A 13-year-old boy proved that age is not a limitation when he won two bronze medals at the World Chefs Championship in Kedah yesterday, 16 December
According to their website, the cooking competition - which was held at the Sultan Abdul Halim Stadium in Alor Setar - aims to act as a cultural bridge between Kedah and the world, as well as to be a platform for chefs globally to share their experiences with each other.
There were over 80 categories to compete in, ranging from baking confectionery and patisseries to dishing out Malay, Chinese, or Japanese cuisine.
The 13-year-old, Syahzan Imran Putra Khairil Anuar Hisham, won the medals in the 'Chicken Main Course' and 'Salmon Main Course' categories
According to New Straits Times, he also won the Jury Award for being a promising young participant.
The SMK Syed Mohamed Al-Bukhary student said he felt calm competing against the more experienced participants around the world.
He had not expected to be announced a bronze medallist for the two categories, but this has given him a boost to continue dabbling in cooking.
Syahzan said that he took part in the competition due to encouragement from his father
"Actually I have never cooked before. I have only assisted him when he does cooking demonstrations. But I trained for this competition with him for two weeks," Syahzan said, as quoted by Harian Metro.
"My father taught me how to handle the equipment and cooking basics focused on the categories that I was entering."
His father, Khairil Anuar Hisham Mahmud, who has 18 years of experience as a chef, said he would continue to help his eldest son improve his culinary knowledge and skills.
"There were tears in my eyes watching him in the kitchen. I did not think he would so calmly follow whatever I taught him," he said, "Experience is gold, so I hope he can master this art."
Khairil, who works as a culinary lecturer at an academy in Malaysia, however, said he would not force Syahzan to follow in his footsteps.
"I hope he can pick up and master the skill as much as possible. But if he decides to pursue his dream to become an engineer, I will support him too."