Chef Gianfranco Chiarini,
One of the most famous Italian Chefs is revealing unknown parts of his life and his career.Get close and personal with one of the most popular Italian Chefs
From Italian origins he grew up between Italy, Venezuela and the U.S. He joined the Instituto de Alta Gastronomia de Caracas in the early 90s, from where he graduated as an International Chef.
Later, returned to the United States and graduated with a master’s degree from the Pittsburgh Culinary Institute. In Paris, France, he attended the Cordon Bleu, earning Le Grand Diplome Culinaire. Finally in Italy he earned the honorable membership of Executive Chefs of La Gran Accademia della Cucina Italiana. He has worked and trained to Michelin standards under great chefs in Italy and France.
Chef Gianfranco Chiarini has been directly involved in the management, menu designing, prototype and product development, as well as the opening, of luxury Hotels, Culinary Centers and many restaurants in the U.S.A., Venezuela, the Caribbean, Ireland, Germany, Austria, Italy, Netherlands, France, Spain, Portugal, Czech Republic, Kuwait, Oman, Bahrain, Lebanon, Qatar, Dubai, Jordan, Egypt, South Africa, Indonesia, Ethiopia, Turkey, Hong Kong and India.
Selected as best chef in the Persian Gulf 2005 & 2006, by the acclaimed “Chaine des Rotisseurs” for their gala dinners.
Chef Gianfranco Chiarini has served personalities such as: His Highness Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, AMIR of Kuwait (*1926+2006), U.S President Jimmy Carter and his wife, The Presidents of the African Union, Princess Amira al-Taweel and her husband the Saudi prince Al-Waleed bin Talal. Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani Emir from Qatar, Turkish President Abdullah Gül, Vice President of Iraq Adil Abdul-Mahdi, and many more.Easy questions to warm up… How did you become a Chef ?
Growing up in a multi-cultural family and of course with a rigorous grandmother who taught me the true origin of flavors. This triggered my empathy for good food and it’s in depth analysis even at an early age. Therefore it was inevitable that once I finished high school my destiny was to be in front of the fires, pots and pans.
What is your “motto-quote” in life ?
“A well-adjusted person is one who makes the same mistake twice without getting nervous.” How would you describe your character with 5 words?
Fast, Adaptable, Focused, Disciplined and Passionate What are your weaknesses if any ?
I hate to repeat myself twice. What do you see yourself doing in 5 years’ time?
Everything I want and without regrets. Exactly that. More Professional questions… What qualities you value in most cooks ?
Honesty, Care, Teamwork, Discipline and Low Maintenance What mistakes in the kitchen you will never forgive ?
I will forgive The first one and not the obvious ones. I appreciate common sense Who is the chef you admire the most ?
Paul Bocuse What would be your worst kitchen nightmare ?
Not having my valuable dishwashing steward on a busy Friday night What is the secret of your success ?
Not bending over backwards, having personality, not bullshitting others and honest even if it hurts
More Personal questions…What are your favorite local specialty and International specialty?
Since I live in Poland now it will be Pierogi and Internationally Tagliolini, Butter and Truffles. Which Cuisine is your favorite?
Italian followed by Arabic Which is your favorite dish?
I have many but I love my super homemade salads What you do not eat?
Red meats, Dairy, Deep Fried, or anything that comes in a bag or a can What you didn’t like to eat as a child?
Eggplant, I love it now though Which is your favorite restaurant?
Any restaurant that serves honest food, that respects the raw materials and don’t do molecular and convenience cuisine Which is your favorite holiday destination?
Anywhere where my wife is Which is your favorite drink ?
Natural and freshly pressed juices What is your favorite activity ?
Cooking Your favorite movie ?
Remember the Titans Your favorite cookbook ?
My cook books More spicy questions… What is the most crazy thing you have done in your life?
Hide in the trunk of a car while passing two country borderlines in the Middle East in war time Have you done something in your life that you wish you haven’t and what was it?
Wasted so much time when I was young… Who you would like to take out for a Dinner and where?
My wife of course, wherever she wishes What and Who would you take on a desert Island ?
I think this answer is obvious, my wife 🙂 Who is the sexiest Celebrity Chef by your opinion?
