Three Meals a Day in Deukryang Island Episode 1:
We’re back for season three of Three Meals a Day – Fishing Village Edition. Compared to Manjae Island, Na PD has chosen someplace more fairy-tale-like. Somewhere south of Korea lies a beautiful place with the legend that if it snows in October, you’ll meet the people you’ve been waiting and pining for.
Cue “snow” made of white ashes as Lee SeoJin tries to start a fire in the fire pit, HAHAHHA!
But rewind to several weeks earlier when Na PD had set up a meeting for all the participants. First to walk in is Korea’s Sir Grumpypants Lee SeoJin, who complains the moment he steps into the BBQ shop about Na PD making him sit for a national exam just to get his boating license. Hee! Why didn’t he style his hair up for his license? Pfft.
But even grumblers get nervous sometimes and SeoJin hesitantly checks with Na PD that the other participants are people he doesn’t know, right? Na PD just retorts, “people who are close to you – where are they?!” PWAHAHAHHA!
But in walks Actor Moon JeongHyeok, more famously known as Shinhwa’s Eric Moon.
Track back a few days before when the production team met with him alone. Oh, he cleaned up real good. I still remember the short crop and beanie he wore to Oh HaeYoung Again’s ending party, looking like a total hobo. Heh, he isn’t afraid of bugs, likes fishing and likes making food. Did you get a god or something, Na PD?
And so of course SeoJin approves, his deep dimples showing that it’s for real.
Actor Yoon KyunSang walks in too and just like Eric, he was made to come for a personal interview with Na PD (all recorded in secret of course). He shares that when he was younger, his nicknames were Wall, Log and Fork-crane, just because he has so much strength, heh.
In that meeting with all the guys, Eric asks Na PD if KyunSang is the quiet type (Na PD tells him to ask KyunSang, who’s just right beside him, ha) and KyunSang basically answers that by asking a barrage of questions like a kid and in the end, Eric gets comfortable enough to retort.
Business Management graduate Lee SeoJin suddenly starts assigning tasks to the younger boys, telling Eric to fish and KyunSang to clean and cut the fish, pfft. Eric cheekily asks SeoJin if he’s going to go off swimming (for fun) and Sir Grumpypants snorts at him to do that himself, why should he, hee!
Lee SeoJin: “I’m the one who drives the boat!”
They end off the meeting by clinking their glasses and the next time they meet, they’re at port on mainland nearest to Deukryang Island. Ha, the moment he gets there, SeoJin demands to know what kind of boat he’s going to drive and it’s basically a simple fibreglass open boat, powered by a four-stroke engine with a deliverable maximum of 175 horsepower. By the way, the boat had been christened SeoJin-ie (ho)/Seo-genie (ho). Hee.
KyunSang sees the small boat and starts feeling nervous but with Eric right behind him, he has nowhere to run. SeoJin passes them all life-jackets (that are black, lol. I’ve never seen that colour on life jackets, ever) and Na PD sees that and quips that he thought SeoJin said that he was confident of driving a boat well. Na PD, wearing a life jacket on such a boat is the law, nothing to do with the captain’s ability.
Eric keeps his eyes on the important stuff and asks where they have to head to. Na PD points towards the bridge nearby and tells them that they have to cross it. SeoJin just casually agrees and then retorts that he’s a guy with a license but that doesn’t bring much comfort to Eric, who asks if he still has the option of escaping, hee!
KyunSang asks if he can release the boat from the anchor it’s tied to but Eric forbids him, because he hasn’t readied his heart yet. Hee, Na PD loudly warns them that because the boat is small, should they pass any big boats, it’s going to rock like mad, putting fear and doubt in KyunSang and Eric’s hearts. Meanwhile, Lee SeoJin just grins, confident in his lessons and himself.
They head off soon and he steadily steers them to the bridge that Eric was so afraid of. Captain SeoJin points to a huge piece of land on the right and asks if that’s their destination. That doesn’t look like much of an island to them, so they check the map and KyunSang concludes that their destination is behind that mass.
Eric suggests doing the Titanic pose with KyunSang and despite SeoJinnie telling them not to, they do it anyway.
