NO PRAISE FROM UNGRACIOUS NAJIB, NAZRI OR UMNO? YET DIANA CHAN, THE MALAYSIAN-BORN MASTERCHEF AUSTRALIA WINNER, DOES MALAYSIA PROUD

KUALA LUMPUR – The aroma of food filled the air as Masterchef Australia season 9 winner, Diana Chan showcased her cooking skills to an excited crowd of food lovers.

She caught the crowd’s attention with her bright smile and with her quick and easy dishes which she demonstrated in an hour.

The 30-year old who grew up in Malaysia, before moving to Melbourne, Australia at age of 19, showcased three of her famous dishes, steak with chimchurri; razor clams, chilli and garlic with pangratto and deconstructed eton mess to the crowd.

Chan first caught the cooking bug when she moved to Australia to further her studies.

‘I’ve always loved eating. But moving to Australia and seeing all the fresh produce made me try cooking and then, it just hit the spot.

‘As a student, I wanted to try all the good food, however, it was too expensive, so I decided to cook,” said Chan whose first dish as an amateur cook was a simple fried rice.

The accountant by profession decided to join the ninth season of the popular cookshow after receiving encouragement from her boyfriend and good friends.

Throughout the seven months of the competition , Chan was not allowed to have her cellphone or contact with any of her loved ones, which taught her to handle nail-biting pressure and push her limits to greater heights.

She said the most difficult challenge in the competition was the dessert for the final competiton, ‘Trio of fruits’ by famous Australian pastry chef , Kirsten Tibballs.

‘It was the most challenging dish I’ve prepared because of all the details and layers. It was a six-hour competition and I was so overwhelmed when it ended that I just started crying,” she said during the cooking demonstration held at Bukit Bintang today.

Chan who is now working on her e-book said will open her own restaurant in a year.

‘I really want to serve full wholesome meals with fresh ingredients and herbs.

‘There are so many other great Malaysian foods that are unknown to people out there and I want to show these food to the Australians, Malaysian food with a modern twist,” she said.

Chan, who chose chilli as the ingredient she could not live without, enjoys having a banana leaf rice meal in Malaysia as her go-to food, as she claims that no other place in the world serves curry like Malaysia.

– NST

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