Let It Be

“A restaurant that removed your favorite item from the menu, a bad cover of a great song… Write a post about something that should’ve been left untouched, but wasn’t. Why was the original better?”

“Old is gold!” That’s what I often hear older people say when they want to bring across a point about the way things were in the past or how things were done in the good ol’ days. Sometimes you feel like raising your arms up in the air and wave them off as has beens or people who refuse to change or are stuck in their old ways. Perhaps they were regarded as old fashioned and out of touch with the current or the real world. Soon, these people will pass away and some of them have passed on but what they held so strongly in views, taste and skills went along with them.

In Singapore, we have a common feature of food or hawker centres in housing estates, shopping and commercial buildings. Sometimes they are called food court, cafeteria or canteen. This is due the busy lifestyle of the people that needs to have convenient eating places for meals throughout the day and night. The food also needs to be good for people to keep coming back for more or become regulars at such stalls. It is no wonder that the country has become well known as a food haven.

So what has the old fashioned folks gotta to do with the local food? Well, they were the ones who crafted their gold in the local foods that have fed us and whet our appetites over many years. With well worned, hard earned recipes from days gone by, from great great grand mothers and fathers or generation to generation were passed down through experience, memory and painstaking labor. However, in recent years, the taste of these foods had undergone some changes. Perhaps the newer generation wanted to try some fusion methods or be creative about the flavor, texture and looks.

The recipes of gold have been meddled and mixed with stuff that changed its value and original purpose. How can you make a sunny side up egg any other way besides over easy? There are some foods that should remain the way they are meant to be with the right ingredients and preparation, no short cuts or replacements. Some of our famous local foods are “Char Kway Teow”, “Orh Luak”, “Nasi Lemak”, “Mee Goreng” and “Bak Chor Mee”. We want it the way it used to be and it should always remain the same. There were situations where the new generation do not want to carry on the food legacy and it gets sold to investors who only want to meet the bottomline but at what cost? The loss of originality. Why can’t they just let it be?

Let it be – DP