2010 is an amazing year for the blog. I can’t believe that I have been doing this for four years already and even got a book published. I wish to thank the people who have been the foundation of the blog, namely the ieat kakis.
The blog may beabout hawker food, butin reality, it is more aboutpeople — both hawkers as well as our kakis. Over the last four years, I have hadthe opportunity to meetso many friendswho love food and who have joined our communityto share their food finds. These are the kakis who help toorganize our makan sessions and form the backbone of our foodie community. They continue to scour the island for the best eats and post them up on our forum. Some of their recommendations eventually get blogged. But apart from that, they are my source of encouragement and support on a personal level. This year’s Book Launch and end of year lunch event wouldn’t have occurred without the persistent encouragement from my kakis. So THANKS very much guys!
I am glad that the book has been published, but to me, it is but a work in progress. There is still much to be done in terms of blogging all the best eats in town. Some of the Hawker foods that did not get included in the book like Satay Bee Hoon and Indian Rojak as they need more entries so there is more work to be done and many passionate hawkers out there waiting to be discovered.
The other areas which I would really like to look into is to write about our very own home grown chefs. I think there are many great talents around who might not be getting as much limelight as the world famous chefs who are opening up restaurants in Singapore. One of the things I would love to do is to just get each chef to talk about the best dish that they have created of all time. But somehow I haven’t managed to get that off the ground. Hopefully, I might be able to do that in 2011.
Looking into 2011, I hope to see more passionate next generation hawkers who will take our traditional hawker dishes and make them appeal to a new generation of Singaporeans and visitors. I hope to see stalls focusing more on tradition and opening up not just hawker stalls, but small eateries which celebrate our Singapore Hawker Heritage. I am talking about hawkers who insist on making their own fishballs, ngoh hiang, noodles, carrot cake and even Kway Teow if possible. My friend CK Lam, Penang’s leading food blogger wrote a blog post about people making their own Kway for Kway Chap. To me, that is an idea which we can bring to the 21st century. Imagine a modern stall with an area where Kway is still made by hand, much like what they are doing with Soba noodles. I would love to eat that, won’t you? Or how about having a stall where the carrot cake is still milled from rice and steamed on the spot before being fried? I believe we are at the point where we are about to see these developments happen in our local Singaporean food scene.
Another thing I would love to work on is a film celebrating the Singapore Hawker Heritage. I have already something in mind which I would love to see, but so far I have not been able to make inroads yet. Hopefully the book will be able to create enough interest to opens doors for this vision.
One of the things that has brought me a great sense of satisfaction this year has been our work with Goducate in Sandakan. Through the book sales and the makan sessions, plus the generous donations from our ieat community, we have managed to raise around $50,000 to help educate the displaced children in that part of the world. We have used the money to purchase a vehicle to ferry the kids and teachers in and out of difficult terrain and we are now looking at providing the raw materials for the villagers to build schools to educate their kids in the kampongs. Since the money has been raised from the sales of “The End of Char Kway Teow”, we are planning to name the very first school, “Char Kway Teow”! This year, our group of ieaters braved the terrain to visit the kids there (ok we had great food there, it wasn’t all torture and no fun) and I hope to be able to organize some more trips for next year.
Finally, I really have to thank God who, from my perspective, made all these things possible. The book of Proverbs 3:5-6 says to:
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him,
and he will make your paths straight.
I have found this verse to be true over the course of the last four years, from starting the blog, to organizing the makan sessions, to publishing the book. I may have my own plans, but ultimately it is His plans which come to pass and I am learning to submit to them. I look forward to see what the Lord has in store for ieatishootipost next year!
Happy New Year everyone!