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Mar 18, 2018
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Posts Tagged ‘pastry’

The Scoop: Prioritized Pastries to launch with pop-up

Monday, January 9th, 2017



Pastry chef Alex Feick is bringing her baking game to area restaurants and retailers. Prioritized Pastries aims to supply area restaurants, stores and individuals with quality artisan breads, pastries and desserts. Feick is an industry vet who’s worked in kitchens like Pie Oh My!The Libertine and now-closed Niche.

Feick said she wants to focus on smaller restaurants and retail outlets that might not have the budget or space for a full-time pastry chef, but still want high-quality pastry items on their menus or shelves. Individuals can place orders as well, and there is no minimum order requirement.

Instead of leasing her own space, Feick has arranged to prepare her wares in the kitchens of several local establishments like Pie Oh My! Orders can be made by contacting Feick via Facebook until the company’s website is up and running in the next two weeks.

To kick off the new venture, Pie Oh My! will host a Prioritized Pastries pop-up from Tuesday, Jan. 10, through Saturday, Jan. 14, from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. or until sold out. Fieck said there will be a rotating menu of her “greatest hits” available, including gluten-free and vegan items.


Related Content
Save Room for Dessert 

The Scoop: Half & Half to open second location in Webster Groves 

The Scoop: Jane Callahan sells Pie Oh My!

By the Book: How to Boil an Egg by Rose Carrarini

Friday, October 28th, 2016



How to Boil an Egg by Rose Carrarini is full of simple, timeless egg-centric recipes from a basic poached egg to quiche and pastries. What attracted me to the book, though, was its restrained British elegance with lush stills of popovers and Eton messes by botanical artist Fiona Strickland.

I want to be the person who can make an excellent scone. The classier-sounding British biscuits have always eluded me in their simplicity, and though this recipe made a clear and even pleasant read, that remains the case. Everything from the weather to the way you fill a cup with flour can affect the amount of liquid needed to bake scone, and it’s hard to adjust ingredients without overworking the dough. However, despite being a bit dry and tough, these cute teatime snacks were delightfully savory and deeply spiced – perfect with a generous pat of butter.

Skill level: Beginner to intermediate – the directions are clear and helpful, but some dishes require a little experience, or at least cooking common sense.
Others to try: Green tarts, popovers
The verdict: Despite the bold and interesting flavor of these scones, their dryness couldn’t beat Butter & Scotch‘s biscuits and gravy.




Cheddar, Leek & Curry Scones
18 small scones

4½ cups (500 g.) self-rising flour, plus extra for dusting
4 Tbsp. caster (superfine) sugar
2 tsp. curry powder
½ tsp. salt
100 g. (scant ½ cup) butter
60 g. (generous ½ cup) grated cheddar cheese
2 eggs
120 ml. (½ cup) sour cream
Lightly beaten egg, to glaze

For the leeks:
40 g. (3 Tbsp.) butter
1 Tbsp. olive oil
250 g. (9 oz.) leeks, thinly sliced
1 tsp. sugar
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

• Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with baking parchment paper.
• First, prepare the leeks. Melt the butter with the oil in a pan, add the leeks and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, for 10 to 15 minutes, until very soft.
• Stir in the sugar, season with salt and pepper and leave to cool, and then chill in the refrigerator.
• Meanwhile, put the flour, sugar, curry powder, and salt into a bowl, add the butter and rub in with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fresh breadcrumbs.
• Stir in the cheese and make a well in the middle.
• Lightly beat the eggs with 3 tablespoons of the sour cream in a bowl, stir in the leek mixture, and pour into the well.
• Using a fork, stir to mix, finishing by hand to bring the dough together, adding the remaining cream if necessary. Do not overwork the dough – it should just come together softly but firmly.
• Roll or pat out the dough on a lightly floured surface to about 3 centimeters (1¼ inches) thick.
• Carefully stamp out 4 to 5 centimenter (1½- to 2-inch) rounds and put them on the prepared baking sheet.
• Brush with beaten egg to glaze. Bake for about 20 minutes, until golden.

Reprinted with permission from Phaidon

First Look: Sarah’s on Central in Eureka

Friday, August 19th, 2016



Sarah’s Cake Shop owner Jill Umbarger attempted to quietly open Sarah’s on Central at 127 N. Central Ave., in Eureka last Wednesday, Aug. 10, and was met with a line out the door. As The Scoop reported in June, the new cafe adds breakfast and lunch fare to the usual desserts Sarah’s Cake Shop is known for.

