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Something from almost nothing

Kwon testing out “nasi lemak” and “bee hoon” during the Red Breakfast radio interview on Wednesday.

Publication Date : 07-06-2012


The most mind-blowing experience South Korean celebrity chef Edward Kwon had while working on the EdVentures in Asia series was to cook up something from almost nothing in the rustic outback of Ulan Bator in Mongolia.

The former head chef of the seven-star Burj Al Arab Hotel in Dubai said he was told to ride a horse, which he had never done in his life, and his Mongolian hosts then said, “Let's go catch a lamb.”

Kwon told them he did not know how to catch a lamb but the men managed to get one after 15 minutes.

“They told me to cook it but there was nothing out there. It was totally barren no trees, except for two dogs, a grandmother and another person in a hut,” he said after a live interview on Red FM 104.9 radio station with DJs Lil' Kev and Nisha from 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. yesterday.

During the lively and laughter-filled interview, the DJs had him try out nasi lemak, bee hoon and even made him drink Indian “omam water”.

Kwon said the nasi lemak had a lot of different textures and that Koreans would love it.

He, however, agreed with Lil' Kev that the medicinal drink tasted like petrol.

Kwon also did a pre-recorded interview with Capital FM 88.9 which will be aired tomorrow at 8:30 a.m. during the “Talk of the Town” belt.

Both radio stations are part of the Star Media Group.

EdVentures in Asia is now airing on Life Inspired TV (Astro B.yond Ch 706) at 9:00 p.m. every Sunday, simultaneously with Hong Kong.

The 13-episode series is a collaboration with Star Publications (M) Bhd and presented by Malayan Banking Berhad.

In the series, Kwon embarks on a gastronomic adventure across Asia to globalise South Korean cuisine by creating new dishes by infusing local fare with Korean ingredients.

In Ulan Bator, Kwon said all he had was a whole unwashed lamb, uncut carrots and potatoes and a meagre two cloves of garlic.

He said he was stumped as to how to start cooking “when there was nothing to cook with”.

The men then pointed out some cows and told him to gather the dung and several big stones, and they started a fire with which to heat the stones, he said.

They put the chopped lamb meat and ingredients into a pot and sprinkled some salt into it, and then put the heated stones into the pot.

Kwon said the aroma from the hot stones was amazing and it turned out to be the most delicious lamb dish he had ever tasted.

“It was a most memorable experience,” he said.

Maybank customers stand a chance to watch Kwon in action and taste his culinary creations at an upcoming exclusive dinner event in September by signing up for selected Maybank products or becoming the top credit card spenders from now till July 31.


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