Healthy Oriental Food with Seonkyoung Longest
Aflete loves nothing more than talking with creative people who have a vision they want to share.
It was our pleasure to speak with Food Network show winner and famed YouTuber Seonkyoung Longest about her love of food and how she is letting people see making great food at home isn’t as hard as you think.
Enjoy the interview…
Q – Can you tell us a little about yourself and what you do for anyone who hasn’t come across your YouTube or Instagram before?
Hello Aflete, thank you for having me here! I’m Seonkyoung Longest, I’m a self-taught chef/culinary artist from South Korea.
I’ve only been cooking seriously since 2010. In less than 5 years, I have been a Food Network show winner on Restaurant Express Season 1 and launched my own restaurant in a Las Vegas hotel casino.
With all the experience I had, I want to teach, motivate and inspire people cooking at home while having lots of fun! Most of my recipes are about entertaining and celebrating life and I like everything about what makes people happy because of food.
I’m not teaching my viewers and fans only how to cook, but I’m giving them the inspiration to be the best. I’m showing them myself and proving that I can be better than what I’ve been told. I believe people can see and feel it throughout my YouTube cooking show and Instagram pictures.
Q – Before you became a Food Network winner you had already competed on other US cooking shows such as Master Chef (season 4) – How has that national exposure changed the way you think about food?
It hasn’t. Actually it’s concreted my thoughts and opinions about food. I still believe in fresh food and what goes in your body is what makes you- as my father (He is an organic farmer in Korea) taught me when I was a little girl.
Q – Has your fame in the US translated back to Korea? Do people recognize you when you go back to visit family?
I haven’t been back to Korea yet, so… I have no idea. hahaha But I’ve heard I got pretty famous.
Q – You have a history in art and dance, and being an artist is clearly very important to you, so how do you bring your own personality and creativity to your cooking?
I’ve always been an artist, I’ve always been creating something. That’s who I am and who I’ve been as long as I can remember and that’s how I exist. I always think of the color, texture and flavor match and find a balance of the look and the taste. Like how a fashion designer’s mind works for clothing.
Q – Korean food is often lauded as one of the healthiest (and most delicious) cuisines in world food – what is your favourite feature of Korean cooking?
Fermentation and Wrap. Those are what really makes Korean food unique. Everyone knows kimchi, Korean fermented vegetables. It’s known as one of the healthiest foods all around the world because of it’s nutrition. Some say Korean women are beautiful and have healthy skin because we eat kimchi regularly. I don’t know if that is true but I do believe kimchi is one of our secrets to stay fit and healthy.
But kimchi is only one example of Korean fermented foods example, we do have much more fermented foods that we eat at almost every single meal. Ssam means wrap in Korean. We do love to wrap everything (meat, rice, tofu and even vegetables! You name it, we wrap it (!) in lettuce and/or all kinds of different leafy vegetables. It’s a huge part of our cuisine and shows how much we love fresh vegetables and balanced our meals are. Plus, it’s super fun to eat with your hands! ?
Q – You are famous for your wonderful Asian recipes and series Asian At Home – but what is your favourite non-Asian cuisine and food?
Southern cuisine, AKA comfort/soul food. Hands down.
My first stop in the US was Mississippi, where I lived for about 5 years. I learned cooking there. To be honest with you, I hated it at first, because it was too different than what I used eat (almost opposite) in Korea.
But now? I’m craving mac & cheese, shrimp & grits, biscuit & gravy, Southern BBQ, sweet tea and more. None of them are healthy foods but once in a while, it’s all good. ?
Q – You use many different forms of social media to reach out to people – how effective do you think social media is in helping people to think about what they eat and be healthier?
Health and food are some of the biggest subjects all the time and people always seek more motivation and inspiration on social media. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest and more- We choose our friends/community/follow and get information, motivation and inspiration from them.
What I want to do is motivate and inspire people to cook fresh food at home, eat better and live a better life. I really believe that my work inspires more and more people every day to cook fresh food at home.
Q – What is your impression of Aflete (a social platform exclusively for food, health and fitness), do you think it would have any advantages over the current platforms?
It’s moving into right direction – Aflete’s including everything you need to live a happy life. These days more people are trying to live a better and happy life but not everyone knows how. Aflete can be a wonderful source.
Q – What feature(s) would you want to see Aflete incorporate to make the experience better?
Teaching people about what they putting into their body and how to do it better at home. Motivate them every day through social media to keep people on right track.
Q – You have only been cooking seriously since 2010, yet you have achieved so much in such a short space of time, where do you want your cooking adventure to take you next?
I want to have my own TV show and eventually my own network to share and teach people how to cook fresh food at home for their own good. Also a new restaurant where I can share my creative mind & recipes with people in person.
Q – How can people see more of you and your recipes?
Visit my Youtube Channel Youtube.com/SeonkyoungLongest for my cooking show Asian at Home & life Blog and visit my website www.SeonkyoungLongest.com for written recipes. Follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for everyday inspirations of Asian home cooking!
Thank you so much for this awesome interview Aflete! Aflete ROCKS!!!
It was our pleasure to interview Seonkyoung and we hope to bring you more from her in the future!
Photo credits of Seonkyoung to Sandy Le Photography.
For quick and easy smoothie recipes see the eBook below