Food Playground is very different from the typical cooking school you see in Singapore. We see ourselves more as a hands-on cultural exchange venue, rather than a cooking school. As such, we do not attract only people who are interested to learn how to cook local cuisine. Many of our participants come to us because they are interested to learn more about Singapore through our fascinating food heritage and culture.
We create memorable local experiences for our overseas visitors by taking them on a cultural journey through a hands-on appreciation of local food culture. We showcase how our multi-racial society blended together in a perfect harmony through food. For example, Laksa was influenced by the Malay’s use of chillies, dried shrimp paste and candlenuts, the Indians gave their input through the use of coriander seeds and the Chinese contributed the rice vermicelli. We believe that food forms an important part of culture and part of the joys of traveling is to be able to appreciate local food from a local’s perspective.
We want you to walk away not only knowing more about the Singapore food culture and heritage but also with more motivation and “courage” to try out local cuisine.
What You Will Do
A typical 3-hour cultural cooking class at Food Playground will encompass the following:
- Introduction to Singapore's Food Heritage and Culture: In this session, we provide an interactive classroom simulated food trail for our participants by bringing them through a journey to our local hawker centres. A quick survival guide to navigating hawker centres is presented, alongside an introduction to some of our most popular local foods.
- Introduction to local favourites and ingredients: Here in the kitchen, we introduce the dishes that the participants will be preparing for the day, giving them a detailed explanation of the origins of the dish and the specific local ingredients used. We also take time to explain foreign substitutes to these local ingredients so our participants can replicate the dishes back home.
- Hands-on cooking session of 3 popular local dishes. Our instructors provide close guidance, demonstrate and help participants learn all the steps to making the dishes so that they can easily replicate them at home.
- Dining and sharing session, in which participants get to enjoy the fruits of their creation, while continuing the cultural exchange with one another at the comfort of our private dining area.
Why We Do This
The inspiration to set up food playground, a fun hands-on cooking school in Singapore, came from my personal adventure travels across South America and Southeast Asia. I have had the rare privilege to learn how to cook Thai, Vietnamese, Cambodian and a variety of Latin American cuisine during my travels, and realized that cooking is an excellent enrichment activity to learn more about a place’s culture and interact with locals.
I am also very passionate about creating meaningful employment opportunities for local seniors and stay-home mums. Food Playground serves as an ideal platform for this group to make a sustainable level of income while enabling them to share their passion in cooking and their rich knowledge of Singapore's cultural heritage and history.
1) All ingredients for preparing the 3 heritage dishes
2) Aprons and chef hats will be provided
3) Free flow of drinking water, coffee and tea
So, there is no need to prepare anything on your end! Just come and have a great time!