Here is my interview with Mei and the photos of her family and some Korean dishes that she made. I discovered Mei through Facebook when she posted this photo of her daughter Avril making kimchi. She said:
“My 3 year old daughter loves cooking. While I am cooking, she is always beside me to help me. She sees Maangchi’s cooking videos everyday!”
Avril says, “Mommy, I help you. I want to make Kimchi like Maangchi did!!”
I thought this photo was so wonderful and cute, and when I contacted Mei I learned that she’s been a longtime silent reader of mine.
1.What is your name and where do you live?
My name is Meilani Chani. I am an Indonesian Chinese. I live in Batam Island, small part of Indonesia, near Singapore.
My mother is a cooking expert. Since I was young, I ate many delicious dishes from my mother’s hands. But I only ate Chinese food and Indonesian food and never tried another country’s cuisine.
It started from almost 3 years ago when Korean drama was booming at that time. Every time in the drama scenes, I saw they made one full table of Korean food, I started feeling curious. Why they always eat kimchi? Actually what the kimchi taste was?
From the first time I searched the information from You Tube. And this was the first Maangchi video that I downloaded at that time. I tried it at home, step by step following your instructions. And the result was BAD!! Because of lack of knowledge, I substituted the important ingredients from you. I couldnt find any Korean Mart at my living place, so I changed the Korean hot pepper flakes with local hot pepper powder. I didn’t make rice porridge. I also didnt use fish sauce. So I thought that it was my fault causing the kimchi turned badly :).
After two years, finally I found one small Korean Mart in my area. I was so happy and excited. And I started making another recipe from you. Thanks Maangchi!! Now I know what actually The Kimchi taste is, and of course also another Korean dishes. Korean Food is so delicious and healthy!!!
2. What do you do and how many family members do you have ?
I am a property executive. I got one 4 year old son and a 3 year old daughter. My daughter is one of your fan too. She plays cooking everyday. Talking to herself, “Yanyeom Tongdak”, “Sesame..”, “bla bla bla” (imitating your ways showing cooking) :). She is so enjoying when she watches your cooking videos. Maybe someday she will be a cooking expert like you.
Avril is helping her mom make hoddeok
3. How often do you cook Korean food following my recipes?
I am so busy when I have to attend exhibition. So I make Korean food only when I am on leave or public holiday.
4. What are your favorite Korean dishes? Choose 3, please!
I havent tried your all recipes yet, so I just can say, the Korean food that I like until now are Kimchee Jjigae, Japchae, and Hoddeok. I very like spicy food.
5. What’s your best Korean dish, the one that everybody compliments you on when you make it?
The Korean food that got the compliments are dakgangjeong, miyeok guk, and hoddeok. My mother and sister like dakgangjeong. Especially miyeokguk, my mother likes it most. Now almost everyday she cooks this dish. Because she knows that miyeok contains much calcium, so it is a healthy soup. And my daughter said “deliciouso” for the hoddeok :). When I prepare ingredients and cook Korean dishes, I am so excited and happy. Simple reason, just because I love Korean food.