Mum's the best
Malaysian chef Sherson Lian says mothers are the best cooks
Mum's cooking will always reign supreme.
That's what Sherson Lian, 30, proudly told M over the phone from Kuala Lumpur.
The famed Malaysian chef couldn't be happier to share his mum's cooking with everyone on his new TV series Family Kitchen With Sherson.
The culinary programme, airing every Thursday at 10pm on Asian Food Channel (StarHub TV Ch 435), showcases Lian's and his mother Ann's love for traditional Malaysian cuisine, with mother and son dishing out family recipes such as ayam goreng berempah (Malay spiced fried chicken), sour plum stewed duck and Indian-styled fried chilli sardine.
"I'm very glad that I can do this show with my mum," said Lian, who became popular from his cooking show 5 Rencah 5 Rasa.
"She was the one who encouraged me to pursue a career in food and her passion continues to inspire me."
Lian added that he used to be his mother's kitchen hand in her small café in Kuala Lumpur.
He was about 11 years old, and picked up his love for food and cooking while helping her "peel onions and garlic".
The first dish he made was hotdog in a bun topped with a savoury meat sauce that he made for his school friends.
"I was 13 and at that time, the (fast-food chain) A&W Coney Dog was popular," Lian recalled.
"So I made it from scratch and everyone loved it."
While the 68-year-old matriarch doesn't really cook much these days, she would still "cook up a storm" whenever the family gets together. And her sour plum stewed duck remains Lian's favourite.
"She makes it twice a year - Chinese New Year and on our family vacation," said Lian.
"We have a tradition where my whole family would travel to an island every year and Mum would cook the duck dish and pack it with us."
But Lian, who also hosts Amazing Food Challenge: Fun In The Philippines, admitted that his busy schedule doesn't permit him to visit his mother, who now lives in Malacca, as often as he'd like.
"Every time I go back, it's only for a couple of days. I really miss Malacca food," he said.
"Half the time is spent eating out and the other half indulging in my mum's cooking.
"Mothers are always the best cooks. They cook for the family, the people they love, it's very special.
"I'm sure even professional chefs would agree.
"Mums just need to plonk the food on a plate and it would always taste great."