Edward Lee Recruited as State Dinner Guest Chef for South Korean President by White House!

Edward Lee was hired by the White House to serve as the guest chef for state dinners. According to Chef Edward Lee, food has the ability to convey a narrative at its finest.

And the narrative that he desired to be conveyed with the meal that he had prepared for the state dinner that will take place at the White House this week of the profound connection that had existed between the United States of America and its ally South Korea.

On Friday, Vice President Joe Biden hosted South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol during a state visit that included a glamorous state dinner. The White House had requested Lee, a Korean American chef, and restaurateur, to assist in the preparation of the cuisine for the state visit.

Edward Lee Recruited as State Dinner Guest Chef for South Korean President
Edward Lee Recruited as State Dinner Guest Chef for South Korean President

The White House provided an exclusive preview of its intentions to deploy Lee as a “guest chef” for lunch and its high-wattage lineup for the after-dinner entertainment, which included Broadway stars Norm Lewis, Lea Salonga, and Jessica Vosk. The White House handed the preview to The Associated Press.

Lee shared his thoughts in an interview with the Associated Press:

“Korean food and American food can merge together and create this beautiful hybrid that is unique and delicious.”

He claimed that by adding a “little Korean flavor or Korean spice,” any well-known American dish would retain its familiarity while also becoming something new. He called it “real food for thought.”

Biden has only extended two invitations for state visits, the highest diplomatic honor the United States can give to its closest allies. The first one was shipped to France in December. Yoon Suk Yeol loved the hospitality and shared his thoughts on Twitter as well:

The dinner’s chef, originally from New York City, was contacted around two months ago by White House social secretary Carlos Elizondo. Lee’s style of cooking combines elements of Korean and Southern American cooking.

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The first lady, Jill Biden, and her staff were in charge of the dinner, so Lee spent two days there recently, testing recipes and, plating meals, presenting samplings to the first lady and her team. He collaborated with Cristeta Comerford, the chef de cuisine in the White House.

The choice to have Lee serve as the evening’s guest chef is reminiscent of a strategy employed by former first lady Michelle Obama when planning state dinners. She enlisted the help of prominent chefs like Marcus Samuelsson, Mario Batali, and Anita Lo to spice things up. It was a terrifying ordeal to go through.

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