I am absolutely exausted after having worked 60 hours this week, but I can't tell you what fun I had working with one of the most brilliant chefs in America.
There are a LOT of different components in just one dessert so there is a lot of work to do between foams, ice creams, bases, etc...
This photo is actually outdated since he know does a blueberry cheesecake.. but the presentation method is still similar.. how cool is that cheesecake.. If you are asking yourself "where is the cheesecake" then I guess you'll just have to head over to Wd~50 and find out! The contrasting flavors and different textures make his desserts so outlandish and out of this world that will make you beg for more.
This next one is one of my favourites. Lemongrass mousse with whole wheat sorbet. YES wheat! he's a genious! and on top it's lemongrass ice that doesn't melt and create a puddle in your plate. The jackfruit it's garnished with is handpicked and sliced too. There is such a thing as an ugly or beauty-less fruit as I found this week. Chef Alex focuses on Nature's beauty to garnish his plates, but he doesn't like plain and un-interesting.
This huge chunks of things on the plate are pieces of inflated coffee ice cream. If you are saying "whaaaat?" That's exactly the first thing I said when I saw that dessert. It's friggin awesome!! It's like a souflee! But it's made in a vaccum. It's garnished with candied pecans and pieves of chocolate and foam. But the coffee icebergs are still my favourite. What a shou stopper!
I am so sad to say this next dessert is no longer on the menu, but can be found in books where Chef Alex contributed his recipes to.
It's a brioche cake filled with apricot jam. It's garnished with a foam and buttercream.
A note regarding the foams used: Chef Alex doesn't use a cannister as many would think. He just whipps them up. How talented is he?!
Ok.. get ready for this because this thing is soo amazingly good and awesome and I got to plate about 100 of them last night... The Hazelnut tart with coconut cream, giuandija ganache, chicory foam and hazelnut streusel and coconut powder. This is so delicious and my recomendation for the chocolate lovers. It is currently also on the tasting menu along with the rainbow sherbert dessert. These little tarts are made individually every day and are so delicate and fragile. The tart is completely mousse based without a sturdy layer to hold it together. It's delicious and I can't say it enough!
Last but not least is the pear and licorice tart. I found it isn't one of the top sellers but it deserves its merit just like any other dessert. Look at how beautiful. And the plating is fenomenal. Each little piece of pear is so decoratively placed on every plate. It's a masterpiece like all other desserts at Wd~50.
Other desserts are on the menu but I don't have images of them. The strawberry dessert with yogurt panna cotta and fennel cake is beautiful and looks like a circus on a plate. The strawberry tuille that garnishes and pieces together the dessert gives it a wonderful and fun look that makes you wonder "do I really have to destroy that dessert now?"
So after the most amazing 60 hours I've spent in a professional kitchen, I can certainly say I love being a pastry chef. It's not all that glamorous of course, there are days when it's tougher, especially with the long hours and not having time for anything but work, sleep and comute. There are also days when it seems you can't do anything right and you have chefs yelling at you for this and that, but it's nothing personal. I learned that this week.
And the daunting tasks of passing fennel seed through the finest strainer for 1 hour, but in the long run.. you see what your hard work has produced, and you hear all the customers say how wonderful it tasted and beautiful it looked and it makes it all worth it!
Now it's my weekend, and much desserved I think.
Relaxation, Relaxation, and a Wedding Cake to make!