Friday - - Food -

What will you be cook­ing at Taste, and why did you choose those dishes? In the main theatre I will be demon­strat­ing my Mid­dle Eastern twist on the French clas­sic gateau moelleux [a melt­ing chocolate cake]. I have in­cor­po­rated a fra­grant Ara­bic cof­fee fill­ing, which works won­ders. In the cook­ing class I will be mak­ing an on-trend red vel­vet pan­cake with cream cheese syrup. They are so mor­eish and, trust me, the next hot break­fast item. Desserts seem to be es­pe­cially prone to ‘trends’. What’s your take – and where do you think desserts will go next? Baking is like fash­ion – trends and style come and go – only the clas­sics stand the test of time. For me it’s all about the taste. Yes, if you can make the cake or dessert look glam­orous, that’s a bonus, but [there is] noth­ing worse than super-elab­o­rate cre­ations that do not taste great. What would you like to never see again? I am se­ri­ously get­ting bored see­ing mir­ror glazed cakes all over my In­sta­gram feed. It is so yes­ter­day – move on, please. You started your ca­reer in the UK with the Roux Brothers – and you’ll be shar­ing the stage with Michel Roux Jr this year. I worked with the Roux Brothers for five years – I was the head pas­try chef in their pro­duc­tion kitchen. They put a lot of faith in me – I was 22 years of age and it was my first job in Lon­don. I learnt a lot and will for ever be grate­ful for that ex­pe­ri­ence. They are a very gen­er­ous fam­ily and are still very sup­port­ive to this day. It’ll will be great to catch up with Michel Roux Jr – we are both very busy so these days so we tend to catch up at work events and shows. What do you eat at Le Gavroche? Le Gavroche is ac­tu­ally cel­e­brat­ing its 50th an­niver­sary this year, which is in­cred­i­ble in the fickle world of hos­pi­tal­ity. I al­ways make a point of go­ing to Le Gavroche for din­ner on my birth­day. Le souf­flé su­issesse [a cheese and cream souf­flé] has been on the menu since the open­ing and is sim­ply the best starter ever. I still use Al­bert and Michel’s orig­i­nal tarte aux cit­rons recipe to­day at my café, Cake-Boy. Mother’s Day is com­ing up soon – what dish would you sug­gest mak­ing for a mum? My Straw­berry Om­bre cake, which graces the front cover of my lat­est book, Af­ter­noon Tea. It’s a very stylish cake, it shouts ‘cel­e­bra­tion’. Pas­tel frost­ing with a moist vanilla sponge lay­ered with straw­berry con­serve and more cream frost­ing. It’s a fab­u­lous cake to cel­e­brate Mother’s Day. Sum­mer wed­ding sea­son is com­ing. What cakes are peo­ple are or­der­ing? We see more and more peo­ple ask­ing for fresh patis­serie cakes, dec­o­rated with berries and yummy creamy fill­ing like mas­car­pone and cream, which can be served as a dessert, like you do in Europe. On the iced cake front, our clients keep it clas­sic and chic with maybe a lit­tle touch of royal ic­ing lace or em­broi­dery re­flect­ing the de­tails of the bride’s wed­ding dress. Re­ally, the key trend is ‘time­less’.

Eric Lanlard is at the Chef’s Theatre on March 9 at 4.30pm, 8.30pm on March 10 and 7.30pm on March 11. Put your baking skills to the test with him in the cook­ing chal­lenge on March 10 at 6.30pm and March 11 at 3.30pm.

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