The splendor of a candy store window comes home in this approachable guide to the techniques and tools of the confectionary. Master Baker Peter Greweling applies his years of experience in and out of the kitchen (as a professor of Pastry Arts at the C.I.A.) to this comprehensive, but still user-friendly resource. With an introduction on the equipment and ingredients of the confectioner’s kitchen and chapters on everything from the “Master Techniques” to “Brittles, Toffees, and Taffies” to “Fudge, Fondant, and Pralines,” Chocolates and Confections could easily outfit any kitchen for the serious—and seriously sweet—business of candy production.
Some cookbooks are incomplete without notes in the margins, creased pages, and the occasional grease stain. Others, such as Great, Grand, & Famous Chefs and Their Signature Dishes, don’t even belong in the kitchen. This elegant collection, presented by Australian hotelier Fritz Gubler, presents a survey of iconic chefs of modern haute cuisine. Each chef profile includes personal anecdotes and culinary philosophies, beautiful photographs, and the recipe for a chef’s signature dish. The recipes are more illustrative than specific, intended to provide the reader with a deeper understanding of the chef rather than a detailed method. But be forewarned: Great, Grand & Famous Chefs may inspire a bout of culinary exploration that could lead to bankruptcy and an overstocked fridge. But according to Fritz Gubler, and based on the profiles in the book, it will be money well spent.
Among his myriad other accomplishments, Master Chef Rudi Sodamin has helped define higher standards and expectations for cruise line cuisine. Besides being “the most highly decorated chef at sea,” Sodamin is an extremely well-traveled, sophisticated gourmet chef whose prolific talent brought him to great heights in his career from a very young age. With this second installment of the Holland America Line cuisine cookbooks, Sodamin shares the recipes and practices that make him such a sought-after chef at sea. Chef Sodamin also takes a big picture approach to the world of cruise cuisine, consulting corporations to get the highest quality product to the galleys of every cruise line kitchen. In The Taste of Elegance he offers a repertoire of the recipes and culinary building blocks that make cruise line cuisine work, examples of dishes that successfully transplant the gourmet standards from the land to the sea.
2004 IACP Award Winner for Food Reference/Technical Category; Up-to-date, advanced techniques for the professional pastry chef and serious home baker The Advanced Professional Pastry Chef brings up-to-date coverage of the latest baking and pastry techniques to a new generation of pastry chefs and serious home bakers.
The ingredients, preparations, and “how the hell did he do this?” elements of Achatz’s signature dishes at Alinea are finally assembled into a volume available to the mere mortal. If you’ve never experienced dining at Alinea, but wish you had, this will get you a step closer. The photography is up-close and stunning and the wealth of detailed information in each recipe is staggering. Each dish is broken down into its various components, which range from simple to highly complex, and is followed by meticulous instructions for plating and presentation. What’s more, no element is repeated from one dish to another—and with 100 recipes, that’s saying a lot. Alinea carries the requisite testimonials from food media heavyweights (e.g. Steingarten, Ruhlman), but the most interesting of the book’s six essays is Achatz’s piece on the thought process, choice of technique, and ingredient selection behind some of his most memorable dishes. The beauty and sophistication of the Alinea cookbook propels it into the very top percentile of this year cookbooks, and makes for the grandest of gifts.
Certified Master Baker and associate professor Eric Kastel of the Culinary Institute of America offers this extensive guide to the processes and products behind artisan breads. Kastel intentionally demystifies the rarefied world of artisan breads for the home cook and seasoned baker alike, with accessible explanations of the specific methods and ingredients that go into producing these characteristically satisfying and impressive breads. He covers everything from flour to yeast to bread texture and crust, offering an array of recipes and instructions on capturing wild yeast for an authentic sourdough starter. The serious bread baker looking to incorporate authentic artisan practices shouldn’t overlook this detailed, authoritative guide.
