Now, I don't know Chang personally, but historically his restaurants have generally been more about meat, seafood and poultry - pork, for sure, but beef, lamb and veal have made the cut too. I mean, there were even notes on his menus suggesting that vegetarians might want to think about eating elsewhere. One main course at Momofuku Ssam Bar involves a whole pork shoulder - bo ssam - which is usually ordered by a group of 6 or more diners and has to be ordered ahead. Another (at Momo Noodle Bar) is the fried chicken - also to be ordered in advance and involving two whole chickens , one fried in the Korean style and one southern American style.
And all of a sudden, Mr. Chang goes veg. Interesting, huh? Yes, it seems he was "stressed out." With 5 restaurants to his name, no doubt.
So, what did he do? According to the article, he took a time out in South Korea (his ancestral country) to explore temple cuisine, the traditional vegetarian food that has been cooked and eaten by Korean Buddhist monks and nuns for centuries.
Whew - I'm glad he got that under control. Seriously though, it seems as if DC was getting a little tired of all that pork and starting to love his vegetables. He wouldn't be the first; hasn't Batali undergone the same "transformation?"
But please - does this have to become news? Well of course - because he's David Chang. And obsessive food freaks that we are, we must know. It's all good and there are some really nice recipes to go along with the article.
So David - eat your vegetables. Stop stressing out. I'm going to try a recipe or two from the article. Looks like they'll be really tasty - especially with some pig on the side.