The Cherry on the CakeSeptember, 2023
Voice-over: Tonight, the Seychelles are docking at the “The cherry on the cake".
Radina Dumanyan: In Bulgaria there is no specialized shop for Seychelles products, I'm almost sure about that.
Voice-over: There will be "chicken milk” and heart of palm.
Maxim Behar: Are there hearts of palm?
Salesman: There are.
Maxim Behar: Really?
Voice-over: And most of all, there will be many stories from a host who knows literally the whole world.
Levon Hampartzumyan: He’ll be telling stories while he is cooking, maybe related to what he's cooking.
Maxim Behar: It's a very simple job, however you must know how to do it.
Voice-over: This week they will not just be cooking but will surprise us with their special guests. We start with the king of PR, well known locally and around the world - Maxim Behar. The actress whose smile never lies Radina Dumanian. The opera prima from whom even "Dolce vita" can take a lesson from - Darina Takova. And the banker who is suspected to be an undercover chef Levon Hampartzumyan. And in the end the keen eye with a sensitive palate Chef Ivan Manchev will judge them.
Maxim Behar: Hello, my name is Maxim Behar and tonight I'm the host of "The cherry on the cake".
Ivan Manchev: Honor and respect Mr. Behar, welcome to the “The cherry on the cake". I hope that you’ll manage to bring your style and great attitude to the kitchen too and cook one of the most delicious food today. I wish you good luck!
Radina Dumanyan:The bar is too high, so I have special expectations for tonight.
Maxim Behar: I'm not going to cook here. Does it look like a kitchen, no it doesn’t. This is the office of the company I run. My work is deep in my heart, I've been in public relations for almost 30 years. I've met several interesting people here. Pope John II, who gave me his gold medal, Hillary Clinton, my good friend Prince Charles who I've met many times.
Voice-over: It's nice to have such friends to ask for a pinch of salt, a glass of veg oil, a horses-drawn wagon, just the little things of life.
Maxime Behar: It's a unique Code of Ethics that I wrote in 2001. Here's a very small part of the history I have as a person in journalism with a long career path, then in private business. You see a wonderful picture with the King in the Synagogue in Sofia one of the most beautiful in Europe. This photo is very interesting the daughters of Ernesto Che Guevara who I interviewed in the mid-80s.
Voice-over: If you interview them again, please ask if you put a comma in front of Che Guevara, I've been wondering all my life.
Maxime Behar: Prince Philip, the Spanish Prime Minister Felipe Gonzalez, look at this handsome man, Hristo Stoichkov many years ago. George Soros and so these are people every one of them has given me something, I've had wonderful conversations. We've been friends with many of them.
Levon Hampartzumyan: Yeah, he's met successful people in business, politics, media, so he's famous enough himself that other famous people know him.
Maxim Behar: Here's the big surprise in this business office. Can you imagine what it is?
Voiceover: Looks like a pregnant rugby ball, but if it's not, I have no idea.
Maxim Behar: It comes from the Seychelles, of course, it's called Coco de mer because the first settlers in the mid-17th century of the Republic of Seychelles were missionaries who arrived from Africa. They arrived on the largest island, Mahe. These coconuts started coming from the ocean and so they called them 'Coco de mer' or 'Coconuts from the sea'. Why do you think I hold it in my hands? It is because I have been the Honorary Consul General of the Republic of Seychelles in Bulgaria for 18 years. Therefore, tonight for my dear guests, but also you will watch it dear TV audience, already my friends, there will be a special Seychelles menu. It will start with a unique salad called "The Millionaire's Salad". This is one of the most distinguished and rare dishes in Seychelles that can only be eaten in the finest and most expensive restaurants in the islands. You will be fascinated by the fabulous Tuna fish steaks I am going to prepare. There will be Seychellois Nougat for dessert, of course Chili and other interesting sauces such as papaya ground with spices. Details in a bit. So, let’s go shopping before the shops has been closed and then start cooking because it will get dark. And knowing what gourmet food lovers my guests are I need to have cooked all, when they come to have everything Seychellois ready, it's not quick at all.
Ivan Manchev: Well, high level is a high-level Mr. Behar. I hope you'll do your best. From what I've heard Seychelles has a bit of French influence so I would expect you to do something French as well, but what you're going to cook today I hope it's going to be in the best way. And bring us into the culture of Seychelles.
