Have You Eaten Yet?

Chef Yaowadee Chookong: A Conversation From Chiang Mai Thailand

June 15, 2021 Kassata Bollman Episode 17
Have You Eaten Yet?
Chef Yaowadee Chookong: A Conversation From Chiang Mai Thailand
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Today my guest is chef & author Yaowadee Chookong.
She joins us from Chiang Mai Thailand where her restaurant Slow Fish Kitchen is located.
Her menu is focused on highlighting local seafood & supporting local fishermen.
Currently Chef Yao is wrapping up her second book titled 'Bring Me Curry When I'm Gone'.
 
Today We’ll Be Discussing:
- Current COVID Situation in Thailand 
- Thai Food
- The Slow Food Movement
- The Netflix Documentary Seaspiracy
- Sustainable Fishing in Thailand

https://www.cookingwithyao.com/

https://www.instagram.com/yaowadeechookong/?hl=en

[[MUSIC]]


I’M KASSATA BOLLMAN. 

TODAY MY GUEST IS CHEF YAOWADEE CHOOKONG.


SHE JOINS US FROM THAILAND.


I’LL START WITH A BRIEF INTRODUCTION:


CHEF YAO LEARNED HOW TO COOK FROM HER MOM -  WHO WAS THE HEAD CHEF FOR THEIR VILLAGE….. & PREPARED MEALS….. FOR COMMUNITY CEREMONIES.


IN HER TWENTIES….. WHILE LIVING AT A FARM  IN NORTH THAILAND…... YAO CONNECTED WITH THEIR SUSTAINABLE PRACTICES….. & HER JOURNEY AS A CHEF STARTED THERE.


SHE’S THE AUTHOR OF A THAI COOKBOOK, THE YAO OF COOKING ….AND SHE’S WRAPPING UP HER SECOND BOOK NOW….WHICH IS CALLED ….BRING ME CURRY WHEN I'M GONE… 


AT HER RESTAURANT SLOW FISH KITCHEN IN CHIANG MAI…. THE MENU IS FOCUSED ON HIGHLIGHTING LOCAL SEAFOOD & SUPPORTING LOCAL FISHERMEN.


TODAY WE’LL BE DISCUSSING THAI FOOD, THE SLOW FOOD MOVEMENT & THE NETFLIX DOCUMENTARY SEASPIRACY…..….


SO I’LL START BY ASKING…..AS WE ALWAYS DO….CHEF YAO…..

 “HAVE YOU EATEN YET?” AND IF YOU HAVE….WHAT DID YOU EAT TODAY?



[[CHEF YAO DISCUSSES]]















COVID UPDATE


BEFORE WE JUMP IN….CAN YOU GIVE ME A QUICK UPDATE ABOUT LIFE IN THAILAND WHEN IT COMES TO COVID…..CURRENTLY ARE THERE ANY RESTRICTIONS ? ARE RESTAURANTS OPEN WITH INDOOR CAPACITY?



[[CHEF YAO DISCUSSES]]







THAI FOOD


I WANT TO START BY TALKING ABOUT YOUR THOUGHTS….ON THAI FOOD IN OUR CULTURE TODAY….AND HOW IT’S PERCEIVED AROUND THE WORLD….


YOU’RE FAIRLY OUTSPOKEN ABOUT HOW THAI FOOD USED TO BE REALLY HEALTHY….BUT THE COMBINATION OF THE INDUSTRIAL FOOD SYSTEM ….& THE INTRODUCTION OF PROCESSED PRODUCTS…. HAS CHANGED THAT.


I’D LOVE TO HEAR YOUR THOUGHTS ON THAI FOOD…..AND THE CHANGES THAT YOU’VE NOTICED…..




[[CHEF YAO DISCUSSES]]
















SLOW FOOD MOVEMENT



YOU’RE PART OF THE SLOW FOOD MOVEMENT….FOCUSING ON WHAT’S FAIR FOR LOCAL FARMERS & PRODUCERS…..…..AND THOSE ACTIONS TRANSLATE TO A CLEANER  PLANET….& TO BETTER FOOD FOR CUSTOMERS.


YOU’RE A FOOD ACTIVIST &  EVENT PLANNER…. FOR SLOW FOOD... IN CHIANG MAI….

I’M ASSUMING COVID HAS AFFECTED RECENT EVENTS…


BUT CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT SOME OF THE MAJOR ISSUES THAT YOU WERE TACKLING….BEFORE THE PANDEMIC…..AND WHAT YOU EXPECT TO FOCUS ON IN THE FUTURE….




[[CHEF YAO DISCUSSES]]




























SEASPIRACY



THE NETFLIX DOCUMENTARY SEASPIRACY ADDRESSED THE CONSEQUENCES OF COMMERCIAL FISHING ON THE LOCAL ECOLOGY….AS WELL AS HUMAN TRAFFICKING…... AND MODERN-DAY SLAVERY.


SEASPIRACY PORTRAYED ILLEGAL…...UNREPORTED AND UNREGULATED FISHING PRACTICES…FORCED LABOR…..AND HUMAN TRAFFICKING…..

IN THAILAND’S SEAFOOD SUPPLY CHAIN.


YAO, SINCE YOU’RE A FOOD ACTIVIST AND CHEF….I’D LOVE TO GET YOUR PERSPECTIVE…... YOU HAVE FIRST HAND KNOWLEDGE OF WHAT’S HAPPENING THERE……

YOU HAVE A RESTAURANT CALLED SLOW FISH KITCHEN….

YOU SOURCE FROM LOCAL FISHERMEN……


PLEASE TALK ABOUT SUSTAINABLE FISHING IN THAILAND……. 


AND QUITE FRANKLY…. HOW THE HELL WE END  HUMAN TRAFFICKING IN THAILAND’S SEAFOOD INDUSTRY……...




[[CHEF YAO DISCUSSES]]



















TAKEAWAY:


YAO, THANK YOU FOR SHARING YOUR STORY WITH US …....

I LIKE ENDING…. BY ASKING…. IF THERE’S ANY TAKEAWAY THAT YOU’D LIKE TO LEAVE WITH LISTENERS…... THAT CAN POSITIVELY INFLUENCE THEIR LIVES….. 

IT COULD BE SOMETHING THAT WE JUST DISCUSSED, A PRO TIP…. OR GENERAL LIFE ADVICE THAT YOU LIVE BY ….…



[[YAO DISCUSSES]]




……& YAO WHERE CAN PEOPLE FOLLOW YOU ?




[[YAO DISCUSSES]]




OUTRO:


THANKS FOR LISTENING….AND IF YOU HAVEN’T ALREADY….... FOLLOW  “HAVE YOU EATEN YET?” ….WHEREVER YOU GET YOUR PODCASTS….



[[MUSIC]]





COVID IN THAILAND
THAI FOOD
SLOW FOOD THAILAND
SEASPIRACY DOCUMENTARY
THAI FISHERMEN
TAKEAWAY