God of Cooking – Chapter 13: Grand Chef preliminaries, and… (4)

When Jo Minjoon heard that, he unconsciously bowed. Only after bowing did he remember that it was a korean salute, but he didn’t care. Even so, he wanted to express himself.

“You are one of the 100 to participate in the advanced rounds. Let’s meet next time Minjoon.”
“Thank you.”

Jo Minjoon turned his back after replying while smiling. Alan was looking at Jo Minjoon’s back getting farther away. Emily looked at Alan and said.

“It seems that we just met one of the winning candidates.”
“…….I wonder. Maybe that was the best he could do. If he doesn’t get better, he probably won’t be able to hold the trophy. Because this competition is unexpectedly intense.”
“You think so? Joseph. What about you?”

Joseph was shut for a while, and slowly opened his mouth.

“The bream was delicious.”

It was brief but Alan and Emily understood the meaning behind it. Right, they only evaluated dishes. Not the chef, but the dish. This competition was as simple as that.

Normally, those who passed the preliminaries liked to boast with all kinds of methods. Hiding the badge under the clothes to act as if they failed and then taking it out. And there were even those who put it on their mouth and then spit it. However Jo Minjoon didn’t like to boast like that.

Jo Minjoon just walked out after putting the badge on his chest. The audience looked at the badge and cheered and applauded. Jo Minjoon smiled brightly and received their cheers. The Dean family went to him. After Lucas held Jo Minjoon once, he said while laughing.

“I knew you would pass.”
“I also knew.”

The PD(Program Director) who was looking at that sight next to the cameraman made a weird face. Not because he was displeased with that action, but because he had too many things to think about. Jo Minjoon was certainly a participant that was worth spending broadcasting time on him. He even got to the second phase of the preliminaries, and his skills weren’t bad either. Also his story was certain. The Dean family were interviewed about their story while Jo Minjoon was being evaluated.

‘It is certainly good merchandise.’

The problem was, what kind of character he had to be. For now, the current Jo Minjoon had four characteristics. First, the passion for travelling to the next corner of the world to participate in Grand Chef. Second, his confident and right attitude. Third, the point that he’s asian. The fourth and last was kind of obvious, but it was his cooking skills.

Depending on how harmoniously they produced it, the program’s would vary accordingly. Of course, because of one participant there wouldn’t be an eye changing transformation.

While the PD was wondering like that, Jo Minjoon went with the Dean family to where the audience was and watched the participants. There were at least 20 countertops, and it was never vacant. Jo Minjoon checked at the participant’s levels. They were mostly level 5, and sometimes, even level 4’s could be seen. Unexpectedly, there couldn’t be seen any level 6’s.

If you thought about it, it was kind of obvious. Although Jo Minjoon was the youngest from his restaurant before reincarnating, his skills were better than some of the esdest. Even after college, he had cooked thousands of times. His experience, honestly talking, was almost perfect for an amateur.

That Jo Minjoon was level 6. And that was after he got to the US, broadened his knowledge and horizons, and leveled up because of that. If level 6 participants were common on an amateur program like Grand Chef, then that would be rather strange.

The completed dish sucked even more. They had to cook a dish that could change their lives in a place they were not accustomed to, with people they weren’t accustomed to. In that situation, it was difficult to show your skills like you normally would.

What Jo Minjoon grasped was that if your level was 6, when you cooked like you normally would, the average cooking score would also be 6. Only after utilizing the best recipe, the freshest ingredients and cooking without mistakes could he get a 7.

But those who were only level 5 were that nervous, their cooking core couldn’t help but be low. Unexpectedly someone was able to make a 6 points dish, but would that person be able to satisfy the judges?

It was at that moment. One countertop got free, and a girl got in. Jo Minjoon’s face froze when he looked at her face. She was someone he knew. He couldn’t help but know.

“Kaya….. Lotus.”

It was her. He knew that she participated the preliminaries in New York, but he didn’t imagine that they would do so in the same day. The worst genius Grand Chef could produce. It was hard believing that they would make contact. Before reincarnating, she was an idol he couldn’t reach. Grand Chef’s season 3 winner. At the same time she was Jo Minjoon’s most adored idol.

