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Ferran Adrià Lawsuit Dismissed

Ferran Adrià Lawsuit Dismissed

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Barcelona District Court Number Two has dismissed a lawsuit filed by the sons of Miquel Horta i Almaraz, a onetime investor in the celebrated elBulli restaurant on Spain's Costa Brava, against the restaurant's owners, Ferran Adrià and Juli Soler. The Horta heirs had claimed that the restaurateurs cheated their father when they bought out his investment, but the court fould no merit to their argument.

Horta was once described as "an eccentric Marxist millionaire." In the 1980s and '90s, he invested in everything from the Futbol Club Barcelona to both the communist and socialist parties in his native Catalonia, and he bankrolled a publishing house called Editorial Antártida/Empùries. His fellow Marxist, the Barcelona novelist and food writer Manuel Vázquez Montalbán, introduced Horta to a promising young chef from a place called elBulli on the Costa Brava, Fernando Adrià, who wanted to publish a cookbook. The result, El Sabor del Mediterraneo — The Flavor of the Mediterranean — sold little when it was published in 1993, but was ultimately influential among chefs all over Spain and beyond and helped make Adrià's name. Speaking of which, the byline for the book was the first time he described himself as Ferran, the Catalan version of Fernando, the name with which he had been baptized.

The following year, Adrià and his business partner and co-restaurateur, Juli Soler, found themselves with a problem: They had recently purchased the business part of their restaurant — but not the land or buildings — from its founders, Dr. and Mrs. Schilling, and had invested a lot of money in creating a new kitchen. The Schillings had always told them that they'd sign over the property itself to them when they decided to retire — but when that time came, they changed their minds. Adrià and Soler would have to buy the land and bulidings themselves, said Dr. Schilling, or he'd sell them to somebody else. The two didn't feel that they could walk away from the place, having just invested so much in it, but they had no capital. Then they thought of Miquel Horta.

"We went to Miquel and made him a proposition," Adrià once told me, "that he participate in our project as a partner. He accepted right away. He was our 'Mr. Humane.' He helped us very much." They bought the land and buildings and elBulli continued in its rise to become the most influential restaurant of the late 20th century and beyond.

Unfortunately, the transaction with Horta ended badly. According to Adrià, at the time that he made his investment, the company had a net worth of about 250 million pesetas and he and Soler offered Horta a 20 percent stake for 50 million — about €300,000 or $400,000. By 2005, the worth of elBulli had quadrupled, to around €1,200,000, and with Horta's consent Adrià and Soler bought back his interest for 20 percent of that figure. All appeared to be fine until 2008. Horta had developed a progressive mental illness, and in 2008, his sons announced that they were filing suit against the elBulli partners on the grounds that their father's shares had been worth as much as 20 times what he was paid, and that they had taken advantage of Horta's condition to dupe him out what was due him.

When I asked Adrià about the action a couple of years ago, he would say only that "The whole situation is very complicated," adding that he had had no contact with Horta for years. He sounded sad about that fact. He has always maintained that he had no idea, when he concluded his business dealings with Horta, that the man was ill, and he has said repeatedly that Horta asked his advisors at the time whether or not to go ahead with the buyout, and they encouraged him to say yes.

Adrià. whose elBulli Foundation is scheduled to open this spring on what was once the site of the restaurant, expressed satisfaction at the dismissal of the suit. "It's good to be able to begin this," he told reporters, "without having to look into the past." Horta's sons, meanwhile, have announced that they will file an appeal of the decision.

The &aposCurious Q+A with Ferran Adrià

W hen innovative chef Ferran Adrià closed his groundbreaking El Bulli restaurant in July 2011 and said that he would turn the space into the amorphous El Bulli Foundation, the food world, to be frank, freaked out𠅎specially those who were never able to experience a meal there. Adrià loves to surprise and recently, while on a five-city tour promoting his extraordinary seven-volume elBulli 2005-2011 (Phaidon, $625), he finally revealed his grand plans for the upcoming training and research center.

