Electrolux Newsroom Asia Pacific

Chef spotlight: An exclusive tête-à-tête with Andres Lara, dessert chef of acclaimed Iggy’s restaurant (Singapore)

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Andres LaraAndres Lara

Voted 27th in the world’s best restaurants by San Pellegrino and equipped with high-performance Electrolux Professional appliances, Iggy’s is undisputedly one of the best restaurants you can find on the sunny island of Singapore. We caught up recently with their affable dessert chef, Andres Lara.

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Tell us a little about yourself and where you are from.

I was born in Chicago, USA. Both my parents are from Colombia. Spanish is my first language, and Latin influence played a big role in my upbringing.

When did you first become interested in cooking?

During my sophomore year, I started to work for free during the weekends in different kitchens. One weekend, a fine dining restaurant where I worked at made some very beautiful desserts. That opened my eyes to a world where you could create and express yourself (through dessert-making).

Where did you acquire your culinary skills? Can you share with us your work experience?

I attended the French Pastry School in Chicago. It was the first school in the United States that specialised only in French pastry. After that, I worked in various pastry shops and restaurants in Asia, Europe and the United States.

What is your favourite kitchen equipment and why?

A sturdy hand blender. I use it for so many things, like ice-creams, ganaches, creams, etc.

What is your speciality?

I have a love for chocolate and restaurant-style plated desserts. I feel it’s an area where I can express myself best, and my style becomes a bit more unique.

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What is your favourite dish or dessert?

I don’t have one. I don’t like to be fixed on just one dish or idea. I am constantly in search of my own evolution.

Describe your personality.

Obsessive-compulsive, introverted, a dreamer, passionate, romantic, poetic, calm (Zen) and humble.

Where do you draw inspiration for your dishes and desserts?

It can be anything as long as you keep your eyes open. It can be something in nature, something you might have read or heard, or something that moves your soul a bit.

What do you like to indulge in on your day-off?

I really love Dairy Queen’s Oreo Blizzards!

What advice would you give to an aspiring dessert chef or dessert enthusiast?

Work for the best people you can find, work hard and work for free if you have to. Be humble and keep your head down.

Do you have a simple dessert recipe that you would like to share with us?

At Iggy’s, we’ve got a truffle dessert for December made to look like a snowball. It consists of white chocolate and coconut ganache rolled in coconut flakes.

The ingredients are:

300g of white chocolate

180g of coconut puree or milk

40g of Trimoline sugar or honey

50g of dried coconut flakes

30g of Malibu rum.

Heat the coconut puree with the sugar, and then take it down to a simmer. Pour over melted white chocolate and blend well. Once it’s blended consistently, add rum to the mix and blend it again. After that, leave it to set overnight. Take it out the following day and roll and dip in coconut flakes.

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