What's Cookin' Cayman - Interview with Chef Adriano Usini

Candid Q&A's from one of Cayman's most 'colourful' chefs

Chef Adriano Usini

What is the most overrated ingredient?
I would say fois gras and truffles.

At what age did you know you wanted to be a professional Chef and what was the first dish you learned to cook?
When I was a kid, I used to help my Grandmother and my Mom make fresh pasta and gnocchi at home.

What condiment can you not do without?
For sure olive oil.

What famous dish is unique to your hometown or country?
Oh boy! I am from Italy! From my hometown there is a kind of ravioli called “casoncelli” which is stuffed with different types of meat and it is then served with sage-butter and parmesan cheese.

If you had your own cooking show, what would you call it?
Shake it and Bake it.

What’s your favourite late-night snack?
A sandwich made with salami from Italy.

Have you ever cooked for anyone famous and if so, who?
I have cooked for Silvio Berlusconi, the Italian ex-prime minister, many times in Milan. And a few years ago I cooked for Olivia Newton John when she came to Ragazzi.

What are your thoughts on GMO and organic produce?

For my entire career as a chef I have always tried to use only natural products and especially those that are in season.

What is your most humorous chef moment?
Probably when one customer asked the waiter if the salmon was local or another one said that the chicken tasted like iguana!