Nan has been cooking for her family and friends for 75 years, since she was 10 years old. All of her recipes have come from watching or listening to family and friends; not being formally educated, cookbooks are of little use to her. Whilst she used to cook for her 8 brothers and sisters, she now cooks for her large extended family and her even larger circle of friends.
She was born in Singapore in 1932 and has lived here ever since, occupying the same one-room flat since 1962. Nan squeezes every inch out of her tiny kitchen to produce the most wondrous curries, chutneys, pies and cakes.
Nan’s cooking doesn’t only fill the stomach but also fills the soul. She has always taken pride in being defined by her generous food. Nan has always willingly shared her recipes to anyone who asks. She invites people to her home to show them how to cook. Nan has never subscribed to the notion that recipes should be kept secret. Nan’s welcoming and giving nature is always obvious in her life and food.
I am Nan’s oldest grandchild. I decided to start compiling Nan’s recipes in 2014 as I wanted to make sure that her special dishes would always be available to our family. When extended family and friends came to know about my desire to compile Nan’s recipes, everyone insisted I produce a proper cookbook so that they could also have a copy of Nan’s cooking.
I enjoy travelling and exploring the food stories of the world. I love taking photos of food and I am happiest when I am in the kitchen.