Located on the grounds of his former restaurant in Roses, Spain, El Bulli Foundation will be composed of three parts: an exhibition space called El Bulli 1846, a lab called El Bulli DNA that will be the workshop for 40 people from around the world, including cooks, architects, and journalists and the Bullipedia, an ambitious encyclopedia of gastronomy.

As our past interviews with the chef have shown, Adrià&aposs intensely driven to push the boundaries of what food can be, but for all his innovations he thinks of himself as an ordinary guy.

"People think I&aposm extravagant, but I&aposm really a normal person," he says. "I&aposm married without any children. My wife is wonderful, marvelous. I don&apost separate my job from my life. It&aposs all one. But there are aspects of my personal life that are not public. I&aposve never taken a photo in my house for a publication. I go to the movies, to the theater, I read the paper: I&aposm normal. We always say that the people who worked at El Bulli were ordinary people who did extraordinary things."

We spoke to the iconoclastic chef at New York City&aposs the Modern—located in the Museum of Modern Art�out his obsession with ice cream, love for Las Vegas, predictions for the next food destinations, and the keys to happiness.

To break the ice with the chef, we asked him to draw his favorite breakfast.

Ferran Adrià: This is a very creative way to start an interview and I do a lot of interviews. It sets you up to do an interview in another frame of mind. I draw very badly.

Epicurious: Which talent would you most like to have that you don&apost possess?

FA: To speak English. [He laughs.] But I have a philosophy in life that what you can&apost change, don&apost worry about. I can either dedicate myself to cooking and everything that I&aposm doing or I can dedicate myself to learn English, and it&aposs better for society that I focus on the cooking.

Epi: Was there anything that you thought you wanted to do before you started cooking?

FA: Like all the kids in Spain, I wanted to be a soccer player. One of the things that has sort of marked my career is that I never wanted to be a chef. I didn&apost like eating or cooking and that&aposs something that&aposs followed me my whole career. Many of the high-level young chefs today wanted to be chefs when they were little. I never had that desire. Cooking was a way of questioning and asking myself why things were the way they were.

Epi: What foods are you craving the most right now?

FA: In general, I&aposd love to go to Japan because it&aposs been a while since I&aposve been there. But I want to eat something that doesn&apost exist. For me, my biggest goal in the kitchen is to like a dish at a creative and emotional level. As you can imagine, surprising me is very difficult so when someone does surprise me with his or her food, that&aposs when I&aposm moved. A dish that would help me sort of change the way that I understand cooking—that&aposs what I would love.

Epi: What personal quirks does your team tease you about?

FA: It&aposs not my team. I&aposm part of the team. They don&apost tease me too much because I&aposm very serious when I&aposm working. There&aposs no time for joking around, but we have a team where everyone has his own particular personality and brings something to the table. When you&aposre with a creative team—my brother Albert, Oriel Castro,—we&aposre three very, very different people, but when we get together it&aposs marvelous. I could not have done what we did at El Bulli on my own. It would have been impossible.

Epi: Does your brother tease you from childhood?

FA: We have a very serious relationship. We love each other very much but professionally we&aposre not joking around. The dynamic has changed a bit because he&aposs the one with the restaurant responsibilities for Tickets, Patka, 41º Experience, and Bodega 1900 in Barcelona. I go to one of his restaurants at least once a week, which puts him under a great deal of pressure, and give my critique. It&aposs a magical relationship. We&aposre brothers. For him I represent pressure. No one&aposs going to put more pressure on him than I do. Experiencing the restaurants before and after is sort of an interesting process for me to see. He knows when I&aposm going to show up and this is important because the team is under very high pressure two days before. Then they&aposre relieved the day after.

What makes a restaurant good is when it feels pressure. Here, at The Modern today, they&aposre under pressure and that&aposs what makes a restaurant good. More or less, they want to please me and everyone else here. If there&aposs no pressure, then you might sit back and relax too much, you know?

Epi: Is there one food that you&aposre secretly obsessed with having at home?

