Finally more time for the children - and for research, which for top chef Andrew Wong is part of his work.

The lockdown, just tightened again in London, also has good sides for the chef.

And gives him time to explain his work as a culinary historian in an interview.


How do you go about your research?

Andrew Wong:

We are investigating anything that could give us clues about historical eating habits: paintings, literature, poems, travelogues, records of Chinese medicine.

Also the archive of the Forbidden City in Beijing, which is currently being digitized - a good 100 years after the abdication of the last emperor - and which also includes documents on the dishes consumed.

We collect all of this and try to draw a picture of how people cooked and ate back then.

For example, we know that Peking duck was fried 2,500 years ago - much like what is done today.

For me, it's not about cooking old dishes, but rather interpreting them for today's audience.


How do you do that?