In no time at all, they spot Deukryang Island in the distance.
Welcome to super slow island, Deukryang Island. Back in the Joseon times during the Imjin war, this was the island from which Navy General Lee SoonShin got many food supplies and henceforth, the island was named Deukryang, which literally translates to “got supplies”. Let’s hope the island does the same for our guys now too.
As long as you fish, as long as you throw your nets out, there should be something and like a promise, our guys catch fish, crabs and even octopuses in the days that follow. Bright red chilli peppers dry out in the sun while colourful murals prettify the place.
SeoJin arrives at the port and he practically just bumps his boat into the jetty to stop it, HAHAHA!
Na PD is there to greet them with gifts – three of them to be exact. He says that the boat is SeoJin’s gift. Next up is Eric’s gift and SeoJin laughs to see a three wheeled scooter with a simple cart hooked to it. It’s named Ericar. That’s Eric’s eldest sister’s name (but I bet the spelling’s different) and he screams, “Noona!”
They all ride Noona and, hahaha, Eric is evidently not the best driver ever. Seems like Ericar doesn’t do well on slopes either.
They ride all the way to their compound and it’s yet another blue-roofed house, though arguably, all the houses on the island have blue roofs. There’s a little garden patch for them, and even chickens that lay eggs. Their house has three rooms. SeoJin takes one for himself while Eric and KyunSang share the huge second room together. The last room is an open “kitchen” but as you know, Na PD always thinks that stoves are useless things so there’s none there.
Waiting for them is a fish tank too, the same thing you’d see outside seafood shops in Korea. As a welcome present, Na PD has left a single abalone in there, HAHAHAHA, and SeoJin complains. Na PD retorts that the abalone is Michael. PFFFT, IT HAS A NAME! They’re never going to be able to eat it.
But of course, SeoJin immediately suggests making abalone porridge.
KyunSang is more intruiged by something else – a eye-catchingly red bucket in the middle of their platform boldly labelled, “KyunSang’s”. HA! But because he’s the youngest, he thanks Na PD when the other two would have grumbled.
SeoJin notes that there’s no refrigerator and when KyunSang opens a door in the kitchen, he sadly notes that there’s no toilet. Eric gets a little stunned and asks SeoJin if it was always like that and SeoJin confirms it. But then he immediately grumbles that Chajumma and gang had both! So Na PD adds that they don’t have gas either and explains that for tvN’s 10th anniversary special, they’re going back to where they started. Basically, the theme of this season is nostalgia. What? LOL.
Eric mutters in disbelief that he never thought it’ll be like this when he’d watched the earlier broadcasts and SeoJin whines that their conditions right now are worse than in the past. Pretty sure it was like that on Manjae Island too though.
KyunSang looks around like a kid and unhelpfully points out the stacks of wood they have behind the house. Everyone sits or paces around for a long time, a little stunned, HA. Eric even offers to cut Michael up.
But once they get their bearings back, Eric suggests something simple for lunch, like Potato Sujebi or Knife-cut Noodles and SeoJin suggests green peppers as a side dish. However, before they can get down to work, they have to change pants first. Eric changes from jeans to shorts while KyunSang changes from long exercise pants to short exercise pants, LOL. Lee SeoJin doesn’t even change pants at all and just continues to lie in the shade.
PFFFT, that spot becomes his Chairman-Seat as Na PD shows us all how he just sits there and orders his other members around, hee.
But when they get confused or need help, he’s there to help them out, like setting up the fire pit (but that’s all he does). Na PD notes that casting KyunSang was the right decision because the kid practically does everything. Meanwhile, SeoJin complains that it’s so much harder now than just a year ago, all while sitting in his Chairman-Seat in the shade and shaking his leg.
Armed with the cooking skills, Eric is left to do his magic in the kitchen. He pours some oil into a plastic bag and then adds flour into it. He begins to knead it through the plastic happily and Na PD’s voice cuts through the peace, going, “are you doing that so that you don’t have to do the dishes?!” His shy laugh says it all, hee. And that’s the birth of Ecipe – Eric +Recipie (aka, The Single Man’s Cooking Methods).