FA: Sweets. Ice creams. Jelly candies𠅎very flavor. If I had the memory of it and I concentrate on it, I might have a sorbet of mango, which is wonderful because the texture is very unique as a sorbet. As an ice cream, a chocolate ice cream might be amazing but a bitter pistachio might be incredible, too. There&aposs an Italian brand called Amorino that I think makes the best commercial ice cream in the world. It&aposs right down the block from our El Bulli Foundation workshop called El Taller in Barcelona so I&aposm always going there and getting a different flavor—I don&apost ask for the same one ever. I always vary it. And if there&aposs a new one, I&aposll ask for it. Sometimes I mix the flavors, but ice cream is not so good when it&aposs mixed because then you&aposre not so sure what you&aposre eating.

I&aposm not an absolutist with anything. I vary what I consume. For example, it&aposs been four months since I&aposve had this drink [he holds up his glass]: It&aposs Cava with Campari—it&aposs like a Kir Royale but a different version of it. I say, "Oh, it&aposs fantastic," but I&aposll only have it three times a year.

Epi: You have the workshop in Barcelona and there are wonderful photos of you in your office at El Bulli. Is there one secret room that you&aposre most excited about at El Bullifoundation?

FA: The El Bulli Foundation is located in a natural park and I&aposve always loved walking on the grounds—that&aposs priceless. It&aposs a beautiful physical location and the location is really important. The story starts there. Someone else otherwise thought to turn the land into a mini-golf course.

What&aposs very interesting with the El Bulli 1846 project is that we&aposre going to donate it. Conceptually, I already understand that it doesn&apost belong to me anymore, that it&aposs going to belong to everybody. It&aposs fantastic. We&aposre doing it because we want to, but at the same time it&aposs like changing my computer chip. It&aposs a metaphor because I&aposm thinking about how I&aposm going to leave it behind as a place for other people, so I&aposm not thinking of it as mine anymore.

Epi: Is there a food that you hate?

FA: Since I was a little boy, I&aposve hated green and red bell peppers. I like the spicy peppers𠅌hiles, pimento, and paprika𠅋ut not those. My father loved them.

Epi: Is there a childhood comfort food that you think about?

FA: No, there isn&apost. I&aposm very cold and clinical because I&aposm dedicated to creativity and I don&apost think of it that way. To please people, I could tell a story, but in one day at the workshop I could eat and taste all of the dishes that my mother made in her whole life. In my case, I think I need to be more pragmatic than the idea of my grandmother or mother&aposs cooking.

Epi: What kinds of ethnic food do you think are underrated right now?

FA: The success of national cuisines are linked to the success of contemporary cooking today. Before, no one knew what Nordic cuisine was until it became contemporary cooking by René Redzepi. René does Nordic food, but it&aposs very contemporary. Enrique Olvera in Mexico, same thing. People respect Mexican cooking because this gentleman is doing it really well. Also Gastón Acurio in Lima. Alex Atala in Brazil. The next countries that are coming up are Vietnam, Thailand, India, and the Arab countries. They have very important cultures. It&aposs better to travel there, but you can still get to know the food from afar. You can&apost be everywhere.

Epi: We saw you in Las Vegas—what do you think of that city?

FA: It&aposs fantastic. I would go every weekend—well, not every week𠅋ut I would go often. It&aposs a place to have fun, like an amusement park for adults. I liked doing everything there and it&aposs a great place for inspiration. You go from hotel to hotel and they&aposre like small cities. [He laughs.]

Epi: If you could read anyone&aposs diary, whose would it be?

FA: Picasso. It would be very interesting because he&aposs serious, one of the great creative giants of history.

Epi: Has there ever been an ingredient that you weren&apost able to master and have given up on, like blood or lamb brains?

FA: No. It&aposs actually the opposite. The "simple" products are the ones that are very difficult to do something creative with. Like steak—it&aposs very hard to do something creative with a steak because we have that memory of seeing it as a steak. When you&aposre eating carpaccio, you don&apost think about it being a steak, yet it is still a part of what goes into a steak.

Epi: What is your idea of happiness?

