Massimino himself describes his relationship with gastronomy: “I am a chef, I enjoy fire, the energy of the kitchen, and research. But I am most attracted by the real thing, the pure state of things, by whatever grows from a root”…The passion he puts in each of the topics speaks of his natural talent, creativity and great care for the culinary world. His devotion to cuisine started at a very young age, as he took great pleasure in both eating and cooking. When he was 18, a class with Gato Dumas – a famous Argentine chef – was the starting point in his career.
In 1998 he took a cooking and pastry course while working for a number of restaurants in Buenos Aires city. He holds a degree in Culinary Art from IAG (a distinguished cooking school in Argentina) and has always worked hand in hand with
top chefs renowned for setting trends. Massimino also hit the big screen and hosted his own cooking show “Más Sano, Más Rico” (The healthier, the tastier) on the prestigious TV station El Gourmet.
His long-standing vegetarian and raw food diet logically influenced his career and paved the way for his current fame as one of the most outstanding Argentine chefs in this culinary specialty. Buenos Aires Verde, Massimino’s own restaurant, is a flagship of his unique cooking style.
In conversation with Argentina On The Go, this celebrated chef explained the benefits of vegetarian food in our country and shared some recommendations to make the most of these flavorful options. “Vegetarian and vegan cuisine is growing more and more, and that is a fact. It has been adopted by a great variety of people from all ages, and even kids are being raised on this diet from an early age. It is not only a diet, but also a lifestyle that embraces respect for other beings, namely, animals.”
The Significance of Vegetarian Food
“It is believed that meat provides the necessary proteins for a healthy development. Yet, we can find a good amount of proteins in the vegetable kingdom as well. Following a plant-based diet also means being environmentally conscious and respectful of the Earth’s cycles. More and more people who take to this philosophy are also finding the solution to many of their health problems”.
“Eating organic and agro ecological foodstuffs is of utmost importance, as they grow each season and carry with them all the nutrients our bodies need. What’s more, by choosing seasonal food, we are bound to pay a better price, while avoiding pesticides and genetic manipulation”.
Risotto de quinoa a la calabaza – Buenos Aires Verde
Which is the greatest challenge for Argentine chefs when it comes to vegetarian food?
“Each cuisine style has its own diverse techniques to apply to the ingredients and the cooking itself. Like with French cuisine, dishes are prepared following certain specific procedures. Many tend to believe that a dish is supposed to contain meat and some garnish, but that is not always the case.”
“In this type of cuisine many of the dishes are created from the combination of an array of ingredients. A clear example could be a simple Yamani rice wok dish. Basically, it is all about using ingredients other than meat. The rest is a matter of tapping into one’s creativity, like with any other culinary style”.
Buenos Aires Verde
“Our philosophy embraces respect for the cycles of the Earth and those living on it, as well as the use of purely organic or pesticide-free foodstuffs. In Buenos Aires Verde, our recipes are designed and elaborated with the right combination and compatibility of the ingredients in mind, which makes it possible for the body to be nourished, to develop and experience true and natural repair.”
The Chef’s Recommendations
Among the must-taste dishes in this establishment that stand out most are the cooked lasagna, the raw lasagna, the Buenos Aires Verde power pizza, the quinoa risotto with butternut squash and the veggie chori (sausage). Visitors are invited to discover the fascinating selection of flavors, textures and colors that the vegetable kingdom is proud to offer.
Chori veggie – Buenos Aires Verde
In closing our special post on veggie food today, we would like to share with our readers a brief list of some other exceptional spaces where to relish this kind of food.
The ideal place for those who are planning on savoring an entirely vegetarian dish for the first time, Chui features a creative menu with local flavors likely to captivate even the most demanding palates. Its setting, which includes a comfy green space, is adapted to every season. Though booking in advance is not required, we suggest being there early enough to secure a table.
Costa Rica 6038
“Plant-and-mushroom-based world food” is Sacro’s slogan. This vegetarian space has become more and more popular thanks to the delicacies served here. A must-visit for those who seek to know places through their local cuisine.
In the heart of barrio Palermo, visitors will discover a more laid-back setting – with various Instagram-worthy corners- in Lado V, the perfect spot to spend a great time with friends. Among some of the big favorites are: Nachos with vegan sauce, fries with romesco sauce and garlic and oil dressing, mushroom vaos, vegan burgers, pizza, salads and drinks to suit all tastes.
Palermo: Bonpland 1920
Belgrano: Cuba 2220
And to end this fantastic tour with a flourish, we invite our readers to visit one of Bioma Café’s two subsidiaries. This establishment was the first coffee store to specialize in veganism in Argentina and still sets trends with their amazing vegan options.