You don’t need a silver fork to eat good food

Whether you reckon it a pleasure, a chore, a skill, a bore, a basic job or an art form, there is no doubt that cooking is vital. As a craft, people’s appreciation of it never seems to wane, as they witness today’s myriad cookbooks, tv contests and online recipes. While, in The Jungle Book, Mowgli is told that the necessities of life will come to him, food is often better for expert preparation, so I here offer praise to a very fine chief cook.

With a new chapter about to begin, many questions filled my mind while my mother helped me finish packing. But I know she had only one – would I still get good food, away again at sea? She can be reassured with an unqualified yes to that one. I might not live like royalty on the “MAERSK EMERALD”, but to my mind every day I eat what is fit for a king. This is thanks to Selvan Irudhaya Amala Liyonston.

His own particular forte is dosa, a south India pancake delicacy. We feast on that every other Thursday, which is always eagerly awaited, with everyone excited about what new version is going to appear, and keen discussion and great anticipation all along the line in the galley. There is always something original, and I think that at the last count Mr Liyonston had chalked up 110 varieties, so he deserves some time in the limelight.

The best gift that any living thing can have is good food – if you want to present options, the best one is food – good food is the only thing that can fill the heart as well as the stomach – to run a good ship you need good food – good food means a good cook.

The view from the crew is that chief cook Liyonston is one of the best we have ever come across, who not only dishes up great food right on time, but also, with his whole approach to his task, plays a very major part in maintaining good crew health and also harmony. Furthermore, nobody ever misses a birthday cake, all of which are suitably shaped, or themed, according to the role or background interests, with more recent models being a laptop, a ship, a camera and even one representing Hogwarts school from Harry Potter.

Thanks to this peerless chief cook, the food onboard the “MAERSK EMERALD” fills the heart, the stomach and the soul. It is, very simply, complete food.

Gowrishankar Swaminathan

Chief Officer