ANDRÉ CAMEIRÃO: “I HAVE MANY IDEAS AND I WANT TO SHOW THEM”

The Portuguese chef André Cameirão trained at the CET School of Hospitality in Barcelona and, after going through different kitchens in his native country, jumped into Sergi Arola’s restaurant, “one of his best experiences,” he explains.

Later he decided to try his luck abroad, specifically in the Sunflower restaurant in Amsterdam, where he lived new experiences, met new products and lived with renowned chefs.

In the last year, he has worked at the Hotel Vila Gale in Sintra (Portugal) and now begins a new adventure at the Azor Hotel in Ponta Delgada.

His career has made him travel to Spain, to the CET hospitality school, in Barcelona.

It has been a great trip. A few years ago, I was in school, and now I am in the semifinal of a great event. It is something that makes me quite happy, but always with the idea that I can still do more and better.

It is his first time in this international contest …

This is the first time I participate in this contest. This edition also includes Israel and Greece, which promotes greater diversity in the regions, but the chances of winning are also reduced. I continue this contest since its second edition, I think that more and more young chefs attend this type of event and this time I decided to compete because I felt I was prepared, had many ideas and wanted to show them.

His first experience abroad was in Amsterdam, in a restaurant with Portuguese cuisine in the capital of the Netherlands.

It was a Portuguese house, with products from my country, but with a different touch, since we were in the city of Amsterdam. We had quick snacks, such as octopus salads, cod with chickpeas, classic grilled cod with mashed potatoes and octopus with potatoes, but also with vegetables such as beets, radishes, and endives, which are widely used products in the kitchen. The presentation of the dishes was meticulous. We also had “cataplanas,” a typical Algarve dish where we use some seafood and fish. And, of course, the cream pie (cream pie, Belem pastries) was never missing.

In the dish that presents the contest, do Portugal’s flavors predominate or those of its passage through European kitchens?

My dish will have a story and a meaning. It will be a link between sea and land. I use the liver and fish scales with smoke and fire techniques. The flavors and products will be Portuguese, such as salt, olive oil, fish, and herbs, combined with techniques that I acquired in some of the countries where I have been.

And if you win, what do you plan to do?

There are still two phases to meet the winner, so little by little, but if I win, I will go to a Portuguese restaurant for dinner, and then I will see.

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