Published at 19th of December 2020 02:25:08 PM
“As you know, we’ve been focusing a lot on Western cuisine until now . So, I want to make delicious food in Asian countries . That’s all . I don’t have any particular reason . ”
“Sure, you can do it . ”
But Raphael thought a bit strange about what he said .
Just in case, Min-joon asked, “Why aren’t you cooking?”
“Oh no, what’s the point of a sous chef like me cooking with you at the kitchen?”
“Are you serious?”
Despite Min-joon’s repeated questions, Raphael just smiled and avoided answering .
It didn’t take long for everyone to finish cooking and sit around in the hall .
While they were enjoying each other’s dishes, Anderson’s eyes trembled when he put Min-joon’s food in his mouth .
‘Wow, he brought the best taste of sushi so easily . ’
He knew that although the scent of ginger seemed strong, it actually removed its unusually strong scent to stimulate one’s taste . But he didn’t expect Min-joon could make good use of it like this . Besides, Anderson had never seen him devoting so much devotion to Asian cuisine .
‘When can you stop growing, you cuisine monster!’ Anderson thought to himself .
At that moment, Rachel said, “You guys have improved a lot . ”
With everybody paying attention to her, she opened her mouth with a low voice .
“Several things happen all the time in times of change, and the change we’ll be going through this time is not just the relocation of our main restaurant . ”
“Anything else then?”
“Sous chef Raphael is quitting soon . ”
As soon as she said that, they looked at Raphael all at once .
With Raphael raising his fingers to form a V shape, she continued, “Are any of you ready to take over?”
When she said that, the demi chefs’ eyes were burning with the unhidden desire for that sous chef position . And it was Janet who looked most confident . She slowly raised her hand . When Rachel looked at her, she said, “As you know, I was already offered a sous chef job at my previous restaurant . In other words, they saw my potential back then . ”
Rachel said, “I don’t doubt your competence, either . You’ve done your job perfectly as a demi-chef . You’ll probably carry out a sous chef role excellently . But what I’m hoping for isn’t just you doing your part . In other words, you should show more than you can do, just like Raphael did . ”
At that moment, Janet glanced at Raphael for a moment . Raphael’s direction was certainly perfect . It was Raphael who carefully conveyed Rachel’s intentions to them and took care of them handling the heat and ingredients at every moment .
If Janet was asked if she could work as well as Raphael, she couldn’t say yes . Raphael was a real professional . Basically, he was so good as a sous chef that he could be picked as the head chef of any high-end restaurant at any time . That was why he took the sous chef job at Rose Island’s main restaurant because he was as good as the head chef of any Rose Island branch with a good reputation .
In short, when Rachel asked them if they were ready to take over Raphael’s job, she clearly wanted to look for someone who was as competent as a head chef . At that moment, Min-joon also thought his cooking skills were not good enough to be a head chef .
‘Well, maybe I can imitate a head chef one day if I totally focus . But what if I have to keep working like that for one week, one month, or one year…’
Min-joon shook his head . That was a different story . One could show one’s best temporarily, but the thing was whether one could keep up with his best all the time . If one could always show one’s best, it meant one’s basic skills had already reached the best level .
And Min-joon’s basic skills weren’t that high yet . His cooking level showed it, which stood only at Level 8 now . Besides, he didn’t meet the conditions for Level 9 yet .
Min-joon was convinced that before he reached cooking level 9, he couldn’t be the sous chef of Rose Island’s main restaurant or the head chef of its local branch . Alan also had a cooking level of 8 until recently .
‘As a sous chef of a local branch…’
As far as he knew, there was no sous chef of a local branch with cooking level 9 . In fact, it would be weird for anyone with cooking level 9 to work as a sous chef . It would be even more strange for such a chef to work at the main restaurant . Raphael would not have worked as a sous chef at Rose Island unless he shared some common interests with Rachel from the beginning .
“What do you think, Rachel?” Havier asked .
Min-joon pricked his ears when he asked that . Right now, what he was most curious about was what was on Rachel’s mind . To put it precisely, he wanted to know how she judged the demi chefs including him . How much did they improve in her eyes?
It was funny . Whenever Rachel had high expectations for him, he didn’t accept her judgment, thinking her rating was exaggerated because she didn’t see the system window as he did, but he was expecting her to give him a generous rating right now .
