3 Questions for the Chef of the New Miss Molly’s Café & Pastry Shop

Our Q&A with enterprising pastry chef Molly Sullivan

Pastry chef Molly Sullivan loves to make a French free-form pastry called a galette, but crème brûlée? Not so much. And she has strong views about the place of desserts in a meal. In the local-girl-makes-good department, this Tosa native plans to christen Miss Molly’s Café & Pastry Shop this month and says she’ll bring local sourcing to her menus. Sullivan talks classic-versus-artful desserts and – despite being up to her elbows in butter and sugar – healthy eating:

What defines your baking style?
It’s more rustic and elegant than detail-oriented, with a French-country aesthetic. Ingredients are what’s important to me. I think that’s what will show through.

You worked as a pastry chef at Braise. How did that shape your views on what desserts will fly in MKE?
At Braise, I had the freedom to play around, so I did. Some places may think they need dessert “standards” [cheesecake, crème brûlée], but when you put something interesting in front of the diner, I think you find they’re really open to it.

Miss Molly’s will also serve a savory breakfast/lunch menu. How does that fall on the decadence spectrum?
It definitely has a health focus – fresh salads and plant-based sandwiches and lighter fare. And dessert is not just about sugar. If done well, you should feel good, not stuffed. You don’t need to eat a slice of cake the size of your head.

‘Path to Pastries’ appears in the July 2017 issue of Milwaukee Magazine.

Find it on newsstands beginning July 3, or buy a copy at milwaukeemag.com/shop.

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Ann Christenson has covered dining for Milwaukee Magazine since 1997. She was raised on a diet of casseroles that started with a pound of ground beef and a can of Campbell's soup. Feel free to share any casserole recipes with her.