The Naked Baker
Alonso is definitely a man heating up the kitchen with his tantalizing desserts. Oh and did we mention, he does this all shirtless. I found this dessert king on Instagram and I had to find out how he became the Naked Baker.
Alonso was so gracious to sit down and chat a bit about himself and his baking.
Alonso, tell us a little about yourself.
I am a 27-year-old baker, currently living in Austin, Texas. I was born and raised in Lima, Peru where I received my education in Hospitality Management at the Peruvian University of Applied Sciences (UPC). I have lived in three different cities in the last 4 years trying to discover myself. I’ve always loved traveling and having new adventures.
I moved to Fort Lauderdale, Florida in 2016 after I graduated from college. It was very hard at the beginning, settling down in a new country, new culture, making new friends and trying to fit in. Somehow I managed to get through it and that’s where my story with baking starts.
I started baking to find some kind of relief for my anxiety. I found out that baking was more than a “fun activity’’ for me but more therapeutic. When I was in the middle of an anxiety attack, I walked into my kitchen and started grabbing every ingredient that I saw. I started throwing them into a bowl and mixing them up. My mind was so preoccupied with what I was trying to make that it helped me forget about everything else and my anxiety subsided.
Personally, baking is also a very helpful way to express my feelings, since I am not very good at expressing myself. It’s a way for me to express my feelings as a thank you, appreciation, or sympathy through baked goods.
How did you become the Naked Baker?
I stained my shirt while baking one day and my friend snapped a picture of me making a cake shirtless. I thought I looked sexy and that was it! The Naked Baker began! I am a little bit of a flirt also and things get heated up in my kitchen all the time so you got to be careful if you are around!
Have you ever had the need to go into your kitchen and start baking or cooking right after you get up? In my case, I do, and most of the time and I am always in my undies because I am too lazy to put clothes on.
Baking is sexy, from picking the ingredients and combining them together, to the preparation and care to achieve the final presentation. We all know everything goes in through the eyes first, so we have to make it look sexy and tasty. You wouldn’t just put anything in your mouth, right? (LOL)
I came up with the name with the help of my Instagram followers. It was very fun to interact with all of them and with all the amazing and creative ideas they gave me. I very much appreciate all the love I have been receiving in the last couple of months. I have some new things coming up soon so stay tuned.
Is baking your true passion in life?
More than a passion for me, it is kind of a form of therapy. It has helped me a lot with getting to know myself and it also makes me and everybody else around me happy too. I do have other passions in my life. One of them is soccer. When I was a child I used to tell my parents I wanted to be a professional soccer player. Also, I love helping others. Currently, I volunteer at the Central Texas Food Bank where we provide food to families in need.
What is your biggest accomplishment?
One of my biggest accomplishments was finishing college. It was one of my first goals. Also, moving to another country. But most importantly, I learned how to manage my anxiety. I think I have been getting much better in the past couple of years and I am pleased with that.
Who would you like to meet in person?
Paul Hollywood, one of the judges of The Great British Baking Show. That is one of my favorite shows at the moment, and I get inspired by every episode.
The desserts you bake all look amazing, any plans to open a dessert shop sometime?
Thank you very much, I really appreciate it. Baking is definitely something I really love doing. Right at the moment, it is a hobby for me. I still have a long way to go, I am learning new recipes and skills every day. There are plenty of talented people in the culinary industry. I always told myself I should not be comparing myself with other people but that is also a form of inspiration for me to be more competitive and to work harder on getting better.
But for now, opening a shop will have to wait. Also, I was wondering if the health department would want me baking naked so I may need to change the name a little.
Baking has helped me so much in life that I would love to be able to have a place that is inclusive to everyone and share it with as many people as possible.
Is there anything else you would like everyone to know about you?
I get asked if I have a background in culinary school. To be honest, I only took one single class in pastry when I was in college. It was part of my curriculum. After that, everything I have learned comes from the internet or books I have been reading along the way. Baking is like magic, you could grab five ingredients and turn them into dinner. Grabbing the same combination of ingredients and one day you could be doing cupcakes, and the next day could be making cookies. It’s all about creativity and having fun.
This year I am looking forward to going back to school in a nursing program. I will still be taking different types of baking classes and I have a lot to learn about techniques, concepts, etc. Baking will always be in my life. I have been looking at moving and I am not very sure if I will stay in Austin, but will see where the future takes me.
Everyone always asks me if I eat everything I bake. I do taste it to make sure everything is right, but that’s all I do. The rest of it I tend to share it with everybody. Could you imagine if I ate it all? My body wouldn’t be able to keep up with it. I try to stay very active. I play soccer twice a week and I religiously try to hit the gym at least 6 times a week. Pretty much that’s what keeps me sane.
How can people keep up with you and your baking?
I started this baking journey just this year. So, it’s kind of a new thing for me. The easiest way to find me is on Instagram @thenakedbaker11. I am looking forward to opening my own YouTube channel where I will be posting full videos of my recipes and I will also have my own website.
Alonso, thank you so much. I look forward to seeing where you take your career and hopefully one day I get to taste some of your desserts.