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e-book YOUNG CHEFS REGRET: DEAD OR ALIVE

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My first job in a real kitchen, I was a slacker, I had long hair, I wore mascara, I was partying a lot. After 3 months, the chef got so upset with me he backed me up against a wall and got so close to my face, I could see his nose hairs.

I was sure I was going to quit anyway. I started to take the work seriously. I stayed on for another year and to this day, I am still friends with Chef. Chef tried to protect us from the mayhem as best he could. It was a tough environment to try to be a serious chef but it also was a brazen introduction into the world of temptation.

You either succumbed to it or not. My first restaurant was near Chinatown and I used to go every afternoon and try to recreate all the crazy dishes I ate at these hole in the wall restaurants.

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One of the first things I made were duck confit dumplings in a broth I made with the bones fortified with curry and dried mushrooms. I topped it with thai basil and some fancy oils that I thought was really cool back then. I was proud of it because I made everything from scratch, the confit, the curry, the broth, even the dumpling skins. It took forever to prep that dish but I felt like it was a dish that I could stand behind and call myself a real chef.

I guess what the majority of people do is considered normal.

I guess chefs are in a minority with regards to how we structure our days to day lives. What was your arc in terms of the first kinds of cookery you loved and how it morphed over your career? I grew up in a typically first generation Korean household so every meal was some variation of traditional Korean food. So I guess that was my first love. As a young chef, I immersed myself in French cuisine, culminating in a summer cooking all over France. Once I realized that cooking staff meal excited me more than the dinner menu, I knew it was time to move on.

young chefs regret dead or alive Manual

I never went to cooking school and to me his book was an essential part of my education. It was clear, concise but free to pomp and circumstance. It was and remains today, still one of the must reads for every young cook. And she did it all with humility, grace and an intelligence rarely seen in our profession. She is everything I want to be. This may sound unconventional but I would love to dine with Marco Pierre White.

A TINY COOKING show for humans of all ages.

It would be a complete mess and probably end up in a shouting match and broken glasses. How much fun would that be?

Cooking lessons at Young Chefs Academy

Townes Van Zandt — I missed him by a couple of years. But I probably own the largest collection of Townes bootlegs. His live shows were so much better than his recordings. Sometimes brilliant, sometimes heartbreaking.

Gary Rhodes

I was really close to my grandmother and I had spent the whole day in the hospital. That night, I was exhausted and emotional. The next day, I went to a record store and bought every CD they had. Been a huge fan ever since. Hard to narrow it down but I adore gochujang, the fermented Korean chili paste. I love buttermilk too. And fish sauce, sorghum. Persimmon vinegar is my new obsession too. Is Thanksgiving overrated? In terms of food and drink?

What is your T Day Dinner these days? I was very emotional. For someone who achieved so much so young, does turning 30 feel like turning a corner? For sure, yeah. You are remembered a little bit for that. My focus now is on being a sustainable company and making what we have better than what we did yesterday.

If I have one regret, it would have been to have enjoyed my teens and my 20s better. I still pinch myself. I have a different vision. But I do want to be the favourite restaurant in the area. What do you think they handed me apart from a brain to tell me that I need to work for myself? I was up at six this morning after going to bed at three finishing off my emails.


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There are loads. Holborn Dining Room is near where I live on the Strand. I go to Zuma on the way home from the Belmond Cadogan. I love Hawksmoor because the meat is delicious. I go whenever I can. Everyone is nice to you in Bangkok — the people are super polite and very humble.

I love KFC.

'Australia's original domestic goddess'

KFC and a bottle of good Champagne is my food heaven. Chef de cave Caroline Latrive: Making it in Champagne. Everything you need to know.

The Atlantic Crossword

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