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Renowned for beautiful cakes and whimsical confections, Miette Patisserie is among the most beloved of San Francisco's culinary destinations for locals and travelers. Miette's pretty Parisian aesthetic enchants visitors with tables piled high with beribboned bags of gingersnaps, homemade marshmallows, fleur de sel caramels, and rainbows of gumballs. This cookbook brings the enchantment home, sharing 100 secret formulas for favorite Miette treats from chef and owner Meg Ray. More than 75 gorgeous color photos capture the unique beauty of Miette desserts and shops. More...
An Excerpt from the Introduction by Meg Ray:
At Miette, we make our pastries with individual care and attention to detail. Some of the recipes, such as the layer cakes with several components, may be time consuming or challenging for the home baker. We do not sugarcoat the importance of certain steps or techniques, but we have done our best to simplify the methods without compro-mising what we do in the bakery. Collected here are the recipes for our most beloved pastries, with a particular emphasis on our signature cakes, organized in the same way we think about them at the bakery. Also included are chapters featuring our more casual afternoon cakes; tarts; cookies, bars, and pastries; and candies and creams. A section of essential and versatile recipes at the back covers fillings and frostings, syrups, curds, and mousses—every flourish and all the building blocks necessary to make the recipes in this book, and any of which may serve you in countless baking adventures beyond these covers.
I have never worked in a large-scale kitchen, so everything I know I learned from trial and error, by reading myriad cookbooks, and from the contributions of the amazing bakers who shared their knowledge with me in the Miette kitchen. The recipes in this book are the result of years of experiments and experience, and incorporate the lessons I learned from my many mistakes, so I can anticipate yours. Because this is a bakery book, not a general baking book, we took the approach of embodying most of such accumulated wisdom in the recipes themselves rather than trying to write a comprehensive techniques section. It is often said that baking is an exact science, but for me, baking is enor¬mously creative. Once you know the basic rules, there is room for more than a bit of verve. This is the spirit in which I founded Miette, and I hope that you find that same spirit in the pages of this book.
BUTTERMILK PANNA COTTA
The tangy buttermilk and vanilla bean make this panna cotta a luscious base for any summer fruit, including strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries.
In this recipe, we use powdered gelatin. Be sure to measure the gelatin since the amounts that come in the packages will vary. Also be sure to follow the directions on the package to fully dissolve the gelatin so the dessert is smooth and properly set.
makes twelve to fourteen 2-ounce panna cottas
2 cups heavy cream
1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin powder about 1/2 packet
1/3 cup (2 1/2 ounces) sugar
1/3 vanilla bean
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons buttermilk
fresh berries, finely diced, for garnish
1. In a medium bowl, pour in 1/3 cup of the cream and scatter the gelatin evenly over the surface. Leave the gelatin to soften for at least 10 minutes. Arrange 14 clean small jars in a baking pan and clear space in your refrigerator for the pan.
2. Meanwhile, combine the remaining 1 2/3 cups cream and the sugar in a medium saucepan. Split the vanilla bean lengthwise and scrape the seeds into the cream. Bring to a boil and add the dissolved gelatin mixture into the hot cream. Add the buttermilk to the cream mixture and whisk to combine. Strain the mixture through a medium-mesh strainer into a container with a spout, such as a glass measuring cup.
1. Pour the mixture into the jars just to the base of the neck. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight to set the panna cottas. Garnish with the fresh berries. These will keep in the refrigerator, covered with plastic wrap for up to 3 days; garnish just before serving.
Copyright © 2011 by Meg Ray. Photographs copyright © 2011 by Frankie Frankeny. Reprinted from Miette: Recipes from San Francisco's Most Charming Pastry Shop with permission from Chronicle Books.
Meg Ray (left, photograph by Elli Sekineis) is the chef and owner of Miette and Miette Confiserie. She lives in Oakland, California.
Leslie Jonath is the author of several cookbooks, crafting, and children's books. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Frankie Frankeny is one of Entertainment Weekly's "100 Most Creative People in the United States" and a frequent photographer for Chronicle Books. She lives in San Francisco.
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