She said, “To be honest, I want to give you guys a chance to serve as the sous chef . But at the same time, I’m not so sure . Maybe I want to believe you are all competent . ”
“Does it mean we’re not competent enough?”
She shook her head at Havier’s sullen voice .
“Well, it doesn’t mean I can’t trust you . I trust you, but if you ask me if you are competent enough for me to give you the sous chef position, I can’t give you a definite answer . ”
It was natural that Rachel replied so . Min-joon even thought she spoke like that because she wanted to beat around the bush on purpose . Subjectively and objectively, their cooking skills were not good enough to be qualified as the sous chef of Rose Island for now .
She said, “So, I have one suggestion for you guys . ”
All of the demi-chef’s eyes sparkled at that . Her voice sounded like that of a grandmother who hid behind her a gift for her grandchild . But a little later, all the demi chefs including Min-joon hardened their expressions .
“It’s hard for me to say that it’s a lucky occasion for us, but because of the fire and relocation, we have had plenty of time until now . What I mean is you can take part in the Paris International Cooking Competition this time in Paris . ”
“Paris International Cooking Competition?”
“Have you ever heard of it?”
“Of course . It’s famous as the best of the global cooking competitions . Do you think we can win?” Havier asked with a tense expression .
The Paris International Cooking Competition was not for amateurs . Or, even any professional chefs could not participate in it because there were so many famed cook masters attending the competition, who had the same cooking level as Rachel’s .
So, it was a competition even head chefs of Rose Island branches could not even dream of winning .
“I don’t expect you to win in the Paris competition . The important thing is what you can show there . ”
“If we can show something there, are you willing to consider us seriously for this sous chef position?”
“If I can show your overwhelming skills there, not just here, I have no reason to make you the sous chef of Rose Island . ”
When she said that, the demi-chefs turned to each other . While they were lost in thought for a moment, looking at each other, she said in a relaxed voice, “At the Paris competition, you are supposed to work as a team of two . It’s up to you how you can team up . You can take your own cook or you can ask somebody else to recommend one . You can decide on it on your own . But just keep one thing in mind,” she said in a heavy voice . “You’re going there to prove how much you have improved . ”
“So you’re going to Paris again?”
“Yeah, sooner or later . ”
“Man, how come you are going abroad on and off like an entertainer?”
Kaya complained with an annoyed voice .
Anderson looked at her blankly as if her complaint was ridiculous .
“I don’t think you are in a position to say that, Kaya,” Anderson quipped .
“You shut up . Why are you cutting in when I’m talking to him? Do you want to meddle in our matter?” she balked .
“If that’s the case, you guys should have secured a separate house, not here . Why did you have me live with you like this?”
“Hey, stop it . Why are you guys quarreling all the time like this? You seem to enjoy it,” Min-joon said .
“What the heck are you talking about?” she quipped .
As if she really felt bad, she looked at Min-joon sharply then took out the grilled fish from the pan . Be it a coincidence or fate, it was the French cuisine Truite du Bleu that she served on the plate right now . It was a dish of trout soaked in milk and flour then baked in cooking oil with butter and salt and pepper .
She sprinkled lemon juice, almonds, and parsley powder over the trout and rubbed her dirty hands on the apron .
“How long are you going to stay in Paris if you participate in the contest?”
“I guess around 15 days . ”
She didn’t respond to that for some time . Checking her expression, Min-joon put the flesh of the trout in his mouth . Since its thorns were evenly removed, he could not feel the sense of chewing it . And the oily butter and milk, as well as the juicy trout itself, melted in his mouth .
Given her simple cooking process, she brought out the taste surprisingly well . And that was why Min-joon thought she was one cut above him in cooking . If she could make its recipe perfectly, anybody could bring out the same taste by focusing on each and every detail while cooking .
However, as far as her basic sense was concerned, she could make a very delicious dish as if she made it according to the recipe, even if she made a simple steamed pork . Of course, she was less skillful in making the recipe than Min-joon, but if she could gain experience in the future, even Rachel would find it difficult to beat her . And that was why she could conquer the world-class chefs not only in the United States but in the world even when she was only in her mid-20s .
Min-joon suddenly thought to himself, ‘What if I had Kaya’s cooking sense instead of the system window?’