The luxury hospitality icon of the capital of Indonesia, the InterContinental Jakarta Pondok Indah, has prepared a whole series of sublime pastry products and events for affluent residents of Jakarta to the fullest.
The sweet creations of Pastry Consultant Chef Kim Pangestu never cease to amaze us. The talented Indonesian artisanal pastry star honed her skills in prestigious kitchens in Australia such as Le Cordon Bleu in Sydney, Kirsten Tibballs’ Savour Chocolate, and Patisserie School, Peter Doyle at The Quay, Tetsuya’s and Adriano Zumbo’s Zumbo Patisserie.
Upon her return to Indonesia, she became the Pastry Chef and owner of Nomz Kitchen, where her sweet creations earned her undeniable adulation and recognition from pastry connoisseurs all over Indonesia. As well as being the baking instructor’s favorite of many leading brands, Kim is now building her own pastry business in Jakarta.
We caught up with Kim Pangestu, who filled us in on why she loves baking and of course, what it’s like working for InterContinental Jakarta Pondok Indah.
What inspired you to become a professional pastry chef?
What inspired me to be a pastry chef, actually, what inspires me the most is my mom because my mom liked to bake when I was a little kid. The smell of the cakes that she baked, really smelled so nice that made me happy. So since then, I had always wanted to bake a cake. So she inspires me to be a pastry chef to make a nice cake to make people happy.
Had a great experience working at Adriano Zumbo’s Zumbo Patisserie, what have you learned from him?
I learned so much, what I learned the most from him, he taught me how to create a dessert, like how you can create something that is unique, that’s why I learned the most from him. And of course, we’d made a lot of products in our kitchen and I have really really good recipes and a lot of broad knowledge of all ingredients that we had.
What do you love about your work at InterContinental Jakarta Pondok Indah?
Ok, that’s a good question, the first time I came here was last November. I was supposed to create Christmas collaboration with them. And what I love the most about their kitchen is they have the best pastry kitchen in the whole Jakarta, they have the best equipment, the best facility, and it’s really nice. And also, what is every pastry chef’s dream is they have the best ingredients. So in InterContinental Jakarta Pondok Indah, we use all the best ingredients. That is what makes me really excited to work with InterContinental Jakarta Pondok Indah.
Can you tell us about the special Chinese New Year desserts and cakes you curated for InterContinental Jakarta Pondok Indah?
This Chinese New Year in InterContinental Jakarta Pondok Indah, we have a few cakes and cookies. First, something special for the cookies we have four kinds of nastar, of course, we have the Original Nastar, we have the Cheese, we have the Red Bean and Matcha, and we also have the Durian Nastar. I think our nastar is the highlight.
And also for cakes, the limited edition one is the Fortune, I call it the Fortune, it’s strawberry mousse cake but we glaze it with red glaze and we have an edible chocolate flower. Another thing is we have the Jade. Jade is cream cheese, matcha, and also orange madeleine cake inside. So we have a lot of specials, later we can visit our Chinese New Year cake shop in the lobby.
Where do you usually get the inspiration for your dessert creations?
I get inspiration from everywhere, from daily life, from surroundings, and also I read a lot of pastry books.
The kitchen is a busy, fast-paced, often stressful environment. How do you keep cool under pressure?
Normally I have a coffee in the morning to start my day. And also I think just do everything one at a time, just focus on what we’re going to do in the kitchen. And then I mean the hotel is always busy, we have a lot of functions, we have a cake shop, we have a buffet, and also a la carte menu. So I guess our team we have a very strong team in pastry, so we all look together and we divide all the job among us, and we communicate really well.
Do you offer desserts for those with special dietary needs?
In InterContinental Jakarta Pondok Indah, we do serve gluten-free, and also no chocolate sometimes we have no gelatin, we depend but we cater to a lot of them. Mostly is the no gluten. Like today we have a customer that requested for gluten-free bread.
What are some of your favorite flavor combinations?
My favorite combination is actually passion fruit and milk chocolate and caramel cardamon. Actually, that will be my next creation for this hotel. I made it before that flavor pairing and I think it goes really well, so I really want to make it also for this hotel. So it’s passion fruit, milk chocolate, and caramel cardamon. Yeah, it’s really nice. I mean, of course, there’s a lot of other nice pairings as well, like chocolate and clove, it’s nice too. But, I think passion fruit, milk chocolate, and caramel cardamon is my favorite right now.
Besides baking, what do you usually do during your free time?
My hobby at home, so whenever I have my day off normally I’ll cook for my family, and for my baby as well. Because my baby is a foodie, he can say what’s nice and what’s not nice. So that’s why I cook a lot for him.
Any favorite dessert shop you usually visit in Jakarta? What do you love most about it?
In Jakarta, the place that I went last was probably Union. I like their Red Velvet Pie, and also for my childhood memory it will be Capital. Yeah, it’s an old-school pastry shop, but I really love their Blackforest Cake. I think it brings back my childhood memories.
What would you do if you were not a pastry chef?
It’s either a make-up artist or a lawyer, that’s actually my dream.
Can you tell us about the upcoming dessert trends in 2022?
When people ask me what’s the dessert trend every year, honestly I can’t answer and I don’t know what’s the trend. But, as a pastry chef, I would like to create my own trend. So, every year normally we will do brainstorming, and then create our own trend because we want to be the leader in the pastry. And that’s what I would like to do with InterContinental Jakarta Pondok Indah, we want to be the leader of the pastry.
Can you share a bit about your plan for your upcoming dessert creations at InterContinental Jakarta Pondok Indah?
What we are actually doing is our valentine’s cake shop. So we are going to have a few valentine cakes, valentine pralines as well, and we are also in the progress of developing for our Chinese new year buffet. It’s all going to have a new creation in every of the event.
InterContinental Jakarta Pondok Indah
Jl. Metro Pondok Indah Kav. IV TA, Jakarta 12310, Indonesia
Tel: +62 21 3950 7355
Fax: +62 21 3950 7366