Pastry Chef Alexis Guillemin with fresh baked bread at the Marina Restaurant in Oak Bay. Photography by Lia Crowe

Inspired Chef with Chef Alexis Guillemin

Pastry Chef at the Marina Restaurant gives her recipe for apple crisp

  • Aug. 28, 2018 12:05 p.m.

Quick Facts:

• Born in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, and grew up in Saskatoon.

• Training: “At age 19, I packed my bags and drove to Nanaimo, BC to study at Vancouver Island University.”

• Has worked at Marina Restaurant for just over a year.

• Prior to that, worked at a number of places in Victoria, including the Italian Bakery right out of school, and then The Beach House Restaurant in Cordova Bay,

Fol Epi Patisserie and a “short but amazing time” at The Fairmont Empress.

What are you best known for as a pastry chef?

“If anyone ever asks me how long they should bake something I say ‘Until it’s done!’ This is the way I was taught and I think it’s a good skill to have. You should never rely on a timer to tell you when things are done. A good pastry chef knows when something is baked by the way it looks, feels and smells.”

What are the 10 most important ingredients in your pantry?

“Butter, whipping cream, vanilla beans, flour, eggs, sugar, salt, chocolate of every kind, nuts (hazelnuts being my favourite) and feuilletine (wafer flakes that stay crispy when mixed into chocolate and hazelnut paste).”

Favourite dish to cook and eat on a cool day?

“A warm fruit crisp with vanilla bean Gelato. This is so quick and easy to make. I choose whichever fruit is in season at the time and always add graham cracker crumbs to my crumble topping.”

What’s your go-to item when sampling other chefs’ fare?

“This is tough because it really depends on what mood I’m in! I’m a huge fan of anything with chocolate or nuts in it, but I can rarely pass on a classic crème brûlée or tiramisu.

Hobbies?

“Usually when I’m at home I’m either spending time with my husband and our two dogs or in my kitchen, decorating all kinds of cakes. I’ve recently been focussing a lot more on decorating cakes. I think it’s because when my husband and I got married, I realized how amazing it can be to add something special to someone’s wedding day or special occasion, and it’s an area I’m very interested in.”

Pastry Chef Alexis Guillemin at the Marina Restaurant. (Lia Crowe photography)

Apple Crisp

Filling:

4 large apples (2 Granny Smith and 2 Gala), peeled, cored and sliced thinly

Splash of lemon juice

3 Tbsp melted butter

2 Tbsp All-Purpose flour

1 1/2 tsp vanilla

Pinch of salt

1/3 cup brown sugar

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp nutmeg

1/4 tsp ground ginger

Graham Crumble Topping:

1/3 cup butter, cold and cut into cubes

1 2/3 cups oats

3/4 cup graham crumbs

1/3 cup brown sugar

1 tsp vanilla

Pinch of salt

To make the filling:

Toss sliced apples and lemon juice in a bowl. Drizzle on melted butter and stir until coated evenly. In a separate bowl, mix together brown sugar, flour, vanilla, salt and spices. Add mixture to apples and mix gently with hands until evenly coated. Transfer mixture to an 8-by-8-inch baking dish.

To make crumble topping:

In a mixer or by hand combine graham crumbs, oats and butter. Mix until the butter is cut into mixture in very small pieces and mixture looks combined and not too dry. Add brown sugar, vanilla and salt, and mix just until combined. Pour mixture onto apples and spread evenly.

Bake crisp at 375 degrees F for 30-35 minutes or until the apples are bubbling and the crumble is a nice golden colour. Remove from oven and allow to cool for about 10 minutes. Serve while still warm with a scoop of vanilla bean Gelato and a slice of aged cheddar cheese or a drizzle of caramel sauce.

– Story by Susan Lundy

Story courtesy of Boulevard Magazine, a Black Press Media publication

Like Boulevard Magazine on Facebook and follow them on Instagram

Just Posted

Eighty athletes compete at Biathlon BC Cup race in Quesnel

Two-day event at Hallis Lake features beginners, national-calibre racers and recreational athletes

Column: This and that for seniors in Quesnel

Regular Observer columnist Ruth Scoullar writes about what’s happening and shares some good advice

Forestry Hockey League Highlights: Week 17

Bear Communications and Fraser River GM notch key wins

British Columbia Rodeo Association releases tentative 2019 schedule

The BCRA season opens with the Williams Lake Indoor Rodeo April 26-28, comes to Quesnel July 19-21

Quesnel Women’s Resource Centre wins $500 for Deeds Well Done

There were 28 nominations to the campaign in Quesnel

UPDATE: B.C. legislature managers accused of excessive travel, personal expense claims

Clerk Craig James, security chief Gary Lenz call allegations ‘completely false’

B.C. man fined $10,000 after leaving moose to suffer before death

Surrey man was convicted last week on three Wildlife Act charges

‘Blue Monday’ isn’t real, but depression can be

CMHA encourages people to prioritize their mental health

Anti-pipeline group wants NEB to consider impact of emissions, climate change

Stand.earth filed NEB motion asking to apply same standard to the project as it did with Energy East pipeline

Parole granted for drunk driver who killed B.C. RCMP officer

Kenneth Jacob Fenton will be able to attend alcohol abuse treatment, nearly three years after crash that killed Const. Sarah Beckett

B.C. man charged in 2014 snake venom death of toddler

Henry Thomas was taking care of the North Vancouver girl the day before she died

B.C.’s largest public-sector union wants inquiry into money laundering, drugs

Union officials say Premier John Horgan and Attorney General David Eby have not ruled out the possibility of a public inquiry

Teen in confrontation with Native American: I didn’t provoke

Nick Sandmann of Covington Catholic High School said he was trying to defuse the situation

Cariboo man pleads guilty to second degree murder in death of former girlfriend

Michael Martel admits to violent attack on Vesna Dumpstrey-Soos in 100 Mile House

Most Read