Past Events

The Food of Singapore Malays: Gastronomic Travels through the Archipelago

Over a decade in the making, food historian and author Khir Johari’s The Food of the Singapore Malays has been published to enormous popular and critical acclaim. It’s an innovative study that explains the breadth of Nusantara cooking in the Malay Archipelago. Listen to Khir Johari in conversation with Gareth Richards, and get a signed copy of the book.

Speaker: Khir Johari
Moderator: Gareth Richards

This event is co-organised by Penang Institute and Gerakbudaya Bookshop Penang.

About the Book

The Food of the Singapore Malays: Gastronomic Travels through the Archipelago is truly a landmark publication and deservedly picked up three prizes, including Book of the Year, at the recent Singapore Book Awards. In more than 600 pages, Khir Johari traces the evolution of Malay food from the seventh century to present day, and delves into the stories behind dishes and ingredients. It also contains about 30 recipes. As Khir says, ‘There is so much more to food than what we eat. It is who we are … It turned out to be a project where you get a chance to celebrate the lives of the custodians and keepers of recipes and traditions and knowledge and stories.’ In short, this is a living history, and an essential volume for readers and eaters alike.

About the Author

Khir Johari was born and raised in historic Kampong Gelam, Singapore, in his family home Gedung Kuning, a treasure house of culinary knowledge and recipes. After studies in the United States, since returning to Singapore he has focused on research into the food cultures of maritime Southeast Asia. He was elected vice president of Singapore Heritage Society in 2016 to promote public education and advocacy.