The 7th Best Buddies cooking competition with Fu Hong Society

April 26th, 2011 | Posted by greg in Charity | Daily life...

Earlier this month, I wrote this post when I was just coming back from the 7th Best Buddies Hong Kong cooking competition. I had to write the post while my emotions were still together and was waiting for photos to share, but unfortunately, I couldn’t get any, so I used what I found on the internet. But I had to share it!


Did I just say awesome? Ok.. think awesome as in amazingly awesome!

Chris, the excellent chef from the Jockey Club in Happy Valley, and I were both “judges” for the first round of the competition. There was 4 rounds of 7 sessions and each sessions had 6 teams. Each team was composed of 4 people including one mentally disabled person. I’ll spare you the math, that’s 672 people participating and a lot more people  supporting and organizing. In other words, it was a LOT of people and frankly, I have never witnessed so many kind-hearted people packed in the same room! The ambiance and the mood was fantastic!

We had to judge on different criteria. 40% of the marks were for the support, team work and interaction between the disabled person and the rest of the team. The next 30% was for the taste, 10% for the nutritional value of the dish presented, 10% for the creativity and the final 10% for the cleanliness and hygiene.

Each team had to cook one dish: anything  in 20 minutes.

I have to tell you: This event started at 9 A.M. and we had to taste about 40 dishes during our session. We saw a myriad of the most popular dishes from Hong Kong’s home cooking as well as some very creative take on classics. Younger teams were more daring and older ones a bit more conservative. In the end, most of dishes were properly cooked and some were even excellent!

Noteworthy was on dish made of drunken prawns in Chinese wine – with a nice sauce made from Sake – the alcohol was cooked off and the flavors were very good. It has been done by a team of young students and a mentally disabled person; the dish could have been served in any good restaurant around town any day. On the other hand, I had a hard time tasting chicken feet curry at 9 a.m. !

I felt almost ashamed to have to put marks on all the team’s efforts. I think I was the most generous of the judges and deducted points only for very obvious fails. There will be a winner like in any competition, but to me, all the teams were winners on that day!

It felt so good being surrounded by people with genuine emotions and hearts.

We had to seat down for a photo and the disabled person next to me hugged me for the whole photo session – that (…and chocolate) is the best feeling ever!

Check out the Best Buddies International website here

And here for the Hong Kong Best Buddies at Fu Hong Society

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