holiday destination.
The School of Hospitality at Sunway University, in Sunway City, is proud to be a part of this series, “Celebrity Chef: East vs West”. Filmed on the campus of Sunway University, the final episode featured not one but three School of Hospitality (SOH) staff – Chef Chong Wei Tzeh, Chef Queeny Cheong Peg Gie and student Kelvin Lau. They were placed in teams to assist the two celebrity chefs.
Local chef, Chef Nur Amirah Haji Mazlan was tasked to demonstrate the cooking method of several dishes before the two celebrity chefs started their culinary battle. The authentic Malaysian dishes chosen were Nasi Lemak – a coconut milk-infused rice with a rich and fiery chili sambal, Ayam Goreng – a Malay-style fried chicken with spices, and Bubur Cha-Cha – a rich coconut-milk based dessert with sweet potatoes and yam. The blindfolded celebrity chefs had to taste the dishes and were then tasked to create their own version of the dishes.
Chef Chong was placed in Chef Nicholas Tse’s team while both Chef Queeny and student Kelvin Lau were placed in Chef David Rocco’s team. An opportunity of a lifetime for the three of them, they not only assisted the celebrity chefs but were an integral part of the filming process of this international cooking show.
Kelvin found working with Chef David Rocco a great experience as Chef Rocco was so humble and would even listen to young cooks like him. An eye-opener for Kelvin, he was amazed to discover the one-hour show required a production team of fifty people and months of planning just to produce the segment.
Impressed by the production team and the effort it took to film a cooking show of this international scale, both Chef Chong and Chef Queeny enjoyed the once-in-a lifetime experience. “It was very well organised, and orders were given and taken in a brigade system, just like in the kitchen,” said Chef Chong. “Much effort and work went into the shooting, and the stress is immense. But David Rocco and Nicholas Tse showed us that work can be lively and fun. It does not matter what kind of intense atmosphere we are in, as long as everyone works together as a team,” said Chef Queeny.
As the demo chef, Chef Nur Amirah was proud to present Malaysia’s much-loved dishes to the two celebrity chefs. Doing the demo was not easy for her as she had to prepare many sets of ingredients, including raw, pre-cooked, half-cooked and the finished products. This was to allow the production team to showcase the different stages of the cooking process. For Chef Nur Amirah, “This experience is really precious to me as who else can say that they showed David Rocco and Nicholas Tse how to cook Malaysian dishes!”
Catch the rerun of Episode 4 featuring The Banjaran Hotsprings Retreat on 6 June, and Episode 5 featuring Sunway City Kuala Lumpur when Celebrity Chef: East vs West returns from 16 May to 13 June on NatGeo People (Astro Channel 725), ###