2.9.10 In yesterday's New York Times Susur Lee recounted a truly frustrating trip from Toronto to NYC for an Iron Chef competition with Bobby Flay. He's most comfortable cooking with his own ingredients so he packed what he needed on ice & got a letter from the network explaining his unusual luggage. However, when Border agents opened his bags, the special cornstarch he had with him broke open and went everywhere; the agents were immediately suspicious that it was not actually cornstarch. They tested it to make sure it wasn't cocaine (obviously it wasn't), but then found rosemary and other herbs which they insisted on testing too (again, wasn't drugs). In the end, he'd lost about 2/3 of all the product he'd brought with him. When they finally let him go, one of the border agents called him back to ask for a picture. After all of that, it turns out he knew exactly who Susur Lee was and wanted a fan photo.
Susur Lee tied Bobby Flay in the Iron Chef competition, though he's convinced he would have won if his ingredients had all made it through the border.
Susur Lee is the executive chef at Shang in New York, Zentan in Washington and Madeline's and Lee, both in Toronto.
Source: New York Times