He kneads the dough, secures the plastic bag and puts it in a bowl of cold water.
Once done, he looks around for a metal sponge, earning Na PD’s suspicion about what he needs it for. Eric explains that it’s because he hates peeling potatoes. HAHAHA! And even better, he just lets KyunSang do the washing of the potatoes himself later.
Once the kid’s done washing the potato, he goes off to fan the fire and Eric gets amazed at how it looks like something he saw on TV. But compared to HaeJin’s gang who fanned it in the winter (and so looked warm and snuggly), they’re making the fire in blistering heat. Their wood isn’t even burning, HA!
Eric gets frustrated seeing KyunSang working futilely on the fire and so asks him to change places. But no… it wasn’t because he hoped to relieve the younger man from his suffering – he just needed someone to go find a young pumpkin from somewhere, HEE.
So while KyunSang searches the area for a young pumpkin, Eric and SeoJin ponder over why the fire just won’t catch. At first, Eric fans the flames, hoping for a miracle while SeoJin rips the newspapers, but not before reading them first. Later, SeoJin takes over making snow while Eric cleanly chops the firewood into thinner pieces.
Elsewhere, KyunSang comes upon something round, small and green and wonders if it’s a young pumpkin, not sure himself. He asks the production but they’re all tight lipped and the captions tell him to just watch the broadcast later, ha.
Once he returns, KyunSang goes back to fire-fanning duty while SeoJin sits in his Chairman-Seat and encourages KyunSang to fan it hard. Na PD tells him to just call in from Seoul if he’s going to do that, haha!
But at least with all their efforts, the wood catches fire and the fire starts to burn steadily. Now that they have the fire going, it’s time to start cooking. Eric slowly and calmly puts water into the pot. He then goes to the kitchen to get some dashi to add into it. Then he goes back to the kitchen to get three anchovies and returns to put them in the pot too. Then he goes back to the kitchen to get a chopping board. Lee SeoJin: “why don’t you just get everything at once?”
After all that shuffling, he starts to really get right down to cooking by cutting the vegetables. He cuts a whole onion and half a potato. But he looks at the bowl and starts hesitating, wondering if it’s enough, so he cuts another quarter of a potato. He then starts work on the young pumpkin.
He gives KyunSang a cup and tells him to get guk-ganjang, a type of soy-sauce. KyunSang is all, “what”, and Eric rephrases his request to, “get me the saltiest.” Somewhere nearby watching all this is Lee SeoJin who boldly chuckles. You…are the kind to treat all soy sauces the same, so don’t laugh.
KyunSang searches through the 11 crockpots that they have and gets stumped when 4 of them look like they contain soy-sauce. He gets a chopstick to stick into the crockpot for a taste-test and then whines for advice when he realises that he shouldn’t double dip. Eric’s advice is to use the back of that chopstick. He also mutters back that KyunSang has five fingers, heh.
So KyunSang goes back to try again, and again, and again… and then almost cries as he tells Eric that he doesn’t know which one is the saltiest. Eric asks if he should get him a spoon. HAHAHA! He takes so long that Eric goes to the pots himself and does a taste test, finally declaring that the one KyunSang picked was the right one.
Now that he has the soy sauce he needs, he seasons the broth. In another Ecipie moment, Eric cuts the dough with scissors and puts it into the boiling broth instead of pulling on it like a normal person. He then reels from the smoke entering his eyes and KyunSang offers him a pair of sunglasses. SeoJin laughs that sunglasses are not the important thing now, saying that all while standing in the shade and wearing sunglasses himself.
Eric and KyunSang just take the pot off the firepit and once he’s done “demonstrating”, Eric passes the job of adding the dough into the pot to KyunSang, shamelessly telling him, “because this is fun, you do it.” While SeoJin nags right beside KyunSang, Eric comes clean that he can use his hands too, but if he does that, then his hands will get stained.
A while later, the dish looks fine enough and Eric announces that it seems like it’s “good enough”. That’s enough for SeoJin who demands for it to be brought over.
