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TV show makes Korean cuisine simple

Celebrity chef Judy Joo presents ‘approachable’ hansik for international audience

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Published : 2014-01-17 19:41
Updated : 2014-01-17 20:00

The Playboy Club London’s The Dining Room executive chef Judy Joo (right) and fellow head chef Andrew Hales
(The Playboy Club London)
A new Korean food show for the international audience has been unleashed.

The program, titled “Korean Food Made Simple,” aired its first two episodes on Dec. 18 and 19 on MBC.

According to a Mokpo MBC representative, the remaining episodes will air on Saturdays at 1:55 a.m. starting Jan. 18.

“Korean Food Made Simple” will also be rolled out in around 81 countries including America and Europe starting this February, the program’s supporter, the Korean Food Foundation, stated.

The show is, according to the MBC representative, a Mokpo MBC, Blink Films and Media Story 9 co-production.

Judy Joo sits down for some grilled clams by the sea near Taejongdae Resort Park in Busan for “Korean Food Made Simple.”
(Blink Films/Media Story 9 Production)
“It combines the two elements of travel ― searching out the best food in the country ― and cookery demonstration back in the chef’s kitchen,” Blink Films co-owner and executive producer Dan Chambers said via email.

Chambers added, “It is a winning combination because it allows the viewer to know where the food originates from, and then how to prepare a simple version of it themselves.”

Viewers will be following Judy Joo of Iron Chef fame on this culinary journey through Korea.

According to Chambers, each episode runs for 30 minutes and puts the spotlight on different Korean food like street snacks or seafood.

“Judy Joo visits some great examples of each type of cuisine in Korea,” Chambers, 45, elaborated. “After each visit, she then takes us back to her kitchen where she prepares a mouth-watering meal inspired by what she has seen.”

Joo revealed how much she enjoyed filming in Korea.

“I loved going to the kimchi festival,” Joo, 39, said via email.

“I equally enjoyed the baseball game I went to,” the Korean-American freelance chef and food writer continued. “The energy was contagious and the food was awesome.”

Joo, who is also the executive chef of The Playboy Club London’s The Dining Room, revealed how the program will feature recipes that will be easy to do at home.

“I have simplified the ingredients to some degree to make things easier to find for people who do not have Korean grocery stores near them,” Joo explained. “I also skip steps, take short cuts and do a lot of ‘one-pot’ cooking.”

The show, according to Joo, will feature 30 recipes, including her take on bossam (boiled pork belly), which she glazes with doenjang (fermented soybean paste).

“It’s so tasty,” she said. “I’ve made it for a number of dinner parties already with huge success.”

The French Culinary Institute graduate has amassed expertise doing stints in the kitchens of Gordon Ramsay, the French Laundry and the Fat Duck, as well as starring in Iron Chef U.K.

For the new program she melded her own “childhood memories” of hansik with her “strong professional culinary background” to create dishes using “new ingredients and techniques” for the program.

“Judy was an absolute delight,” said Chambers, who went on to praise her as “intelligent, knowledgeable, a truly brilliant chef.”

By Jean Oh (oh_jean@heraldcorp.com)

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