Chef Inspired Healthy with Diane Henderiks ~ Michael Ferraro
Chef Michael Ferraro shows personal chef and culinary nutritionist Diane Henderiks how to make a quick, simple, and healthy salmon dish
Michael Ferraro started his impressive culinary career at the tender age of 20 and has been on fire ever since! He has worked in top-notch establishments like Beacon Restaurant, Mercer Kitchen, Four Seasons Hotel in NYC and its fine dining restaurant, Fifty Seven Fifty Seven, The Biltmore Room, Café Centro and Fresh Tribeca. Michael is the executive chef at Delicatessen in NYC where he prepares international comfort food with a twist by incorporating elements from his Italian roots with classic French training. Michael is also the creator and executive chef of macbar, a restaurant fully dedicated to gourmet macaroni & cheese.
Now let’s get Michael’s take on healthy cooking and eating…
Diane: Do you see a trend with diners seeking better-for-you options on the menu?
Michael: Yes, for sure, and I have for a while. Even though the basis of my restaurant is derived around international comfort food, I have a wide variety of health-conscious dishes.
Diane: What’s your definition of “healthy eating”?
Michael: A well-balanced diet with the majority of the food based in vegetables and lean protein. Not over-eating. Even while dining out at some more indulgent meals, an important rule of thumb is to not overeat. Keep the portion size moderate.
Diane: What is your secret to cooking healthier without sacrificing flavor?
Michael: With proteins, I like to incorporate flavors with marinates and brines. I use olive oils instead of butter and try to limit the dairy, as well. The quality of ingredients is very important because very little needs to be done to enhance their flavor.
Diane: What is your favorite dish on your own menu and why?
Michael: My favorite dish is actually one of the healthiest dishes, the tuna tartare. I use lean yellow fin tuna with toasted soy vinaigrette and a wasabi-flavored roe. This is a dish that’s packed with protein, with very few carbohydrates.
Diane: How about an update on what’s new and exciting in your world?
Michael: We just launched our summer menu at Delicatessen, which includes lots of fresh and fun new dishes, including the salmon tataki I’m making here. I am also excited to be showcasing my burger at Burger Bash during this year’s New York City Wine & Food Festival, and then the South Beach Wine & Food Festival in February.