Magnificent classic French brasserie recipes from one of the most celebrated restaurants in the country. The Balthazar Cookbook is already creating a buzz among food lovers and critics as the first major French cookbook since Patricia Wells's Paris Cookbook. Started by Keith McNally in 1997, Balthazar quickly became a New York hot spot, famed for its star-studded clientele, its lively, friendly atmosphere, and its superbly prepared versions of the "comfort" foods served up in Parisian brasseries. Beautifully designed and enhanced with glorious full-color and black-and-white photographs, The Balthazar Cookbook captures the restaurant's incomparable style and offers more than 100 recipes from its signature dishes.
With more and more chefs achieving celebrity status, interest in the exciting world of today’s leading chefs is higher than ever. Essential reading for anyone who loves food, Becoming a Chef gives an entertaining and informative insider’s look at this dynamic profession, going behind the scenes to look into some of the most celebrated restaurant kitchens across the nation. More than 60 leading chefs--including some of the newest up-and-coming--discuss the inspiration, effort, and quirks of fate that turned would-be painters, anthropologists, and football players into culinary artists.
With C Food, Executive Chef Robert Clark and owner Harry Kambolis have taken the usually content-heavy cookbook format and turned it on its head. In conjunction with Vancouver photographer Hammid Attie, Clark and Kambolis have assembled a book that showcases exquisitely detailed culinary photography on an equal footing with recipes. C Food untraditionally rests its laurels on the time-tested formula that a picture is indeed worth a thousand words (in this case, at least a thousand), with close up shots of curlicue grilled squid and bright, textured portraits of salmon sashimi set against a clean black backround—the visual silence against which Attie’s conceptual minimalism sings out. From the seat of their award-winning sustainable seafood outpost C, Clark and Kambolis have proven that eco-friendly and fine dining don’t have to be mutually exclusive concepts. No down-market, folksy aesthetic appears on account of the team’s conscious concessions to mother earth, and the cookbook is no exception, with recipes that convey the restaurant’s inspired, influential, and unswervingly respectful approach to seafood.
In Coco, ten of the world’s legendary chefs define the select population—a mere hundred worldwide—of the most talented young chefs on earth. The result is an undeniably authoritative guide to the most exciting kitchens in the world today, from Arles, France to Queens, NY, complete with restaurant photographs, sample menus, recipes, and a brief biography for each of the 100 chosen chefs. The book encapsulates the vital physics of the culinary world, the forces of inspiration and competition that catalyze and invigorate the professional kitchen. With contributions from the likes of Ferran Adrià, Fergus Henderson, Mario Batali and Yoshihiro Murata, including personal reminiscences of dishes that have impacted the great chefs lives and careers, Coco acts like a beacon of culinary excellence to inspire and guide the next generation of professional chefs.
Food photographer, journalist, and trained agricultural engineer Jean-Pierre Gabriel has written a culinary bible by way of science. At once catalogue and celebration of its subject, the encyclopedic book covers the tools, techniques, and overarching philosophy that inform modern gastronomy. “More than ever,” Gabriel says in his introduction, “today’s cuisine is all about the meeting of flavor and science.” If this is indeed the case, Gabriel’s book is its literary compliment. Gabriel approaches the “raw materials” (e.g. eggs, meat, fish) by way of technical insight into their perceived culinary properties (the white blotches on cooked fish are actually “coagulated albumin,” the result of the flesh’s enzymatic reaction to ageing). Gabriel goes on to cover the techniques, tools, contemporary ingredients, and themes of modern gastronomy, from rotary evaporators to transglutaminase to umami, fermentation, and low-temp cooking. Recipes from chefs like Sang-Hoon Degeimbre and Bart de Pooter are splayed out like the structure of a chemical compound, a further demonstration of a raw material, tool, or technique—and the perfect visual metaphor for Gabriel’s central thesis, that science and cuisine have been, and will continue to be, fundamentally interconnected.
Over 100 recipes from Restaurant Nora in Washington, D.C. Pouillon serves simple, sophisticated food featuring the finest seasonal, local, organic ingredients. Here, she offers 20 of her four-course menus. Not for the beginner, experienced cooks can comfortably turn out dishes like Indonesian Quail Sate or Sea Scallops in Black Sesame Crust. Pouillon also guides you through presenting the food artfully, with handsome color photos to help.
