Last Sunday was the showdown between Michelin Star chef Gordon Ramsay and 3 of our local hawkers at the Singtel Hawker Heroes Challenge event. The 3 local hawker heroes were selected after 8 days of intensive voting and over 2.5 million votes and these heroes were Mr Ang Kiam Meng from Jumbo Seafood (319, 922 votes), Mdm Foo Kui Lian from Tian Tian Chicken Rice (318, 151 votes), and Mr Ryan Koh from 328 Katong Laksa (316,611 votes). This event is open to the public and only the first 1000 people will have the opportunity to taste the dishes by Chef Ramsay and the Hawkers Heroes. I was honoured to be invited to be among the 1000 people to vote for their favourite chef/hawker and their dishes!
Laksa, chicken rice and chili crab…here we go!
Many people turned up for the event and it was really crowded; to taste the dishes, to see Ramsay, to see the hawkers, to support the event – they were all there excitedly.
After a short while came the man himself, Chef Gordon Ramsey. The crowds there were cheering and crazy over the sight of him. Screams and cheers of his name “Gordon” can be heard.
After a short opening by Makansutra’s KF Seetoh, the race to gather the most votes begins! Voting ends at 9pm sharp!
Chef Ramsey makes his rounds around the “stations” of his kitchen where he will be serving food to people and looking after his 3 dishes individually. The lucky ones gets to be served by Chef Ramsey himself!
As voting ends at 9pm and there were 1000 people needed to be served, have them tasted it and vote for it, time was really tight. While the hawker heroes focused on their one signature dish, Chef Ramsey goes around his kitchen to make sure things were going smooth and the 3 dishes were in the best quality. Hey, the scenario reminds me of Kitchen Stadium in Iron Chef America!
Food tasting begins……
Half-time interviews with the Hawker Heroes.
And it was my turn to vote for my favourite chef/hawker and their dishes! Starting off with Ramsey’s dishes……
……and the Hawker Heroes’ dishes.
All of the dishes tasted great and I cast my votes to the dish I feel tasted best of the best. After all, all were indeed tasted best and so to vote for one, it’s got to be the best above all!
Now that votes were cast and time had reached 9pm, it’s the moment everyone waited for – the results.
The results were near and Chef Ramsey gets the crowd even more excited!! His name can be heard cheering from his fans again.
And so the results were out that night. In the Chicken Rice category, Mdm Foo Kui Lian from Tian Tian Chicken Rice emerged the winner.
And in the Chili Crab category, Chef Gordon Ramsey won.
And finally in the Laksa category, Mr Ryan Koh from 328 Katong Laksa was the winner.
I must say it was a nice friendly challenge between our local hawkers and a Michelin Star chef. All the dishes tasted great that evening, the atmosphere was exciting and it has promoted our all-time favourite local hawker dishes well; a must-try for tourists and foreigners coming to Singapore and even for us as Singaporeans, dishes that we locals will never get bored of.