November 6, 2012 09:00 PM
Imagine quitting your job and moving to France to learn the fine art of pastry from the masters. Picture travelling around France and Italy eating your fill in order to better understand how wonderful and satisfying food can be.
Sounds impassioned. Sounds crazy. Sounds like what Jackie Ellis did.
Just five years after opening her own design firm, and doing quite well at it, she gave it all up to follow her dream. There really is no better place to learn pastry in the world, and Paris was waiting. After studying she did a stage with Angelina Salon du Thé and then, this is the good part, just followed her appetite around France and Italy for months of glorious indulgence.
Ellis immersed herself in the food and culture of Italy and France and admits she ate with wild abandon. I needed to understand food the best way I knew to eat it. It was amazing.
She came back to Vancouver inspired and perhaps a little bit rounder. She got to work and the evidence of all the croissants, macarons and cheese she enjoyed in Europe fell away, but their impression did not.
Her experience as a designer would come in very handy designing her business. With a keen eye for detail and an ability to make things look beautiful, and now taste beautiful, Beaucoup Bakery began to take shape and she got to work selling with Vancouver Farmers Market and tempting shoppers with beautifully displayed delectable treats such as local summer berry tarts and chocolate hazelnut tarts.
Although definitely inspired by her travels abroad, she was not quick to forget her childhood favourites. Even though she never found a brownie in France, there would definitely be brownies at Beaucoup. Like everything else, they would be made of the finest ingredients using some well-honed classic techniques Valrohna brownies with crystallized violet and salted caramel blondies, to be sure.
Ellis has continued to learn from the best so she can offer the best. Most recently she went to barista training at 49th Parallel Coffees headquarters in Burnaby and completed a honey tasting with Mellifera Bees honey. She has been recipe testing for months now, fine tuning her lemon tarts with candied lemon peel and milk chocolate rice pudding with blueberry cinnamon compote and hazelnut streusel.
Although sweet treats will be the focus, quiche, sandwiches and salad will be available for lunch. Come in for a treat Beaucoup will be a place that feeds your body and your soul, Ellis says.
Opening is scheduled for the end of November.
It also reminds us that with a dollop of passion, a spoonful of determination and lots of butter, dreams can come true.