I would say….me! of course in my opinion and my wife’s opinion, 🙂 Who would you like to be locked in the kitchen with, for one night (after service)?
With any waiter who hasn’t understand what takes to do what we Chefs do Which is your favorite “ Soul food” dish that you’ve created and can we have the recipe?
Italian / Caribbean & South American Fusion Fish. (Perú)
Atlantic Bonito Ceviche, warm Peperonata & Coriander,
Gazpacho cold marinating juices
Atlantic Bonito Ceviche:
800 gm = 14.11 oz. Atlantic Bonito, (julienne style cut)
1 – Large red onion, (sliced finely)
1 – Ají limo (limo chili pepper), chopped very fine
2 – Small tomatoes (chopped)
57 gm = 1/4 cup. Parsley (chopped)
20 gm = 4 teaspoons. Olive oil
20 gm = 4 teaspoons. Lemon juice
Juice of 15 limes
White pepper to taste
Pyramid Salt from the Indian Ocean. (to taste)
3 – Red peppers
2 – Yellow peppers
60ml =2.30 Fl oz. Extra-virgin olive oil
1 – Red onion, (peeled and sliced)
3 cloves of garlic, (finely chopped)
1 – Medium-sized bunch of marjoram or oregano
20 – Little very ripe baby plum tomatoes
1 – Generous bunch of basil (leaves only)
Pyramid Salt from the Indian Ocean. (to taste)
Freshly ground black pepper[margin20] Coriander, Gazpacho cold marinating juices:
the juices from the Ceviche
57 gm = 1/4 cup. Cilantro (chopped)
1 – small cucumber, (diced)
1 – Large tomato, (diced)
1 -Red pepper, (chopped)
1 – Green pepper, (chopped)
200 gm = 7 oz. Ice cubes (to blend the Gazpacho)
Method of preparation:
Approx preparation and cooking time: 2 – 4 hours.
Approx serving time: 30 minutes.
Difficulty level: 3/5.
Total servings on this recipe: 4 persons.
Atlantic Bonito Ceviche:
In a Pyrex or ceramic container, place the fish, onion, and tomatoes. Followed by chili, salt, and parsley. Cover with lime juice and olive oil. Protecting with clear film, and place in the refrigerator for an hour.
Make a large quantity of the marinating, letting the fish exposed to the acidic lime and lemon juices. Let the flavors and aromas blend for a couple of hours, until it is time to assemble.
Start by slicing the peppers in half, scooping out the seeds and julienne. On a medium, nonstick pan add a tablespoon of the olive oil, and apply heat.
When the oil is warm, add the onions, a dash of salt and sweat for 15 minutes, stirring from time to time.
Once the onions are soft, and translucent, add the garlic and marjoram. Sweat the onions for five more minutes. They should not have browned at all. Proceed now to integrate the peppers and stir to combine.
Pierce the little tomatoes with a small knife and add to the pan, squeezing softly between your hands to release their juice. Place a lid on the pan and simmer at low heat.
Continue simmering, until the peppers are soft, and almost falling apart. Drizzle over, the rest of the olive oil, add the basil leaves and set the salt and pepper, to taste. It will need salt and pepper. Keep semi-warm until assemble time.
Coriander, Gazpacho cold Marinating juices:
In a food processor, place all the ice cubes first at the bottom. Combine all the ingredients in the food processor on top of the ice cubes; process until smooth. Cover and chill. Be ready to assemble.
Let’s begin with the assembling of this highly attractive and contrasting dish, yet rich in colors, flavors, proteins and nutrients.
Full of freshness and energy. Definitely, a summer dish without a doubt.
Take a deep bottom shaped plate, and start assembling frontal layers, as if it was a painting. First start with the Ceviche, then peperonata, and so on as shown.
Now proceed to mix well your Ceviche juices/Gazpacho chilled and pour slowly on the plate without exaggeration or over flooding the ceviche. Enjoy it cold, as it is and have a pleasant fruity Sauvignon Blanc, 2005 or 2008. Just lovely!
NOTE: The Atlantic bonito, Sarda, is a powerful (mackerel-like fish), from the family Scombridae. It is an important business and game source, commonly found in shallow waters of the Atlantic Ocean.