One-on-one interview with your host, Joy Zhang.
Q. So, your website is pretty cool, can you quickly describe what it’s all about?
A: Heck yeah it’s cool! 1-2-Simple Cooking is all about teaching singles and couples how to cook efficiently at home. The end.
Q. That’s pretty sweet, but a lot of singles and couples already cook at home. So, what’s special about 1-2 Simple Cooking?
Well, I realized that most singles and couples struggle with cooking effectively at home. We’re here to teach you tips, tricks, and shortcuts to make cooking easier and more approachable. You’ll learn how to shop, how to store ingredients, how to waste less food and money, and you’ll learn simple, straightforward recipes that don’t involve a lot of tools, time or cleanup.
Q. That’s sounds great, what was your inspiration for such a concept?
Tiffany Chung, my partner, was actually the inspiration for the show. She approached me with the idea because she loved to cook but didn’t because of all of the leftover food, mess, and waste involved with cooking for herself. I knew she was onto something because this was a common complaint that I’ve heard many of my own friends and family complain about and I really wanted to help.
Q. So what’s your role in all of this then?
Well, I’ve been a home cook for over 15 years, and over the course of the time I’ve been constantly thinking of ways to cut out time in the kitchen while still making wholesome recipes that not only are good but also good for you.
Q. What makes your teaching style different than others out there?
I love that all our videos are short and to-the-point to make sure that it’s easy to follow and understand. Each week we’re releasing an instructional or recipe video. We’ll then feature recipes during the week on our blog to review what was learned in the lessons so you can retain the concepts while having a fun and interactive experience with us!
Q. How can I get started?
Q. What are you most proud of regarding your chef skills?
I come up with recipes that are approachable for any level of home cook and I’m able to utilize ingredients well so the flavors stay fresh and seasonal.
Q. What keeps you grounded as a person?
Nature. I think it’s important to respect both ourselves as well as the environment we live in. It helps us remember to keep things simple and purposeful.
Q. Who’s your favorite chef or culinary figure?
Gosh a lot! But if I really had to just pick one….Anthony Bourdain.
Q. Do you care to elaborate?
Well not to go into too many yummy details… I just think he’s funny and witty and stays true to who he is. Also I'm a huge fan of his show. It’s cool to follow him all around the World and watching him explore all the different cultures through their cuisine.
Q. What’s your favorite style of food to cook?
I like to cook wholesome, seasonal, approachable, food. You’ll find a little bit of everything here, anything from spring rolls to BLTs -- we even feature vegan and gluten free recipes! Can I get a what, what??
Q. Did your mother’s cooking influence you?
Yes, absolutely. I remember when I was just big enough to see over the sink I’d be cooking alongside her. All my life I always followed my mother around to the market and stores. She’s really taught me the importance of respecting the ingredients, using proper cooking techniques and always cooking with love.
Q. What would make you happiest about the show?
I want singles and couples to get freaking excited!! I want our videos and recipes to encourage people to cook more often at home. And I hope the show will help people realize that cooking is simple, approachable and fun and in many ways it can really change the way you live your life and brings a sense of consciousness you may not have had before.
Q. So you’re the Zen master of cooking?
Oh you’re a funny guy! I also have ninja skills if you want me to show you.
Q. If you could travel to anywhere in the world to eat food, where would you go?
Vietnam or Hong Kong! Vietnamese food just completes me – their use of fresh ingredients and paired with French techniques, you really get the best of both worlds with their cuisine. Bun Bo Hue is one of my favorite dishes, so comforting yet bold and flavorful. I’ve always wanted to explore Hong Kong for their seafood – man what I’d do for some fresh scallop and lobster….
Q. What are some of your hobbies outside of cooking?
I enjoy yoga and rock climbing and I try to squeeze in a little piano from time to time. And I LOVE balancing objects on Layla's nose/head.
Can I show you some photos?
Q. That's funny! What else can she balance?
Check her out on instagram: #laylabalances!
Q. Anything else you want to tell us?
Yes! I just wanted to say, none of this show would’ve been possible without the time, help and support of our Kickstarter backers and our wonderful friends and family. Without them, none of this would've been possible. So thank you guys for being awesome, I hope you guys enjoy what we have in store for you!