Preface: This blog started out as a brief Facebook status update, but turned into a 318 word essay! Enjoy!
Why is it that the term “CHEF” is being used way too often nowadays? To become a chef, you need years of training and cooking on the line in a restaurant. Anyone can put on a chef’s coat, but only the ones who’ve worked in the trenches should have the distinction of being called “CHEF”! In fact I think that a chef’s jacket should technically be called a cook’s jacket.
Gabriele Corcos and Debi Mazar, stars of the Cooking Channel’s “EXTRA VIRGIN”
(Photo courtesy of Gabriele Corcos)
Growing up in Fiesole on the outskirts of Florence, Gabriele Corcos was taught to love and appreciate food and where it came from. He also learned the intricacies of Tuscan cooking from his mother and grandmother. Today, Gabriele and his wife, actress Debi Mazar, are the stars of their own cooking show on The Cooking Channel called “Extra Virgin”, which can be seen at 10 PM EST on Wednesday nights. They are also the creators of a video web series called “Under the Tuscan Gun”, which was the initial inspiration for their new show.
Arrosto Fiorentino aka Roast Beef
On Super Bowl Sunday, most people are eating the usual suspects: chicken wings, chips and dip, maybe a sub/hero or a couple of American style pizza pies. I, on the other hand, went against this big game fare in favor of something a little more Italian or should I say Florentine. Attending Dario Cecchini’s (the world’s greatest butcher) recent butchery demonstration in NYC, I’ve had a hankering for meat, and in particular beef and to be even more specific roast beef aka arrosto fiorentino. (To read about Dario’s demonstration click here.) I’m talking about just that: beef that is roasted in a hot oven. This was a no frills recipe that was super easy and tasted better than anything you could buy pre-made.
With the one and only Dario Cecchini
I’ve met some influential people in my life, but I was truly moved and inspired when last week I had the honor of attending a demonstration by Dario Cecchini, the world’s greatest butcher. The demo was held at the Italian Culinary Academy at the International Culinary Center in New York City. Dario lives and works in a small town in Tuscany called Panzano in Chianti. He has a butcher shop called Antica Macelleria Cecchini, as well as, three restaurants (Solo Ciccia, Officina della Bistecca & Dario +). He was visiting America on a goodwill mission to introduce the dying art of butchery to a new generation of American chefs.