Radina Dumanyan: There is no specialized shop for Seychelles products in Bulgaria, I am almost sure about that.
Voice-over: Don't count on it too much, Consuls shop at other groceries.
Maxim Behar: Alex, hello.
Alex: Hi. How are you?
Maxim Behar: Good to see you. I'm great. I've been invited to cook in the "Cherry on the cake" I'll have a lot of good friends at home. I was told there was fish from Seychelles here and it's fresh.
Alex: From the Seychelles specifically caught yesterday and arrived today with the morning flight.
Voice-over: Of course, the fishermen there don’t go out in the sea until they’ve got a plane ticket to fly it here.
Alex: The Cherry on the cake is the tuna.
Maxim Behar: Let me see it.
Alex: There it is.
Maxim Behar: Great, that's what I came for.
Alex: The Indian Ocean is the cleanest area in the world because the fewest ships sail there. The water is clean, it's not polluted with fuels.
Maxim Behar: To tell you something you don't know. This is exactly how they cut the fish in Seychelles to look like the continent of Africa. Please select 6 pieces for me. Do you have hearts of palm?
Alex: I do, absolutely.
Maxim Behar: Seriously and I also need palm leaves, are there any?
Alex: Banana ones.
Maxim Behar: Banana leaves. I need let’s say 5.
Radina Dumanyan: In the kitchen, the banana leaves are used to lay on the floor so that when the cook goes over with a hot pan he slips and falls. So, he spills everything on himself.
Maxim Behar: I'll put the fish steak on a banana leaf with a special sauce. With some papaya and Seychelles chili.
Ivan Manchev: Seychelles chili is very hot, so care must be taken.
Alex: Can I come and visit you too.
Maxim Behar: Of course, with the greatest pleasure. You can even give some good advice. Now comes one of the important parts, to buy the fruits, vegetables, and everything we need to cook. Imagine if we just put tuna steak and nothing else. Knowing my guests well, they will just get up and leave.
Voice-over: If they leave call Prince Charles to bring his relatives.
Maxime Behar: We take fresh salad onions and three cloves of garlic. Let's see what's inside. I've come for coconuts, and these are lovely, I’ll take the mango for sure. A market without limes is not a market.
Seller: This is the yellow kiwi.
Maxim Behar: I'll take some of it too.
Seller: Parsley and dill Bulgarian production.
Maxim Behar: I must admit to you that these spices are not available in Seychelles. I import them from everywhere and I take it just in case because they don’t fit the local taste, but I can find what to use it for.
Seller: Here you are.
Maxim Behar: Thank you very much. What's your name?
Maxim Behar: Silvana, on behalf of my guests for whom I will be cooking a special Seychellois menu please accept my special gratitude because you sell great products. Stay healthy and keep serving your customers. We start the actual part before that I make a clarification.
Ivan Manchev: Great apron, bravo. Prepared as always.
Maxime Behar: "Mon Kontan Sesel" means "I love Seychelles" in Creole, I only cook with this apron because I mainly cook Seychellois dishes when I do. You may find it strange, but these people - 90,000 population, also start their dinner or lunch with a salad. The famous and popular salad in Seychelles is the "Millionaire's Salad", as in Bulgaria it is the "Shopska Salad".
Levon Hampartzumyan: Do millionaires eat salad, I thought they only ate black and red caviar.
Maxim Behar: Hearts of palm or is it the top of the palm that has something like a crown. Inside the stem itself that's the heart of the palm itself very tasty and nice. First, we start cutting it into small pieces. By no means should they be squares, cubes or anything else. By the way, there are a lot of palm trees in Seychelles, you know it, you must have seen a lot of movies. There is one detail the leaves of the palm trees serve to cover the local houses. That is why it is forbidden to cut the palm leaves and the trees themselves too.
Voice-over: Well, it's like eating some guy's roof top insulation.
Maxim Behar: These palm trees are grown for this purpose, so that both the bark and the heartwood can be used. Now we add some lemon juice and see what happens, how to squeeze a lemon easily, simply, and quickly.
Voice-over: After the commercials, we've got one-of-a-kind dishes.
Maxim Behar: What is "Satini" neither is it like "stuffed peppers" or "Shopska salad". "Satini is Satini" something very interesting.
