Island Flavors in Arabia: Chef Adam Schihab

Hailing from the Maldives, Chef Adam is one of the only people from the Maldives who is currently working in the Kingdom.

“Apart from those who work as diplomats at the Maldivian embassy,” the chef admits. Now based out Khobar, the executive chef is head of operations at the Vanille Restaurant of Vanilla Group Co.

“I am a chef, entrepreneur, and food blogger. I have worked in ten other countries—Italy, Philippines, and Oman. I had Four Seasons, Waldorf Astoria, Conrad Hilton Dusit Thani, Ritz-Carlton, and Relais & Chateaux in France.”

Chef Adam remebers one of the most memorable food moments for him “One heavy rainy day, I was in the farm with my grandpa and saw him cutting a giant pumpkin and removing the seeds, putting it taste fantastic” this memory prompted him to create a recipe pumpkin seeds.

Chef Adam is a classically trained French pastry chef and from multiple continents to the dishes he creates for Vanille: “I like to add coconut to chocolate. As islanders, we love things with coconuts and sweet potatoes; many fishes and dates also play a massive role in our native food. However, being an international chef, I don’t food at all. I like to incorporate more European cuisine and pasties and bread, and that’s what drives me.”

Known for making fantastic croissants, Chef Adam recently made a croissant using Barbosa filling. “I like to incorporate local Saudi references, such as that in my recipes.” Chef Adam shares that his favorite thing to do is milling his own flour to make fresh croissants and bread.

Instagram: adamschihab
Instagram: vanilleksa

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