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François-Régis Gaudry

5 May 2020
Consummate blogger conniving with pastry chefs

A food critic with the looks of a humanist, he defends products and men on the radio waves of France Inter and Paris Première while disseminating his favourite finds for Express Styles magazine. An update on his sweet favourites.

How does a professional such as you proceed with tasting?

With my senses, to start with! I grasp the beauty of a cake. A dish or a dessert are not just a list of ingredients, after all. Ambiance of the tasting session or the little story told by the recipe also count. Notwithstanding the fact that I am inhabited by feelings such as passion, nostalgia, and even sadness. As a matter of fact, a consoling cake really exists…

Where does this passion come from?

I was lucky enough to grow up in a large family, in Lyon, with a huge garden covered with flowers, a vegetable garden and an orchard. I also remember my Corsican uncles, hunters and fishermen. I remain emotionally attached to nature and, for this reason, appreciate wild flavours above all others.

Your fetish flavour?

I am a passionate of vanilla marshmallow. I also like the texture and fragrances of dried fruits. When I was a kid, my mother used to put dates, prunes and almonds in a farandole around our plate from the beginning of autumn to the end of winter.

A sweet souvenir from childhood?

My grandmother’s fiadone, she came from Bastia: a pie one could call the Corsican cheesecake, made of brocciu, a fresh ewe cheese, flavoured with citrus fruits.

How important is the love of good food in your life?

I peck and cherry-pick like a bird flying from branch to branch. I love to taste!

What do you think of the media success of pastry chefs?

The time had come! Apart from Gaston Lenôtre and Yves Thuries, pastry chefs remained in the shadow of chefs for too long.

Any foibles?

I like to buy candied chestnuts, for instance. I have little rituals that I practice on a daily basis, like messing around with my fork in the plates of my guests during lunch!

A sin to share?

Old crunchy sweets… shared within the family. Bergamot orange from Nancy, which my mother loved, and vanilla marshmallows.

If you were a sweet?

A pralin.… A gianduja from Turin! So fragrant!

From "Desserts" Autumn/Winter n°13 

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