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"Dominique Ansel: The Secret Recipes"


Robenco15
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Just picked this up. Really like it. Great essays and insights in the first 50 or so pages. Then three sets of recipes organized by beginner, intermediate, advanced. The beginner section isn't too bad and the intermediate section would probably pose some real challenges but nothing too insane. The advanced section is incredible. Some of those recipes go on for pages but I'd say everything is doable given you have the equipment, time, and a way to source the ingredients.

The last small part is some basic techniques. This has pictures too to show the process of laminating a dough, etc. which i found useful as I don't know a ton about baking.

I'd pick it up if you are even mildly interested in baking and Ansel's recipes. He is an absolute genius and this has to have some of the most creative dishes (pastries, etc.) I've ever seen. I wasn't as familiar with his stuff so some of it really blew my mind.

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On quick glance and off the top of my head, The Bouchon Bakery cookbook is much more thorough in terms of variety of recipes and standard pastries, etc. Dominique's book is very specific to his own unique creations and very intense. I'd say the hardest recipe in Bouchon Bakery is maybe as hard as the fifth hardest recipe in Dominique's book. By hard I mean a lot of things like steps, duration to complete the recipe, and how difficult it might be to execute it.

 

But I haven't cooked a ton out of the Bouchon Bakery either so not sure how accurate that may be. The biggest difference is Bouchon Bakery really has every standard french baking recipe in it. Breads, sweets, all of the above. Dominique's book has mostly sweet things of his own design that he sells at his shop. There are some overlap of recipes with Bouchon Bakery but most of the recipes in Dominique's book are really unique to him. I'd say Bouchon Bakery would give you a wonderful education in baking, etc. and Dominique's book would show you how to really execute 3 Michelin starred pastries, or whatever you'd call Dominique's genius creations.

 

I am not familiar with Elements of Dessert, sorry.

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