He tried to follow the pickpocketer with all of his strength, but there was no way to catch a local of the place. The pickpocket moved from alley to alley and soon disappeared from his sight.
“What the fuck……”
Jo Minjoon looked around without any strength. It never happened before in Korea, but it wasn’t even an hour and he became a victim of pickpocket. ‘When I was warned to be careful of the pickpockets, would I be one of those victims?’ He thought like that. I was absent minded.
‘I didn’t hold New York in much regard’
He was at a loss for words. He didn’t have much cash but all of his cards were on the wallet. He couldn’t even take a cab properly.
Jo Minjoon went back to the place he got robbed without strength. The beggar that was seated on the floor said with a smile.
“Do you need this?”
While he was saying that, on the beggars fingers was the 5 dollar bill Jo Minjoon gave him. Jo Minjoon let a out sigh and answered. It was quite a while since he interacted with a foreign man but it was pretty fluent.
“It’s okay. It’s pettier to give and take. Get something to eat with that.”
“Do I look like a beggar?”
It didn’t look like he was asking because he was uncomfortable. He asked as if he was really curious. Jo Minjoon scanned the blond man around his forties. An old coat and a tattered scarf. To look at it as a vintage fashion. His clothes seemed too humble. He was seated on the floor and also, the hat was placed as if he was begging for money so he seemed the more humbler.
“Are you not?”
“I also have a house.”
“…….At least you aren’t homeless. The 5 dollars. Can you give it back?”
“Didn’t you just say so. That giving and then taking is the pettiest. As I got it being treated as a beggar, I’m taking those 5 dollars as the cost of it.”
The man was saying that while having a big smile, so Jo Minjoon didn’t particularly have anything to say to him. In the first place, there was nothing he could do with 5 dollars.
Jo Minjoon sighed and sat besides the man. The man opened his mouth.
“I’m Lucas Dean. What’s your name?”
“Jo Minjoon. First name Jo and name is Minjoon.”
Lucas glanced at the travelling bag Jo Minjoon had and said.
“It looks like you came to sightsee, but you got it all ruined from the start.”
“……Can’t do anything about it. Except to be on the streets.”
He couldn’t call home saying that as soon as he got to the US he got pickpocketed. In fact, his mother was really worried before he left…
“Did it become roaming?”
Jo Minjoon took out his cellphone. He prepared it beforehand, but fortunately the internet worked just fine. After reporting the loss of his cards, he was wondering wether to call the police or not. Lucas told Jo Minjoon.
“The police won’t even care about pickpockets. It’s a minor matter. Even more if you are a foreigner.”
“…….It’s a scary place.”
“Do you have somewhere to go?”
Jo Minjoon shook his head. Looking at Jo Minjoon, Lucas smiled and asked.
“Would you be willing to stay in a beggar’s house?”
Lucas’s house wasn’t even 20m away from where he was. He went inside the house made of red bricks and opened his mouth.
“For it to be a beggar’s house, it is quite splendid.”
“Stop with the beggar this and beggar that. It makes me sad listening to you.”
“Oh, please. Don’t thank me like that.
The house of the supposed beggar was quite good. The ceiling was high and the floor was made of marble. Was it a 230 yard house? If he combined the second floor’s rooms, then it would be even bigger.
It was at that moment when Lucas came in. On the living room, a golden haired woman was looking at Lucas with a shocked expression.
“Lucas…… Is that really you?”
“……Jane. I’m sorry.”
The woman’s face who was called Jane was surprisingly pale. She was walking wobbly, so Jo Minjoon thought that she was going to fall. And in the end she didn’t. Maybe if Lucas didn’t quickly hold her, the hard marble floor would have.
“Ah, I can touch you. It really is you.”
“……I’m sorry for coming back late.”
Looking at the conversation going between the two Jo Minjoon didn’t know where to look and looked dejectedly. Only then did Jane seemed to notice Jo Minjoon. It looked like she had many things to say, but she couldn’t do so in front of a man she just met.
“And this person…..?”
“Oh, he’s someone who helped me. Greet him. He’s called Minjoon.”
“Oh, nice to meet you. I’m Jane Dean.”
“I’m Jo Minjoon.”
Jo Minjoon shook hands slightly with Jane and looked at Lucas. Someone who helped him? What was with that? The only thing Jo Minjoon did for him was to give him 5 dollars. But looking at this house he didn’t seem like someone who needed those 5 dollars.
He was curious but didn’t feel like the right time to ask him that. Jane’s eyes were moist, and Lucas’s eyes were also red. There seemed to be something he didn’t know about. Was Lucas a runaway? If he guessed at the age it was something that couldn’t possibly happen, but he couldn’t help but think so looking at his clothes.
Lucas opened his mouth.
“He lost his wallet because of me. It’s going to be a while but I want him to stay at our house. Is that going to be okay, Jane?”
“Of course. It feels just like a dream that you have come back. Jessie will be happy too.”
At the name of Jessie, Lucas’s face got dark.
“Will Jessie forgive me?”
“……Think about those things later. There are many things I want to ask you, but first let me ask you this.”
Lucas looked at Jane. Jane looked at Lucas with eyes that seemed to smile.
“Did you eat?”