Voice-over: And let's just hope the guests don't mix the thin line between extravagance and snobbery.
Radina Dumanyan: That's very fanciful "millionaire's salad."
Voice-over: Before the commercials, it was the host turn to welcome guests, a host who had met so many celebrities.
Maxim Behar: Pope John II, who gave me his gold medal, Hillary Clinton, my good friend Prince Charles who I've met many times.
Voice-over: And for the company, a rendezvous with island cuisine.
Maxime Behar: "Mon Kontan Sesel" that means "I love Seychelles" in Creole, I cook only with this apron because I mainly cook Seychellois dishes.
Voice-over: Let's grab the machete and get started as it’s about time at the Seychelles.
Maxim Behar: Now we put in some olive oil. Here's this red onion. We must put it in the salad. Here are our "millionaire's slices." This fresh onion is a must.
Ivan Manchev: I would cut it even a little bigger.
Maxim Behar: It's a lot of work to prepare this salad, it's the millionaires’ salad. I don't know how a millionaire feels, I'm not the one.
Ivan Manchev: The most important thing is to be a millionaire in your heart and your views towards life.
Maxim Behar: Ladies and gentlemen, the "millionaire's salad made by Max" is ready.
Ivan Manchev: You made a great salad, you chose the right plates, I'm super happy about it.
Radina Dumanyan: That's very fancy - "millionaire's salad".
Voice-over: That’s how it works on islands. They eat lobsters like plain waffles there.
Maxim Behar: We're moving on to papaya "satini." There was an idea to make it out of sweet potato. However, my good friend Milen Velikov, who is actually my consultant as my guests will find it written on the menu. He really insisted on papaya and I agreed with him because that is the real Seychellois "Satini". What is "Satini" you will see now. I don't think it has a definition in English, nor is it like "stuffed peppers" or "Shopska salad". "Satini is Satini" something very interesting and strange, it is a wonderful appetizer.
Levon Hampartzumyan: Papaya is very useful, but it's not my favorite tropical fruit. It's some kind of a tropical pumpkin anyway.
Voice-over: Don’t do that, today we call papaya a pumpkin, and tomorrow we’ll call the pineapple a medlar. Where is this world going to.
Maxim Behar: I just peeled this papaya, cut it up, and now I'm going to scrape it on this grater. See how hard it is for me, however, see how it should look like.
Ivan Manchev: Because the piece of papaya is big. Cut it in two and it will be easier for you.
Maxim Behar: We'll pour water here. We put Himalayan pink salt so that the sweetness of the papaya can be neutralized and make it more delicious of course. In the meantime, we slice the onion very carefully.
Levon Hampartzumyan: He’ll be telling stories while he is cooking. He may share some of his memories from the Seychelles. It’s going to be funny.
Maxim Behar: In 2004 I received a strange email from my acquaintances in Paris. They said to me, "Mr. Behar the founder president of the Republic of Seychelles Sir James Mancham is coming to Sofia he knows no one in Bulgaria, would you mind to see him, have lunch, get to know him and possibly if you can help him in business. "Honestly, I did not have a clue where Seychelles were. And so, Sir Mancham turned up in Bulgaria and we had lunch. After a fortnight a strange number rang on my mobile phone - it was Sir James, "I want you to be our consul in Bulgaria, I want you to represent us I like you very much".And I didn't know what it was, but it sounded very good "Consul”. I said, "Very good Sir James, when can I come" and he said, "Monday." I travelled 14 hours through Paris and when I arrived I fell in love with Seychelles - a great country. The beaches there are the best. Islands there are the most beautiful. Everything else you can think of - palm trees, exotic fruits. The people are unique with wide smiles, good natured, helpful, pleasant islanders. Back to "Satini" I hope the salt water on this lovely papaya has taken away its sweetness a little. How nice is to squish it to dry it. I pour out this water. You've seen the big secret of "Satini" – it is squishing. Now here we must put some olive oil, add the papaya, add the onion. As my good friend Solomon Passy says, "Nothing can happen without chili pepper." Chili pepper on everything, even dessert.
Ivan Manchev: It's nice to have the pan heated up a bit before you sauté the onions, then you put the papaya and finally the chili.
Maxim Behar: You can't make "satiny" without Kurkuma. Nobody can guess what lemon pepper is.
