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God of Cooking

God of Cooking

God of Cooking
Chapter 50

Chapter 50: Chapter 50: Unexpected Fame (6)
“Found out what?”
It wasn’t Chloe, but Kaya who asked the question. Her interview must’ve ended because she was there questioning him. Chloe glanced over at Cho Min Joon. Cho Min Joon pointed at his phone as he said, “I got a call from my parents. I think they know I’m here.”
“What? Did I hear that wrong? What’s so serious about that?”
“It’s not that serious, but I don’t know what to do. I still haven’t told them I wanted to become a chef.”
In response, Kaya grabbed her chin and went deep into thought. She stared at the ground with a serious look on her face, but she still couldn’t understand.
“I don’t get it. Sure, you didn’t tell them, but they know now, right? Are they against it?”
“No, not yet, but they probably will, and that’s not the problem. No matter what they say, I’m going to pursue this. I’m just worried about my parents. They might worry and have a hard time thinking I’m going after a stupid dream.”
“It’s not like your parents are kids. Don’t worry about them so much. It sounds like you’re overprotective about them.”
“I just want to avoid conflict. It’s tiring.”
“It’s more tiring to avoid it. You look foolish to me. You’re just giving yourself a hard time.”
Cho Min Joon was unable to say anything in response. It was true he was foolish. It was probably best to face his parents head-on, but Cho Min Joon had gone through this before. He said he liked cooking and quit his job as a teacher, but what happened then? His parents weren’t relieved at all. Every time Cho Min Joon saw his parents, he saw worry behind their smiles.
He didn’t want to repeat that. That was why he wanted to convince them with results. That he had potential, talent, and skill, but he put it off for too long. Hearing the news from strangers online was different from hearing it from their own son. Chloe patted Cho Min Joon on the shoulder as she said, “Go give them a call. You’re worried, too.”
“Okay. Go ahead without me. I’ll join you later.”
“… Good luck.”
Kaya headed to the kitchen after cheering him on. Cho Min Joon sat on the sofa in the hallway and put the phone to his hear. Ring, ring, ring. Ring, ring, ring. The line was ringing, but he didn’t hear a voice. A moment later, Cho Min Joon spoke first, “It’s me.”
[… I was just watching your show. Why didn’t you tell me?]
“I’m sorry. I wanted to tell you once I had good results.”
[I noticed you cooking well these past few months… But I’m so surprised that I’m at a loss for words.]
“How did you find out?”
[There was an article about you. Just a small one. ‘Korean Cho Min Joon Competing in Grand Chef.’ Ah Ra showed me the article, and I couldn’t believe it at first. I just couldn’t understand why you would go there and keep it a secret from us… Did we do something wrong?]
“No, of course not. I just wanted to tell you with good results, Mom.”
Cho Min Joon held his breath. There was tension between them. Cho Min Joon broke the silence first.
“I’m going to become a chef.”
He didn’t say he wanted to or planned to. He made it direct. He was so passionate about cooking that Lee Hye Sun didn’t know what to say.
Cho Min Joon didn’t drag it on. That was all Cho Min Joon wanted to convey, and Lee Hye Sun understood that. He heard Lee Hye Sun’s voice over the phone. He could hear her trying to be as calm as possible.
[I don’t’ know what to say right now. I’m sure you had many thoughts, too. I’ll hang up now and think about it. All I want to say right now is… we’re cheering you on, but of course, we can’t help but be worried.]
“… I know.”
[I enjoyed the show. It seemed like you must have practiced a lot when we weren’t looking. Did you?]
“Yes.”
That was the only answer he could give. It was weird to be this good without any practice. Lee Hye Sun continued.
[All I can say right now… is good luck. I’m sorry.]
“Why are you sorry? Don’t say that.”
[Good luck, and don’t get hurt. Since you’re there anyway, win the whole thing, okay?]
“… Okay.”
He had a frog in his throat, and Lee Hye Sun caught on, so she quickly wrapped up the call.
[Oh yeah. I forgot you must be busy. I’ll hang up now, Min Joon. I love you!]
“I love you, too…”
She hung up before he could finish. Cho Min Joon bit down on his lip and looked down at his phone. She had a different response from what he expected. It was natural that she was worried, but Lee Hye Sun didn’t dismiss his dream of wanting to become a chef. He didn’t know what she was thinking on the inside, but on the outside, she wasn’t resisting.
Why was that? There was no need to think for long. The result was already shown. The result that Cho Min Joon wanted so that he could reassure his parents. Those results were conveyed through a short news article. The fact that he was getting famous in a foreign country was different from simply working toward a dream.
Cho Min Joon looked up at the ceiling. It was different from before. He had enough skill and status to put his parents at ease, and that made his heart warm up. Cho Min Joon lifted his head. He did it to stop his tears from falling.
After calming down in the halls, Cho Min Joon entered the kitchen. As soon as he got up to the 2nd floor, Chloe approached as if she was waiting.
“Did it go well?”
“Yeah. Better than I thought.”
“… That’s good.”
Chloe looked even more nervous than Cho Min Joon. She patted her chest and sighed out of relief. He felt both thankful and sad about that. Cho Min Joon scratched his nose and turned his head. The Red Team members had finished their interviews and were entering the kitchen.
Cho Min Joon made eye contact with Marco. If he wasn’t black, his face would have been pale. That was how nervous he looked.