KyunSang asks what he should put the food into, listing out quite a number of different ladles and containers and SeoJin just tells him to do as he wishes. He doesn’t have to ask about everything!
The Business Management graduate then checks his watch and notes that lunch is done at three just like he’d expected. They settle down to eat and KyunSang declares that it’s delicious. They don’t say a single word at all, making Na PD curious about the taste. So he scoops a little of the Potato Sujebi and before anyone can stop him, he’s made off with the whole pot and eating out of it with a ladle like a hungry beggar/ university student.
SeoJin guesses that they’ll be eating dinner at maybe nine or eight that night and a fast forward shows him stoning in front of the fire pit and going, “but it’s 8:20 already though? Give me alcohol.”
Once done with lunch, they all stone in different places, not quite sure what to do. SeoJin suggests taking the boat out to fish and Na PD nags at them to get 10 species of fish already. SeoJin scoffs that he doesn’t even know 10 species of fish and Na PD reminds them that if they catch a porgy/seabream, they’ll get 30 000 won (~$30). KyunSang cheers up at the thought of just catching three of them and SeoJin quips that they’re all going to sleep in a motel if they get it.
It’s time to wash up and SeoJin refuses Eric’s offer to clean up while he washes the dishes. If there’s one thing that Sir Grumpypants can’t let go of, it’s being High-Quality Dishwasher SeoJinnie. As expected, SeoJinnie inspects every single piece of utensil, making Na PD taunt, “is that gold?!”
There’s nothing for KyunSang to do now and he’s so uncomfortable that he titters around, hoping for the hyungs to give him something to do. But SeoJin doesn’t let him touch his cleaned dishes and Eric has nothing for the guy.
Finally, after almost wearing the floor down, Eric tells KyunSang to dry the dishes and KyunSang happily gets down to work. His next task is cleaning the floor and he searches around for another rag to do it with. Captions: “Our KyunSang has changed!” Eric tells him to clean the floor with that same rag, so he does… then he uses it to clean the tray afterwards, heh.
Almost-pro fisherman Eric heads to the shed to check out the fishing rods and the bait. He judges the fishing rods he pulled out and gives the one that’s easiest to handle to KyunSang, who’s all, “I believe in you, Hyung.”
Na PD casually asks him if he’s fished before and KyunSang replies “no” and Na PD tells him to truthfully say something that he’s good at. He thinks… and settles on “things that require strength.” In other words, he’s brawn over brains.
Before they leave, Eric and KyunSang head into the house to check for things that they might need, like shoes, jackets and what not. Eric offers SeoJin some sunblock which he refuses and finally, the three of them head out, Eric and KyunSang looking no different from before they “prepared”.
They ride Ericar to the jetty and choose to just fish from there.
They set up their crab nets, setting their bait in a small basket in the middle of it and SeoJin has the honour of throwing the first one in. Eric and KyunSang throw the two others into the sea too but instead of fishing after that, they realise that they hadn’t brought the bait.
So Eric goes back to the car to get it all while KyunSang and SeoJin sit and just wait for him, hee. KyunSang sighs that it would be great if they caught three porgies and SeoJin the veteran knows that their luck won’t be that good.
SeoJin sets out all their fishing gear while KyunSang just waits hopefully for Eric, lighting up like a puppy when he sees him.
When it comes to fishing, Eric is the brains while SeoJin is the Shark-hunter. SeoJin’s a newbie at fishing but he at least knows that porgies/seabreams are caught through line-fishing. On the other end of the spectrum, we have KyunSang who knows nothing and just incessantly asks Eric questions about fishing.
Eric comes to his help and when he asks SeoJin if he’s casted a line before, SeoJin tells him to do it before he takes the rod over for himself, hee. KyunSang gets a demonstration too and tosses the line over and over again, getting it caught one time and getting his bait stolen another.
Both KyunSang and SeoJin demand for help from Eric, leaving him with little time to fish. So it ends up that KyunSang becomes the first one to catch a fish, specifically, a small Japanese Whiting. He’s gleeful about it even though it’s just a baby and he resolves to catch a bigger fish later.
