Paco Torreblanca: less is more

The lesson by the great Spanish pastry chef featured an essential dessert, a tribute to Langhe and Kandinskij

The dessert that Paco Torreblanca, a master in Spa

The dessert that Paco Torreblanca, a master in Spanish pastry making, presented in Milan (photo Brambilla-Serrani)

«Taste is of course the most important component. And if there’s decent aesthetics, all the better». It is with these words that Paco Torreblanca, pastry chef in Alicante, born in 1951, the number one dessert professional in Spain debuted in Milan.

«Life gave me a lot: I’ve worked with Ferran, Andoni, Quique…», he says in excellent Italian, made gentler here and there thanks to a nice Castilian intonation. «It’s an honour to be on this stage. I’m a pastry maker but my work is also about cleaning the floor holding scraps of paper». The humility behind the human factor. This while he could easily delegate: «Every year, I get 1400 applications to work at Torreblanca Cero, but I only choose 10 interns per year».

Paco Torreblanca

Paco Torreblanca

Torreblanca’s journey in the Auditorium starts from Alba: «I’d like to make a tribute to Langhe and Piedmont, two regions I love. I will do so with this sponge cake with red wine; not Barolo, I prefer to drink that. Then black truffle, and a 60/40 praliné with hazelnuts from Valrhona». The result is a Savarin with glaze of praliné, a candid recipe in which he soaks savarin in a syrup of water and sugar aromatised with cinnamon, star anise, Sichuan pepper, vanilla, cardamom, lemon zest and pepper.

«At the end of a dinner, cakes should not be fat and have too many ingredients: in this case, we only have 3 elements». This is followed by another surprise dedication: «Blanco su blanconegro su negro, is a tribute to a painter I love, Vasilij Kandinskij». Menos es más, less is more. This is also the title of the «no decoration» pastry-making book he presented at the end of the lesson. It sums up the knowledge of a man who has always created a dialogue with the “savoury” side of the restaurant offer, «though in pastry-making everything is perfect and studied in detail. And I like it this way».

Translated into English by Slawka G. Scarso


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