Filipinos win top prizes in Japan soy sauce cook fest

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Two Japan-based Filipinos bagged top prizes in a soy sauce cooking competition held at the Royal Park Hotel In Tokyo.

Japan soy sauce cook fest
(L-R) Cooking contest winners Justin De Jesus, Clair Ocampo and Florence Zappia with the judges (standing) at an awards ceremony at the Royal Park Hotel in Tokyo’s Chuo Ward on Sept. 30. [by japantimes.co.jp via Manila Bulletin]

Clair Ocampo, a Filipina based in Saitama Prefecture, won first prize for her “pork back ribs adobo and banana with burned brown sugar” at the eighth Soy Sauce Recipe & Story Contest.

Another Saitama-based Filipino, Justin De Jesus, tied for the second prize with his “Philippine beef steak, with a yuzu citrus and soy sauce flavor.”

“I have loved adobo since my childhood. I used soy sauce and brown sugar to better bring out the pork’s flavor. Also, to give it an interesting taste, I used hakkaku spice and laurel leaves. My dish is unique and original,” Ocampo said.

De Jesus said he wanted to cook Filipino food using Japanese ingredients.

A Canadian woman based in Tokyo, Florence Zappia, also bagged the second prize with her “Deep-fried, stewed eggplant with Italian sauce.”

10 out of 75 entrants cooked their dishes for the final screening at Hattori Nutrition College in Tokyo’s Shibuya Ward on Aug. 20.

From the 10, the remaining seven, from Singapore, France, Indonesia, Switzerland, Brazil the U.S. and Iran were awarded bronze prizes.

The contest was one of the highlights of the event organized by the Japan Soy Sauce Association to commemorate Soy Sauce Day.

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