Female chefs leave mark in Shanghai

Local | Amy Nip 4 Feb 2019

In the male-dominated catering industry, five young female chefs have made a remarkable breakthrough by scooping up major awards.

Cloris Choy Pui-man, Agnes Lee Mei-yan, Melody Tang Sin-ting, Victoria Yau and Zoe Yip Ming-wai, all of whom are in their 20s, are Chinese Culinary Institute graduates. They were brought together by the institute to form its first-ever female chef team to compete in October in the 2018 Asian Culinary Exchange in Shanghai, where they went head to head against chefs from Japan, South Korea, Macau, Malaysia and Shanghai.

Their appetizer, three main courses and dessert revolved around the theme of "The Misty Rain of Jiangnan," earning them three gold and two silver medals, along with a "distinguished styling award."

Said Yip: "This is recognition for Chinese female chefs. Chinese kitchens are traditionally dominated by men. But I believe female chefs can also shine with our professionalism and passion."

Lee explained they came up with the Jiangnan theme as the competition was being held in Shanghai. Jiangnan is the region south of the Yangtze River that encompasses Shanghai.

The dessert was a deep-fried purple sweet potato puff that resembled an antique vase.

Pierre Lau Wai-ping, the institute's program manager for Chinese catering, said the young women did not know each other before the competition.

Separately, Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor invited 108 students and their parents, teachers and school principals to Government House on Saturday. The invited students have all triumphed in different competitions over the past year.

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