The Napoli born chef Salvatore Silvestrino has been casting his culinary prowess over the City Center Rotana Doha, one of Qatar’s best 5-star hotels located in the heart of West Bay.
LLQ Lifestyle chats with the star chef to find out about his fusion cooking secrets, fine flavors, and slow-cooking enthusiasm that is making its mark on the culinary map of Doha.
Meet the 5-Star Chef Salvatore Silvestrino at the City Center Rotana
Becoming a chef is not an easy career to pursue. It needs sheer dedication and hard work to reach the high skies of the culinary space. We asked Chef Salvatore what made him decide to become a chef. He replied,
“My dad loves food and enjoys a great food night out as well, and then there is my mum who is an absolute firecracker in the kitchen, she instilled in me that willingness to further my knowledge of food and that passion to create.”
The Life in the Kitchen
Handling a professional culinary workspace is with exceptional expertise is something Salvatore is an expert in. We asked Salvatore how he managed to do all that with such calmness. He replied,
“Yes, I have worked in some amazing countries and all of them have provided me with different learnings and habitual routines when it comes to food. Regardless of which country you live and work in, you adjust yourself culturally to absorb as much as you can.
There is no pressure living in Qatar like there was no pressure living in Singapore or wherever else I have worked. Life in the kitchen can be extremely pressured if you let it be or are not up to the task. I love my job hence every day is a new beginning and a new chapter to write about.”
Professionally Reinventing the Slow-cooked Delicacies
Slow cooking is something that resembles the feeling of home, an echo of a family’s grand welcome to a homecoming, something that remind you of warmth and love. We asked the chef about the feedback he is getting for his slow-cooked dishes as, according to our knowledge, Salvatore is much into slow cooking. We got the answer,
“I like slow cooking; I love braising and adore roasting at low temperatures for long periods. The young chefs that did not fully grasp the idea of slow cooking are embracing it more and more and guests that love a stew or casserole fully appreciate it being cooked for 5 to 6 hours. “
Getting reconnected to the Food
A lot of people in our modern culture think they either don’t want to cook or say they don’t have time to cook. We asked Chef Salvatore how he would encourage Gen Z to get reconnected with their food. The chef gave us an inspirational reply.
“Food should not be used to fill you up when you are hungry but rather nourish your soul. The people need to reconnect with food because food is about that moment in time when you were a kid and sat at the table with your parents and conversed about the day.
I can recall a million dishes and where exactly I ate that dish and with whom. Whenever I cook something, I always go back to that early memory and how it made me feel.”
About the Arabic Cuisine
Since our star chef has been an enthusiast of slow-cooking, we asked him about what slow-cooked recipes he found interesting in Arabic cuisine. Here’s his reply.
“There are way too many to mention or write about, but if I was to name one that stands out, it is Harissa, WOW! Cooked wheat with chicken or Lamb until it becomes this porridge, almost mastic like consistency, accentuated by the smell of coriander, cumin and a little drizzle of ghee.”
Making a mark with Fusion Cuisine in Doha
Being a Napoli chef with soul, how has the fusion of different cuisine influenced your career? We asked, and the chef replied with a grin.
“I am from Napoli the city of a thousand smells and influences but we are as passionate about life as we are about food. I would have to say that I have masticated over a million recipes and chewed over a million menus in my lifetime so far.
And yes, every cuisine and every culture has influenced my cooking style and my career and every single menu, I have created. But I am still traditionally centered when it comes to Italian cuisine.”
The Chef Salvatore’s exclusive menu for the City Center Rotana Doha
Every chef creates his menu that comes from his years-long culinary experiences, the diversity of ingredients, the savory and sweetness of spices, and of course, his own signature style. When we asked Chef Salvatore about the menu at City Center Rotana Doha, he explained.
“The menus at City Centre Rotana are a reflection of my travels, my experiences, my learnings, and the diversity that one learns from the varied cultures you work with.”
This interview with Chef Salvatore get us really inspired to visit the City Center Rotana and indulge in his signature savory menus. Would like to catch up with us there?