Tuesday, August 16, 2011


my favourite

My mother was a good cook and cooking was her passion. However she did not allow her children into the kitchen, so I never had the opportunity to learn cooking from her. Moreover, from the very young age of 12 years I was living away from home for my studies - those days girls will automatically be placed in hostels and here too, we were not allowed into the kitchens! Goodness!

When I started work I was living on my own. My apartment was right in the city where we can get all varieties of food, available 24hours a day. So cooking was never my priority - until I got married I never knew how to cook.

I tested many cookbooks and over the years became attached to those written by veteran chef Betty Saw, one of Malaysia's favourite food writers and the author of the immensely popular newspaper food column, 'From Betty Saw's Kitchen'.  

The Complete Malaysian Cookbook (formerly Rasa Malaysia) takes you on a voyage through Malaysia's culinary heritage where every state's best recipes are showcased. From Johor Laksa to Penang Acar, these books contain kitchen-tested recipes sourced from home kitchens to the royal kitchens.

Cookies Galore contains over 70 recipes for mouth-watering cookies. The veteran culinary expert gives her take on the old staples of shortbread, chocolate chip cookies, etc., with recipes for Double Chocolate Shortbread, Raisin and Milk Chocolate Chip Cookies and other original sweet and savoury cookies.

The book contains recipes for both Chinese and Western cookies. Vegetarians should find the book useful, since Betty includes several eggless cookies, such as Eggless Almond Butter Cookies and Eggless Double Ginger Cookies.

In this second compilation, Betty Saw lets you in on more of her great cooking tips and ideas. With answers to questions like how to best prepare asparagus and the correct way to choose a lobster, this book will be a boon to both the experienced cook and to one just starting out in the kitchen.

This is the third book full of helpful cooking tips and ideas collected from years of first-hand experience, Betty Saw presents them in answers to questions like how to prevent avocado from turning brown and how to make kuih keria with grated tapioca instead of sweet potato. Arranged from A to Z in terms of subject, this book will be a handy companion to all cooks, whether experienced cooks or aspiring beginners.

Many More Kitchen Secrets is the fourth book in the series. Betty Saw helps you find your way around the kitchen from how to pull egg strips when making agar-agar to how to make yoghurt that is not too liquid.

With over 30 years of experience, she shares her knowledge and practical cooking tips on various television cooking programmes and in several cookbooks, including Betty Saw's Best Noodles Recipes, Everything Bean Curd!The Best of Chinese Cooking, Asian Fish Cookbook, Asian Retro Food, Tempt, Asian Delights, A Time for Dessert, Cookies and Slices and many more.

More on Betty Saw / Betty Yew here.


  1. can i ask something (hope not too sensitive eh):
    how come some of u women when other people look inside their cookbooks get angry like their jewels had been stolen.
    why not share freely? :-)

  2. i katrina, betty saw contributed a lot to malaysian cooking. her tips surely must be very useful for all who cooks... its these tips that makes a difference in food taste between various chefs/ cooks.
    by way,i cant help reading the above comment and find it very amusing lol rather hilarious.

    these days,there are plenty of internet recipes, with the best of tips and flavor to ensure that visitors will come back for more..

    so i guess hiding ones recipe is not trending anymore... unless like secret recipes for business purposes.

  3. remgold/CV

    Irony there are some still very secretive. And yes, today not only internet, there are many cooking classes that's exceptionally good.

    I attended many of ChefLi's classes, Chicken Rice, Noodles, NasiLemak @ 20dishes, Western, Differnt rice etc and am sending all my kids there too. He gave out all the tips that makes cooking tolerable, fun and easy.

    My late mum used to prepare a special dish for HRaya, I was wondering what that was as I have not eaten same elsewhere.

    Only found out it was Chili Corn Carne (adapted to Msian taste, pedas2 lebih), a traditional dish popular in some parts of US and Europe. Seems my late mum learnt from one Australian cook way back in the 70's (we had Australian AirForce base near our kampung back then)

    And I noticed this only after I saw the same recipe/ingredients in one of Betty Saw's cookbook!!