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Yumm and More: The Finest Bahamas Cake From Pâte à Choux
Pate a Choux: Lebanon's Wondrous Croissants
During my adolescence, I remember dad taking me to a pastry shop all the way up to Broumana. Owned and run by Victor Rbeiz, Pâte à Choux cakes were special, freshly handmade with love and passion, a passion that has run for many generations. Pâte à Choux made the best and finest cakes and sweets way before big commercial factories existed. Places like Pain D'Or, Moulin D'Or, Wooden Bakery among others have not seen the light back then. And to be honest, mass production is lessening the country's level of fine taste.
Pate à Choux is a traditional French pastry founded in 1956, it is one of Lebanon's leading sweet artisans, highly recognized for its desserts and viennoiseries creations. I'm a big fan of Pate a Choux, visiting every other week for their unique cakes and rich croissants. You have to try their Bahamas, it's addictive, or the caramelized banana eclair, strawberry tart, and the list goes on and on.
In Broumana, Victor Rbeiz and his two sons, Marwan and Makram, created majestic pieces of cakes. Up until today, I believe that every piece they create is more than just "a cake", but more like the keys to heaven. Bahamas, Rose Noir, Hanold or Caramel Mille-feuille are a few of the many signature sweets. Pâte à Choux still creates until today in their four different branches: Broumana, Antelias, Verdun and Sodeco. I often pass by their Sodeco branch to enjoy their finest creations. The crunchy fresh croissant, dark chocolate cakes, thin light mille-feuille, banana caramel eclair, chocolate ball and much more - premium sweet bites that promise to activate different areas of your taste buds.
My favorite of all is the Bahamas... The Bahamas cake, invented by Pâte à Choux a few years ago, but copied unsuccessfully by many. It is the only cake that makes me want to close my eyes after every bite. A mix of soft ingredients between bananas, creamy and a fluffy cake texture... melt between your tongue and palate without even having to chew anything. You feel softness, tenderness, passion, aromas, sweetness and much much more.
The Pâte à Choux Bahamas is a round cylinder-shape individual cake covered with chocolate. What's inside is a big surprise: A yellowish cake that looks like a hamburger, a thick 2cm piece of cake at the bottom covered with Banana flavor pastry cream (crème pâtissière) embracing a few pieces of ripe banana slices all covered by another layer of yellow sponge cake. Simple! On the outside, is a thin layer of Crème Chantilly that is covered again with a robe of rich chocolate. Just imagine! The second your fork touches its exterior surface, it slides down easily and softly. Make sure to eat it, as is, to feel the three distinct layers.
I love their cakes: You have to try them if you haven't done so yet.