Ivan Manchev: That's interesting, bravo.
Maxim Behar: We'll have to go through it over the fire. Now the "great September shuffle" begins. Here it is, this ready-made "Satini" from a Seychellois recipe of fresh papaya and other ingredients, spices. Look how nicely it softened and looks super.
Ivan Manchev: You did great job, I can't wait to see how you serve it.
Maxim Behar: Moving on to the next dish.
Radina Dumanyan: I expect fish for the maindish. I'm sure he went to a fish store and bought some amazing stuff.
Maxim Behar: In army, it was called first, second and third. And if I use that terminology tonight for the second we have tuna steak. In Seychelles it goes with a special Seychellois chili. We're making Seychelles chili now so that in the tuna plate, on the banana leaf, we can put something that will make the steak completely different. We take three cloves of garlic. I don't know if you are aware, but Seychellois cuisine is one of the healthiest in the whole world. There is a very popular plant called "citronella" -this is actually lemon grass. Very typical of Seychelles, it usually grown in every home garden. In the morning Seychellois get up with a small satay or a knife, cut some of the grass and make tea. Several times I ask Seychellois friends of mine, they say, "It is very helpful for digestion, to be able to absorb the food properly, let us drink a tea of 'citronella'." And they serve you citronella tea and they say, "Digestive, Digestive, however this is great for libido. It's a very nice aphrodisiac - our citronella."
Ivan Manchev: Mr. Behar great, everybody's going to be looking for "citronella" from now on, and we need to get our demographics a little better.
Maxim Behar: Nine out of ten times when you ask a Seychellois what they call "Aphrodisiac," it will be mineral water, papaya, something plucked from the tree, or their signature little bananas. I call it marketing though, not aphrodisiac.
Levon Hampartzumyan: One of the first erotic films was shot in Seychelles.
Maxim Behar: We put garlic, chili, ginger and now we add salt just a little bit. Again a little lemon pepper. We squeeze lime juice. This is Seychelles chili half done, we blend it. Seychelles chili is completely ready.
Ivan Manchev: And natural, I would add a little olive oil otherwise overall very good.
Maxim Behar: Look at it – what a beauty. I don't even taste it with my fingertip because it's quite strong. However, when we put some on the tuna steak, made fresh and they'll go together perfectly and it won't taste that hot. Time to start the coconut nougat the most workable aphrodisiac of the whole dinner. Now I want to show you how to crack a coconut. Then the other side. Here it is. It's quite a hard job. The lovely coconut. Original Seychellois.
Voice-over: One hundred percent traveled on the plane next to the tuna fish two next seats.
Maxim Behar: We need to grate it. I'll tell you why. Because the milk of the coconut is in the bark. Not inside like we all expect, you split it and drink it. that's not the milk it's in the bark. These chips are full of milk. We should squeeze the milk, take it out and put it in this bowl. For this we need boiling water. Great. We're going to let them sit for twenty minutes so that the coconut milk can come out nicely. It's going to be very necessary for the nougat. We need to put some water in here. Now this lovely coconut that you have seen, I will have to mash it thoroughly. It's like we're going to make wine out of it, but it won't make wine, but it will make a nice nougat I guarantee you. And that's sugar, water, and coconut flakes. I add vanilla essence.
Ivan Manchev: It would have been nice if he had put some fresh vanilla, a sprig, and there is plenty of it in Seychelles.
Maxim Behar: We put a little orange peel and lemon peel and stir. The coconut that we mixed, with all the ingredients we have to put them to rest in the fridge. And we put the coconut milk in the mashed potatoes because a real mashed potato can't do well without coconut milk. And that's the most Seychelles ingredient for the mash. Here's the famous, Seychellois, coconut, potato, lemon puree that I'm going to flavor our tuna steak with. Thanks so much for your attention, it turned out great. But now the most important thing is that those foodies who are coming tonight to love it.
Ivan Manchev: I trust they would love it as you did great job. You cooked super delicious Seychellois cuisine. I hope they appreciate it the way I did.
Maxim Behar: Now I'm heading to the table, it should be Seychellois too.