While Jane was preparing to cooking, Jo Minjoon was being escorted to his room by Lucas. There was a room on the second floor. Jo Minjoon asked cautiously.
“Can I ask you what happened?”
“…….I ran away. I wandered for quite a while, and returned just now. It’s thanks to you.”
“I didn’t understand before and I still don’t. What is it that I helped you with?”
Lucas showed him the 5 dollar bill. Jo Minjoon let an awkward laugh.
“You didn’t even use the money.”
“To receive good will from someone was like a trigger for me. I also looked around, felt guilty, and thought that I had to start again.”
Jo Minjoon didn’t argue at what he said. How many things would have passed his mind for the bill I gave him? So he couldn’t guess wildly. There were many things he was curious with, but it was quite difficult to ask it all to Lucas right now. Jo Minjoon chose to alleviate the mood.
“It’s a 5 dollar hotel.”
“You can checkout whenever you want.”
Lucas laughed while saying that.
It was soon past 5 o’clock. Jo Minjoon unpacked his luggage and went to the kitchen. It hadn’t even been a while but the cooking was almost done. It was mac and cheese, hamburger steak, and salad. Jo Minjoon, that at least wanted to help, said with an awkward face.
“The smell is really nice. It seems that your cooking skills are really good.”
“My husband is quite the epicurean. So to not hear his naggings, I can only practice.”
Jane said that and let out a light laugh. Lucas who was next to her said with a bitter expression.
“I believe that good food makes both the people who, make it and the people who eat it, happy. I still believe that. However….”
Lucas was about to say something but he refrained from doing so. Jo Minjoon peeked to the direction where Jane was. The unique feeling and the aroma the mac and cheese gave thrusted to his nose. It was a smell that made him expect the cooking points.
“You will be happy. Good food makes you happy at least three times a day.”
“It’s twice. I only eat twice a day.”
“Then you will have to make to effort to eat three times.”
Of course if you thought about the calories american food had, maybe eating twice was healthier than otherwise.
The mac and cheese was soon finished and being served on the table. Jane put the hamburger steak on the plate and asked while setting.
“Do you put eggs on the hamburger?”
“No. I like it without eggs.”
“Good. We also eat it without eggs in our house.”
Jane laughed and sat on her seat. Jo Minjoon looked at the dishes with his eyes sparkling.
Origin: (Too many ingredients to figure out)
Quality: High (Average ingredient)
Cooking point: 6/10
[Mac and Cheese]
Origin: (Too many ingredients to figure out)
Quality: Medium High (Average ingredient)
Cooking point: 6/10
Not surprisingly both of the dishes were 6 points. If it’s 6 points it is comparable to a restaurant. At least, what Jo Minjoon experienced was like that. If even that wasn’t it, it was like a weekly event dish from a really well out town restaurant. It was hard for normal people to get this result.
Jo Minjoon held his hands for a while and offered his prayer. Lucas said while looking at him.
“Are you catholic?”
“No. I’m protestant.”
“Too bad. We are catholic.”
“Dear. First eat your meal.”
Lucas grabbed his fork. Jo Minjoon also grabbed his. Where Jo Minjoon’s hands first went to was the hamburger steak. To say the truth he didn’t really like hamburger steak. Precisely speaking he didn’t like minced meat dishes. However the aroma this hamburger steak gave was really strong.
It was when Jo Minjoon took a bite of the hamburger steak. It seemed as if only beef was used, not pork, and the aroma was stronger than the average hamburger steak. He also sensed the aroma of pepper and on the sauce he felt an acid taste. What is this sauce? Even when he put all of his concentration on the tongue he couldn’t think of anything. It wasn’t a flavor he knew. Jo Minjoon turned his head to the recipe window. He was curious about the sauce’s identity.
[Hamburger steak ingredients]
Beef, onions, eggs, bread powder, salt, herbs, pepper powder, brown sauce (A1 sauce)
‘Oh, so this is brown sauce.’
Brown sauce was developed on Britain. It was a sauce made with jujuba, vinegar or sugar on tomato paste, but what made it sweeter was called HP sauce, and what made it sourer was the A1 sauce. It was a sauce that wasn’t used much in Korea.
Precisely speaking the flavor of the hamburger steak wasn’t so familiar. The flavor of the meat was strong, and the flavor was also strong. If it was on Korea maybe it would be a failed dish. However what appeared before him was a 6 point dish. If that was the case it meant that it was a well prepared dish. It could be that it was an american flavor that he was so strange to him.
Jo Minjoon tried to approach cooking with the point of view of an american. Anyways Grand Chef was a party of americans. If he didn’t understand american dishes there was no way he could win. Jo Minjoon tried to comprehend the taste of the hamburger. He suppressed the strong aroma the hamburger gave and tried his best to comprehend the complicated flavor.
At first he couldn’t do it well. However, one bite. Two bites. The more he ate the more he comprehended. It was at that moment. Before Jo Minjoon appeared an alarm window.
[You ate a hamburger steak on your home.]
[Location bonus! Your attitude on approaching your tasting made the proficiency of the skill ‘comprehension of american cooking’ to rise!]
[As your field of view on cooking broadens your cooking level goes up!]
Translator : Subak
Proofreader : Maled