Click and collect Ipswich chef's gourmet Paris-Brest pastries
- Credit: Vlad's Patisserie
What looks like a doughnut...but isn’t a doughnut?
These pretty, deftly-made Paris-Brest choux buns from Ipswich chef Vlad Zdarsky – that's what.
The beautifully decorated pastries feature, alongside tarts and other bakes, on the menu of Vlad’s Patisserie- a passion project set up by the Tuddenham Fountain’s sous chef during lockdown - and are available to click and collect from a designated point at the pub on the outskirts of Ipswich throughout the week.
“Pastry is something I really really love,” says the self-taught cook, who’s been with the Fountain for 10 years.
Vlad takes inspiration from the culinary greats, including Michel Roux Jr and, more contemporaneously, Antonio Bachour of Bachour’s Bakery in Miami. “It’s all classical French patisserie, but I take my own twist. For example, the Paris-Brest are not just hazelnut praline – my flavours are different. I love the Paris-Brest, and I’m a fan of cycling so it seemed like a nice thing to do. You don’t see many people around here making them. You’ll see eclairs and choux buns, but nothing like this.”
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For those not in the know, a Paris-Brest (named for the long-distance cycling event in France), is two ‘wheels’ of crisp choux pastry, traditionally filled with a praline-flavoured cream, and decorated with caramelised nuts.
“I have so many different types,” says Vlad. “Peanut butter with salted caramel. Hazelnut with caramel. And chocolate, which is really dark, with a mirror glaze on top. Apple custard has been really popular. I put apple jam underneath finely diced fresh apples with the custard.”
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Other treats conjured by the chef include lemon tarts complete with a meringue dome and a dusting of raspberry powder, dark chocolate and passionfruit curd tarts, and white chocolate and raspberry tarts, with homemade raspberry jam, and whipped, light white chocolate ganache.
There are custard tarts too.
Pastries can be ordered via direct message at Vlad’s Patisserie on Instagram or Facebook with 48 hours notice, and cost £4 each or £3.50 each if you order more than three. And you can find some of his products at the recently opened Milkshed café in Sproughton.
For now, it’s Vlad alone working on the bakery business, but he hopes one day to have his own shop. “I’m doing this for the love of it, step by step, giving myself small targets but I’m hoping, sometime maybe I’ll have my own small patisserie locally.”