When Andrew Del Vecchio was a kid, it was his dream to attend the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York, a small town 30 minutes from his hometown of Poughquag, New York. His dream came true.
In 2008, Del Vecchio graduated from the CIA, and now, four years later, the 24-year-old is chef de cuisine at Talde in Brooklyn. “Seven months ago, I was a line cook,” he says incredulously. “This is life in the fast lane.”
If Del Vecchio is overwhelmed by the pace, he doesn’t say so. And though he was raised on a diet of Italian-American food–much of it prepared by his grandmother–and worked for a brief spell at Andrew Carmellini’s restaurant Locanda Verde, he’s spent most of his cooking career exploring Asian ingredients and techniques. That path began at Buddakan, where he worked alongside Dale Talde; when Talde went on to open his eponymous Brooklyn restaurant, Del Vecchio joined him.
But for the latest edition of Williams-Sonoma’s and Tasting Table‘s Sous Chef Series, Del Vecchio looked to neither Italy nor Southeast Asia but to France, cooking seafood en papillote, a light, elegant and simple technique that’s incredibly versatile and easy to master. He made fish his in a foil pouch on the grill, but we adapted it to a parchment pouch cooked in the oven.