Kaya was a participant that was the topic of conversation. Not only did she have skills, she had the abilities to become a star. The combination of being a white person and being from the lower class. To be called as white thrash, Kaya was excessively splendid. Her curly black hair was tied, her eyes were painted black with smokey makeup and were decadently beautiful, but they seemed to be poisonous.

Jo Minjoon stared blankly at her eyes. The sky blue eyes were shining under her black makeup. A strong aura seemed to emanate from her. It seemed as if she wanted to devour everyone from the broadcast.

Under the pressure of her aura, it was after a while that Jo Minjoon saw her state window. And he lost his words. The moment he got a hold of the system, Jo Minjoon thought that he had gotten ahold one of the most important abilities. However that wasn’t it. It was a rule that like every things, standards would get deviated. And at this moment, Jo Minjoon was a chef that didn’t have any special abilities. He was only comparable to a star that lost it’s brightness under the sun.

Jo Minjoon looked at her as if he was on a trance. The icebox over her counter wasn’t opened yet, but Jo Minjoon already knew what was inside of it. Eel. On this preliminaries, she would present a combination of boiled down eel with sauce, and mimosa salad.

As soon as Kaya started, she started to deal with the eel. Her knife skills were so clean that you wouldn’t believe it was from an 18 year old. Born on 1992. Even with the korean method*(TL:Koreans start counting the age when they are still a fetus. Think so), she still wasn’t 19. That girl who wasn’t even on her twenties was handling  the eel as if she was a master from a japanese restaurant.

Kaya, after slicing the eel, poured white wine and some salt. And after that she started to boil some eggs, and on the other hand, she started to make the sauce that was going to be put on the eel. The ingredients were simple. Ginger, garlic, soy, white scallions, mustard leaf, and basil. After she put those things on the mixer, she applied it on the eel and also put lemon peels. Easily speaking, it was a lemon peel marinated with sugar. And after dealing with the eel, she started to prepare the mimosa salad.

For the mimosa salad, after carving the inside of a lettuce, you opened it as if it was a flower blooming and above it, put the salad. The first thing Kaya did, was slicing apples, onions, and cucumbers. After that were the boiled eggs. After squashing the eggs like scrambled eggs, she mixed it with mayonnaise, mustard and pepper. And after that, she seasoned a portion of avocado with salt and pepper and put it on the salad. She sprayed lemon juices over it, and after that was the eel.

And this moment was the highlight. She put the eel on the grill and turned on the gas fire. It could only be said that it was a reckless action. Cooking with a grill, or precisely speaking, cooking directly on fire was a really difficult thing. Of course, Jo Minjoon roasted the bell pepper directly, but there were no problems if he burnt it. Rather, it was a method that needed the bell pepper to be burnt.

However eel was different. The tender fish burnt rather easily in front of fire. But it was also applied with sauce so there was nothing else to say. It was a combination that the exterior got burnt, and the insides were still raw. That being added that the fire on the counter was the first time lit.

However Kaya didn’t hesitate. She could see things ordinary people couldn’t. It was also possible that she could read the path of the fire. Jo Minjoon honestly thought like that. Controlling the distance between the fire and the grill, and cooking the eel. That sense of feeling was near to a god’s ability.

‘Would I be able to do that?’

I can. A thousand, or ten thousands. IfIi could practice several years I would be able to cook the eel like that. However he couldn’t right now. In this moment, Jo Minjoon thought that it was an ability bestowed by a god. He didn’t want to walk the path of cooking slowly. He wanted to be able to cook to the point that even Kaya wasn’t able to copy him. Not in the near future, but right now.

He felt his throat running dry. The stat points of Kaya could be seen once again. Nineteen. He could see the ability of a chef that hadn’t even bloomed properly.

[Kaya Lotus]
Cooking level: 7
Bakery level: 6
Tasting level: 10
Decorations level: 6

< Grand Chef preliminaries, and… (4) > End

Regular chapter of the week! Thank you for reading and for your support!

Translator : Subak
Proofreader : Maled

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