Chef Anis Nabilah tells Dennis Chua she will promote healthy eating with her new cookery show, dedicating it to a special fan
CELEBRITY chef and culinary show host Anis Nabilah Umaruddin’s latest TV series is one she describes as unorthodox and eye-opening.
The bubbly lass is proud of her most recent cookery series, Eat Clean With Anis, which recently ended last August.
She says: “It began on May 22, and it introduced healthy eating with minimal sugar, organic vegetables, grass-fed beef and lamb, and free-range chicken.
“These are organic ingredients which are detoxifying since they do not rely on pesticides and are not genetically modified.”
Eat Clean With Anis also revealed that although coconut milk and coconut oil have been “vilified”, they are actually beneficial to health.
“Traditional ingredients have a lot of goodness; that’s why our grandparents had faith in them.”
For the cookery show with 13 episodes on Astro Bella, Anis invited a celebrity guest star to share some culinary knowledge with her each week.
“Among the big names who were with me on the show were Amy Search, Soo Wincci, Yasmin Hani, Atilia Haron and Faizal Hussein. Each is a talented cook in his or her own right.”
Anis’ last TV series was very popular with viewers who said it was “interesting and fun”. Titled 1, 2, Bakar, it ran for 13 episodes on TV3 beginning last April 12.
“In this out-of-the-ordinary series on Sundays, I co-starred with veteran chef Norizan Alisa, and we prepared various dishes using modern (by Anis) and traditional (Norizan) cooking methods.
“While cooking on each episode was a friendly competition between us, at the end of the day, there were no winners, and we identified the strengths and weaknesses of each dish, so that viewers could learn from us.”
Coming in November is the pre-recorded Ceria Rasa Anis for RTM. This studio-based cookery show sees her introducing traditional recipes from various countries she has visited.
“Every country has its special recipes and I show viewers the traditional way to prepare them. Along the way, I also share why I am interested in learning a particular recipe.”
Ceria Rasa Anis, she says, is a lot like Selera, which ended last year; it screened on TV3 every Saturday morning for two years.
“While Selera mainly focuses on my travels around Malaysia, Ceria Rasa Anis has a more international flavour,” says Anis.
This year marks her 13th year as a chef. She graduated from the Food Institute of Malaysia with a culinary arts diploma in 2003.
“When I started in 2008, nobody took me seriously. Eventually, thanks to support from cooking-based TV networks, I was able to fulfil my dream,” says Anis who began her hosting debut with cookery shows Icip-icip and Mencari Resipi Temurun. “Food and culinary arts have always been my passion as I love to spend time with my mother, preparing meals for my large family of 10.”
Anis says her passion for food was nurtured by her late grandmother.
“The countless hours spent in the kitchen with my mother and grandmother sparked my passion and also promoted a lot of bonding. Somehow, they both believed that I’d become a chef one day,” she adds.
Her rising popularity, however, was tinged with sadness, as she lost her eldest brother, Adam, 26, to a heart ailment in April.
“He was one of my biggest fans and never failed to watch my cookery shows. While he wasn’t a cook, he gave me lots of interesting tips on how to improve my shows. We miss him, and I’ve decided to dedicate my next show to his memory,” she says.
While cooking is her first love, Anis would love to do voiceover work for animated films.
“To my siblings, I’m often known as Gollum, the nasty villain of the Lord Of The Rings trilogy! That’s because I excel in imitating his menacing voice, and do so during festivities to their applause!” she says.
“I’m able to imitate a few beloved cartoon characters such as those from Disney and Warner Brothers.”
She says it is great that there are some Hollywood movies, especially animated movies, dubbed in Bahasa Malaysia for local audiences and many actors lend their voices to the characters.
“If opportunity knocks, I’d definitely say ‘yes’ to voicing a Disney cartoon character in
Bahasa Malaysia, even if it is a minor character.”