For breakfast, visitors can choose from pastries, quiches, breakfast sandwiches and sweet or savory muffins. A dedicated toast menu features sweet and savory toppings including house-made jams on slices of Companion bread. For lunch, sandwiches, salads and soups are offered, and daily after-school specials are a weekday treat; right now, it’s $1 grilled cheese sandwiches.

“I’m from Eureka, so I’m excited to be here,” Umbarger said. “As soon as I saw (the space) was for sale, I knew I had to have it.” Sarah’s on Central is open Tuesday through Saturday from 7:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Here’s what to expect when you walk in:



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-photos by Michelle Volansky 

First Look: Nathaniel Reid Bakery in Kirkwood

Monday, August 8th, 2016



Internationally renowned pastries are now available in Kirkwood. Pastry chefs and co-owners Nathaniel and Lee Lee Reid opened Nathaniel Reid Bakery at 11243 Manchester Road on Aug. 1, serving up sweet and savory breakfast pastries, sandwiches and colorful tarts and cakes.

Nathaniel Reid’s career is studded with accolades and stints in prestigious kitchens. Dessert Professional magazine named him one of the top 10 pastry chefs in America in 2012, and he received U.S. Pastry Chef of the Year at the 2010 Paris Gourmet Competition. Mostly recently, he served as pastry chef at The Ritz-Carlton in St. Louis, and he has crafted sweet confections at Joël Robuchon Restaurant at The Mansion at MGM Grand, as well as The Ritz-Carlton in Las Vegas.

Despite his successes in the fine dining and hotel industries, Reid said he’s always wanted to open a community bakery. “This was the goal since I started 15 years ago, to get to this position,” he said. Reid designed and constructed the 1,920-square-foot space from scratch, knocking down the wall between the former clothing store and neighboring office to create a small retail space and expansive pastry kitchen visible through a large window behind the counter.

That window showcases baking techniques of all kinds. Reid and the kitchen team create pastries from delicate laminated dough, fresh crusty baguettes for sandwiches, vibrant tarts and cakes, a rainbow of macarons and more. Patrons select from the day’s offerings on display in four pastry cases and can pair with a Kaldi’s coffee drink or tea. Nathaniel Reid Bakery is open Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Here’s a First Look at what to expect when you step inside Kirkwood’s newest bakery:


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-photos by Michelle Volansky


What I Do: Patrick Devine of La Patisserie Chouquette

Tuesday, February 2nd, 2016



With a last name like Devine, this pastry chef was born to make dessert. Today, you can find Patrick Devine turning out French confections as assistant pastry chef of Simone Faure’s La Patisserie Chouquette in Botanical Heights. Here, he shares his love of challenging technique and crowd-pleasing sweets.

Why work with pastry?
I love to cook, but I also appreciate the rigid technical (aspect of) pastries, and the challenge of finding where you can be creative with it. … I liked that whole challenge of sticking with a recipe, and if you don’t do it right, then it doesn’t turn out –understanding why it worked or why it didn’t work. If we are all in this industry to please people and satisfy some creative need we have, too, dessert is really going to cap that off.

You worked at The Ritz-Carlton in Clayton for a long time. Why did you go with Faure to Chouquette?
Simone likes to say it’s this big Jerry Maguire thing, where she was like, “Who’s coming with me?” But it was more me saying, “That sounds like exactly what I wanted to do from the moment I moved back to St. Louis.” … We work together really well. She had a one-guy-in-the-kitchen rule for a long time, even at the hotel. She’s like, “There is enough testosterone in one person, and you are that person.”

How is working at a small, independent pastry shop different than working at The Ritz?
More control. In a hotel, you have your day-to-day dictated to you by what kind of events are going on. …  It’s more producing a lot of food. … It is extremely frustrating at times, very challenging, keeps you on your toes. It’s a great place to learn. Moving from that to something small … gives you a chance to be more focused on individual creative items.

Chouquette specializes in French pastry and elaborate cake designs. What are you in charge of?
My main focus is the baked goods, the individual pastries. … I don’t care to do cakes. When it comes to decorating, … I’ll just really overthink the details, where Simone is like, “I’m going to do this, and here it goes.” And it looks awesome. She can knock out someone’s wedding cake in half a day, and it’s the most glorious thing you’ve ever seen. For me, it would take like four days. And I’d still be staring at it.

What’s your favorite thing to make?
My favorite thing to make is The Darkness. It’s Simone’s creation – a triple chocolate croissant. … Laminated doughs are really fun to make, but I like this one because most people haven’t seen chocolate dough before. Usually when they see it coming they’re like, “Ahh.”

