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Posts by Steelybob

Yep, On Baking is pretty bad.
The Suas book is a true bible and unlike some others isn't filled with a lot of irrelevant info or untested recipes, etc. Michel Suas btw runs the SF Baking Institute and he brings in experts from other fields as each topic is covered, eg MOFs that specialize in sculpture when he gets to the sugar deco chapters.   The Bouchon Bakery book that came out 2 years ago is also very comprehensive and detailed in all the core aspects of pastry & baking.   I would avoid "On...
the guys I see doing it use nothing but isomalt period. Pictures below were taken 2 weeks ago in Costa Mesa CA and humidity was in the 70% range that day.   you do need good lamps, you should always be using gloves, the gloves I see them using are these really cool looking fingertip reinforced rubber gloves out of Japan somewhere, wish I had a name or knew how to get them - just basic dishwashing gloves from japan tho. If you look carefully in top photo, there's a pack...
This is a quick demo of how it works...   http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=7BUFonSyTqc
I work for Stephane Treand, he makes molds for The Chicago School of Mold-Making which sell them. Aside from the molds & noodles that are standard equipment for sugar pouring, he has a line of products called Showpeels which enable you to create very fine, filigree like designs by pouring sugar on them lightly.   I highly recommend trying to get hold of one or two for something like wings on a blown bird. You may find designs that will work instead of blown...
So Good is the best, Dessert Professional is another good "industry rag" that also has a website (last I checked). Pastry & Baking NA is another rag that is also free if you can find it, but I'm sure you could get it sent to you.   Amoretti & Qzina (Chef Warehouse) are some other names you can follow that have fairly active web presences and do tons of demos, etc.
MOF Stephane Treand frequently teaches macarons at different levels out of Southern California.   www.thepastryschool.com
If you're in America, I highly recommend talking to Maria Coassin, she's learned the hardcore old school way and has one of the most successful gelato shops in north America (in gloomy, rainy seattle no less).   And she started teaching a few years ago.   http://www.equipmentandconcepts.com/how_to_make_gelato/
Jean Marie Auboine out of Vegas teaches some specialized hard candy techniques, including panning and large scale confectionary production techniques.   Most of the other highly specialized teachers and schools only focus on bon bons, showpieces and modern pastry.
As indirectly mentioned above, school is about networking, nothing else.   If you can build a million dollar a year business off a $65k investment then it's worth it. If you are just trying to get a job in a kitchen, you're probably more likely to get hired without having gone to culinary school.
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