FA: To be happy? It&aposs impossible to be happy at every moment. One thing that&aposs important is to not worry about things that you can&apost change. It&aposs very difficult to change things sometimes. Worry about the things that you can change. When someone has a sick relative, for example, you can&apost change the fact that the person is sick. What you can change is that they get taken care of properly and well. At the philosophical level: Don&apost look for success, look for happiness. It&aposs very easy for me to say because I&aposm a privileged person, and not at all objective, because I&aposve gotten a thousand times over what I sought. If I meet a young person, I tell him to look for happiness. The success is a consequence of that process. The person might say, "Oh, I need success to be happy." But I would say that I didn&apost do it that way. It&aposs complicated. The easiest example in terms of how to be happy is that in the mornings, when you get up, the first thing you&aposre going to do—whatever it is making coffee or breakfast, taking a walk, going to work—if you want to do it, that&aposs the true sign that you&aposre happy. When you wake up in the morning wanting to do what you&aposre going to do, that&aposs when you&aposre happy.

Epi: What is your present state of mind?

FA: I&aposm well. I&aposm always very active and I&aposm always looking for equilibrium. I have problems with my family, health problems with my parents, but that&aposs what it is. The El Bulli Foundation is going really well and that&aposs life. When you understand that&aposs life, it is.

Epi: What do you appreciate the most in your friends?

FA: I appreciate most that my friends don&apost cause me problems. When people cause problems for you, they&aposre not friends. The reality is that you help them solve problems.

Epi: You&aposve had so many incredible chefs cook for you. What&aposs your most memorable meal?

FA: Many of them are iconic in what they represented for me in my career. The best meals in my life are from the people I most admire. I remember a mythical meal at Michel Bras&apos restaurant because he&aposs one of the chefs who I admire the most. We were this close to the table and it was like he had uncovered a new world.

A MoMA employee approaches Adria, tells him that she is very inspired by his work, thanks him, and leaves.

FA: This is more important than anything. I nourish myself with these kinds of encounters. My career today crosses more boundaries than just cooking. It&aposs hard to understand if you didn&apost live it this way. The logical thing would be for a chef to come up and say hi to me, and chefs do, but people from all walks of life come up to me who I would never expect or imagine. Someone who works at MoMA would admire me? If you analyze it, you think it doesn&apost make any sense, and it&aposs incredible that my life is that way.

Summer, garlic and the gazpacho of Ferran Adria'

All started last week end. By browsing on Instagram, I ran into the recipe of Ferran Adria’s gazpacho, re-interpreted by Lucia from L’ultima Fetta . In case you do not know, gazpacho is a typical Spanish summer soup, made with tomatoes, cucumber, garlic, onion, pepper, oil and stale bread. Everything is blended and served cold.

What intrigued me was the procedure used by Adria’. The chef of El Bulli puts the garlic in cold water and brings it to boil for a few minutes. Then he drains the garlic and repeats the procedure other two times.

Now, I can’t help but asking, why? Why boiling the garlic? Probably to get rid of that stingy taste with is a prerogative of garlic. But why staring from cold water and do not place the garlic directly into boiling water? You may understand this question has been in my head for over a week and I need to find an answer )

As chances are low that Ferran Adria’ stops on this page and reads this post, I will have to roll up my sleeves and find the solution.

In this week's cookbook review, we decided to take a look at one of the newest books from Phaidon, What is Cooking.

For groundbreaking chefs such as Ferran Adrià, cooking has reached a level of complexity where science, chemistry, and technology intersect with immense creativity and imagination. Adrià's latest 'Sapiens' volume takes readers on a compelling journey to better understand the relationship between the human race and the process of preparing food.

Packed with images from Adrià's legendary restaurant elBulli, his unique personal sketches, and explanatory diagrams that are used in his lectures, this book revolutionizes the way we look at how we prepare what we eat.

A Cookbook Without Recipes

What is Cooking is not a traditional cookbook. In fact, it's closer to being a book than a cookbook. Without having any recipe it is difficult to be considered a cookbook.

