At Avalon, we take pride in our beautiful, freshly-baked pastries, cakes, and desserts. In this post, you’ll meet Aeriel, our Pastry Chef who’s responsible for the delicious baked goods on our menus.
Whether you’re planning a wedding, corporate lunch, or social gathering, you’ll be in wonderful hands with Aeriel’s creativity and expertise!
Meet Aeriel, Avalon Catering’s Pastry Chef
Aeriel has been a part of the Avalon Catering family since 2018. Originally from a small town in California, Aeriel studied pastry at the California Culinary Academy. She was encouraged to attend by her mom, who had dreamed of attending culinary school herself, but pursued a more “practical” path, as Aeriel puts it.
She studied pastry and fell in love with it. Then, craving more knowledge and versatile experience, Aeriel went back and completed the school’s full culinary program.
She also realized that despite what some people might say, she could find stability in a culinary career. After all, as Aeriel says, “There are restaurants everywhere – everybody eats!“
As a result, she is well-versed not just in desserts but all kinds of cooking, as well as savory baking – and her experience proves it! After completing an externship in upstate New York, Aeriel worked in “pretty much every type of restaurant.” Her experiences also include owning a restaurant, working as a catering manager, and living and baking in Germany for a year. Prior to Avalon, Aeriel worked as a pastry chef at a private on-mountain resort in Vail, Colorado where she could ski into work!
All in A Day’s Work: Aeriel’s Baking Routine & Creations
For logistical reasons and because she’s an introvert at heart, Aeriel works best when she has the kitchen to herself. So, she usually arrives at Avalon around 3pm and spends the night baking! She sometimes picks up supplies on her way in if they’re needed.
Then, she’ll whip up whatever that day calls for. Aeriel says she enjoys listening to audiobooks while she bakes sometimes, to tap into her creativity – especially fantasy fiction.
Avalon’s menus include a variety of delicious, farm-to-table baked goods that your guests will remember long after your event has passed. While our menus are seasonal, here are a few of our current favorites made by Aeriel:
- Coconut & Guava Panna Cotta – Lightly sweetened eggless coconut custard topped with a guava gelee. (gluten free, dairy free, vegan)
- Gooey Butter Sweet Corn Squares – Delicate gooey butter bars with a hint of sweet corn.
- Malted Almond Poppy Seed Short Bread – Rich almond short dough with poppy seeds and malted milk. (gluten free)
- Apricot Dulce de Leche Toaster style Pastries – Apricot preserves and dulce de leche encased in a delicate pastry and lightly iced. (nut free)
Aeriel especially enjoys baking foods that accommodate everyone’s dietary needs. After all – just because someone is vegan or gluten-free, doesn’t mean they don’t want to enjoy a cookie with their corporate lunch, or a slice of wedding cake! Avalon’s menus, including desserts and baked goods are created with a variety of dietary needs and allergies in mind.
A Pastry Chef & An Artist at Heart
In the kitchen and in her personal life, Aeriel is enamored with all types of art. For several years, she pursued her passion for visual art through graphic design. Aeriel feels her culinary background, combined with her artistic vision and design background, allow her to create the best possible work for Avalon’s clients.
She shared, “Being into visual art as a whole impacts my pastry work, because the first thing I think of is – what is it going to look like? It’s a given that it has to be delicious. When I can imagine the vision, then I can reverse engineer to determine the type of ingredients that will work best. For instance, you don’t want to fill a cake with Bavarian Crème if it’s a tall cake that needs to stand up with more structure!”
Aeriel’s approach of starting with the end goal in mind is especially helpful when it comes to creating tasty, photo-worthy wedding cakes like the one pictured here.
Get to Know Aeriel, In Her Own Words
How would you describe your work?
“I love to create classic flavor combinations in new, funky, and interesting ways. In keeping with our menus, I often create organic, rustic, and earthy designs – but I’m a fan of sprinkles, edible glitter, and vibrant colors, too!”
What 3 words would you use to describe yourself?
“Creative, spontaneous, and caring.”
Do you have a favorite menu item to bake?
“Cakes are one of my favorite things! You’re a part of someone’s really special event – not just weddings but birthdays, anniversaries…the best days of your life! It’s so meaningful. I love when people send me photos of their event, or of their guests enjoying the cake I made.”
Outside of Avalon
When she’s not baking delicious creations for Avalon’s clients, Aeriel pursues a wide variety of hobbies. Some of these include portraiture and oil painting, glassblowing, and writing fantasy fiction and children’s books. To combine her baking skills and creativity, Aeriel even got a 3D printer to make custom cookie cutters and cake toppers!
Aeriel also embraces the adventure of parenting a 4-year-old daughter and almost-2-year-old son with her husband, a web developer and designer. Their family includes their bulldog, Kyoshi, named after a character from Avatar, The Last Airbender.
As a proud “nerd couple,” Aeriel and her husband also look forward to going to conventions together as well as watching Star Trek and Dr. Who. They’re working toward building their “weird, industrial, modern” forever home over the coming years!