The moment Annie Hesselstad had waited and longed for came in January 2019. That was when she was finally put in charge of Artipelag’s pâtisserie and bakery. The position of head pastry chef suits the 29-year-old to a T.
– I want to develop Bådan into a café people visit on purpose. Many people drop in for coffee and cake as part of their visit to the art gallery, but I want Värmdö’s residents and visitors to see this as THE café to visit. It should be worth making the journey here for the pâtisserie and bakery alone!
If you ask what the future focus of Artipelag’s pâtisserie will be, Annie is a firm believer in the Swedish patisserie tradition. She favours a fusion of classic Swedish ‘fika’ and French elegance.
– I maintain that I’m classic with a twist. I’ve always loved the typically Swedish punsch rolls, almond tarts, etc. Punsch rolls are also perfect from a sustainability perspective as they’re made from leftover cake.
Sustainability is something that’s become increasingly important to Annie. Being a pastry chef involves a great deal of counting and measuring, to make exactly the right quantity of buns and pastries to satisfy the demand. Everything to ensure that as little as possible gets wasted.
– I hate throwing food away and we do our best to avoid it. We use small plates upstairs for the buffet, to make sure that people don’t take more food than they can eat. If I make pastries down here and get, say, yoghurt mousse over, we make it into a dessert that they can serve upstairs. A bread pudding that we make of leftover buns is also a permanent feature of the buffet.
Since February, she’s been working on what’s set to be the summer’s major pâtisserie event at Artipelag: the pastry she’s created for the major Fornasetti exhibition.
– It is a very Italian and zesty pastry. The dominant flavours are limoncello, pistachio and mascarpone. I’ve given it a rather graphic look, as a nod to the fact that Fornasetti worked extensively in black and white. I always try to work this way, to link flavour and design to the exhibition – people should come here and see the connection.