Art of making pastries

Chef Arvind Prasad

Gone are the days when baking was all about making buns and basic cakes. In today’s health-conscious world, everything needs marketing. I’ve been in the industry for almost two decades now and there are so many things that I am learning on a daily basis. 

There’s a lot about food that brings back childhood memories.

For some, it could just be the simple aroma of their favourite bun and cookies while for others, it might be the celebration behind it. Either way, this helps us develop a taste as we grow older. 

Today, most of the celebrations are incomplete without a cake. And by cake, I don’t just mean a combination of sponge and cream. It has to be creative, pleasing to eyes and satisfying to the palette. A perfectly finished cake with multiple textures is what is popular now.

Even during festivals, we’ve seen a gradual increase in consumption of bakery products like cakes, chocolates and desserts. 

I can now see a future where we prefer desserts made from the choicest ingredients in small portions with innovative presentation and a healthy twist to it.

Being healthy is the top priority today. A healthy diet limits the number of calories people should consume in terms of added sugars and saturated fat. Does that mean no desserts?

While many baked goods are a major source of both added sugars and saturated fat, dessert can still be an enjoyable part of a full and well-balanced eating pattern.

Instead of focusing on what to cut out, why not add something nutritious to your recipe? You can add a fruit or vegetable, experiment with recipes that use less-common flours, use low-fat dairy products and so on.

But not all desserts have to be sweet. A little bit of sourness, salt and maybe even a bit of spice can give the dessert its oomph factor. And that’s why the ‘Mango and Chilli Opera’ makes the cut today. This is actually an inspiration from Opera, an old fashioned French classical cake, which is a beautiful blend of coffee and chocolate.

Chef Arvind Prasad
Co-founder and executive pastry chef

Whitecaps International School of Pastry

Ingredients
Almond Sponge                                              


Mango And Chilli Opera

  • Milk, 100 g
  • Sugar, 100 g
  • Cooking cream, 55 g
  • Whole wheat flour, 90 g
  • Milk powder, 15 g
  • Baking soda, 3 g
  • Baking powder, 3 g
  • Vanilla essence, 1 g
  • Almond meal, 35 g
  • Melted butter, 100 g

Method

  • Mix all the ingredients together, rest for an hour and bake at 40x30 cm sheet for approximately 10 to 12 minutes.

Mango Ganache

  • White couverture, 150 g
  • Mango puree, 100 g 

Method

  • Warm mango puree and add white chocolate; blend well.

Mango Chilli Butter Cream

  • Glazing fondant, 100 g
  • Butter, 100 g
  • Chilli powder, 4 g

Method

  • Cream sugar and buttercream, until fluffy. 

Mango Chilli syrup

  • Mango puree, 100 g
  • Green chilli, 2 to 3 
  • Sugar, 50 g

Method

  • Warm mango puree with green chilli and add sugar. 

To assemble

  • Make three layers sandwich with almond sponge, buttercream and mango ganache.
  • Glaze with mango ganache and freeze it overnight.
  • Slice like a finger pastry and serve at room temperature.
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