Chef José Andrés Reels In ‘Horror’ Over Stephen King’s Microwaved Salmon Recipe

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Image Credit: Jacquelyn Martin/AP/Shutterstock

Perhaps the greatest slice of horror micro-fiction was published on Apr. 19, and it came from the master of the macabre himself, Stephen King. “Dinner: get a nice salmon filet at the supermarket, not too big,” began Stephen, 74, setting the stage for the fright. “Put some olive oil and lemon juice on it. Wrap it in damp paper towels,” wrote the man behind The Shining, The Stand, Carrie, and such other frights. Then, the shock: “Nuke it in the microwave for three minutes or so,” wrote Stephen. “Eat it. Maybe add a salad.”

Whether or not Stephen meant to create another nightmare, his culinary creation was certainly a terrifying tale for José Andrés. The chef, whose World Central Kitchen has been operating in war-torn Ukraine, responded to Stephen’s tweet with terror and aghast. “This is a horror movie!” he tweeted. “Eat it raw, eat it plancha, eat it fry…..but 3 minutes on the microwave is like the twilight zone! Do 1 minute at the time if you use microwave, in and out in and out….and undercooked better! Let the waves heat the water molecules enough to be warm!”

Of course, this is not the first time that a horror icon has created a bizarre moment with a fish and a household appliance. Vincent Price famously befuddled Johnny Carson during a 1975 episode of The Tonight Show, appearing in a cooking segment where he packaged a trout in a tinfoil packet with olive oil, white wine, and some seasoning. “It’s really delicious,” the Mask of the Red Death star said, while sampling some fish he cooked ahead of the show.

This man wants you to microwave fish. (AP/Shutterstock

While José Andrés isn’t chastising famous authors for mangling their meals, he’s helping refugees get food in their bellies. Andrés’ Work Central Kitchen has been helping out in Ukraine, feeding survivors and refugees fleeing the Russian invasion. On Apr. 17, a Russian missile struck a kitchen operated by Andrés’ organization, injuring four workers and dozens of others. Despite this, José says he’s not stopping his efforts.

“If anything, we are expanding,” Andrés told Side Dish, per New York Post. “Everybody is still cooking and taking care of people. If the children are here, we are here. We opened ten more restaurants today. Is it scary? Of course. It’s a war. You can be hit by a bomb or missile at any time. But people need our help.”