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Published at 28th of April 2020 02:43:21 PM
Chapter 249: 249



The cassoulet was art . But the scotch egg wasn’t great . Minjoon wasn’t the only one surprised by this . As a matter of fact, pretty much everyone in the kitchen were making a surprised face .

Minjoon tried a bite of the egg without saying anything . The texture of the breading tickled the tongue a little bit before revealing the cassoulet inside . The egg broke away like tofu, coating the tongue with the sauce .

It was delicious . How was this worse compared to the cassoulet? Minjoon thought as he took a bite of the cassoulet by itself . His eyes widened in surprise .


“Like you said… The cassoulet by itself is better . ”


Surprisingly, it was . The scotch egg was pretty fun to eat with its texture . It tasted pretty high-class as well . But the cassoulet itself was neither fun or high-class . It was just tastier .

“The idea is noble . An improvement from the standard scotch egg . But it feels like you’re just mashing two things together here . We can’t sell this . ”

“…I understand . ”

Minjoon lowered his head sadly . She was right . He didn’t think about improving cassoulet when he first started with the dish . He only thought about making a new “scotch egg” .

The cassoulet just kind of came up in the middle of it . Now that he thought about it, that was where everything went wrong . He should’ve thought a bit more about if cassoulet really was the right choice to use with the egg .

“Are you feeling hurried?”

Rachel’s question came to Minjoon rather strongly . She was right . It’s already been a month after Jo Reggiano . It wasn’t like he wanted to make something that popular again . To begin with, the dish itself only got that popular out of chance . Rachel muttered with a bitter face .

“A dish from a restaurant has to be different in one way or the other . All chefs and critics say this . But that precise sentence can choke us at times . After all, it restricts us from making something normal . Making dishes from around the world is difficult enough . ”

Minjoon and Anderson nodded . They felt this multiple times during Grand Chef . After all, people kept trying to critique their food as if they were in a high class restaurant . Rachel continued .


“I’m not saying that’s bad, no . Improving in just one area does make you an expert in that field, after all . But… Going too deep can sometimes leave you with stranger results . Here, take a look . ”


Rachel pointed at the naked baby angel fountain in the middle of the hall . Occasionally the restaurant would get customers who would stare at the fountain for several minutes instead of eating the food .

“What if someone tried putting baby clothes on that angel, saying the original sculpture was incomplete?”

“Uh… . It’d look really cheap . ”

“That’s exactly what this is . ”

Rachel pointed at Minjoon’s dish .

“You were being a bit too greedy by using cassoulet here . You wanted to show off . Because this is a restaurant . ”

“But taking off its clothes… Is also hard, isn’t it? Like you said, this is a restaurant . The dishes here require something special . What should I do?”

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“Let’s say a woman came out into the streets wearing only her underwear . People would call her crazy, no matter how beautiful she was . But what if she was taking photos for a magazine? What do you think the woman would be then?”

“Beautiful… I suppose?”


“That’s what the plate is . Depending on how you plate your cassoulet, any rustic dish could become a beautiful one . ”


Minjoon recalled something Rachel said in the past . That the most important part of food was its presentation . Seeing that her plating level had reached ten, her words didn’t seem so empty to him .

“So you’re saying this cassoulet can get on the menu if I present it right?”

“Who knows… Depends on how you plate it . It tastes amazing . Almost as good as restaurants that’s been making the dish for years . But plating isn’t just about that . Once you understand the artistic nuances that come with it, you’ll find your answer . ”

Minjoon lowered his head . Not because he felt sad or anything, though . His eyes were focused right on the cassoulet in front of him .


“How long have you been playing around with that now?”

Kaya shook her head in disgust . Minjoon looked quite strange messing with clay in front of him . Kaya put her arms around him and reached for the clay pile .

“Can you actually practice with this stuff?”


“It costs too much to use actual ingredients . I have to make do with this . ”


“Ask him to sponsor you . Jeff, was it?”

“Jefferson . I wonder if he calls himself Jeff sometimes? Don’t call him that, though . ”


“I don’t like you calling other people by their nicknames . ”

Kaya smirked .

“You’re like a kid, aren’t you?”

“Don’t even . How would you plate this, by the way?”

“You sure you want my help here?”

“It’s best to get help from others when you’re stuck . ”


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“Are you sure you’re the same guy who said stuff about ‘breaking through challenges by himself’?”


“Words are meant to be changed on the fly . ”

Kaya tickled Minjoon’s side . Minjoon twisted a little and the dish under him escaped the table . Shatter! The dish broke after colliding with the marble floor underneath .

Minjoon looked at Kaya with a tired look . Kaya took her arms off of him and looked somewhere else . She couldn’t ignore him forever, though . She dropped her shoulders when she still felt Minjoon’s eyes on her .

“…Sorry . ”

“It’s fine . ”

“I’ll take care of it . ”

“It’s fine, so just bring a bag and some gloves . ”

“Ok . ”

She couldn’t say much . By the time she arrived with the tools, she noticed something was off . Minjoon was just staring at the broken glass .