According to the authors, it’s ‘a compilation of the connected knowledge needed to answer the question: ‘What is cooking?’ This is a book that will make you think more deeply about what you eat, why you cook the dishes you do, what food comforts you, and conversely what food takes you out of your comfort zone. In which case, Adrià's in-depth exploration of the simple question, 'what is cooking', will resonate even more.

As Ferran tries to better understand the evolution and relationship between the human race and the process of preparing the food, he takes everyone on a journey, exploring gastronomy from the top-down. From the birth of cuisine, to why we cook, what it means to cook creatively, and the language we have attributed to cooking.

An Inside Look at elBullifoundation

What is Cooking offers a rare glimpse into the inner workings at Adrià's experimental elBullifoundation, littered with her personal ideas, sketches, and photography from legendary restaurant elBulli as well as explanatory diagrams used in his lectures and exhibitions.

This book is a proposition, a call to eschew dogmas, and a project to broaden our understating and the decision-making skills that come into play when considering what and how to cook. It is an invitation, a perception based on research that questions currently held notions to allow you to reach your own decision about what cooking is.

As part of a collection of Bullipedia, What Is Cooking is the first book by Ferran Adrià’s elBullifoundation and team on the subject of cooking. This is the beginning of everything. The beginning of Sapiens, of the Sapiens methodology applied to the fine-dining sector, and of Bullipedia.

Final Thoughts

What Is Cooking is fascinating reading for everyone interested in the nature of the food we eat, from enthusiastic home cooks to culinary professionals alike. Destined to be a classic, the Sapiens project addresses the lack of academic understanding of the culinary arts and fine dining by setting a methodology for knowledge and research.


Undoubtedly, What Is Cooking will become a timeless book that chefs, culinary educators, and cooking enthusiasts, and Adrià disciples will want to add to their book collections.

El Bulli treasure trove clears up a mystery &mdash why it all ended

The new “El Bulli” box set is overwhelming — seven volumes, almost 3,000 pages, nearly 40 pounds and with a retail price of $625. There are, according to the publisher (and who is going to count to argue?), 1,400 images that capture what seems like almost every dish served at the landmark Spanish restaurant between 2005 and 2011, when it closed.

And it also contains a hidden surprise: an explanation from chef Ferran Adria and his team of their shocking decision to shut the place down.

As Adria himself explains in an introductory video to the book, “I think that El Bulli 2005-2011 is the end of the dream that was El Bulli . and this book explains what happened.”

One of the most famous — and controversial — restaurants in the world, El Bulli pioneered what is now called modernist cuisine. That’s the transformation of ingredients by techniques not bound by traditional cooking, into forms and flavors that might not traditionally be thought of as dishes.

If you have even a passing interest in this kind of hyper-modern (and even post-modern) cooking, you probably already have this collection on your wish list. And you probably already know what to expect, since you have on your bookshelf the earlier editions (capturing 1983-93, 1994-97, 1998-2002 and 2003-04 … you’d better hope it’s a sturdy shelf).

The photography of the food is exquisite and the explanations fascinating. Yes, there are recipes. No, you will probably not be trying them at home. The recipe for a dessert called simply “Moss” from the 2008 catalog runs three pages and includes 16 sub-recipes. (Still, some of those sub-recipes are certainly approachable, and could even be incorporated into a relatively ambitious home cook’s repertoire.)

It’s all fascinating stuff, but maybe most interesting is the explanation, buried in the volume titled “Evolutionary Analysis, 2005-2011,” of why Adria and his team decided to close the restaurant at what seemed like the peak of its popularity. It was the culinary equivalent of basketball star Michael Jordan retiring at the top of his game.

There wasn’t one single reason, according to the book. Rather, it was a confluence of several factors — culinary, personal and, because it’s El Bulli, philosophical. Most had been reported individually before, but putting it all together this way makes for fascinating reading.

Partly, it was out of boredom. It seems that from 2005 on, Adria and his team had become more and more focused on the organizational part of the restaurant, in addition to the invention of dishes. In other words, perfecting the process by which the dishes were reproduced, rather than the inspiration that created them.

