Gesture of love leads to cook-off

Arylene Westlake-Jennings.
Arylene Westlake-Jennings.

It is simply a means for showing the people she loves how deeply she cares.

Whether satisfying the stomach of her husband or appealing to the appetites of close-knit friends, Westlake-Jennings revels in dishing out delight.

�I have been very blessed in terms of growing up around food in a country where our passion for eating comes second to none,� she said.

�I was brought up in Singapore by a Peranakan mother and Sri Lankan-Portuguese father, both of whom are incredible cooks in their own right.

�And just as it is for me, they cooked for the pure enjoyment of it.�

Her culinary journey began at age eight, perfecting the art of preparing rice.

By 10, she had mastered several family favourites, such as oyster sauce chicken stir-fry.

Now the vivacious real estate writer is one of eight home cooks selected as a semi-finalist in WA�s Signature Dish cooking competition.

Entering the contest on a whim, she was curious to see whether her recipe would pique the interest of judges.

Representing the Kimberley region, Westlake-Jennings will prepare and cook Cone Bay barramundi with green mango and mizuna salad at the semi-final cook-off today at Fraser�s, Kings Park.

�This is the first cooking competition I have entered and I am thinking it will be my last because the mere thought of cooking in front of strangers immediately tightens the belly with pure fear,� she said.

�I am going to test my dish again before the big day and if it doesn�t boost my confidence then nothing will.�

The competition grand finale is on November 22 at the Margaret River Gourmet Escape event.

The winner receives a two-day mentorship with Guillaume Brahimi at Bistro Guillaume, Crown Perth.