Dominique Ansel is known for bringing the party back to pastries. While he’s not serving foie gras-filled Cronuts or gold-leaf encrusted kouign-amann (at least we haven’t heard that news), his desserts are luxurious. One generally does not think about visiting his bakeries for a cheap meal. That’s unfortunate, because the master baker does offer savory pastries for a steal. Try his decadent EGG-clipse at Dominique Ansel Kitchen (137 Seventh Avenue South; 212-242-5111).
From first glance, it looks kind of like a brownie topped with some custard. The ebony base, however, is a springy squid-ink brioche. It’s topped with an earthy mushroom béchamel, two confit egg yolks, mashed potatoes, and finally, a sprinkling of parmesan. When you cut into it with a fork (utensils are a good idea here), all the luscious, aromatic components blend together like a Frenchified shepherd’s pie, but so much more complex than any version you’ve even dreamed of before. It’s upscale and indulgent. And it’s $7.50.
If you happen to have a little extra cash to spare on your pastry pilgrimage, you may want to try the chef’s new porcine-inspired fall snack, too. In the shape of a pig, the maple apple muffin is adorned with a slice of lardo (cured fatback) on it’s belly. It’s a sweet, smoky, salty treat for $3.50 — cute and also kind of disturbing.