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Favorite Pastry Chef?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
I have to do a paper on a chef for my cooking class and I've chosen to do a pastry chef. I have googled pastry chefs and have come up with long lists of people but I was wondering who you feel is the best of the bunch. I have to write about childhood influences, education, apprentiships, mentors, restaurants they have worked at, restaurants they own, achievements...

Thanks in advance.
post #2 of 10
Try Marie-Antoine Careme, No one since has done what he has done. If you don't know who I am talking about reference The Larousse Gastronomique.

Old time-- Joseph Lambeth, if you can find his books get them at all cost!!

Modern day chefs,Hmmm I would say no-one from the food channel, sorry Duff fans. I have my reasons there.

Michael Laiskonis comes to mind. He is a vary articulate chef who despite all the "new" cooking these days still keeps his head out of his a@#. I respect the guy tremendously.

Michele Bras, though his book is a "mouthful" to go through. Most of his recipes are lost on the typical Applebees customer. Save him for your tasting menus.

Sam Masons stuff is unique but alas the fusion of sweet and savory seems more to be a result of having nothing left to say.
WD-50 left me feeling empty--my wallet too.

Will Goldfarb, well... another flash in the pan, unfortunately he is another victim of the molecular gastronomy restaurant gone wrong.
I liked him better at the Ryland Inn.

Oriol Balaguer- My personal fave right now but it is hard to wrap your head around his stuff. The technique is great, the recipes good, definitely not for the Tira-mi-su types. Buy his book you will see what I mean.

Johnny Iuzzini, I have to say I like the guy and having hung out with him in Vegas once, he proved himself uber cool on the coolness scale. His desserts are great, interesting, true to the point and fortunately not contaminated by the "molecular" trend.

Jean-Francois Bonnet I like for the same reasons as Johnny Iuzzini but he is less Rock and roll, more classic. Desserts are amazing.

Elizabeth Falkner- Good baker? yes, Good pastry chef -well....no.
Demolition desserts-good book if you like brownies, cartoons and stuff like that.

The Gale Gands and Rose Berenbaums and Emrils of the world read better than they recipes actually work. These cookbook chefs are better off baking than putting out any more books that cater the food network crowd. Stay away.

Though not a pastry chef Kat Kora is like the Paris Hilton of the food world. Famous for doing nothing LOL!!

Disclaimer: These are my opinions, so don't get all in a huff if I upset anyone and poke at their personal heroes. I do not consider milkshakes, brownie stacks and NY cheesecake with raspberry coulis as fine pastry, sorry if you cannot handle reality. I can name more if you want, these just come to mind having referenced most of them lately for my spring menu ideas. Also I am bitter as I am not on my own list!




If anyone posts Rachel Ray I will put the curse of Gypsies on you!!:crazy:
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post #3 of 10
You're probably closer to it than I am, rat.....you think the whole molecular gastronomy trend is sort of over? Is Room4Dessert closed?

I wholeheartedly agree with you on those points. I did a lot of reading about Falkner and Gand, and it left me wondering what made them so different or special. One thinks it's just clever marketing rather than innovation or talent. I don't normally buy cookbooks by celebrity chefs, but I did buy Sherry Yard's latest......"Desserts by the Yard". Nothing real special in there, and I've tried many of the recipes too......they are just average as far as I'm concerned. Of course, if I were a famous pastry chef, would I want to write a book that gave all my best secrets away? **** no. I'd write a book of just ok desserts, make some money, and when people said, "Hey, this dessert isn't so great" then I'd say, "Well then, it must be YOU"......:lol:

That's very funny!!!! I never really heard of her til she was on Iron Chef America.

Rachael Ray is NOT a chef! She's a TV personality that plays with food.
Duff gets all the credit for those cakes his FRIENDS make. Is he a pastry chef? Is he an artist? I don't know the answer to either of those questions.

Who's my favorite pastry chef? Well, I can't say any of the well known chefs are my favorite because I don't know them, I've never worked with them, and don't know enough about their work to be inspired by them. My favorite chefs are the ones that have mentored me and helped me along the way in my own career. Jim Lippincott, Darrell Abbey, Mike McCarey.....they're the most important to me because they helped me get where I am today.:chef:
post #4 of 10
i have 2 words for you. Sandra. Lee.


:roll:ok, for serious tho, i really like sherry yard and her story.
post #5 of 10
Room for dessert is closed. Maybe be re-opening near Easter, who knows.
Tailor also is similar, I have never been there but expect the same.
I wish them well.
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post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 

Thanks!

Fabulous! Thank you for all the recommendations. By the way, my professor said we couldn't do anyone from the Food Channel. She echos your sentiments - none of them cook, they just act. I'd include Martha in that bunch but that is a whole story - let's just say spending 2 hours making a layer cake that was tasteless didn't sit well with me.
post #7 of 10
I agree with many of your opinions but I have the opposite view on that one... I think it's the result of saying what most others didn't have the cojones to say. :D

I'm going to toss a few more names in the mix. Pichet Ong and, because I personally have no problem at all with the "new cooking", Alex Stupak and Dominique and Cindy Duby.
It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.
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It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.
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post #8 of 10
I agree wholeheartedly... they build some pretty incredible looking cakes on that show, but it's mostly Geoff that does the brilliant stuff. Duff just kinda hams it up and provides the lights and electronics for the "extreme" cakes. Entertaining show, has some good ideas, but it's Geoff and Anna that have the most demonstrable talent, IMHO. And, even then, I've seen a lot of cake shops produce the same or better work, with more edible pieces! (Including the aforementioned chefpeon!)
For the best cakes in Spokane (and all the "weird" designs that other bakers won't do) visit www.cakes-by-sarah.com !
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For the best cakes in Spokane (and all the "weird" designs that other bakers won't do) visit www.cakes-by-sarah.com !
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post #9 of 10
coming in late on this but Browen Weber at Frosted Art in Dallas is a pastry chef and an award winning sugar artist. Browen is also a very nice person and pleasure to be around. Her talent is amazing.
post #10 of 10
I think for all the people who copy them is is like the parrot repeating the person without really knowing what they are really saying.
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