Darina Takova: Hi Maxim. I am at the airport quite worried because my flight is very late. I hope I'm not messing up something with your dinner, but I'm asking you please wait, I'm coming, don't eat all the food. I wish you a nice time when cooking, nice welcoming of guests. I can't wait to come and attend your dinner. As well as the whole week in this fantastic company, really. Good luck and see you soon, wait for me.
Maxime Behar: Okay sweetheart. Have a nice flight, we're looking forward to seeing you. I've cooked some great stuff. I'm really asking you when you arrive to knock on the door with your feet because your hands are full. Come on, we're waiting for you Darina. So, Darina's late because her flight's been changed. I hope she'll come and try this wonderful menu. As I hope my other two guests are here to welcome them. Let's sit down at the table and get started.
Radina Dumanyan: Mr. Levon Hampartzumyan
Levon Hampartzumyan: Levon.
Radina Dumanyan: It is a pleasure to meet you.
Levon Hampartzumyan: Hi, nice to meet you.
Radina Dumanyan: We are already here. As far as I understood Darina is late because of her flight.
Levon Hampartzumyan: Something with her flight, yes.
Radina Dumanyan: She will come, won't she?
Levon Hampartzumyan: She'll come, she's already with us spiritually, so when she comes, we'll tell her about the most interesting things from before she came and after.
Radina Dumanyan: And don't you hope that if she doesn't come we can share her food? Okay let's go.
Levon Hampartzumyan: The evening is promising we'll have a good time. So, I guess I have positive expectations from tonight.
Radina Dumanyan: Maxim, hello.
Maxim Behar: Come on. What time is it?
Radina Dumanyan: I'm Radina, nice to meet you. I know you indirectly.
Maxim Behar: I'm Maxim. It's very nice to meet you. And I know you indirectly, and already personally. Welcome Radina. Levon.
Levon Hampartzumyan: I’s very nice to see you.
Maxim Behar: Cousin. May you be alive and well, welcome.
Levon Hampartzumyan: We won't introduce each other because it will be the 756 time.
Maxim Behar: More than 30 years. Tonight, we have a Seychelles project, our first together to taste what I have prepared for you. I made it with lots of love and emotions.
Levon Hampartzumyan: An Armenian is more suited to be a chef than a Jew. I haven't heard of a Jewish cook yet.
Maxim Behar: Levon, don't start this topic right when you enter.
Voice-over: I bet on an “ashure” that we are about to hear more jokes on this topic.
Maxim Behar: Let's have a drink now because it's warm. I want to have a nice cold Prosecco, come on in.
Radina Dumanyan: A warm welcome, it's like we've always known each other. I liked it very much.
Maxim Behar: Wait and see.
Radina Dumanyan: Here it is.
Ivan Manchev: That's a nice, classy welcome. "Prosecco with attitude and comfort, bravo. I really liked it.
Radina Dumanyan: So, it's going to be a wonderful evening. That's what the "thunder" portends.
Maxim Behar: Radina, come in. You are very welcome. I'm very happy to meet you and see you. Cheers!
Radina Dumanyan: Cheers to that "welcome drink".
Levon Hampartzumyan: Cheers! And to Darina, of course. Maybe it's in the airplane already.
Maxim Behar: Darina will come now, see how much there is for her.
Voice-over: After the commercials, it's time for the secret ingredient in this week's rule.
Maxim Behar: You know, there's a very interesting rule in "The Cherry on the cake". Each of us is allowed to invite one guest, friend, opponent, critic, fan.
Voice-over: But won't the special guest surprise even the host.
Stefan Ivanov: Maxim I had another suggestion for you. We could swap our wives for an evening.
Voice-over: Before the commercials, Maxim Behar vowed to “ignite” his guests' senses in every way possible.
Maxim Behar: Nine out of ten times when you ask Seychelles what it is, they say, "Aphrodisiac."
Voice-over: And an ever-lasting dispute started right away on the front door.
Levon Hampartzumyan: An Armenian is more suited to be a chef than a Jew. I haven't heard of a Jewish cook yet.
Maxim Behar: Levon, don't start this topic right while you come in.
Voice-over: Today the ball is in the Jewish chefs' court. So, let's see the final result - how many goals there will be.