“The time came when there were very few things left to improve on the organizational front, which brought with it a certain monotony.”

At the same time, in addition to much praise (books were written about the place, there was a joint exhibit at the Pompidou Center in Paris, and the establishment of a Ferran Adria chair in Gastronomic Culture and Food Sciences by the Camilo Jose Cela University in Madrid), there were problems.

Modernist cooking was suffering through a backlash, particularly in Europe, that included several books and articles alleging that the techniques and ingredients were harmful to diners. And El Bulli seemed to be the centerpiece for all of them.

“All of this made us realize that there was a certain tiredness in the many years of El Bulli’s hegemony.”

There was also a court case filed by the heirs of one of the restaurant’s former partners claiming that Adria and his team had cheated them out of part of their inheritance. (The case was dismissed.)

And, oddly enough, the book cites the case of a Swiss gourmet who talked a wealthy friend into backing him as he attempted to dine at every Michelin three-star restaurant in a period of three months. Apparently, he disappeared from El Bulli after dinner (but before paying his check).

“We were greatly concerned, at first thinking that some misfortune had befallen him.” They needn’t have worried. He was later spotted by Interpol withdrawing money from several Swiss banks, “he stated that the media attention he had received had affected him psychologically and that there had been a moment when he did not remember who or where he was.”

Perhaps more to the point, there was the departure in 2008 of Albert Adria, Ferran’s brother, the pastry chef and an indispensable member of the team from the beginning of the restaurant, which required a reorganization of the whole team.

It all added up to a period of reflection for Adria and his then-business partner Juli Soler (who eventually left the organization in 2012 for health reasons). “Not surprisingly, Ferran and Juli saw things differently and had differences of opinion, but a consensus was reached between them in the end, and it was decided that they would take two years off in which to learn, rest and find renewal.”

The closure of the restaurant was supposed to be for only two years, reopening in 2014. That has yet to happen, but Adria is very busy, establishing multiple ventures, including the El Bulli Foundation and an online encyclopedia of gastronomy called Bullipedia, which is still in the works.


  • Mini golf course turned beach bar: Dr. Hans Schilling and his wife, Marketta, founded the restaurant in 1965. Schilling envisioned turning the property into a mini golf course, but instead, El Bulli became a beach bar that served drinks and sandwiches.
  • Bulli equals bulldog: Marketta owned several French Bulldogs, and her nickname for them was "bullis," which inspired the restaurant's name.
  • Chef at 25: It wasn't until 1984 that Ferran Adrià and Christian Lutaud became head chefs, but by 1987, Adrià had taken sole charge of the kitchen at the young age of 25. In 1990, the restaurant received its second Michelin star, and in 1997, El Bulli received its third star.

Keep reading for more unusual facts about El Bulli.

Molding clay putty plate next to a picture of the finished dish

Peru Sabe – A film by Ferran Adria and Gaston Acurio

Last Monday I was invited to the United Nations in Manhattan, for the premiere of Gaston Acurio and Ferran Adria‘s documentary: “Peru Sabe. Cuisine as an agent of social change,”directed by Jesus Maria Santos. If you’re interested enough in food to be reading a food blog, you probably know who Ferran Adria is. If you’re interested enough in Peruvian food to be reading a Peruvian food blog, you also probably know who Gaston Acurio is.

But in case you don’t, I will tell you briefly. Ferran Adria is none other than the world’s most famous chef, owner of El Bulli, which has been awarded 3 Michelin stars, and named best restaurant in the world a record of 5 times. He has been named one of the 100 most influencial people in the world by Time Magazine. Gaston Acurio, on the other hand, may not be the world’s most famous chef, but he is unquestionably Peru’s most famous chef and personality. He has 31 restaurants in 12 countries, and was proclaimed “the most famous chef you’ve never heard of” in early 2011. By now, the last part of that phrase is not so true anymore.