With Culinary Careers, Rick Smilow and Anne McBride have put together a comprehensive—as in industry-engulfing—resource for anyone interested in a culinary profession. Whether you’re a wearied worker crossing from the office to the kitchen, or vice versa, you’ll find a path, and ample advice, to cater to your specific culinary career. The book is wholly practical: Smilow begins by answering the age-old question: “Do I need to go to culinary school?” and goes on to break down the types (there are five categories) as well as the comparative worth of on-the-job experience. For those not looking to park themselves in a restaurant, Smilow breaks down the variety of other jobs available in the food world, whether you want to be a wine importer, test kitchen manager, or part of the grand machinery of food television. Meanwhile, would-be chefs can pore over advice from professional chefs with restaurant empires all their own, like Thomas Keller and Daniel Boulud, as well as chefs and pastry chefs at the helm of high-caliber kitchens, like Michael Laiskonis and Graham Elliot Bowles. And for those seeking careers outside the kitchen, Smilow has collected advice from leaders in management, retail, public relations, wine and beverage, and sundry other professional sectors of the food world. No one seeking work in the culinary field—a wide and previously uncharted territory—should be without this book.
Few people could have predicted that a teenage dishwasher in the Catskills would end up executive pastry chef of Daniel by the age of 26. But that’s exactly what Johnny Iuzzini, erstwhile club kid turned four-star pastry chef, did. After a flirtation with the savory side of cooking, Iuzzini realized his true passion for dessert, dedicating the next years of his life to intensive study, travel, tasting—and some serious time in the kitchen. From this aggressive campaign of self-education came expanded culinary horizons, exposure to ingredients and methods that Iuzzini was eager to bring to his work. From Daniel, Iuzzini moved on to Jean Georges, where he added another element to the restaurant’s classic Tastings to create the book’s title presentations: four-part dessert platings that showcase an ingredient, season, or pastry concept, often playfully inverted or turned on its head. The spirit and technical excellence of the “fourplays” showcase Iuzzini’s dedication to the conceptual depth of his desserts, and to their value not as an addendum to the meal but as an experience in and of themselves.
When Auguste Escoffier first thought of this definitive guide to the cannon of French cuisine in 1882, he intended it “for the younger generation … for those who, starting work today, will in twenty years’ time be at the top of their profession.” With the publication of this newest English translation, almost 130 years since the first spark of inspiration, Escoffier gets his wish. (Again.) Because it’s the next generation of culinary talents that will now dive into the master’s carefully catalogued guide to classic French cuisine, confident in its authenticity. Amateurs beware: Escoffier’s famous narrative recipes assume a level of culinary mastery (Oeufs Mignon assumes knowledge of Sauce Périgueux which assumes knowledge of a “well-flavored Demi-glace,” etc.), putting the book squarely in the realm of students and professionals. And especially for those students of the culinary arts not (yet) versed in its rich past, introductions by Heston Blumenthal (who delves into the past at Dinner) and CIA President Dr. Tim Ryan put Escoffier’s genius in historic perspective. “The man casts a long shadow,” says Blumenthal. “We eat the way we eat because of Auguste.”
In the great and diverse catalogue of literature devoted to the chef, his cuisine, and the El Bulli legacy, Colman Andrews’ coverage stands out as something slightly more personal—as intimate a glimpse into the man behind the curtain as we’re likely to get. The book, purportedly the last biography to which Adrià will contribute, isn’t actually a biography, at least not in the traditional sense. It’s a life story, certainly, a kind of dual biography told in parallel. On one side is the story of Adrià as chef, covering his meandering path from hapless partier, to semi-serious cook, to the driving force behind the next great evolution in cuisine. On the other side is the life of El Bulli the institution, from its inauspicious beginnings as a would-be tourist trap through its various culinary incarnations, to its rebirth as the stucco-ed, breezy, unlikely hub of modern gastronomy. Whether Andrews intended it or not, the parallel is effective, not simply in narrative terms; it emphasizes how the evolutions Adrià and El Bulli are inextricably interlinked, and with them, the future of the culinary experience as we know it.
