Culinary clash on street food

Central Station | 31 Aug 2018

Singapore's bid to get UN recognition for its street food has sparked a cross-border culinary clash, with angry chefs in Malaysia pouring cold water on the idea.

The city is home to many open-air hawkers' centers, with some of the stalls even been awarded Michelin stars.

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong announced last week that Singapore will nominate its hawker culture to Unesco's list of intangible cultural heritage, describing the food centers as "community dining rooms."

The move sparked anger in Malaysia, whose citizens have long claimed their street food is far superior.

Malaysian celebrity chef Redzuawan Ismail, commonly known as Chef Wan, thinks Singapore's UN bid is rubbish.

"When you talk about hawkers, Singapore is not the only one to have a hawker culture," he said. "Why do you need to go to Unesco to patent? Is yours so special?"

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