At the table with: Chung Jae Lee

At the table with: Chung Jae Lee

Acknowledged as the driving force behind the surge in Korean cuisine across Australia, Chung Jae Lee is currently executive chef of Seoul Food in Darwin’s Elan Soho Suites. But before his arrival to the Northern Territory, Lee was cooking modern Korean food in his own restaurant, Mapo, for over 12 years. Lee is also the author of Korean cookbook: A twist on the traditional.

Who is your inspiration?
Tetsuya would be on the top of my list as my story on moving to Australia and starting out is quite similar to his.

What’s currently in your pantry?
A long list of things, black rice, aged soy sauce, truffle oil, pasta, chilli powder, Korean beef stock.

What’s in your fridge?
Dried anchovies, dried squid, Korean fish cake, minced garlic, many types of seaweed.

Best thing to come out of the microwave
Melting butter in a hurry. That’s it!

What did you last eat?
Rice, of course, with scotch fillet bulgogi cooked on my weber, kimchi, lettuce, and chilli paste.

Where do you like to go for a feed?
I love market food or backstreet food where I can get the real deal.

When I’m not cooking, I’m…
Spending time with my girls as when they get older I imagine they won’t want to hang out with me so making the most of it now.

Butter, margarine, a mix or neither?
Definitely really good quality butter. It enhances the flavour and the hips!

Tools I can’t live without
A good knife, scissors, and a spatula.

Cookbooks I always return to…
The Beauty of Korean Food: With 100 best loved recipes

Check back on Thursday as Chung Jae Lee shows how to make your own barbecue sauce.

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