With more than thirty years of experience in the business, Delores Custer knows how to make food look good for the camera. And in an industry that relies so heavily on print and online-visuals, the art of the food stylist is in high demand. Would-be food stylists, whether total amateurs or active professionals, couldn’t ask for a better guide than Custer, whose extensive career included heavy-hitters like General Mills, Bacardi, and Cuisinart, and who has previously taught her craft at NYU, the CIA, and ICE. The book is entirely, and exhaustively practical, covering everything from the history of the craft to getting your first job to organizing storyboards, exaggerating appetizing visuals, and building a kit of various, and surprising, food-styling tools. Whether she’s giving advice on how to get the best “cheese pull” for a pizza commercial (pre-slice the dough), suggesting hair grooming lotion as a perfect visual substitute for milk (it’s highly toxic), or troubleshooting styling issues for everything from pasta to meat to pastry, Custer’s advice is detailed, thorough, and generous—proof of a long, successful career in the industry making food look as good as, and often better than, it tastes.
Larry Knight has worked as a dishwasher, busboy, waiter, Maitre’D, and Senior Butler. In his books he culls together years of knowledge to distill exactly what goes into making restaurant service exceptional. While the title implies the book is a resource for chefs, the content would more likely benefit front-of-house employees and restaurateurs. Knight focuses primarily on the work of a server: serving techniques, proper etiquette, responsibilities by profession, and miscellaneous need-to-knows. The book might be more aptly titled “What Every Restaurant Owner Must Force His Staff to Read” but there is no denying that the knowledge Knight has to offer is of an inestimable value.
Ferran Adria introduces Chef Jason Atherton, “a magnificent cook,” in a brief but warm forward to this cookbook distillation of Gordon Ramsay’s Michelin-starred London outpost Maze. Working under the likes of Adria and UK culinary powerhouse Ramsay, Atherton developed his own imaginative approach to cuisine that is both ambitious and firmly rooted in fundamentals. In Maze, Atherton showcases the restaurant’s award-winning menu that combines Eastern and Western elements (e.g. Wagyu beef, ras el hanout, Scottish salmon, preserved lemons) for a modern upscale take on tapas. The cookbook is built as a sort of inverse pyramid, with recipes (in categories “Savory” and “Sweet”) straight from the restaurant menu at the top, followed by two recipes that use the same central protein or flavor profile in more casual preparations. With only this brief foray into the back kitchen of Maze, the success of the restaurant, and Chef Atherton’s proven potential, become immediately and stunningly apparent.
Most professional pastry chefs and bakers are well aware of the idiosyncrasies and necessary exactitude of their chosen craft. The same ingredients, the same measurements, and the same methods might yield different results in different kitchens, with different equipment, at different altitudes, or on different days. But Paula Figoni is here to help. She’s been here, in fact, a food scientists and associate professor at the International Baking and Pastry Institute at the College of Culinary Arts at Johnson & Wales University, for years. And this is her third edition of How Baking Works which, despite its title, is far from a beginner’s primer on the basics of the bakeshop. Figoni delves into the technical aspects of baking, from the logic behind the various applications and kinds of baking powder to more esoteric food science like Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (basically a measurement of a food’s antioxidant activity). Whether she’s delving into the chemical structure of a starch molecule or offering techniques to guarantee the highest quality low-fat product for your customer, Figoni is full of practical, professional advice for the contemporary, chemistry-savvy kitchen.
Ideas in Food is a portable book jam packed with information for professional chefs and advanced home cooks. Husband and wife team Alexander Talbot and Aki Kamozawa of IdeasInFood.com work with chefs through their consulting company and blog to make food science understandable and accessible. The book is divided into one section for home cooks and another for professionals. The former section covers topics that one would mostly likely pick up in culinary school; topics like brining and dehydrating are deconstructed, explained, and utilized in tempting recipes. But it’s in the professional chapters where Talbot and Kamozawa get really interesting. They decipher hydrocolloids from xanthan gum and locust bean gum, expound on transglutaminase, and clarify the use of liquid nitrogen. Most chefs know that these chemical catalysts can transform mere ingredients into conceptual and elegant dishes, but readers of Ideas in Food will understand how.
