Doctors at the Hong Kong Sanatorium and Hospital swapped their white coats and stethoscopes for aprons and chef's hats to raise funds for charity.
The hospital in Happy Valley tested the doctors' kitchen skills at its Christmas party on Monday. The crowd cheered as the hospital's medical superintendent Dr Walton Li Wai-tat flipped his egg in mid-air.
The hospital's auditorium was filled with stalls serving a variety of main dishes, snacks and desserts made by staff from different departments. Doctors, nurses and other staff went from stall to stall, filling their plates excitedly.
"It's the day of the year when everyone in the hospital has fun together. It's Christmas time and we hope our staff will bring some cheer back to the patients," Li said. "We involve all our staff in giving to charity, with each of them contributing a little."
Each person was charged HK$100 for admission to the party, which was donated to Operation Santa Claus, the annual charity drive jointly organised by the South China Morning Post and RTHK to help needy people in the community. This year Operation Santa will raise funds for 18 charitable organisations.
The six contestants in the egg-frying competition each had to raise at least HK$10,000 in sponsorship from colleagues.
The contest brought in more than HK$260,000, with nursing services director Manbo Man Bo-lin emerging as the top fundraiser. Overall, the party raised HK$630,000 for Operation Santa, after the hospital donated a dollar for every dollar raised by its staff.
Fundraising activities continued throughout the party, including an auction of paintings, a sponsored barley-water-drinking competition and a karaoke contest.
The highlights of the buffet meal included a lobster spaghetti dish made by Marco Tse Chi-wing, a designer from the hospital's corporate communications department. He said he made the pasta from scratch himself after learning how to do it at a workshop with Marco Medaglia, a chef from the Kowloon Shangri-La hotel's Italian restaurant - in which he took part thanks to a winning bid in Operation Santa's Silver Auction last year.
"Everything was freshly made and I didn't use any additives. The sauce was brewed for over 10 hours, using about seven lobster heads," he said.
A black forest cake, also made by Tse, and a dish of chicken feet and cucumber won the cooking competition.
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