Refining the art of pastry

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The need to match international standards of pastry training programmes gave birth to the Academy of Pastry Arts in India. Inspired by the concept of Make in India’, the academy focuses on providing well designed pastry programmes for the budding chefs of the country by giving them the desired exposure in the field

Nikhil Sharma

Nikhil Sharma

The increasing number of aspiring pastry chefs opting for international institutes for training programmes was the raison d’être for the Academy of Pastry Arts in India. The academy aims at churning out budding pastry chefs and entrepreneurs who no longer need to look for opportunities to train in pastry abroad. With schools in Delhi NCR and Bengaluru, the academy is committed to the development of a student’s career, from the beginning until long after they leave. Chef Nikhil Sharma, director and executive chef, Academy of Pastry Arts, shares, “Culinary talent in India is in its very nascent stages now and there is so much more that can be done. The industry is still growing in India and we hope that it will develop a number of folds in the next few years. Like the Academy of Pastry Arts, there are not many institutions that provide this kind of expertise in this line of work. The academy and my professional chefs are training students from India and enhancing their skills to bring them up to international competition standards.”

201706eh063The academy boasts of a skilled team of pastry chefs who represented India at the World Pastry Cup 2017 in France and also won a Bronze medal at the Asian Pastry Cup 2016 in Singapore. Commenting on the talent in the country, Chef Sharma opines, “India is very new to the whole concept of French patisserie. Over the past few years, the pastry profession has grown and I hope to see it grow extensively. Compared to the amount of knowledge and skills pastry chefs had then and now, there has been a huge growth in skills. In fact, team India which won the bronze at the Asia Pastry Cup in Singapore last year, even participated in the Coupe Du Monde De La Patisserie 2017 among 23 other countries which is quite a big achievement for our country. We hope to see many more achievements on the international platform.”

201706eh062The academy is the biggest pastry hub in the country and represents India in most of the national and international competitions. Currently, the academy operates from 20,000 sq ft of space in its two centres and intends to take it to 40,000 by end of this year besides expanding in other Asian geographies. Informing about the upcoming programmes, Chef Sharma adds, “We will be hosting another series of master classes coming July to give our pastry professionals a chance to learn from the finest master chefs like Chef Martin Chiffers and Chef Emmanuele Farcone. We will also be hosting Asia Pastry Forum at the end of the coming year in Academy of Pastry Arts, Malaysia where 30 per cent of the students still come from India.”

The idea is to help a chef during all stages of learning. Chef Sharma opines, “We do assist our students with placements in leading hotels and bakery chains in India. In fact, all the pastry chefs of the leading hotels and bakery chains come to us for training. They know our standards well and are more than keen to hire our students.”

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