Whether you are seriously considering making a career out of your passion for the kitchen or you're an armchair foodie, If You Can Stand the Heat is essential reading. This informative and dishy insider's collection of interviews with some of the country's leading chefs and food professionals shows what it takes to make it in the world of food, and helps answer such questions as: What are the first steps in opening up a restaurant? What can I expect if I make a mid-life career change?
As winner of the James Beard Foundation's Outstanding Restaurant Award, Charlie Trotter and his service staff run what many consider to be America's finest restaurant. But it's not just about food in this renowned Chicago hot spot. It's about a subtle relationship between food, wine, ambiance, and service--a relationship Trotter has perfected by hiring passionate staff with the ability to surpass his incredibly high standards. In Lessons in Service, journalist Edmund Lawler reveals the secrets behind Trotter's unequaled success and shows other businesses how to improve their levels of service.
From the reinvention of French food through the fine dining revolution in America, Daniel Boulud has been a witness to and a creator of today's food culture. In Letters to a Young Chef, Boulud speaks not only of how to make a career as a chef in today's world, but also of why one should want to do so in the first place. As he himself puts it, it is "a tasty life." The love of food and the obsession with flavors, ingredients, and techniques are the chef's source of strength, helping the young chef to survive and flourish during the long years of apprenticeship and their necessary sacrifices. Part memoir, part advice book, part cookbook, part reverie, this delicious new book will delight and enlighten chefs of all kinds, from passionate amateurs to serious professionals.
Formerly a pastry chef in New York City, Anrew Garrison Shotts currently runs the prolific Garrison Chocolates, a confectionary company that creates new flavor combinations five times a year. In Making Artisan Chocolates, this authoritative candy man brings the fine art of the chocolate confectionary to the uninitiated. Garrison Shotts outfits his reader from the ground up, with equipment recommendations, a run down of key ingredients, and a program generally meant to inspire creativity and ownership of the process. For a kitchen looking to incorporate house-made truffles or a chef looking for the best resource for chocolate-making at home, Making Artisan Chocolates is a serious book for serious chocolate-lovers.
In purely technical terms, Modernist Cuisine is a comprehensive codification of culinary techniques. In cultural terms, the fact that it spans five volumes, covers topics in meticulous scientific depth, and essentially transforms the fundamental approach to modern cooking, makes it a culinary revolution, printed and bound. Not that Nathan Myrvhold, Chris Young, and Maxime Bilet are looking to challenge the basics of cuisine; quite the opposite, they’re looking to explore them more deeply, as deeply as they’ve been explored. And with volumes including History and Fundamentals, Techniques and Equipment, Animals and Plants, Ingredients and Preparations, and Plated Dish Recipes—with a Kitchen Manual, because let's face it, you're out of you're league—they're exploring (and explaining) everything from the hows and whys of traditional methods to the science behind the vanguard techniques of the last 30 years. And all this from a project that began as an exposition of sous vide and food safety (which Myhrvold covers in unprecedented depth in Volume One). Bisected photographs give immediate visual logic to explanations of technique and product, making this an indispensable reference guide for any cook, chef, or visionary looking to keep pace with—or even dream beyond—the technical, conceptual, poetic precision of modern cuisine.
2004 IACP Award Nominee for Chefs and Restaurants Category; Today’s professional chefs have the world to use as their pantry and draw freely on a global palette of flavors. Now Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page bring together some of the foremost culinary authorities to reveal how to use different flavors and techniques to create a new level of culinary artistry. Mario Batali, Daniel Boulud, Alain Ducasse, Paula Wolfert, and many others share the foundations of ten influential cuisines:
It’s apt that the same year that saw the original, unabridged translation of the Guide Culinaire also saw the publication of Next Restaurant: Paris 1906—the wireless, cyber-bound, great culinary grandson of Escoffier’s original. The first in the “near-real-time” documentation of Next Restaurant’s time-and-taste jumping menu publications, Paris 1906 presents both the rationale for their starting point and the extensive, elegant menu that made up their first three-month culinary tour, courtesy of Executive Chef Dave Beran. "By starting Next in Paris in 1906, we honored one of the greatest chefs of all time," says Achatz, "and in the process showed … just how far—or not—cooking has evolved in the last 100 years.” Recipes give reference numbers, so you can check back to Escoffier’s originals [“Potage a la Tortue Claire,” (907); “Bombe Ceylan” (4826)]. But unlike Achatz et alia, Escoffier was scant on instruction, not to mention void on visuals, which are presented here in full, color-rich, iPad perfection. Photos showcase Beran’s modern aesthetic updates on the French classics—Next tends to plate where Escoffier buffets—and give readers a peek into the cobalt blue, industrial-chic, visually spare jumping-off platform that is the Next restaurant space. At a radically affordable $4.99, it’s an easy addition to your iBook shelf. Just leave room for the next Next, coming soon to an iPAD near you.