Second catch of the day is KyunSang’s too but it’s a rockfish/seabass that’s a little too small/young to eat this time so they send it back into the sea.
The sun sets and the sky gets dark enough for the production to require setting up the lights, so SeoJin pulls up the crab nets and in addition to their single Japanese Whiting, they get another five crabs. HAHAHA, those crabs are so many in numbers that Eric laughs that they’re like rice over there in a future interview and laughs that their tank looks like something from a soy sauce crab restaurant. Hee, they even make crab rice and soy sauce crab and marinated crab.
But back in the present, they trudge back to their compound, weary. Eric tells KyunSang to add his babies into the tank and after a long lonely day, Michael the abalone gets a friend. HAHAHA, Eric suddenly tastes the water and declares that it’s sea water.
He pours the crabs in with KyunSang and while the 30 year old kids have fun poking their dinner, 45 year old Lee SeoJin couldn’t care less and just stokes the fire.
While waiting around, the production tells them that KyunSang’s cats are in the room and while both Eric and KyunSang both head straight for their room, SeoJin sits on his Chairman-Seat, resolutely not caring.
KyunSang introduces his cats to the world. White cat Koong-ie is named as such because he fell for it the moment he saw it (shim-koong) while brown cat Mong-ie is named as such because of his short legs (mong-ddang). They’re both huge and fluffy but while Koong-ie is shy and reserved, Mong-ie is curious and playful.
The time to make dinner comes and both SeoJin and Eric feel nervous when they see the rather empty tank. Even though they have a fish and five crabs, they’re all really small. On the other hand, KyunSang laughs and shows them his sun-burnt arms, ha.
With resources so scarce, it’s time for the Business Major to show his prowess and SeoJin suggests crab stew for dinner, buffering the inadequacy due to the little crab meat they have with other starches like potatoes and pumpkins.
Pfft, the captions are a genius’ work. They label SeoJin as the Boat Captain and under pros, they write “(verbally) suggests ideas”. Under cons, they write “only suggests ideas”, HA.
They tease that all he does is provide only ONE suggestion before giving up. And while he goes blank, Eric asks what they’re going to do with the fish so SeoJin suggests that they just grill it.
Second in command to the captain is Representative E, aka, Eric Moon. Pros: Detailed. Cons: Slow. HAHA!
Eric lists out the things they have to do and tells KyunSang to clean the crabs with a toothbrush.
So last but not least in Three Meals Company is Intern KyunSang (not even a contract worker, ha!). Pros: Nice and Strong. Cons: Like KyungSang (a combination of the word 궁상 (Koong-sang), meaning wretched and shabby, and KyunSang’s name). He asks Eric about EVERYTHING, and Eric has to teach him how to deal with a crab.
He stares at the tank forlornly… and when SeoJin asks him how he’s gonna catch the crabs, he shows the captain his gloved hands. Oh KyunSang. Since employee-safety is a huge thing these days, Captain SeoJin brings a pair of tongs over and grabs the crabs out for him. He even knocks the crabs out cold for KyunSang but KyunSang still gets a crab pinching his glove.
While he cleans the crab, Chef Eric sits beside him and advises him while the talented Lee SeoJin sits in his Chairman-Seat and watches while he relaxes.
Now that the crabs are cleaned, Eric sets it all up, rolling the crab meat out of the crabs with a rolling pin and a chopping board.
SeoJin comes over and offers his services as the resident potato-peeling-expert while both KyunSang and Eric watch on in awe. This is your tvN10 Awards Entertainment Daesang winner guys.
KyunSang is tasked with chopping the vegetables and even then, Eric has to tell him exactly how he wants it. Then he stones.
In his interview, the production asks him why he keeps stoning and Eric takes almost half a minute before answering that it’s because he needs to think things over before doing them, otherwise he’ll get confused, ha.
But finally, all the vegetables are chopped, the broth is set to boil and the crabs are done. Eric mans the stew while SeoJin stands aside and compliments him for doing what looks like a good job. He comments that KyunSang and Eric work well together and sighs that there’s no one who matches with him, aw.