Maxim Behar: Here is the Welcome Drink and then we should sit down around the table so they can read my menu, which is not short at all. You know, there's a very interesting rule in “The cherry on the cake" tonight and that will continue throughout the week. Each one of us is allowed to invite a guest, a friend, an opponent, a critic, a fan that is dear to them. And I have invited an extraordinary person who I can say is a friend of mine. But I have great pleasure, honor, and respect for him. A lot of the viewers know him. His name is Stefan Ivanov. Stefan Ivanov together with his son Maxim, my namesake, of which I am even prouder, sailed across the Atlantic. Now it is with great pleasure and honor that I would like to welcome my friend Stefan Ivanov, who will be my special guest tonight.
Stefan Ivanov: Nice to meet you.
Maxim Behar: Welcome. Welcome.
Radina Dumanyan: Hi Stefan, I'm Radina, nice to meet you.
Levon Hampartzumyan: Hi Stefcho, we've known each other for a long time.
Stefan Ivanov: The dinosaur banker years. Since the financial crisis in 2008.
Levon Hampartzumyan: Yes, yes.
Stefan Ivanov: It's very nice to have friends and to have someone to invite you to a special dinner. Especially if he has prepared something so exotic.
Maxim Behar: Stefan, thank you very much again for being here. Welcome, we're going to have a nice Seychellois evening. What I've prepared for my guests is a complete Seychellois menu.
Radina Dumanyan: I never imagined that I would taste Seychellois cuisine. And it's an opportunity that probably comes once in your lifetime unless you go to Seychelles.
Stefan Ivanov: Maxim, you're not playing it safe with the exotics on this menu. You've never played it safe. Are you sure it's going to work out for you?
Maxim Behar: Yes, I'm sure.
Voice-over: Yes, honest Consular. The man knows what he's doing.
Stefan Ivanov: I see that there is one reassurance, mashed potatoes, but everything else seemed quite risky.
Maxim Behar: Did you see what's in the mashed potatoes? There's coconut milk.
Stefan Ivanov: I was sure that you would take big risks, and for that, as a good old friend, I bring you a gift. To reassure you, so to speak. If your menu doesn't work out, I'm bringing you some things that crossed the ocean with us. That supplied us with enough calories.
Maxime Behar: Yeah wait, that.
Levon Hampartzumyan: Freeze-dried food.
Stefan Ivanov: It's freeze-dried food, so frozen and dried food. Which saves you when you need calories.
Maxim Behar: Spaghetti carbonara.
Stefan Ivanov: When you open them and wait a little bit, it's like a freshly cooked meal.
Maxim Behar: Stefan, this is an extraordinary gift. Thank you very much.
Stefan Ivanov: Hopefully you won't need it, but...
Maxim Behar: I hope I will need it, I hope I will go on an adventure like you did with my namesake Maxi.
Stefan Ivanov: Actually, it was Maxim's idea, his namesake, my son at 15.
Levon Hampartzumyan: Actually, it was Maxim's idea, his namesake, my son at 15.
Stefan Ivanov: There is one right season to cross the Atlantic by boat or rowboat. Which is winter, when the trade winds are very stable, and they push you in the direction you're headed. Because Max is a student, we couldn't sail in the winter. We had to sail in the summer, and then it's hurricane season. And we had to sail amid tropical storms and hurricanes. It was the first boat to cross the ocean completely.
Maxim Behar: Let's start with the "millionaire's salad." I don't know if there are any millionaires here at this table among us, rather not. Levon, I have known him for many years he is hardly a millionaire. He is a millionaire in his thoughts in his knowledge, his heart.
Levon Hampartzumyan: I am a millionaire in what I have spent.
Maxim Behar: As a banker? Okay, that's a good sign too by the way. Ladies and gentlemen millionaires, Bon Appetit.
Levon Hampartzumyan: Bon Appetit, thank you.
Radina Dumanyan: I liked that it was simple in terms of flavors, a good start for the dinner.
Maxim Behar: By the way, did you fish?
Stefan Ivanov: The first two or three weeks we were in survival mode. So, we couldn't think about fishing, but then we had all the time in the world and we were dropping hooks. There was an ecosystem of flying fish around the boat, and they were bumping into the boat because they were attracted by the cabin light. As they fell into the water the predatory fish attacked them, Mahi Mahi one meter at a time. A mahi-mahi chased them already the big sword fish, sharks, so there were always a lot of fish around the boat and with a hook, without even a rod we caught one-meter mahi-mahi. And we ate them raw on sashimi. To save on the freeze-dried food.