As a Peruvian, a food blogger, and simply as a food lover, I was extremely excited to attend the premiere of their film, which is an effort to make Peruvian food better known to the world, not only for how wonderful, varied, and yet unexplored it is, but also for the powerful social revolution it has lead in the past few years in our country. As Acurio explained very well during the Q&A round, we grew up in a country one was taught didn’t have much value, but this has recently started changing in a dramatic way, and guess what is behind it? None other than food, the most basic of our daily needs, and of our traditions.

The idea of the film is not only to praise Peru, but to set an example for other countries with dormant resources that could be utilized to improve an unlimited number of lives, and change people’s attitude completely.

“As a social phenomenon, Peruvian cuisine is unique in the world, but could be an example for other countries,” said Ferran Adria. “While traveling through different regions of Peru to make this film, I discovered the country’s incredible biodiversity and the innovative potential of its cuisine. This is helping to create a new social reality.”

The cocktail party was beautifully set in a river view tent, and there were several cebiche bars were I stood all night, making sure I didn’t miss the next round of exquisite fresh fish and seafood coming my way. It was a wonderful, heart-warming evening.

You can watch the trailer of the movie above, or go to their website to learn more about this great project. It will also be broadcasted by Univision Networks in the US, and by Radio Television Espanola in Europe. So stay tuned!

Photo of Gaston Acurio, Ferran Adria, and Jesus Maria Santos, by M. Rajmil.

Ferran Adrià Lawsuit Dismissed - Recipes

This is Page 2 of a five-page article. Click on the black links below to visit other pages.

Parmesan Ice Cream Sandwich Recipe

From the recipe by Ferran Adrià, Chef of El Bulli

Other people want cake and ice cream for their birthdays: we want Ferrán Adrià&rsquos Parmesan Ice Cream Sandwiches. While El Bulli is 10,000 miles away and impossible to get into in any case, THE NIBBLE&rsquos wine editor, Kris Prasad, is a gifted chef with the patience and technique to make Adrià&rsquos complex recipes. Here is our annual birthday dish: heavenly Parmesan ice cream (savory, not sweet) with a touch of lemon marmalade, between two crunch parmesan tuiles.

Ferran Adrià&rsquos Parmesan Ice Cream Sandwich, taken at the source: El Bulli restaurant in Las Rosas, Spain.

To Make the Ice Cream


  • Place a fine strainer over a medium bowl and set aside.
  • In a medium saucepan over medium heat, bring cream to a simmer. While stirring with a wooden spoon, gradually add Parmesan. Stir constantly until mixture is smooth, about 10 minutes.
  • Pour mixture into strainer and press any solids to extract as much liquid as possible. Allow to cool to room temperature.
  • Pour mixture into a 9x12" baking dish and cover with plastic wrap. Freeze until solid, about 6 hours.

To Make the Marmalade


  • Using a sharp knife, cut all peel (including white pith) from lemons. Dice lemons into 1/2" cubes and transfer to a small saucepan. Add sugar and bring to a simmer over medium-low heat.
  • Cook, stirring occasionally, until mixture is thick, about 1 hour. While marmalade is simmering, prepare Parmesan cookies, below.
  • Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.
  • 5 large egg whites
  • 1/2 pound finely grated Parmesan cheese
  • Nonstick cooking spray


  • In a mixing bowl, combine egg whites and grated cheese.
  • Spray two 10x15" nonstick baking sheets with nonstick cooking spray. Spread half of the mixture in center of each sheet. Top with a sheet of wax paper and use a rolling pin to press mixture evenly across each pan. Remove and discard wax paper.
  • Bake mixture until lightly browned, about 7 minutes. Remove pans from oven and trim dark edges. Cut remaining mixture in each pan in twelve 3" squares to make a total of 24. Using a spatula, turn the squares over and return pan to oven. Bake an additional 5 minutes remove from oven.

To Assemble and Serve

  • Remove the ice cream from the freezer and place on top of a warm, damp cloth for about 5 minutes.
  • Using a knife dipped in hot water, cut ice cream into twelve 3" squares.
  • Place a square of ice cream on a Parmesan cookie, top with a spoonful of marmalade and top with another Parmesan cookie.
  • Serve immediately or freeze until ready to serve. Makes 12 ice cream sandwiches.

