Seychellois Creole food, which combines flavors from various corners of the world as a result of the Seychelles’ historical connections, is one of the islands’ attributes that appeal to visitors.
Seychellois chef, Marcus Freminot, had the chance to showcase this unique factor of the island destination in South Korea, at the invitation of the Seychelles Tourism Board.
Joined by South Korean chefs, Mr. Freminot prepared a special 5-course Creole meal for over 100 guests including media and travel trade representatives, tourism friends of Seychelles, and important opinion leader groups.
The dishes were served at a reception to mark 10 years since the opening of the Seychelles’ Tourism Board’s regional office in Korea. The reception held at the Lotte Hotel in Seoul on Wednesday August 30 was also attended by the chief executive of the Seychelles Tourism Board (STB), Mrs. Sherin Francis.
Guests were treated to spicy accra and salmon fish cake, smoked fish salad with tropical fruit dressing, lime sorbet with a hint of pineapple Takamaka rum, beef steak, and creole apple and nutmeg fritters and rum infused tropical grilled fruit salad.
As the Creole cuisine combines various spices like garlic, onions, pepper, and ginger similar to Korean cuisine, the first such Creole dinner served in South Korea suited the Korean palates perfectly.
Chef Freminot who had no problem catering for a large group of people said, “It was a good experience as I was preparing the Creole cuisine with a foreign team and it felt good to share part of our heritage with chefs who have never heard of our cuisine before.”
Marcus Freminot who graduated from the Seychelles Hospitality Tourism Training College, now known as the Seychelles Tourism Academy, is a former professor at the same training institution. As a chef, he has worked in several hotels and restaurants as well as at the French Embassy in Seychelles. He has also participated in various culinary competitions in Seychelles and abroad.
While in South Korea, chef Freminot also took part in a “Seychellois-Korean Cuisine & Culture Exchange Master Chef Class.”
He demonstrated his techniques preparing various dishes including salmon fish cake with creole sauce, chicken soup, and a fusion dish that blended Creole food with the traditional Korean red pepper paste known as Gochujang.
A Michelin-starred chef, Tony Yoo, who regularly appears on a famous Korean TV show “Chef & My Fridge” also took part in the master class by demonstrating a combination of a Korean dish with Creole sauce.
The master class was co-hosted by the Korean Food Foundation, an organization affiliated with the country’s Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs and attended by some 50 guests including Korean food critics, culinary experts, and VIP customers from HanaTour – one of the largest travel company in Korea.
Chef Yoo said, “Creole and Korean cuisines have a lot in common. Both cuisines use a lot of spices, among which, garlic and onion which are used in the preparation of all the Korean food, similar to Creole dishes.”
Chef Freminot described the master class as a good marketing initiative that allowed him to showcase the Creole cuisine to representatives of travel agencies, DMCs, as well as journalists, food critics and the general public in South Korea.
“It gave me the chance to demonstrate our common recipes, ingredients and methods while explaining about our culture. The Korean guest chef Tony Yoo demonstrated two Korean recipes, which also allowed me to capture some techniques widely used in the Korean kitchen,” said Freminot.
Commenting on the two cuisines, chef Freminot said there’s a lot of similarities in the way the food is prepared and plated and even in the presentation.
“There is a lot of color and flavors in the Korean cuisines, the usage of fresh vegetables, spices, and herbs are common for most dishes. The things that really caught my attention are the level of spiciness and the amount of frying involved when cooking Korean food,” said Freminot.
Following his adventure in South Korea, chef Freminot is currently in France taking some time off and exploring other professional avenues.