Colombian food gets a bad rap. The amazing culinary culture of this incredibly diverse country gets lost among the many inexpensive Colombian restaurants we see in the United States. Chef Daniel CastaÃ±o could be the man to change the world’s view of Colombian cuisine.
CastaÃ±o graduated from the French Culinary Institute and has worked at some of the most challenging kitchens, including Lupa, Babbo, and Quality Meats. Most recently he worked under the tutelage of Mario Batali, as Sous Chef for Otto Enoteca Pizzeria and Executive Chef for the Italian Wine Merchants. In Foixa, Spain he worked with Felicitat Rutlan at Can Quel, and he is the Executive Chef of his newest project, VERA, a coastal-Italian inspired restaurant in Designer Silvia Tcherassi’s debut Hotel and Spa in Cartagena de Indias (a gorgeous vacation city – highly recommended by this Colombian).
Daniel is the Executive Chef and Partner at Emilia Romagna in his hometown, BogotÃ¡, Colombia, which was named Best New Restaurant by Revista La Barra in 2009. Outside of the restaurant business, Daniel is Cofounder and Chef for Brooklyn based supper club social experiment A Razor, A Shiny Knife, which has achieved international acclaim for its food as well as its educational and theatrical dinners and events.
We asked Chef CastaÃ±o for a perfect summer recipe. He told us “a perfect summer recipe is one that is refreshing, light and easy to make. I like the Insalata di Arance because it is just that. No cook wants to stand in front of a hot stove for hours when the summer heat is on, and the sun is out. You want something that will cool you down and keep you light. We have great buffalo in Colombia, and having access to their milk is a wonderful thing. Buffalo Mozzarella, yogurt, stracciatella, and burrata are all amazing products that can be served cold, and still be enjoyed thoroughly. I use yogurt in this dressing because it gives the tang, acidity, and fat that you would get from a normal vinaigrette that uses vinegar, oil, salt and pepper. Using fresh orange segments gives the salad a refreshing burst of flavor that compliments the dish.”
Insalata di Arance
- 100gr Arugula Leafs
- 100gr Bufala Yogurt
- 20gr Toasted Macadamia Nuts
- 80gr Orange Segments
- 10cc White Wine Vinegar
- 10c.c Olive Oil
- 0.2gr Sea Salt
- Mix all ingredients except orange segments in a bowl.
- Season to taste
- Place everything in a ring mold on top of a plate, garnish with orange segments, sprinkle with olive oil.
VERA at the Tcherassi Hotel in Cartagena Calle Del Sergeant Major N 6-21. Cartagena de Indias, Colombia. +57 (5) 664.4445