Michael Laiskonis has a great blog, insights into the making of great professional kitchens from the perspect of a master of desert. So when I tried to get his colleague at Le Bernadin, Chef Eric Ripert, and scheduling conflicts prevented it, I decided to go after this talented pastry chef! One of the things that interested me about Michael was his background. Rather than attend a traditional culinary school, he worked as a line cook and baked bread, one of the things I love to do the most.
My last guest here, Nick Malgieri, praised Michael as one of the most interesting pastry chefs. Though he veers towards favoring modern baking techniques, his recipes and ideas rely on the classic base of the patisserie repertoire. Even then he may use some of the new techniques or tools, but only after first mastering the basics. I expect in the future to make a pilgrimage to Le Bernadin, not only for the legendary status of the restaurant and cuisine of Chef Ripert, but of course to try Michael Laiskonis's desserts.
Michael was so kind as to send pictures and a recipe for cider beignets, thank you Michael!