Generously spiced with historical and literary anecdotes, this undisputed classic of great gastronomic writing discusses all the major food categories and has become established as the work that combines culinary lore and scientific explanations in one authoritative book. Line drawings and photographs.
One of three people in the world holding both the titles of Master Sommelier and Master of Wine, Doug Frost here gives a straightforward approach to Wine. It is both a perfect introduction for novices and a resource for more experienced oenophiles.
Now in its seventh edition, the trade version of this volume features basic recipes for each cooking technique that Gisslen’s readers are acquainted with. He also includes a more global view of the kitchen in hundreds of recipes for meats, poultry, vegetables, and grains with Indian, Italian, French, and Moroccan dishes. A nifty addition are topics of professional interest like food cost analysis, recipe conversion, menu development, and plating ideas—once you’ve finished learning how to small-dice, that is.
Chef Peter Gilmore of Quay cares primarily about the diversity of food. On the menu or on the plate, he wants variety as well as vibrancy. His artistic cookbook celebrates his open culinary philosophy with recipes and photographs from his iconic restaurant. Thomas Keller penned the introduction, where he claims “[Gilmore] has great command of the fundamentals and is also able to successful blend the diverse cultures that have influenced the region with integrity and understanding.” Keller’s favorite, “Mud Crab Congee” reflects Gilmore’s philosophy as much as Keller’s, featuring diverse textures and local ingredients, but with the depth of knowledge that makes Gilmore stand out among Australian chefs. His book, like his restaurant, is a piece of art.
Offering comprehensive guidance on the essential elements of the recipe-writing art, this useful reference provides complete and proven guidelines for recipe testing and writing, from format, syntax, spelling, and terminology to weights and measurements, and presentation.
Despite its title, this restaurant service guide is comprehensive, an approachable primer for the aspiring restaurateur or front of house manager looking to rejuvenate the standards of service. Written by hospitality industry service experts Sondra Dahmer and Kurt Wahl, this book provides a template of restaurant industry service standards, from pre-service prep to wine and bar service to the use of computers and new technologies to supplement and streamline manpower. An elaborate table of contents ensures you will find the information you’re looking for, whether it’s on how to time turning tables or how to most effectively assign stations to your waitstaff. There’s even a special section dedicated to specific case problems, ensuring no question on the fundamentals of service will remain unanswered.
Revised and updated third edition of the established standard book on Port. Long the Port guide for The International Wine and Food Society and required reading for the Wine Education Trust diplomas. As the world demand and prices for Port continue to climb, as new Quintas and shippers emerge, updated information from an established authority becomes indispensable. The fascinating history of the region and the trade along with detailed descriptions of the viticulture and winemaking techniques are covered.
Welcome to bread, not as a food, but as a way of life. Chad Robertson’s devotion to the history and process of bread baking is unsurpassed. It’s what earns the chef and owner of Tartine Bakery industry admiration and his recipes Biblical status among bakers and carbohydrate aficionados. Tartine Bread scales back Robertson’s bakery recipes for the home cook and includes chapters on basic country bread, semolina and whole-wheat flours, baguettes, and enriched breads. And with more than 30 recipes that use days-old bread, cooks can replicate the hearty, healthy, and bread-laden fare that cements Tartine Bakery’s unrivalled reputation for crafted café cuisine. Sous chef Eric Wolfinger’s photographs set a luxurious tone to the cookbook, and along with colloquial prose, take readers as close as they can get to looking over Robertson’s shoulder.
