My topic for the final exam is the city of Lima. In Peru, people eat sweet potato puree with marshmallows for Christmas. I will make a cream out of puree, the base will be dacquoise with pecan nuts and orange peel, and everything will be topped with cocoa butter, and marshmallows with a little lime gel.
Ema Baniček, who until recently was Kul IN pastry student and now is a proud alumnus, has an interesting take on confectionery. She always says that confectionery is the mix of cooking and art. It requires skill, precision and calmness in unpredictable situations that could otherwise overwhelm you in a professional kitchen or pastry shop. And what better way to prepare for the real environment than through an education program that is focused on providing the students with the real-life experience of working in confectionery and the bustling life of a professional pastry chef. Read the article to find out what Emma thinks of the Professional Pastry and Confections program take a peek into her final exam recipes.
Kul IN: Can you tell us more about your professional journey?
- In the third year of college, I realized that I didn't see myself doing the profession I was studying for full time. Cooking is my favorite hobby, I also love art and design, so the interest in confectionery was a natural outcome since cooking + art = confectionery. I worked in a professional kitchen for one summer, and I liked it, although it's hard. Culinary arts might be my first love but pastry comes more naturally to me, also many of the chefs who are my age already have 15 years of experience. I simply love desserts, they always cheer me up and are the most exciting part of every meal.
Kul IN: Why did you choose Kul IN?
- I wanted to take up something else and become qualified to work in gastronomy but the programs at various centers did not seem very reliable to me. Kul IN left a good impression, so I decided to enroll. It also suited me in regards to program duration because I can't afford to spend another two years in school.
Kul IN: How will the knowledge gained during the program help you in your future career?
- We learned a lot, and worked with different ingredients and equipment. I hope I will not be expected to do everything we did here once I find a job, I hope it will be a narrower specialization (laughs). I would like to get a job at a nice restaurant. For some reason, restaurants appeal to me more than pastry shops.
Kul IN: Which lesson did you like the most?
- The pralines were great, the tarts and pies were also cool, as well as the chocolate, I enjoyed that the most.
Kul IN: Can you tell us more about one of the desserts you will prepare for the final exam?
- Of course, I will present my restaurant dessert. My topic for the final exam is the city of Lima. In Peru, people eat sweet potato puree with marshmallows for Christmas. I will make a cream out of puree, the base will be dacquoise with pecan nuts and orange peel, and everything will be topped with cocoa butter, and marshmallows with a little lime gel. Lime is a signature Peruvian fruit, and will also refresh and balance an otherwise sweet dessert.
Kul IN: What do you like to prepare at home?
- Strudel, I like to roll out strudel dough, it's my grandmother's legacy. I love home-baked goods and bread, there is nothing better than fresh bread in the morning. I never have enough space to prepare the cakes I want, or the tools needed, so I honestly don’t make cakes at home. Only small cookies and family desserts.
Kul IN: A good pastry chef must be ...
- Curious, patient, creative.
Kul IN: A message to future / indecisive students?
- Think outside the box!