lunes, 19 de octubre de 2015

Interview with: Sergio Aguilar Rodriguez

We have been sharing with you in this blog cakes, bavarois, chocolate sculpture, gum paste and royal icing, filled chocolates, as well as articles for four years. We also had the opportunity to interview the Patisserie World Champion Jordi Bordas and to let you know through photos about a course of pastry for professionals, given by another Champion, Julien Alvarez.

We have thought that it is time for you to know more about Sergio Aguilar Rodriguez, whose creations you can see in this blog, and about his way to see and conceive pastry.

More than a job, for Sergio pastry is a passion.

1. If you already work as a pastry chef, where does this will to make more come from? Don’t you prefer to rest when you have free days?

I work as a pastry chef and my job is to carry out a production in a way that the product turns out to be the most profitable to the company I work for.

To prepare these customised cakes is for me a way to express my creativity with all that I have been learning for 25 years in this profession and it is my way to bring my sweet part in important moments of the life of many people who trust in the work of Crear Para Endulzar team.

2. What does it bring to you?

Above all gratification, for the comments and the thank you expressions I receive. It is also a way to go on growing in something I love.

3. Where does your inspiration come from?

A little bit of everything. When I prepare a customised cake, I try to reach the point that will surprise and impress the person or the people who will receive the cake. The creation has to become a way to give the message that the customer was looking for when he ordered the cake, the bavarois, the chocolate sculpture or the gum paste and royal icing. It has to reflect the essence of this person who is going to get it and this is the first source of the inspiration.

4. But you may have subjects that inspire you more or less. How much time do you generally take to conceive the creation?

I am inspired by people or things that transmit to me this magic that is only present in the nature or obviously, in great artists. It is clear that there are paintings, books, pictures, songs or films that go inside my head, where a collage is formed and where different things fuse together. This happened to me for example with a cake that I called “The Persistence of Eternity”, where I joined a painting of Salvador Dali that I am fond of with touches very representative of Michael Jackson, who I admire a lot. 

I also prepared a cake where I united various Álex Rovira book covers. I did a “Star Wars” montage too, as well as other collages.

The time I may take is quite variable. It is not the same to prepare a direct message to someone than to develop a creative cake for 100 people. For these ones, I generally get ideas that gather into my head for weeks and I try to transmit really what I want so that these 100 people are surprised. For an event for 80 people, I remember having worked for weeks in the customisation, the flavours and all the details. Two weeks before the date, they cancelled the order without any apparent reason. That was something very disappointing and many people do not imagine the time I already had been working on the creation.

For smaller cakes, 1 or 2 kilos for example, our intention is to try to reach all kind of people. Because of that, there are very simple cake that I can decorate in half an hour and other much more complicated, as for example the portraits, where I can take an hour and a half or even more only for the decoration. This is the reason why I generally ask two weeks time to get the cake prepared.

5. You go on training: in everything or only in chocolate?

I continue learning in various pastry subjects, not only in chocolate, though I recognize that it is what I like most. Each course is lesson, not only for what they teach you but also for what you discover about yourself and your profession. I think that we should always go on learning and retrain, and even more in such a job, where everything evolves every day.

6. Why haven’t you chosen the fondant like many others, even well-know pastry chefs?

Fondant is useful to make some figure or an exceptional detail, but as far as I am concerned, it is not the most appropriate to eat a cake, as much for the texture as for the caloric value. When a customer asks for it, I firstly give him/her other options, but if he really wants fondant, in this case I obviously do it.

7. Is it possible to eat sweet and healthy desserts?

For this reason I recommend no fondant cakes. Obviously it is possible to eat desserts less caloric and healthier. In fact, I am studying about this subject. I would like to get to the point to prepare juicy, healthy and sweet desserts, with the texture I am looking for. I also want to be able to propose different options according to allergies or ways to consume (vegan desserts).

8. Who are you inspired by or who do you admire?

I have many mentors and for Works quite different, who are a great source of inspiration for me.

Beginning with the pastry world, I will first and foremost name three pastry chef who trained me and who were (and are) important for my growing. Tomás Ortega, teacher in Barcelona Pastry School, Manuel Martí, with who I worked five years and who got me into the chocolate world, and Fulgencio Murcia, with who I have been working for the past fifteen years and who I am learning from every day. Jordi Bordas is also one of the pastry chefs I most admire and follow for his creativity and his perfectionism from the simplicity.

In others fields, I will begin with the artist who most positively marked me in life: Michael Jackson, for me the greatest artist I have seen. But also genius like Michelangelo, Dali or Gaudi, we are talking about 3 different artistic styles but unique ones and that have broken moulds, though all of them were very perfectionist when carrying out a work.

Cinema is another of my passions and there are 2 kinds of cinema that I like: the “good cinema” that will be eternal, with films like “Hamlet” by Kenneth Branagh, “La Lista de Schindler”, etc… and the science fiction one. I watch this one with the will that it surprises me.

And finally, I would like to name 2 writers who are important in my life for the messages they transmit to me: Álex Rovira and Karo Lyne Chamiel.

9. Until now, which cakes or chocolate sculptures are you most proud of?

Well, I could not really say this one or this other one. I prefer to say the creations that have brought most satisfaction to the people they were aimed at. To see old people with emotion tears in the eyes while seeing a cake that you prepared, a hug that take the breath, a kid who tells you that your cake is magical or just leaving someone speechless, nothing can overtake that.

Interview by Karo

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