Mr ALISTER HENSKENS ( Ku-ring-gai ) ( 16:29 :48 ): Du Plessy Pralin in West Pymble has been one of Ku-ring-gai's best-loved businesses since Martha and Marcel Adam opened the store in 1961 and pioneered handmade chocolates. The creations of Du Plessy's pastry chef, Michael Oksinski, are not only popular with the locals but have seen him included as one of the nominees for the Savour Patissier of the Year for three consecutive years. The 2018 competition will take place at the end of this month in Sydney and 30 entrants will be judged by a panel of acclaimed pastry chefs.
For Michael, making desserts was initially just a hobby to take his mind off his Higher School Certificate exams, but a diploma cooking course at TAFE, followed by an apprenticeship, has led to a successful career, including almost four years at Du Plessy. The Patissier of the Year competition has four categories: tarts, eclairs, entremets and desserts. Michael's strength is his entremets, which are multi-layered desserts using different textures, each chosen to give a perfect balance of flavours. Michael's specialties include a salted caramel cake and a chocolate and raspberry mousse cake. His entremet was voted the People's Choice best entremet in 2017 after placing third in the category in 2016. Michael will be aiming for a top-10 placing this year. I wish him well.