Sunday, June 7

Laksa cookbook adds spice to S’wak tourism — Abg Jo

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KUCHING: The launch of the MUSC Sarawak Laksa Cookbook augurs well in demonstrating the diversity in food here, with plans this year to popularize Sarawak fare in the Middle East.

Speaking at its launch yesterday, Tourism Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg said that the cookbook could serve as a guide to chefs here on the various creative ways to use laksa
paste.

“This year, we plan on bringing our Sarawak food to Dubai and Abu Dhabi,” he added later.

“One of our attractions is our food,” he said, after announcing that tourist arrivals in Sarawak for January and February was over 700,000, a six per cent increase compared to last year for the same period.

Abang Johari pointed out that February tends to be a ‘lean month’, but the number of conventions in Kuching this year played a role in bumping up the figure.

“We anticipate we may get 4.5 million tourists this year. Last year, we achieved 4.1 million. The reason being because of additional flights, we now have direct Kuching-Penang and Kuching-Kota Bharu flights.”

According to feedback garnered, visitors find Sarawak to be quite safe to visit, he said.

Abang Johari also hinted that he will be launching a diving spot with historical value in May, and which will also attract visitors to the state.

Meanwhile, MUSC Food Industries Sdn Bhd kicks off a string of marketing activities designed to aggressively promote Sarawak’s famous product – the laksa paste.

“Some of you may have heard of the versatility of the Sarawak Laksa paste and some may even have experienced using them for various dishes,” said Dayang Soroya Abang Fadzail, who was representing MUSC managing director Salleh Ibrahim.

“With this cookbook, people who love cooking and find fun in developing creative and tantalising dishes, will have the chance to use the Sarawak Laksa paste as one of their ingredients.”

She said that both the book and paste will be promoted locally and overseas.