Considered one of the leading pastry chefs in post-World War II France, Gaston Lenôtre (1920–2009) modernized the world of desserts, turning French pastries into the elegant, lighter fare we recognize today. Besides owning 60 boutique pastry shops across a dozen countries, Lenôtre operated a catering business, Michelin-starred restaurants, and a cooking school with up to 3,000 students per year. The likes of David Bouley, Alain Ducasse, Alice Medrich, and Pierre Hermé all worked or studied under him at one point or another.
One of the first to use gelatin to stabilize and lighten his mousses and creams, Lenôtre understood that success in increasing production volume required inventive manipulation of the ingredients.
Lenotre’s first two books, Desserts and Pastries and Ice Creams and Candies, were published first in French, in 1975 and 1978. The books were adapted for American kitchens and translated into English in 1977 and 1979 without compromising Lenôtre’s rigorous technique. We are offering here first English editions of each.
Desserts and Pastries addresses basic batters, creams and syrups, breakfast items, cakes, pies and tarts, soufflés, and petit fours, covering serious range and laying the groundwork for a serious repertoire. Our copy is in Near Fine condition with a Very Good dust jacket, price clipped and missing a pinky knuckle-sized bit of paper on the rear top edge.
Ice Creams and Candies, similarly, offers suggestions for equipping the ideal pastry kitchen prior to launching into sherbets, granités, ice creams, composed frozen desserts, and various confections. It is a great sequel to further expand one’s wheelhouse. The copy is a strong Very Good Plus with a small tear to the front paste down, previously repaired with Scotch tape. The jacket is very good, price clipped, and shows discoloration along the spine. Small bits of paper are missing from the head and foot of the spine.
Students at any level will find much value in these major instructional manuals from the godfather of modern French pastry.