18th March 2019 19:03:23 Hours
The renowned chef of Sri Lanka, Deshamanya Dr Publis Silva who introduced Sri Lankan cuisine to the international community and made the country proud of its culinary delights was invited by the Commander of the Army, Lieutenant General Mahesh Senanayake to the Commander’s office on Monday (18) with the objective of lauding his invaluable expertise and seeking his continued assistance for promotion of the Army Catering Battalion.
Lieutenant General Mahesh Senanayake during his meet with Dr Publis Silva spoke high of his contribution to the field of Sri Lankan cuisine and recalled how Dr Silva has been readily contributing to major Army ceremonies in an excellent manner when he was serving as the head chef at Mount Lavinia Hotel. His host who also mentioned about his documented works and books highlighted the significance of archiving his traditional recipes and grooming a few to carry forward his culinary expertise to the next generation, yet to learn about those culinary skills of social and cultural dimension.
The Army, the Commander opined, would be prepared to assist in preserving his culinary art and conserving that knowledge for future generations while simultaneously grooming a set of Army experts to reach qualitative standards since the preparation of traditional food varieties mirrors the identity of a national culture, the very existence of a generation.
Dr Silva in return quipped that he would be more than pleased to assist the Army in this sphere and help groom a set of new breed who could absorb the professional expertise of Sri Lankan cuisine and take it to the international arena. He also vowed that he would voluntarily support a project of this nature as proposed by the Commander of the Army.
Towards the end of the interaction, Lieutenant General Senanayake presented him with a symbolic memento in appreciation of his dedicated commitment to the art of cooking and the role he played to take the Sri Lankan cuisine to the international community.
Dr Silva presented a copy of his best-selling book on culinary arts to the Commander of the Army as a symbolic token of his meet with the Commander of the Army and extended best wishes.
Brigadier Priyantha Kaldera, Colonel Commandant, SLASC, Colonel Irosh Wanigasekara, Director Supply and Transport, Colonel Nishantha Vithanage, Commanding Officer, Army Catering Battalion, Colonel Udaya Kumara, Military Assistant were also associated with the meeting at the Commander’s office.
Mr Publis Silva who joined the Mount Lavinia Hotel as a Kitchen Helper in 1957 rose to be the Executive Chef and afterwards as the Director, Culinary Affairs and Promotions in the same Mount Lavinia Hotel. Presently, he is also serving several advisory capacities in the Hotel.