Levon Hampartzumyan: Did you have soy sauce?
Stefan Ivanov: We had soy sauce.
Levon Hampartzumyan: Well, so life is good.
Stefan Ivanov: After two or three hours on board the boat, the meat was starting to cook slightly and for lunch we had to make soup in the gas primus. Soup in which there was more meat than water. With a one-meter fish we could have fed ourselves two times and only the tail was left-over.
Maxim Behar: Seychelles fish is the best because it is caught in the clearest waters. The least ships sail through there, which is a fact, the least polluted water and the cleanest water makes wonderful fish. We're going to try it tonight so you can have your say. it will take me ninety seconds to make a steak, so they won't have much time to talk. I'm bringing it very quickly. That's right, it's a very simple job, however you must know how to do it. Have the pan itself super-hot, of course the tuna fish must be fresh and that's it. Ladies and gentlemen, tuna steak made by Maxim. Made by Seychelles.
Ivan Manchev. You don't need much, and you shouldn't be missing from the table for long.
Radina Dumanyan: Maxim I can't wait to get started, please hurry.
Maxim Behar: Wait, wait, here it is.
Radina Dumanyan: And what is it written on your apron, excuse me?
Maxim Behar: Wait, I forgot I was wearing it, "Mon Kontan Sesel". It means I love Seychelles. It's the best and most beautiful phrase that can be read all over the islands on billboards. You can hear it from people, even a waiter in a restaurant can say to you, "Mon Kontan Sesel". I'm dreaming, why don’t waiters in Bulgaria say "I love Bulgaria, these are super meatballs or a great steak.” When they serve your food.
Stefan Ivanov: Not only tonight, but almost every time we meet, Maxim talks about Seychelles. Clearly he takes his Honorary Consul commitment not formally, but really from the heart.
Maxim Behar: This is papaya "Satini" and this is mashed potatoes with coconut. This coconut that I tortured and took the milk out of, I put the chips in the mashed potatoes. I insist you to try the Seychelles chili because it's cooked specifically to be part of the steak.
Radina Dumanyan: It's just extremely tasty.
Levon Hampartzumyan: Well-done, Maxim.
Ivan Manchev: When we serve chili, and especially spicy chili, we should always warn our guests. And ask them if they want it or not, because not everyone likes spicy food.
Stefan Ivanov: We could swap wives for one night. Teach my wife to cook that way.
Maxim Behar: I answer your question right away Stefan. We're such good friends that it doesn't make sense to swap wives, but just go visit each other more often.
Stefan Ivanov: Wow, he's still in love with his wife!
Levon Hampartzumyan: When you say that in diplomatic protocol, in the world of the very rich who have breakfast, lunch, and dine with hearts of palm. Exchanging cooks not women, because women don't cook there, is considered a very great privilege. They exchange many other things of course. Mainly money tokens, sometimes they exchange wives and all that sort of thing. Millionaires’ world, let’s not think of it.
Maxim Behar: I hope they will like the tuna a lot. I made a lot of effort and now it's time to serve them dessert. Here it is the world-famous coconut nougat made by Maxim in our house.
Stefan Ivanov: Did you do it on the first try?
Maxim Behar: Yes, of course. This on the side is a star food, which is purely Seychellois.
Levon Hampartzumyan: Yellow Chinese pentacles.
Radina Dumanyan: I would probably lick my plate up if we didn't take a picture of it. However, eventually, it will be on TV.
Stefan Ivanov: You got it.
Radina Dumanyan: Somebody is ringing the bell?
Maxim Behar: Darina!
Darina Takova: We don't know each other, but it's like we know each other.
Maxim Behar: It's like we've known each other all our lives. Can I kiss your hand?
Darina Takova: Of course!
Voice-over: I imagine how you would greet each other if you knew each other. The palm tree's heart would have been touched.
Maxim Behar: Welcome, make yourself at home.
Darina Takova: Well-done.
Maxim Behar: Let me introduce you to my friend. First Radina.
Radina Dumanyan: Hi, Darina.
Darina Takova: That pretty girl.
Radina Dumanyan: It's very nice to meet you.
Darina Takova: Me too. Hi.
Stefan Ivanov: It's a pleasure.
Maxim Behar: Stefan Ivanov. Levon Hampartzumyan.
