22-year-old Ukranian pastry maker Alina Prokopenko’s life has changed completely during the last 6 months. She says during this time, she realized that there is no better time than now to live fully and to make her dreams come true. She left her hometown Kyiv – where her pastry shop “Bon Choux” was located – because of the war and moved to the city of her dreams, Paris, the perfect place to experience her two favorite things: art and pastry. With a passion for food photography, she’s studying Art History and combines pastry and fine arts. She loves to create informative content on social media about food & life as well.
In Paris, she worked with Michelin-starred chef Daniel Rose for a project when he decided to change his traditional French bistro “La Bourse et la Vie” for Ukranian for 2 months to share her culture. On the first day of her stay in Paris, she prepared the desserts in her temporary accommodation, they were traditional Ukrainian desserts; Medivnyk (buckwheat honey cake) and Kyiv Cake as presentations of her cuisine. They complemented the menu, and were sold to more than 700 customers. She stated that it was a matter of principle for her to prepare traditional desserts even away from home during this difficult time. In this project she did both pastry and service as well as social media communication.
In Paris she also collaborated with some cultural events: a charity gala concert for Ukraine at Château Barthélemy and Ukrainian cultural and fashion spot “Tripolar”, created in collaboration with Vogue Ukraine, for which she cooked buns in a shape of birds, an ancient dessert which her ancestors prepared to welcome spring. Today it became a symbol of peace.
She is planning continue her path in the art of pastry by educating herself at École Ducasse to learn techniques from professional chefs and eventually open her own place in the future.