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

Meet Tour de North cyclist Chris Fedoruk

Quesnel man is a community rider with this year’s Cops for Cancer team

Forestry Ink: Forest tenure changes are occurring throughout the world

Regular columnist Jim Hilton writes about forest tenure and ownership

Quesnel Safeway honours its volunteer shoppers

This year marks the 20th anniversary of Safeway’s volunteer shopper program

Police name second suspect, lay kidnapping and attempted murder charges in connection with Rudy Johnson Bridge incidents

Drynock is considered dangerous, do not approach him and call the local RCMP detachment immediately

Grey Ghost to get back on track at Doug Larson Memorial Race

Quesnel’s Mike Spooner wants to race again after 17-year hiatus

QUIZ: How much do you remember about Woodstock?

Weekend music festival in Bethel, New York, was held 50 years ago

U16 B.C. fastpitch team named national champs

Girls went undefeated at national tournament in Calgary

Advocates ‘internationalize’ the fight to free Raif Badawi from Saudi prison

Raif Badawi was arrested on June 17, 2012, and was later sentenced to 1,000 lashes and 10 years in jail for his online criticism of Saudi clerics

Canadian entrepreneurs turning beer byproduct into bread, cookies and profits

Some breweries turn to entrepreneurs looking to turn spent grain into treats for people and their pets

Canada ‘disappointed’ terror suspect’s British citizenship revoked

Jack Letts, who was dubbed “Jihadi Jack” by the U.K. media, has been detained in a Kurdish prison for about two years

Chrystia Freeland condemns violence in Hong Kong, backs right to peaceful assembly

There have been months of protests in the semi-autonomous region

Most Read