Thanks to their extensive training in different techniques in international bakery, Pablo Conesa and his team use sourdough and high-quality ingredients, while they also produce slow fermentation pastries and a variety of multigrain breads. That’s the reason why the variety and excellence of his products are widely recognized in many national and international baking competitions.
Pablo Conesa is highly committed to quality in modern artisan bakery and deeply values the human component of his work, therefore the relationship with the customers is quite an important part of the job for the baker. Due to its notoriety and extensive experience in Seville’s bread industry, Plácido y Grata has trusted the bakery to offer their customers the best breads and pastries along with the coffee by NOMAD in the café of the boutique hotel.
When did you know that artisan bread was your thing?
While working as a pastry chef in a hotel chain in 2009, in England. I also made pizzas and focaccias, and from there I went on to the brioches and breakfast buns until I got captivated by bread.
I was making bread all the time out of sheer pleasure and interest. I started reading and collecting bakery books in English and French, working with sourdough, organic preferments and flours and I haven’t stopped ever since. The world of flour fascinated me to such an extent that it was where I decided to establish my research based on trial and error; a rather slow and intuitive learning.
Years have passed since that, but that’s where I met Yohan Ferrant, managed to make my first panettone with natural sourdough and where I lived a period of evolution and discovery that is more alive than ever.
To this day, I have three children and a new bakery to open and I still feel very curious about bread; it simply fascinates me. One never ceases to learn in this field. The best baker must stay humble; the bakers who speak of the absolute truth about bread are the ones who are most lost in this world.
What kind of bread do you make?
We make breads of many different types, some better known and some rare ones, but all are custom-made: from the local wheat bread with organic stone-ground kamut to our vegan brioche. We also have traditional French bread, glass bread with olive oil, stone-ground whole rye breads made with rye sourdough, walnuts and pumpkin seeds, spelt with sourdough, whole-grain spelt or our panettones, just to name a few varieties, we even have more.
Seville has a long baking tradition. Could we say that Seville is the cradle of bread?
Well, the truth is that I think there are places with more important baking traditions. We have evolved a lot here in recent years, but there is still much work to be done in this regard. In spite of being my city, Seville is still quite far from Barcelona, Galicia or Cantabria in terms of bakery training in Spain. But still, in the last 6 years some interesting bakeries have emerged in the city, offering better products than in previous decades. This is quite an important step.
What do you enjoy most about your work?
Seeing the finished product and assessing it not as a baker but as a customer, as I think that clouds the judgement.
How was your bread received abroad? How well is Spanish bread valued?
The truth is that very well, Spanish bread is making a name for itself in the world. Social networks have helped a lot showcasing the work of some great Spanish bakers who have many followers and get visitors from abroad, including many high-profile international professionals. There are bakers who have been the main creators of this movement and are dedicated in body and soul to the job, such as Yohan Ferrant, Antonio Cepas Alonso, Anna Bellsolà, Eduardo Crespo, Juanjo Rausell or the Gure Ogia brothers just to name a few. They have managed to introduce Spanish bread in the international arena through networks, fairs and worldwide championships.
Can you share a simple recipe with us? How do you like to serve bread to yourself?
I personally enjoy traditional bread served with local ingredients. For example, glass bread with good, unfiltered extra virgin olive oil with a salmorejo spread and some Iberian ham on top. Or a thinly sliced focaccia with Cantabrian anchovies, fresh tomatoes from Los Palacios (Seville) and a drizzle of virgin olive oil.
What’s the place of bread in contemporary gastronomy?
Bread plays an essential role in contemporary gastronomy, as it lays at the bottom of the food pyramid. It is also a food that has evolved quite a bit in terms of tradition, shape and flavors since the very first civilizations and throughout human history. Today more than ever, bread is very important, as it is part of the evolution of modern cuisine
Pablo Conesa Alternative Bakery
Avda de Aznalcazar 2
Bollullos de la Mitación