Singapore Food Festival to take place from July 12 to 28

An array of vegan treats, which are available on the Singapore Vegan Food Crawl. Ms Eiktha Khemlani, founder and owner of food tour company VegThisCity, will be taking diners on the crawls.
PHOTO: The Straits Times

SINGAPORE - The Singapore Food Festival (SFF), dedicated to showcasing the diversity of the Singapore food scene, will take place from July 12 to 28.

The theme of this year's festival, now in its 26th year, is "Savour Singapore In Every Bite". Organised by the Singapore Tourism Board (STB), the festival will have 20 event partners offering a myriad of dining and gastronomic experiences, featuring a range of food from heritage items to modern cuisine.

Ms Ranita Sundramoorthy, 50, director of retail and dining at STB, said at the media preview on Thursday (June 27): "The Singapore Food Festival is a compelling testament to the richness and diversity of our food scene, further cementing our city-state's reputation as a global culinary capital.

"The festival continues to spotlight our vibrant and evolving local food scene that has been anchored by our unsung hawker heroes, home cooks and chefs."

She added that with this year's robust line-up of events - from private chef dinners and food tours around our heritage districts, to theatrical dining experiences - Singaporeans and visitors will be able to taste Singapore's diverse flavours and experience the nation's food obsession first-hand.

The festival's signature event is Streat, a showcase of traditional hawker fare and modern interpretations of local food, which will take place in the evenings on July 12 and 13 at The Promontory @ Marina Bay.

"The festival continues to spotlight our vibrant and evolving local food scene that has been anchored by our unsung hawker heroes, home cooks and chefs."

She added that with this year's robust line-up of events - from private chef dinners and food tours around our heritage districts, to theatrical dining experiences - Singaporeans and visitors will be able to taste Singapore's diverse flavours and experience the nation's food obsession first-hand.

The festival's signature event is Streat, a showcase of traditional hawker fare and modern interpretations of local food, which will take place in the evenings on July 12 and 13 at The Promontory @ Marina Bay.

Also available will be a Hong Kong-inspired brown butter beef curry dish and a yuan yang milk tea shaved ice dish from Restaurant Ibid, which opened 15 months ago in North Canal Road.

Tasting portions of a Hong Kong-inspired brown butter curry dish from Restaurant Ibid. 
PHOTO: The Straits Times

Its chef-owner, Mr Woo Wai Leong, 31, who won MasterChef Asia in 2015, explained the inspiration for his curry dish: "I am Cantonese, but I cannot speak a word of it, which is one of my greatest regrets in life. So I figured that cooking more Cantonese-inspired food is a way for me to get in touch with my personal heritage.

As for the shaved ice dish, he said: "Since Streat is held outdoors, it will be hot and humid. We wanted something that would cool our guests down, without giving them a brain freeze. So we temper the ice and shave it finely. We then add a milk tea syrup - which is close to everyone's hearts - as well as coffee jelly, kaya cream and a popular Chinese herbal syrup."

A tasting portion of a yuan yang milk tea shaved ice dish from Restaurant Ibid. 
PHOTO: The Straits Times

At Streat, diners can also participate in culinary workshops and masterclasses conducted by Singapore's culinary talents, as well as be entertained by popular local music acts such as Charlie Lim and Glen Wee.

Diners can also take part in a Singapore Vegan Food Crawl, which will take place in three iconic Singapore precincts - Geylang Serai (July 13), Chinatown (July 20) or Little India (July 27) - to discover the city's booming vegan street food culture.

Ms Eiktha Khemlani, 37, founder and owner of food tour company VegThisCity, who will be taking diners on the crawls, said: "Diners will be able to try banana flower vadai and tofu buah keluak. There will also be jackfruit char siew, vegan cashew cheese and vegan donuts. Participants will see that Singapore vegan food is really delicious."

VegThisCity founder and owner Eiktha Khemlani (left) with food available on the Singapore Vegan Food Crawl. 
PHOTO: The Straits Times

On July 28, there will also be a Kueh Appreciation Day, which features more than 10 kueh makers, including some of Singapore's longest-running kueh family businesses. The event is organised by non-profit organisation Slow Food Singapore.

For example, Mary's Kafe, which started about 15 years ago, will be serving snacks such as sugee cake, pulot tekan and pattie curry puffs.

Madam Mary Gomes, 70, who owns Mary's Kafe in Bendemeer Road, mainly uses recipes passed down from her late mother, Madam Josephine Monteiro.

Madam Mary Gomes, who owns Mary's Kafe in Bendemeer Road, mainly uses recipes passed down from her late mother. 
PHOTO: The Straits Times

Madam Gomes said: "I make kueh out of passion. I love cooking my heritage cuisine, because I am proud of my Eurasian heritage, and I hope it can be passed down from one generation to the next."

This year, bubble tea brand Liho Tea and Japanese company Glico - which produces the well-loved snack Pocky - will be part of the festival for the first time.

Liho will develop a unique drink, Avocado Kopi, using avocado and coffee, which will be available at selected Liho outlets, while Glico will produce a new flavour of its popular snack. Look out for the Pocky x Ya Kun Kaya Toast and Kopi O limited edition set, which will be available for sale at the Streat event and at all Ya Kun outlets in Singapore, while stocks last.

SFF was created by STB in 1994 to brand Singapore as a top culinary destination by showcasing the best of its local delicacies.

BOOK IT / SINGAPORE FOOD FESTIVAL

Where: Various locations

When: July 12 to 28

Admission: Some events are ticketed

Info: www.singaporefoodfestival.com

This article was first published in The Straits Times. Permission required for reproduction.

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