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SSC Newspaper : October 2013
Strathfield Council is pleased to once again present the Strathfield Food Festival. Returning for its third year as part of the annual Good Food Month, the Strathfield Food Festival places the region on the map as an eating destination in Sydney’s Inner West. It is a day-long taste of all things Asian and the launch of the 2013 Strathfield Good Food Guide. Strathfield Town Centre will close down to traffic as the food and the aromas come into Strathfield Square to share the culture and passion that is Asian foods. With live cooking demonstrations from celebrity chefs and food trail walking tours, the Strathfield Food Festival is an event not to be missed for anyone who loves food, eating out, cooking and discovering new cuisines and tastes that will have you coming back for more. I would like to encourage all Strathfield residents to enjoy Good Food Month, come along to the Strathfield Food Festival on October 27 and bring your family and friends from outside of Strathfield and share the food secrets of this great area. Bring your appetite – see you there! AMINA ELSHAFEI MAYOR’S MESSAGE In a world of fusion cooking, Amina Elshafei may well represent the ultimate. Her mother is Korean, her father Egyptian – a recipe for a heady mix in any kitchen. So expect a fascinating demonstration from the 28-year-old Masterchef Australia finalist, who knows Strathfield’s food precincts well. Since the 2012 show, her life has been a whirlwind of travel and writing. We caught up with her in London. Nahrain John asked about her culinary style Were you excited to be asked to be the star chef at the Strathfield Food Festival? I was thrilled! I’ve grown up in the area and to be part of this festival is a nice reminder of just how dynamic Strathfield has become. Do you know Strathfield food? Do you ever eat here? I know Strathfield over the years has become known as Little Korea. It has been an area my mother, who is Korean, has come to frequently to purchase her ethnic produce. My sister also attended high school in this area, so Strathfield has been a familiar place for my family. In saying that, Strathfield has been an ideal culinary spot for my family to come and eat, particularly Korean food and local coffee. Do you use Korean influences in your cooking? I especially love Korean noodle dishes such as naengmyun (buckwheat noodles in chilled broth), bibim naeng myun (mixed cold buckwheat noodles) and jajangmyun (handmade noodles in black bean sauce). It is also a reflection of the dishes that we have enjoyed eating in our households. However, I can’t forget to include the famous kimchi (preserved vegetables) which comes in so many varieties. I certainly have a strong influence in cooking Korean food at home, as my mother cooks it regularly and I enjoy replicating her dishes. How has your mother influenced your cooking? My mother cooks her favourite Korean dishes at home for our family to enjoy. Her cooking is often seasonal-based, such as making beef soups in winter and lovely fresh dishes in the hotter parts of the year. Your father is Egyptian, do you find your mixed background influences your dishes or your cooking preferences? Absolutely! I am very blessed to be brought up with two very interesting and delicious cuisines. My mixed background has exposed me to such vibrant flavours, textures and ingredients that play an important part in the way I cook. What’s your favourite Korean dish? I enjoy eating Korean-style noodles. In summer I enjoying the buckwheat varieties such as naengmyun and bibim naeng myun and in winter I like jajangmyun. What’s your favourite Korean dish to make? It takes a lot of time, but I like making a dish called tangsuyeok. It is the Korean version of sweet and sour chicken. Will you take time out from being the star chef to try out some of the local chefs’ dishes? Most definitely. At any food festival, I always make it a must to try other food being prepared. I can’t go past great aromas and vibrant looking food! What will you be making at the Strathfield Food Festival? I am yet to decide, but I know it will have seafood and a good amount of heat to it. STAR CHEF FUSES EXOTIC FLAVOURS