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Eric Kim on coming out, the perfect fried chicken, and why he prefers a round table

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Harry Styles concert on gochujang, gochugaru, maesil cheong, and other pantry items. This shopping spree was inspired by Eric Kim’s Korean American: Food That Tastes Like Home, my must-cook tome of the summer.Kim, a New York Times staff writer, spent a year in his hometown of Atlanta with his mother, Jean, coaxing out traditional Korean recipes (“Getting a recipe out of my mother is like pulling teeth out of a tiger’s mouth,” he writes in the book’s introduction), and developing his unique interpretations of Korean American cuisine.Their relationship has deepened over the years — both in and out of the kitchen — since Kim came out to his family.

In 2018, he publicly shared how her recipe for kimchi fried rice held the family together. But coming out isn’t a static event, and the past four years have proven that the mother-son bond could deepen further.“It’s constantly evolving, for sure,” Kim told INTO just after his book had landed on the New York Times’ Best Seller list.

Kim considers the headnote for the Korean pear galette (p. 259) a sequel to his coming-out essay. “My parents were very accepting from the moment I came out to them,” he said. “But it didn’t come without challenges as a family, like getting used to this idea of me being gay, when for the past, at the time, 26 years of my life, I was just kind of straight to them.”“There’s a little story about my ex-boyfriend and then my new boyfriend and how within that span — between those two relationships — was my mother’s kind of comfort with my being gay and her acquisition of language to talk about it,” Kim said.As detailed as Kim’s directions are regarding the fanning of pear slices (“Place the pears in the center, shingling them over one another like fish.

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