“Is something wrong?”

“…No, it’s nothing . ”

Looking at the shattered glass reminded him of something, but the thought went away as quickly as it came . Minjoon picked up the pieces with the feeling of wanting to sneeze but not actually being able to .

That feeling lasted for several days . Even Ella began to get worried because of this .

“Here, have this, uncle . ”


“Uncle looked hungry . You aren’t?”

“I’m not very hungry…”

“Just take it, here . ”

“Yeah . Thanks . ”

Minjoon reached for the jelly on Ella’s hand with a smile . That tiny piece of candy looked quite adorable in the girl’s puffy hands . Minjoon’s hand ground to a halt right there .

“What is it, uncle?”

“…Ella, could you hold that pose for a second?”

“Ella’s arm hurts though…”

“Don’t worry, I’ll hold it up . ”

Minjoon stared at Ella’s hand carefully . Does that piece of jelly have a plate right now, or does it not? Could you really call someone’s hand a plate?

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But at the same time, there was no better plate right now than Ella’s hand . The jelly looked its best on her hand . Minjoon grabbed the jelly and took a bite . The flavor of blueberries coaxed his tongue gently with its sweetness . Ella looked up at him hopefully .


“Yes . Very tasty . ”

“Want more?”

“No, Ella, that’s your snack . ”

“But uncle gives Ella plenty of snacks too . ”

“So that’s why you’re giving it to me?”

“Mhm, mom said I should give back to people all the time . ”

“Good girl, you’re actually keeping your word . ”

Minjoon poked Ella’s cheeks as he said this . Ella nodded with a wide grin .

“Ella, you just gave me a great gift . Don’t worry about giving anything back to me . ”

“What did Ella give you?”

“Your hand . ”

“…Ella’s hand isn’t for eating . ”

“I’m not eating it . ”

Minjoon answered her with a smile . He didn’t think of anything too strange from it . He just realized the importance of dishes . He’s realized how much food could change depending on how it got plated .

‘What plate should I use, then?’

That’s what he needed to think about now . But right then, he heard someone walk in through the door from the parking lot . Minjoon stood up in surprise .


“Yo, Minjoon . It’s been a while . ”

“How did you come here? What about your restaurant?”

“It burned down . ”

Minjoon frowned with visible worry, but Deborah dismissed him with a grin .

“Just a joke . Don’t make that face . I’m just doing some renovations over there . Do you know where Rachel is?”

“She left because the person in charge of the noodles got sick… Did you contact her?”

“No, I tried to surprise her . Though now that I think about it, she wouldn’t even have gotten surprised… Oh, hello, Ella! What are you eating?”

Deborah started talking to Ella . Minjoon used this as a chance to escape back into the kitchens . He laid out all the dishes there, and started staring at it carefully . Maya looked at him confusedly .

“Chef, what are these?”

“I’m looking for a dish that would fit the cassoulet nicely . ”

“…Do you really have to? It looks like a pain to make . ”

“I told you not to worry about it . Someone else would be in charge of it . ”

“Oh, right . But still, testing it’s going to take so long . Can’t we do something else?”

Minjoon didn’t respond . Maya sighed in defeat . Right then, Deborah walked up to them from the back .

“Working with plating?”

“Ah, yes . I’m trying to look for something that I can wow the guests with even with cassoulet . ”

“Ah, I see . Hm… Minjoon, are you any good with art?”

“Sort of . I got A’s occasionally . ”

“Good enough, I guess . You should be able to figure it out, then . You sound like you have the sense for it . ”

“For decor?”

“No, for being able to see what’s pretty or not . ”

Deborah looked down at the dishes . She continued with a calm voice .

“I told you, right? I did all sorts of stuff to try to get two michelin stars, but that never happened . ”

“…I remember . ”

“I don’t think it was because my food wasn’t tasty . It would be strange if a michelin starred restaurant wasn’t tasty . But those guys don’t just rate you on the flavor . Flavor is subjective . So they give you a lot of points on service and decor as well . Even location has a factor in it . Plating is quite important as well, of course . Minjoon, you’re a first gen immigrant, right?”

“Yes, I spent decades in Korea . ”

“This is the difference between the West and the East . The East focuses on flavor . Interior and decor are just secondary . But the West is different . They care a lot more about looks . You could either use overwhelming flavor to beat down any critics, or you could make something pretty and delicious . What do you think?”

Minjoon began to think . Flavor or looks? Where did he really want to focus on? Minjoon opened his mouth slowly .

“I remember getting a question like that in the past . I don’t quite remember the answer back then, but… My answer this time would be…”

Minjoon sounded incredibly stiff and serious .

“Can’t I just do both?”

If you are reading from a pirate or aggregator site, please read from the translator’s site: yado-inn (dot) com I have to put the link like this or else the bots will remove it, sorry 🙁

End .



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