NOTE: You can make the ice cream with cheddar instead of Parmesan and serve slices with apple pie or Tarte Tatin. See the recipe for sweet Cheddar ice cream below.

El Bulli: 1998-2002
by Ferran Adrià and Juli Soler
Ferran Adrià is widely considered to be the most innovative, most influential, and indeed the greatest chef in the world today. El Bulli, the restaurant where he creates his masterpieces, has become a pilgrimage for food connoisseurs from around the world.

In his first book in English, Adrià has created a unique guide to cooking that shows how he has raised the profession to a new art form. It presents not only El Bulli's unparalleled recipes, but an analysis of their development, philosophy, and technique.

Visually stunning, El Bulli 1998-2002 is presented as a boxed set that includes the main volume, a detailed Users Guide and an interactive CD that contains each recipe, numbered and catalogued by year. At $220.50. it may be the most expensive cookbook you&rsquoll ever buy&mdashbut it&rsquos worth it. Click here for more information or to purchase.

Lifestyle Direct, Inc. All rights reserved. Recipes are the copyright of their respective owners. Images are the copyright of their respective owners.

Our interview with Ferran Adrià, famous chef at elBulli restaurant, and ardent mushroom lover.

Ferran Adrià Photo: Pepo Segura

But his creative mind is never still, and there were many more mushroom dishes he continues to create. He uses unique methods and techniques, such as infusing them to make mushroom water, creating a confit with them to produce oil, and making dried mushroom powders.

When you see his dishes, they're amazing. The presentation is simply beautiful. Way beyond adding a few sliced mushrooms to a risotto or omelet!

In other words… he’s a remarkable chef who loves mushrooms!

If nothing else, be sure to scroll all the way down the page, as Ferran has shared some simply amazing photos with us.

Let’s get started with the interview.

And to keep things simple. we'll abbreviate with IM for Incredible Mushrooms and FA for Ferran Adrià.

IM: How do you like to prepare mushrooms for yourself?

FA: I like them simply sautéed so that they retain their maximum flavor.

IM: Which are your three favorite mushrooms, and why? 

The Boletus edulis, also known as the Cep, Porcini or King Bolete. depending on where you live.

IM: What do mushrooms mean in the kitchen of elBulli restaurant?

FA: Mushrooms are one of those magical and fetish products of elBulli restaurant. 

It's in our culinary DNA and our mental palate. This makes it a recurring and highly appreciated product. Because of a mushroom's simplicity, it brings a lot of flavor and aroma to the whole preparation.

In the case of Cep carpaccio, the special texture of the Cep easily reminds us of a veal carpaccio. We loved to experiment with these dichotomies. 

Cep Carpaccio is a carpaccio of confit Ceps and potato salad, black truffle and lamb's lettuce with rabbit kidneys.

Changes at NRN, Lawry's Lawsuit Settled, Honors For Bruni

PRINT MEDIA—Next year, the print version of Nation's Restaurant News will go from weekly to bi-weekly, according to food editor Bret Thorn. The editorial side will get a change too: ". the content will be less news and more awesome analytical stuff — not too long, but smart — as well as an easy-to-use news synopsis in the front of the book." [NRN]

LAWSUITS—The Lawry's steakhouse chain will pay more than $1 million to settle a federal lawsuit that claimed it barred men from waiting tables. [AP]

EATER BOOK CLUBPublisher's Weekly has released its picks for the best books of the calendar year, and at the top of the nonfiction honor roll is Frank Bruni's memoir. Ferran Adria's Food for Thought, Thought for Food also got a spot on the same nonfiction list, while cookbook standouts Ad Hoc, Momofuku, Lidia and Gourmet Today all notched places on the "Lifestyle" list. [PW via Eat Me Daily]

Watch the video: Worlds Best Chefs Assemble as Worlds Best Restaurant Closes Culinary Documentary. Real Stories