- November 7, 2019 8:00 AM
- May 30, 2022 3:21 PM
- June 12, 2021 4:09 PM
PHNOM PENH – The Khmer cookbook “SAOY – Royal Cambodian Home Cuisine” has won the Best of The Best Cookbook in The World 2023 award for the first time.
The cookbook is the second book compiled by Ros Rotanak, also known as Chef Nak. It took four years with the help of illustrator Sot Serey, known as Soben, and photographer La Mo, known as Ly Min.
She did a presentation on the book and received the award in Riyadh at the Saudi Food Feast Festival in Saudi Arabia on Nov. 28.
The book was nominated in three categories at the 29th Gourmand World Cookbook Awards, nicknamed OSCAR.
These were the Best Of The Best Books (Best Publishers B02), Asian Books (Countries and Regions C08), and Heads Of State (Gastrodiplomacy G05).
“Saoy” means “to eat” in a royal setting in the Khmer language.
“The book does not only have 60 recipes used in the Royal Palace between the 1950s and 1970s but also the ingredients,” Chef Nak said.
The book is dedicated to Princess Norodom Rasmi Sobhana who played an important role in recording royal recipes and promoting women’s education at the time.
“SAOY is more than just a cookbook. SAOY is the love and efforts of the team to share Cambodian culinary art and cultures through cooking to the world,” Chef Nak said.
“This accomplishment honors not just our cuisine but also the vivid essence of Cambodian culinary arts. Cheers to preserving history and sharing flavors with the rest of the world,” she said on Facebook.
Chef Nak is a celebrity chef whose mission is to preserve and develop Cambodian cuisine to be recognized globally for its quality. She also works closely with UNICEF, the World Food Program and other food organizations to improve nutrition in the country.
In 2019, she published her first cookbook called “Nhum” which is “to eat” in a family setting in Khmer language. The book has almost 80 recipes of Cambodian food.