THE spread of Bruneian delicacies drew quite a crowd at the Asean Food Festival with the food spread gone just within minutes after guests were invited to savour the spread of participating Asean food showcased at the event.
The event that took place at the Circle of Delegates Hall in UNESCO Miollis Building in Paris, France saw the attendance of about 200 invitees. It began with the chairperson of the event, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Republic of the Philippines to UNESCO, Theresa P Lazaro giving a welcoming speech.
The ambassador said cuisines of Asean reflect diverse cultures and rich historical tradition of the people, and that food plays a central role in bringing families and friends together in celebration and solidarity.
The local Brunei cuisine showcased at the festival was the traditional Ambuyat along with its condiments, which drew quite an interest among the guests as embassy officials briefed them on the traditional food. Guests also and had the opportunity to taste the sago-based food and dipping it with the sauces prepared for the food.
Other than the Ambuyat, guests also tried other local delicacies on display such as the Kelupis (steamed sticky rice) with beef and prawn fillings while the plain Kelupis was served with the choice of Curry Beef or Chicken Rendang.
The event organised at UNESCO was hosted by the Asean-UNESCO Committee (AUC) with the aim of showcasing Asean local cuisines to the permanent delegations of member state of UNESCO of 196 countries as well as to highlight and strengthen the partnership between the two organisations.
The permanent delegation of Brunei Darussalam to UNESCO was headed by the Brunei Ambassador to the Republic of France, Datin Paduka Malai Hajah Halimah binti Malai Haji Yussof who was joined by several officers from the Embassy of Brunei Darussalam in the Republic of France.
Philippines is currently the overall chair of Asean and is promoting passive change and strengthening Asean voice in the world.
Asean has much to offer at UNESCO in terms of its amazingly diverse cultures, growing economic capacities and forging partnerships for peace and sustainable development.
Meanwhile, the Deputy Director-General of UNESCO, Getachew Engida, who was the special guest, in his speech said the cooking style and the presentation of food reflect the norms and values of its people.
Food and gastronomy are important components of the intangible cultural heritage of humanity and similarly culinary diversities are also an important part of cultural diversity for the reason that food matters for UNESCO.
“When talking about food in Southeast Asia, we must talk about rice because rice is the basic food in the region,” said the deputy director-general, adding that the flag or emblem of Asean picks the image of a bunch of paddy stalks which are tightly bound together symbolising friendship and solidarity of the 10 members of the association now.
“Next year celebrates 50th anniversary of the foundation of Asean from 1967 to 2017. My colleagues and I look forward to collaborating closely with the Asean UNESCO Committee to mark the anniversary in the most meaningful way and to bring forward UNESCO’s objectives in your region.”
Source : borneobulletin.com