And it was too be expected. The disqualification mission contained aspects that couldn’t be controlled by cooking skills alone. The tag mission that Kaya and Cho Min Joon participated in required both team play and cooperation, and the tasting mission required an outstanding sense of taste.
What kind of disqualification mission would it be this time? Cho Min Joon retraced his memories, but he couldn’t remember. It was to be expected. Most of what Cho Min Joon remembred centered around Kaya, and she wasn’t involved in any disqualification round.
“Anderson looks calm.”
Chloe mumbled in awe. Just as she said, Anderson didn’t look nervous at all. He looked confident in passing any mission that was given to him. Kaya grumbled as she said, “He has such an unlikable face.”
“… Haven’t you made up yet?”
“Who cares? I’d hate him either way.”
“I know what you mean, but…”
Cho Min Joon laughed bitterly. She was still mad about the fight during the three-course mission. The day when Kaya had to make an appetizer instead of a main was one of the hardest days for her.
“Shh, it’s starting.”
Chloe raised her finger. Just like she said, Joseph began to speak, “Let’s begin the disqualification round.”
The disqualification mission was to make an omelet. The standard was simple. They just had to make a beautiful omelet. It was simple yet difficult for many chefs. Unless they often made omelets themselves, it was hard to get the right form.
They all had to use the same method. They had to cook an egg without adding oil, butter, milk, or cream.
But that was what was difficult about omelets. One needed experience to know when to stop cooking an egg, and it was rather difficult to roll up the egg as well, and the hardest part was controlling the heat. If they turned it up too high, it could become too yellow. And when one made omelets, most didn’t want it seared.
That wasn’t all. When cutting an omelet, the inside of the egg had to be cooked just right. It was also important to use the sides of the pan to get the perfect round shape, and to do all of this in 5 minutes was difficult for those who weren’t used to making omelets.
There was no unexpected turn of events. Those with confidence made good omelets, while those without confidence messed up, and Anderson was confident. He maintained his great confidence and made the perfect omelet without making a mistake. His yellow omelet had no flaw, and it was so soft that it looked like pudding. It was perfection.
But Marco was different. Marco looked anxious from the very beginning, leading to a ripped up omelet. It wasn’t overcooked, but it couldn’t be called a success either.
Cho Min Joon watched with a serious look on his face. It was possible that Marco would get disqualified. Other contestants weren’t perfect either, but Marco was no better.
5 minutes passed. Allan announced, “Please stop and bring your plates here.”
9 plates were placed in front of the judges. Allan approached with a straight face and pushed the plates back but not all of them. He only kept the plates that were perfect. There were only 3 of them.
Allan picked up a knife and cut through the 3 omelets. Two of them were soft inside while one of them was overcooked. Allan sighed.
“There are only 2 omelets out of 9 that are worthy of the name. Whose plate is this?”
In response, Jacob and Anderson raised their hands. Joseph said, “I can see you have experience making omelets. There’s no flaw in these. Both of you can go up to the 2nd floor. You passed.”
“Thank you.”
They both answered in low voices and began walking away. They couldn’t skip with joy since some of their other team members were still there.
Emily looked over at the remaining 7 omelets. She then let out a sigh.
“It’s hard to pick the 3 worst out of these. Would you be able to pick? They all look very unsatisfying. It’s okay if the outside is overcooked. Besides the heavy flavor, you can still make the flavors come alive, but if the inside is either overcooked or raw, I can’t accept that. That’s insulting to the egg.”
Emily was quite harsher than usual. She tended to say only nice things. Cho Min Joon bit down on his lip and looked at Marco. Marco was the one who was the nicest to him. He didn’t want to see him get disqualified.
‘… Please, Marco.’
And Chloe and Kaya felt no different. They also liked Marco, and they knew his skills. He pulled off the best dish, yet he got dragged down because of his team. At that moment…
“Marco! If you pass, I’ll introduce you to a girl!”
Cho Min Joon laughed and looked beside him. It was Kaya. She glared at everybody who was staring and continued, “But not Chloe. Don’t worry, Chloe.”
“O-okay.”
“… Why should she worry about going out with me?”
“Because… Look at your belly.”
Marco looked sad. Emily, who was watching blankly, sighed. She didn’t know if she wanted to laugh or get mad. Even Allan didn’t know how to react.
Emily said, “Marco, I’ll start with you since the girls are interested. Your omelet was ripped in various places. Not a good sight, right? Do you agree?”
“… Yes.”
“That’s good. Okay. The visual is bad, but how well did you cook it?”
Emily cut through Marco’s omelet. As soon as the outside layer cut through, it revealed the soft inside. Emily smiled. Once the egg was cut, it was no different from Anderson’s.
“As you can all see, it’s perfectly cooked. Not too much, not too little. It’s unacceptable for a restaurant, but it’s okay to eat. What do you think this means?”
In response, Marco opened his mouth with caution. His fingers started rubbing against each other.
“Um… Did I pass?”
“Yup. Time to lose weight.”
Emily answered sharply and Marco grimaced. He didn’t understand what Emily just said. Emily smirked.
“If you want to get set up, you should lose weight first.”