As a Chef, I have been extremely fortunate to work in many different cities and countries around the world and have met numerous individuals whom I now call friends. The coolest part of having friends in the hospitality world, is there is never a loss for words, as everyone has their own stories of ups and downs, good & bad from their own travels. In 2007, I was hired on to the lead the Culinary team for a new resort opening in Southern California called the Grand Del Mar; my first task was to hire a Pastry Chef. We needed someone who could create desserts for multiple restaurants, a specialty coffee shop, events up to 750 guests and be able to work with brides on creating their wedding cakes – certainly not an easy task. I interviewed around 10 individuals, all with great talent, but none that could execute all the skills needed.
Then I met an individual named Thierry Delourneaux. I asked Thierry to spend a day with me and creating a tasting of his specialties, to which he agreed with a smile. Thierry created about 10 desserts, pastries, and even a small wedding cake in very limited time, it was very impressive! Needless to say, he was hired. Thierry and I worked together for 2 years during which we had plenty of our own ups and downs, disagreements (even a few screaming fits, of which I always won ;-)) and sleepless nights while preparing to open this new property (a kitchen is like a very dysfunctional family). Through it all, we became friends and two years have passed since we both moved on from the Grand Del Mar. Thierry and I remain life-long friends and this is the case with so many individuals I have worked with. I may not speak with them every day or even every month, but there is an exceptional bond that forms in a kitchen that will always be with you.
I am excited to post this amazing recipe Strawberry, Rhubarb Crisp from Chef Thierry. He is now working in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia at the award winning Greenbrier Resort, a National Historic Landmark and he has 24 extremly fortunate pastry cooks working underneath him. This recipe has a higher degree of difficulty than our previous posted recipes, but thought it was a great dessert to share with you all.
Thank You Chef Thierry!