Levon Hampartzumyan: Darina, it's my pleasure.
Darina Takova: And to me. Hi.
Maxim Behar: Come in!
Darina Takova: Thank you!
Maxim Behar: What did they feed you on the plane?
Darina Takova: Nothing on the plane.
Maxim Behar: Nothing?
Darina Takova: Just a simple water. Nothing.
Maxim Behar: So, should we start the menu from the beginning or what?
Darina Takova: Not where you've come to, please.
Maxim Behar: We will be having the dessert. The dessert is coconut nougat. Darina, I tried to do a "baritone" or as they say, pick it up a little bit.
Darina Takova: Didn't manage much, but you need to practice.
Maxim Behar: I didn't succeed much, however I think I succeeded in the dessert.
Darina Takova: Let's see, gorgeous, thank you.
Maxim Behar: It's a Seychelles nougat. First.
Darina Takova: Let's say cheers and have a sip. Cheers, I'm very glad we got together.
Ivan Manchev: Mr. Behar made a great dinner. He took us to Seychelles, showed us their culture and food, which I am very happy about. Something different, and on the other hand he did it in the best way. Thank you for being with us. It was an honor.
Maxim Behar: Coconut nougat, I hope you like it along with the ice cream that I topped. A little bit to balance out the flavor. Now though.
Darina Takova: But did you do that?
Maxim Behar: Of course.
Darina Takova: In front of the cameras?
Maxim Behar: Naturally. In front of the cameras on "The cherry on the cake." However, let me ask you. Do you know what show we're on right now?
Stefan Ivanov: "The cherry on the cake."
Maxim Behar: Which one is “The cherry on the cake"?
Radina Dumanyan: We're going to see, obviously.
Maxim Behar: We are going to see now the real Cherry on the cake. Attention, please.
Voice-over: It's diplomatic surprise dinners after surprise dinners, but there's no way that's protocol.
Alfredo Torres: Hello, how are you? I'm very happy to see you.
Radina Dumanyan: It smells like dancing maniacs in here.
Maxim Behar: We are black and white.
Radina Dumanyan: Alfredo, Jesus Christ. I just saw him and I knew we were going to go wild. I needed that really.
Alfredo Torres: After eating and drinking hip to dance.
Radina Dumanyan: Come on, we were stuck. No patience.
Darina Takova: That just straight up killed me. I hadn't sat down yet and there was an amazing surprise.
Alfredo Torres: OOOOOO
Radina Dumanyan: The wine you had was not enough
Alfredo Torres: Hip move, that’s right. And now all together.
Darina Takova: All the way down, I can't stand up afterwards.
Alfredo Torres: Now hip move, go ahead, go ahead. Turn your hips, nothing happens without hips move.
Voice-over: And now it's time to turn some rating points.
Radina Dumanyan: Maxim, thank you for your diligence, thank you for making this happen, thank you for treating each of us personally. Thank you for introducing us to your dear friend Stefan. Thank you for the stories. My rating for your evening cannot be other than 10 points.
Darina Takova: Even though I was late I was still able to try Maxim's menu. It was impressive and I can't give it anything less than 10 points.
Levon Hampartzumyan: My rating for Maxim is 9. Only the fish could have been one idea better cooked, even a pity that there are no halves. And of course, 10 is a mark for God.
Voice-over: 29 points for Maxim Behar and his Seychelles evening. Whether this score will be talked about all the way in the Indian Ocean we don't know, but we do know who will be cooking tomorrow.
Radina Dumanyan: I had a great time tonight and if I could I would stay here in this wonderful company with exceptional people. The bar has been raised very high; I have a lot of preparation to do. I need to go and nap for a few hours, so bye till tomorrow.
Voice-over: Tomorrow night on "Cherry on the cake" let's drink to the broad smiles.
Radina Dumanyan: I got food on my teeth, I ate a lot of prosciutto.
Voice-over: Let's drink to the topics that unite.
Maxim Behar: Who decides what's real art, what's trash, what's chalga, or whatever?
Voice-over: And most of all, let's drink to disciplined company.
Darina Takova: From now on until the end of the evening, we must be careful, because we are advancing with the wine so that not to be in disgrace.
Radina Dumanyan: Oh God, this is what I'm talking about guys
You can see the whole show here.