God of Cooking - Chapter 501
Chapter 501: Self-awareness (1)
“So, which head chef did you like best?”
That was the first question June asked Min-joon, who just came back after visiting all the branches of Rose Island. He hesitated for a moment. There were only two candidates that came to his mind, namely Dave and Daisy. However, he already knew who he liked better, given the choice.
“I thought you would choose him, too.”
“Well, the more I knew about him, the more surprised I was.”
“Yeah, that’s why I liked him.”
“Chef Dave is strong.”
He looked at her at that moment. It looked like she wanted to praise him, then she even said something he could not bring himself to mention.
“Yeah, he must be strong compared to me.”
But he didn’t say yes because his silence alone was already a great answer. Although she expected it, she felt a bit bitter when he confirmed what she expected.
‘Dave, you are still ahead of me.’
She had shown all her cooking skills to Min-joon, but Dave captured his heart by showing him his dishes only once. To be honest, she found it a bit absurd. No matter how much she wanted to avoid it, she could not. It was hard for her to even imitate his talent.
“Didn’t you wish you wanted to work for Dave, not me? I guess you might have felt some regrets you didn’t.”
Having said that, she felt ashamed. As someone who was already over 40, she should have refrained from having said that to him. She felt she was jealous of Dave in this situation.
But she already spoke out. She looked at Min-joon with some expectations and fear because he would tell a lie, given his personality. He would speak from the heart.
“Yeah, you’re right. I wish I could because I also wanted to learn Chef Dave’s cooking.”
“Oh, I see…”
“But that doesn’t mean I regret choosing you, Chef June,” he said quietly. “Well, I may have grown big enough to feel Chef Dave’s dishes were great because I worked for you. Chef Dave may be great as a chef, but not as a teacher. That’s the only downside of cooking when you cook guided by your senses. You can’t teach your senses to others because that’s literally senses.”
“I don’t know if I should be happy about what you said.”
“Maybe I might want to learn his senses, too.”
Min-joon thought he might be able to imitate Dave’s dishes while watching him cooking. He thought he could learn it, hoping to cultivate the kind of senses Dave had, just like he coveted Kaya’s senses. After all, however, such a day would never come to him because that was not what he really wanted, and that was not his own.
He continued, “I would rather learn what I really can instead of being lured by what I can’t learn. In other words, I want to learn right beside you and…”
His eyes were twinkling with some sort of determination.
“I’ll help you win, Chef June.”
“You said the fastest way to get what you don’t have is to make the one who has it your friend or let my friend get something. So I’m going to do that. By helping you win the upcoming competition…”
He paused for a moment then continued, “I want to surpass his cooking abilities.”
After he passionately told June about his impressions about Chef Dave, the one that occupied Min-joon’s mind since his return to New York was Chef Daisy, the head chef of Rose Island’s Beijing Branch. More precisely, it was Daisy’s Chinese cooking.
‘Chinese people eat everything except for a desk with legs.’
The reason why he was so impressed by her words was because of her various cooking methods befitting what she said. In fact, it would be more accurate to say that Daisy, not Chinese cooking, was creative.
In fact, it didn’t really matter to argue who was more creative. The important thing was that Daisy’s dishes kept bothering him. So, he had no choice but to visit and annoy a chef specializing in Chinese cooking, whom he knew well.
“I don’t know!” Chloe said like a sourpuss. “Even though I make some Chinese dishes, they’re not authentic Chinese cuisine. Mine is American style!”
“Isn’t there any overlap between your Chinese cooking and Daisy’s? For example, spices. I want to know more about how to use them.”
“I really don’t know well. I just followed the recipes my mom used. I didn’t learn it formally.”
“Yeah, you’re right…”
He bowed his head as if he was disappointed. Chloe wanted to make him smile, but she couldn’t. At first, when he asked her about the Chinese cuisine, she responded to each of his questions kindly, but as time passed, he asked more difficult questions. For example, he asked her why the different spices clashed in Chinese food. Especially when he brought up the topic about the Chinese style of cooking and recipes that she had never heard of, she felt like she was learning from him about Chinese cooking.
“Where did you learn about Chinese cooking so much?”
“On the internet.”
“Yeah, we live in the information age anyway.” She shook her head.
Then she smiled, messing with his hair.
“Then can I introduce you to a teacher?”
“The chef who taught me Chinese cooking.”
Min-joon opened his eyes wide and asked, “Your mom?”
“I heard you developed a new recipe, right?”
Downey asked Min-joon as if he was surprised. Actually, he didn’t announce his new recipes for a long time after he came back to New York, not to mention before he left New York. In fact, it was not because he didn’t develop any new recipes, but because he didn’t have any satisfactory ones.
Downey knew what kind of recipe he was usually looking for. To make a long story short, Min-joon was looking for the recipe with which he could make his own signature dish. He was aiming for the type of dish that would make people conclude it was special. Just like the Cho Reggiano dessert.
“Yeah. I’m going to show it to Chef June now. Would you like to help me?”
Aside from repaying Min-joon, Downey learned a lot while helping Min-joon cook right beside him, for his cooking was different in almost everything including his way of managing the kitchen staff and feeling the finished dishes. Of course, it would be impossible for Downey to absorb his way of cooking, but at least, he would be able to realize something while watching Min-joon cooking.
What Min-joon asked him first was to mix soy sauce, coriander stalks, and five spices to ripen. After their tastes were well mixed, he still waited for the seasoning to seep in by putting in the scallops that were cut into a disc shape properly. Of course, it didn’t mean he didn’t do anything while waiting for it. Min-joon chopped garlic, onions, cilantro, Chinese leek, and shiitake soaked in water, and spinach, then mixed them in a bowl while Downey was taking care of the scallops and seasoning. After Min-joon added chopped shrimp, soy sauce, sugar, and sesame oil first, Downey filled the dumpling skins that Min-joon made in advance.
Meanwhile, Min-joon began to slice the dumpling skins thinly like noodles. Actually, he made use of Daisy’s way of cutting shiitake mushrooms into small pieces and wrapping eels with them.
He wrapped the scallops with the sliced dumpling skins and put them on the oven pan. All he had to do now was to bake them for about 2 minutes.
What he did next was to make Coleslaw. After adding soy sauce, lime, sesame oil, and honey, and Italian pepper, he pickled cabbage and onions with a little sauce he had used for aging the scallops the other day. Now, this Coleslaw would soon be laid on the bottom of the bowl before being served with crispy grilled scallops and dumplings.Read latest Chapters at wuxiamobile.com Only
As for dumplings, he made them more easily. After spraying the dumplings with chicken broth, oyster sauce, and a boiled broth with chili oil to bring out the taste, he would put them in a steamer. In the process of preparing all this, the smell peculiar to the Chinese dish was so strong that Downey asked, unable to resist his curiosity, “Min-joon, haven’t you visited the local branches in America? If anybody watched you cooking now, they must think you have been in China all along. Why do you want to bring out this kind of Chinese taste?”
“Well, that means my dishes haven’t shown any Chinese flavor at all until now. As a matter of fact, I visited only cheap Chinese restaurants. I thought I knew about Chinese cuisine, but I didn’t know anything at all.”
Watching him answering like that, Downey thought Min-joon was really cool because as a chef specializing in western food, Min-joon didn’t have to go to the trouble of learning Chinese cooking. He didn’t have to be greedy about Chinese dishes since he already established himself as a famed western chef here in America.
‘Gosh, is that why he is peerless?’