From Meg Grant
Chef Anthony Amoroso -- recently featured on TV's Iron Chef America: Food Network, where he spent 60 "nonstop" minutes whipping up a meal in competition with Chef Masaharu Morimoto -- credits his Italian great-grandmother for instilling in him a love for creating and preparing food. She was "the best natural cook I've ever known," he said at Vegas@50+. "The table where the kids ate in my family's New Jersey home was in the kitchen. My grandmother used to always say, 'It's in your hands,' but it took me years to realize what she meant. People can put the same ingredients together in the same order, but the result will always be something different."
Today, he says, "I cook how I eat," which means lots of seafood, fresh herbs, and olive oil as opposed to cream. His signature dishes include a tuna tartare, sea bass with mizo glaze, and a lobster pot pie (okay, maybe a little cream), though when he's at home, cooking for himself, he tends toward comfort food. "My dad came over the other night, and I made chicken and dumplings," he said. "I choose things I can make in one pot, because I'm not at home that much and like to enjoy my time when I'm there."
Off-screen, Amoroso, who is 37, competes in a different arena: the triathlon. To keep his shape svelte, he runs, cycles and swims. "It's how I balance the huge intake of food I have on a daily basis," he says. "I taste everything, not just what I like."
From Meg Grant