His food bonds their families
For years, the Mahmoods and the Hoons were neighbours, living next to each other in their Bedok HDB block.
The Hoon family would give the Mahmoods rides, while the Mahmoods would help tend to their potted plants.
But it was the authentic Indian Muslim food prepared by retiree Mahmood Maricar, 69, that truly bonded the two families.
Ms Rachel Hoon, 27, says: "He never fails to invite my family to his home during Hari Raya to join his big, bustling family to dine together. His cooking is fantastic. It has always been delicious and sumptuous."
Each Hari Raya, Mr Mahmood would spend a full day cooking up a wide array of traditional dishes for his relatives and friends, including the Hoon family.
They still keep in touch even though both families moved out because of an en bloc project. They live a block away from each other today.
Sometimes, even when there were no festivals, Mr Mahmood would deliver his home-cooked meals to them.
He began honing his culinary skills more than six decades ago, learning them from his grandfather and father, who ran a catering business.
Says Ms Hoon, a marketing manager: "He once told me that he was a little disappointed that none of his children want to learn his recipes."
Mr Mahmood need not worry that his recipes will disappear as Ms Hoon "grabbed the opportunity", picking up recipes from him last year.
And from Aug 1, the public can also learn to create two of Mr Mahmood's signature dishes - mutton curry and semolina dessert.
The dishes are among 50 that will be featured in My Singapore Food, a crowd-funded campaign that aims to preserve home-cooked flavours through an online video cookbook. (See report on left.)
Says its founder, Miss Karen Nah: "I could feel the deep friendship and bond between the two old neighbours... this is the kind of kampung spirit we need to preserve in Singapore."