The Malaysian Ambassador to the Netherlands, Dato’ Nadzirah Osman hosted a Malaysian culinary event at the Rumah Malaysia (Ambassador’s Residence) in Wassenaar on 7 October 2022. The event was attended by Dutch dignitaries, Ambassadors and members of the Ambassadors’ Spouses Association (ASA), ASEAN Ladies Circle, members of the Dutch media, as well as representative of a local oriental supermarket chain in the Netherlands.
The event featured Tourism Malaysia’s Ambassador for Food and Culture, Chef Dato’ Ismail Ahmad who demonstrated the preparation of three types of Malaysian dishes — Nasi Ulam (Mixed Herbs/ Salad Rice), Kari Daging (Beef Curry), and Kuih Ketayap (Crêpes with Sweet Coconut Fillings). Chef Ismail also amazed the guests with his pulled tea (popularly known as the Tarik in Malaysia) making skills. Few guests showed their cooking skills by trying the recipe.
The cooking demonstration was followed by a luncheon where guests indulged in sumptuous Malaysian delicacies prepared by Chef Ismail and members of the Ladies Association of the Embassy of Malaysia in The Hague (PERWAKILAN The Hague).
In her welcoming remarks, Dato’ Nadzirah mentioned that Malaysia is renowned not only for its beautiful landscape, sandy beaches, pristine clear waters, and biodiversity-rich flora and fauna but also for its wide array of culinary treasures.
“These culinary treasures are an important element of Malaysia’s intangible cultural heritage. As a multi-ethnic and multicultural country, Malaysian cuisine tells the stories of Malaysia, its people, culture, and traditions.” She said.
She also mentioned that “before the pandemic, gastronomy tourism generated RM10.5 billion, 13.3% of total tourism revenue in Malaysia.
“In 2021, Malaysia successfully designated Kuching, the capital city of Sarawak, as a UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy. This recognition from UNESCO is in line with Malaysia’s plan to cultivate elements of innovation and creativity in elevating the gastronomy tourism ecosystem towards sustainable outcomes and positive socio-economic impact.”
She ended her remarks by stating that “as a gastronomical paradise, travellers can connect with Malaysia by immersing themselves in its food, history, people, culture, and environment.”
The event received excellent reviews from all the guests. Guests were also gifted with a recipe booklet signed by Chef Ismail. Guests were also gifted with a recipe booklet signed by Chef Ismail.
The Embassy of Malaysia in The Hague has been actively promoting Malaysia as a tourism and gastronomy destination. Malaysian fruits and food products have entered the Dutch markets and have begun to gain popularity among the locals.