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Covid-19 upended his NY internship, so he is learning to make chicken rice in Shunfu

Covid-19 dashed his hopes of interning at a Michelin-starred New York restaurant. Now, Lim Wei Keat, 25, is a hawker apprentice, part of a wave of young people revitalising hawker culture as it moves a step closer to Unesco recognition.

Hawker Neo Cheng Leong, 60, who has been selling chicken rice for 30 years, with his apprentice, Mr Lim Wei Keat, 25, at the Leong Hainanese Chicken Rice stall in Shunfu.
Hawker Neo Cheng Leong, 60, who has been selling chicken rice for 30 years, with his apprentice, Mr Lim Wei Keat, 25, at the Leong Hainanese Chicken Rice stall in Shunfu. ST PHOTO: ALPHONSUS CHERN

Foodies know Shunfu Mart as a hawker centre in Upper Thomson with convenient covered parking and some excellent food stalls.

Queues are often seen at the muffin stall, the char kway teow stall, the prawn noodle stall, and the stall selling soon kueh and suan pan zi (Hakka abacus seeds).

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