David and the Giant Peach


[Photo: Maro Hagopian]

On "At Martha's Table," broadcast live by Sirius Radio last week, Martha Stewart hosted New York City's wonder-chef, David Chang of Momofuku.

In the last five years, Chang has garnered three James Beard awards, two Michelin Stars, and a slew of other culinary honors such as GQ and Bon Appetit magazine's "Chef of the Year" for his innovative cuisine.

Chang talked Martha through his background, much of which is familiar to his fans; he holds a degree in religious studies from Trinity College before working at Mercer Kitchen and Craft, and later graduating from the French Culinary Institute.

But his "crazy passion for noodles" came only during his stage learning the art of ramen and soba noodle-making in Tokyo. He returned to New York, and after admitting that he "didn't think he could be as good as Daniel Boloud," opened the Momofuku Noodle Bar with funds from his father. After Momofuku Ko, Momofuku Ssäm, and Momofuku Bakery & Milk Bar followed, Ma Pêche, Chang's French-Vietnamese restaurant will open this winter.

My questions for Chang, after the jump.

Where does Chang chow down in New York? For Chinese takeout he loves Grand Sichuan or for Chinese dining-in, Oriental Garden. For the best ramen in the city (other than his own) he goes to Ippudo, a Tokyo ramen chain. And for fried chicken? If he can't have his own, he'll head to Congee Village.

Martha Stewart, a huge fan of all of Chang's restaurants (and apparently an avid eater of pork buns) called him "a national treasure." With an endorsement like that, it's only the beginning for Chang and his giant peaches.

In Videos: David Chang on Charlie Rose
Frank Bruni Goes Ko-razy
Momofuku Ko: David Chang with his Shirt Tucked In
The World According to David Chang, or 'As the Chang Turns'