|My contribution to the food fest: Gateau St. Swanaré|
I was invited to be a "celebrity" chef at the Mohegan SunWine Fest and participated in the Celebrity Dine Around event on Saturday night where I joined an amazing group of chefs. We each prepared 500 tastings for the hungry crowd.
|I assured all diners that no swans were harmed in the making of this pastry.|
I was joined in the dessert section of the ballroom by Executive Pastry Chef of the Mohegan Sun Chef Lynn Mansel. He and his pastry crew made an unbelievable assortment of treats. I can't even explain how much and how wonderful.
|With Chef Lynn. He's my hero. Google the man. He's unbelievable.|
My guest compatriots were fellow pastry chefs Dorie Greenspan (she brought a selection from her outstanding new cookie brand "Buerre and Sel) and Mindy Segal (she made a selection of tasty cookies) where we spent the first few hours feeding those lovely souls who believe in eating dessert first. As the evening progressed, we were swamped with brave gastronauts who, whether they had room in their bellies or not, were going to slip a few sweet treats in their pie holes. My kind of people.
|A table of swans.|
|My partner in serving crime.|
|Just drinking champagne, talking with the lovely people who are eating swans.|
I made individual Gateau St. Swanaré, my take on the Honoré comprised of puff pastry made with Vermont Creamery's maple/sea salt butter that was filled with maple/caramel pastry cream and topped with a little cream puff swan. On the side, I made a little nest of maple cotton candy and topped it with a mini golden egg.
|The Rainbow Puzzle Cake I demoed for the crowd in the grand ballroom.|
|Before I started the demo, I asked everyone to wave "hello!"|
On Sunday afternoon, I demoed my puzzle cake, rainbow style. It was the perfect choice. It's beautiful, it's a little mind blowing and there's suspense built into the process of cutting, flipping and cutting some more. A fantastic way to wake up tipsy festival attendees.
|Patiently waiting for the doors to open!|
|A table full of pistachio treats.|
To cap off SunWine Fest, we three guest pastry chefs and Chef Lynn and his fabulous crew went back to our pastry drawing boards to create desserts for Bubbles and Bonbons, an evening of champagne and dessert (who needs dinner, right?).
|Next time, I'm going to make a dessert with fewer elements if only to save my voice.|
I made a trio of pistachio fun: a layer cake of moist pistachio cake topped with cassis buttercream which was topped with a chocolate sponge cake that was then slathered with chocolate ganache that was in turn coated with a creamy pistachio diplomat cream. I love this cake. The only problem is that describing the cake to dessert patrons takes for-freakin'-ever. Next to the cake I placed my pistachio/cassis macaron and then finished it off with pistachio toffee.
It was a wonderful experience. And I hope to join them again next year. So put that in your calendar for 2014 so you can join in on the fun!