Sri OwenPast Symposiast
Sri Owen – Author and Cook.
In 2015, Indonesia’s most well-known and highly respected cook and author Sri Owen, celebrates her 80th birthday. Sri’s carefully researched recipes and beautifully illustrated, award-winning cookbooks have inspired generations of chefs and cooks to learn about Indonesian cuisine. Chefs Raymond Blanc, Peter Gordon, Yotam Ottolenghi and Michael Caines are among her biggest fans and food writer Tom Parker Bowles dedicated his own recipe for Beef Rendang to her in his latest cookbook.
Sri Owen was born in Sumatra on 31 March 1935, the eldest of six daughters; both parents were teachers. It was a happy childhood until the Japanese invaded the island and the family fled to Java, eventually settling in the small town of Magelang, north of Yogyakarta. After secondary school, she attended Gadjah Mada University, where she met and married an English colleague, Roger Owen, who had been recruited to teach English language and literature. She accompanied him back to London, where she worked for some twenty years as a translator, broadcaster and producer with the Indonesian Section of BBC Far Eastern Service and brought up their two sons.
In 1984 the family moved to Wimbledon Village High Street and found a small shop, from which Sri could sell Indonesian ready-made dishes and snacks, be mentioned in the Good Food Guide, and deliver ready-cooked recipe dishes to Harrod’s Food Hall.
Sri also focused her considerable talent into writing successful cookbooks, among them Indonesian Food & Cookery; Indonesian Regional Food & Cookery (awarded the Langhe Ceretto Prize for Best recipe book and shortlisted for a Julia Child award), Indonesian & Thai Cookery; The Classic Asian cookbook, New Wave Asian and Noodles the New Way.
The Rice Book, which appeared in 1993, won a prestigious André Simon Memorial Award, and was listed, in The Observer last year, among the twenty best food books published in English.
Sri’s most recent biographical book on Indonesian cuisine, Sri Owen’s Indonesian Food, chronicles her life in a compelling narrative, detailing the social history and cooking styles of the islands she loves. This book won best Asian cookbook at the Gourmand food awards.
Sri is a popular international lecturer on Asian cuisine and has run cookery demonstrations, workshops and courses across the globe. She has appeared on BBC TV with chef Raymond Blanc and on Good Food channel in Market Kitchen with Matthew Fort and Tom Parker Bowles. She has been the subject of many press articles as well as making contributions to other collective books by many authors in the UK and Indonesia.
In June 2015, Sri and Roger will be visiting her homeland – not Sumatra this time, but Bali – where, at the Ubud Food Festival, she will receive a Lifetime Achievement Award for her work in making Indonesian food and cooking known to, and appreciated by, a world audience.
To Contact Ibu Sri Owen for information or interviews, please contact her PR/Producer
tel 0771 2890798
or contact Sri directly