Growing up outside of Providence, Rhode Island, Ashley Corrao always baked with her mother. Some of her favorite memories revolved around making Christmas cookies for the family, and baking for her friends.
When Ashley was a junior in high school and trying to decide what she wanted to do, her father asked her if she had ever thought of going to school to be a pastry chef. She really hadn’t thought of it as a career, but loved the idea.
Thus, Ashley ended up at Johnson & Wales, receiving her Associates Degree and then her Bachelors in 2015. When the opportunity came along for a school internship, she decided that she wanted to go to Cape Cod. That’s when she landed at the Wequassett Resort and Golf Club in Harwich, where she worked with their former pastry chef.
Ashley CorraoNow in her fifth season with Wequassett, Ashley has worked her way up from intern to Pastry Chef. “I was in the right place at the right time”, she says. Wequassett has three main dining rooms, all of which include Ashley’s pastries on their menus.
For the Outer Bar & Grille, which is open air, relaxed dining, she chose fun desserts, such as Reese’s Pieces Cheesecake, a petit gateau play on the Mojito, and ice cream sandwiches.
Thoreau’s is a warm, intimate tavern atmosphere, so Ashley chose a vegan lemon tart, a Guinness beer float, peanut butter fudge brownie, and warm apple crisp.
Twenty-Eight Atlantic is a four-star, four-diamond premier dining experience. Ashley’s goal for the dessert menu was to make it light and delicious. She created an Apple Pie Baked Alaska which is flamed at table-side, a Deconstructed Honey Cheesecake with fermented blackberries and smoked muscovado sugar; Balsamic Roasted Strawberry Sorbet served with mascarpone almond mousse and triangles of almond cake; Devil’s Food Cake Soup (center of coffee, a large quenelle of mint ice cream, and the soup poured over table-side); and a play on bananas cream pie – Valrhona dulcey mousse soaked with fresh banana compote served with walnut ice cream.
With all of those delicious desserts, Ashley’s favorite things to make are coffee ice cream and funfetti cake.
When asked why she chose to work with J.N. Kidds, she replied, “I’m able to get a lot of specialty items at a good price, like Valrhona chocolate and muscovado sugar. The sales person is very easy to work with, it’s convenient, prices are competitive, and they always have what I’m looking for.”
Ashley’s ultimate goal is to have fun! One day she would love to open her own shop, maybe a coffee shop with gourmet donuts and gluten free desserts.