Master chocolatier Edward Notter’s got an embarrassment of pastry competition gold medals and a pastry school to his name (literally—it’s the Notter School of Pastry Arts). Add to that his 35 years in the business, the admiration of his peers, and his latest effort, the seminal The Art of the Chocolatier, and you’ve got a standard-bearer in the pastry and confectionary arts. A proven pastry maven, as comfortable with a classic dessert as a sugar showpiece, he’s known industry-wide for his mastery of chocolate, and here he shares his extensive knowledge with passion and precision. Notter’s got everything you want to know about all level of techniques, from enrobing and tempering methods to creating transfer sheets and texturing molded shapes; his expertise ranges from “ganache troubleshooting” to creating chocolate tubes by hand. And that’s the beauty of the book—made manifest in the luscious photography of Joe Brooks and Lucy Schaeffer—it’s chocolate from A to Z, clean, precise, impeccably organized. So whether you want to craft the perfect truffle, get comfortable with gelatin molds, or need some aesthetic or structural pointers for a chocolate showpiece, Notter’s got you covered. Or, should we say, enrobed.
Self described “peripatetic pastry chef” Robert Wemischner has worn many hats in his career: itinerant food writer, gourmet retailer, and instructor in baking and pastry at LA Trade Tech for over 18 years. And with regular contributions to Food Arts and Pastry Art and Design, Wemischner rounds out his profile as one of the more prolific and generous pastry experts in the country. For those who can’t reach his classrooms in Los Angeles comes The Dessert Architect, the crystallization of Wemischner’s extensive knowledge and deeply held respect for the ingredients, techniques, and compositional beauty of the pastry arts. The pastry chef, says Wemischner, “is a composer and conductor, creator and presenter,” who must have both knowledge of and control over the elements of his craft. In his new book, Wemischner breaks down those elements with meticulous care, from the basic components of flavor and palate development to elaborate plating guidelines. Thoughtful questions, instructive recipe guidelines, and comments from chefs around the country make the book an invaluable resource to the cook or pastry chef looking to strengthen his or her ownership of the craft.
Former French Laundry pastry chef and current C. I. A. culinary instructor Francisco Migoya offers this hefty, beautifully illustrated, and arguably definitive account of the evolution of the modern café. From the basic concept of a café to its unique pricing model, standard dishes, and changing expectations, Migoya covers every aspect of the topic. The book is broken down by traditional café areas, including bakery, pastry, savory, beverage, and retail, and Migoya provides comprehensive overview of each section, along with instructions, recipes, and business-oriented pointers. Rustic bread recipes come with detailed technique instructions and troubleshooting tips, while more complex entrées have packaging instructions for “to-go” preparation. And while Migoya provides for the expected convenience of café fare, his elegant, sophisticated food is anything but pedestrian, as exquisite photographs attest. In this penny-pinched age of increased cost-consciousness, Migoya’s work—validating the extraordinary culinary potential of the humble café—couldn’t be timelier.
“There is always another level of perfection to achieve and another skill to master.” So begins the latest compendium of culinary instruction from the Culinary Institute of America. It’s no Modernist Cuisine (though it does offer a digital iPad app at $49.99), but weighing in at just over 1000 pages, the behemoth book is as comprehensive as it is efficient (just what a working chef needs). And the book doesn’t just elaborate upon the basic instruction of the CIA curriculum, it explores all facets of the culinary profession, from its cultural roots to the fine art of bookkeeping, from the increasingly important vocabulary of nutrition to the ever-relevant strictures of food safety. Explanations of equipment, product, sourcing, and, of course, technique, assume both the skill set and the ambitions of the professional (not to mention the kitchen space). So whether you’re a pastry chef looking for alternative sweeteners (check out piloncillo, page 229) or a chef looking to expand your vegetarian options (check out the “Method in Detail” section on grains and legumes, page 755), The Professional Chef will help you live up to its name.