November 3, 2013

Book club: Bouchon Bakery



Cooking from Thomas Keller is like attempting fine art when your lifetime expertise has been in manual labour. Where he creates exquisite masterpieces you make what can at best be described as 'charmingly rustic'. A bumbling novice up against a champion of creative finesse. But this is no reason to shy away from the beautifulness of Bouchon Bakery, for while your efforts may appear clumsy, they're guaranteed to taste spectacularly good. 

Cooking from Thomas Keller is also like completing a decathlon. You don't just make a tarte a la rhubarbe et au beurre noisette—rhubarb tart—you first cure rhubarb and brown some butter,



learn fraisage while making pâte sucrée,


do some blind baking and whip up some toasted almond streusel,



and it is only then that you make your visually stunning and heaven-scented rhubarb browned butter tart.



Craquelins, with slightly fewer preparatory components, are delightful little Belgian brioche pastries that are made with an enriched dough and studded with zest, and the sharp tang of candied orange peel.


Despite the crunchy pearl sugar (and central cube if you're being traditional) these are not overly sweet, and make a delicious change from your standard everyday brioche.


Petite, aromatic and a delight to look at, by my book the craquelin is yet another for the list of perfect breakfast treats.


Très délicieux!

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