Eric consoles him by noting that he actually does more than what’s shown on TV and SeoJin wholeheartedly agrees with that, blaming the editing team and saying that he does all the preparatory work. All the production team does is apologise in the captions. LOL.
Eric adds the crab into the stew and now that it’s done, he prepares the fish for grilling. He tells KyunSang to dry it with paper towels and get some rosemary and KyunSang asks how much he should dry the fish. And after that, he asks how much oil he should put (on the fish), hee.
They simply season the fish with olive oil, rosemary and pepper and when Na PD notes the rosemary in it, Eric jokes that KyunSang doesn’t eat fish without rosemary in it.
Soon enough, the stew bubbles and boils. SeoJin takes a taste and nods his heads. KyunSang tries the fish but comments that he can’t really say a thing because the fish is so small, hee.
The fish is soon done but it’s so small that it makes them speechless. So SeoJin suggests a side dish and KyunSang’s answer is Potato Pancakes. Just the word “potato” has SeoJin nodding his head in satisfaction. Eric adds that he could make Steamed Eggs too.
KyunSang asks if they should grind the potato with the stone grinder they have there, HA, and all the Hyungs point him to the grater.
So he grates the potatoes and midway, he laughs that his arms are hurting and starts thinking of his mom and how hard it must have been for her.
Eric fries those potato pancakes up in hot oil and garnishes them with some red chilli pepper slices.
KyunSang adds the bowl of raw eggs into a pot of boiling water to steam. As they wait, the crab stew thickens and intensifies in flavour and soon enough, it’s ready to eat.
They scoop it up and together with the steamed eggs, the potato pancakes, grilled fish, freshly marinated perilla leaves and rice, dinner is ready, at the glorious time of 11pm.
SeoJin takes a spoonful of Crab Stew and immediately announces that it’s delicious. It really must mean that it’s delicious then. KyunSang agrees too and SeoJin quips that the stew is the best thing he’s ever eaten on Three Meals a Day.
They try the steamed egg too and though they say nothing, KyunSang’s face tells it all. It’s delicious. The only thing that SeoJin complains about is the freshly marinated perilla leaf. It’s just too raw because it hadn’t been left to marinade long enough.
After dinner, KyunSang digs Koong-ie out from under the cupboard. KyunSang’s not the only one who treats them like they’re his kids as Eric looks after them with a fatherly smile too.
In the other room, SeoJinne can’t be bothered at all and sets his one and only foldable bed up, ha.
But later at night, while they all gather, he starts stroking Koong-ie.
The next day, the Hyungs lounge on the porch while KyunSang gets his cats. He joins the Hyungs and sets his cats free. Almost immediately, SeoJin strokes Mong-ie and KyunSang shares that the cats like it the most when you stroke their necks.
KyunSang plays with Mong-ie but SeoJin’s favourite is Koong-ie, who’s hiding behind him and shivering. That’s because it’s surrounded by people it doesn’t know at all.
While KyunSang’s attention is taken away by Mong-ie who’s eating straw, ha, SeoJin tries to calm Koong-ie down. KyunSang opens the door beside him and Koong-ie slinks away. Eric asks if he’s ever seen a just-born kitten and is certain that SeoJin would immediately want to buy one should he see one.
But for now, SeoJin’s dimples only appear for Koong-ie.
Eric cooks up another delicious meal and SeoJin asks the production to think about whether they still want to keep Chajumma on the show. HA!
Hey, so I just skimmed through the subbed episode by FishingSubsTeam and first of all, I have to say GREAT JOB and THANKS to them.
Just had to clarify (before anyone asks) that the translation of the preview that I’d highlighted was translated to “I’m thinking of pressing Cha SeungWon now” by FishingSubsTeam which is NOT wrong, because that’s what it literally is translated to. But that just makes no sense in English. What SeoJin meant that he was thinking of putting pressure on Cha SeungWon (he actually said Master Cha), aka questioning his position in the show aka asking the staff to think about whether he should remain, LOL. Just for clarification. Korean is a very context-based language.
If you have anything else you want to clarify, just leave it in the comments and I’ll get back to you as fast as I can. Cheers!