What’s the most difficult menu item to make?
The macaroons. We had a great recipe going into opening, and that first summer was so hot and humid it just didn’t work. A lot of work goes into those – I think more than anything in the shop. They definitely give laminated dough and croissants a run for their money.

You post a lot of food and architecture photography on Instagram. Where did your passion for photography come from?
I got this nice camera for Christmas from my in-laws. It started more as outdoor nature stuff, and then that turned into urban exploration photography, abandoned buildings. And now that I have been at Chouquette, it’s turned more into food photography.

Do both disciplines fulfill your creative needs in the same way?
I think most chefs or even pastry people have quite a creative aspect to their personality. I feel much more comfortable in a kitchen or behind a camera more than I am in front it. (They both require) being a little introverted.

-photo by Carmen Troesser

The Scoop: The Ritz-Carlton, St. Louis names new pastry chef

Wednesday, October 8th, 2014


{Pasty chef Brielle Fratellone and “Lucy,” her life-size pastry wedding dress}


It’s a sweet homecoming for Brielle Fratellone, new pastry chef at The Ritz-Carlton, St. Louis. The hotel recently announced that Fratellone joined executive chef Melissa Lee in August, replacing chef Nathaniel Reid who worked in the hotel’s pastry program since April 2013.

Originally from the Midwest, Fratellone became enamored with pastry while working as a cake decorator in a grocery store. After winning a James Beard scholarship in 2007, she attended the Culinary Institute of America and upon graduation began working in some notable Florida hotels and resorts, including The Breakers in Palm Beach, Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort in Amelia Island and most recently at the famed, exclusive Everglades Club in Palm Beach.

“Her creativity is helping us as a team,” Lee said. “Her leadership style is excellent, innovative and creative. When I talk about staying relevant, I talk about Brielle.”

Fratellone said she is glad to be back in the Midwest and is excited to build on current trends like deconstructing desserts and to take existing flavor combinations like sea salt and chocolate to a new level. “I want to bring modern influence to the luxury desserts we already serve,” she said.

As pastry chef, Fratellone is responsible for more than just the dessert menu. She and pastry cook Laura Cottler spent more than 96 hours planning and executing a life-size wedding dress made entirely of pastry elements for The Ritz-Carlton’s reopening of its grand ballroom. Fratellone is now hard at work creating another “out-of-the-box” holiday creation scheduled to be unveiled in the hotel lobby Nov. 28.

Baked: Coconut Chocolate Chip Scones

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014



These scones are definitely for the coconut lover. While I am not one usually one of those people, my boyfriend is, and he’ll often skip breakfast if I don’t insist he eat something. It doesn’t take much convincing to get him to try these.

The scones have a pleasant, soft-yet-crumbly texture thanks to the mixture of grated coconut and coconut milk. (Grated coconut offers a more subtle texture than coconut flakes, but feel free to swap them.) The end result is delicate and light with rich chocolate undertones and crunchy sugar on top. They’re a snap to put together and the unbaked triangles are great to freeze, then pop in the oven for a quick breakfast.

Enjoy and happy baking!

Coconut Chocolate Chip Scones
Adapted from a recipe at Pastry Affair
8 Servings

1½ cup flour
¼ cup granulated sugar
2 Tbsp. baking powder
½ tsp. kosher salt
1/3 cup coconut oil (solid state, not liquid)
1 cup unsweetened grated coconut
¾ cup coconut milk
1 tsp. coconut extract
3 oz. chopped chocolate or chocolate chips
2 Tbsp. Turbinado coarse sugar

• Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
• In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, granulated sugar, baking powder and salt. Use a pastry blender or your fingers to cut in the solid coconut oil until the mixture resembles coarse sand.
• Stir in the grated coconut, coconut milk, coconut extract and chocolate until the mixture comes together.
• Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface and form into a disk roughly 1-inch thick. Cut the dough into 8 wedges (like a pie) and place the triangles on a baking sheet. Sprinkle the tops with the coarse sugar.
• Bake 16 to 18 minutes, until the edges just begin to brown. Allow the scones to come to room temperature before serving.

The Scoop: The Ritz Carlton, St. Louis’ Nathaniel Reid featured in The New Pâtissiers

Wednesday, October 2nd, 2013

092413_reid{A cake created by Nathaniel Reid}


While more area chefs and restaurants are landing on the national culinary radar, one St. Louis chef has received aplomb on a global scale. Nathaniel Reid, executive pastry chef at The Ritz-Carlton, St. Louis, is among 38 pastry chefs from around the world included in The New Pâtissiers, the latest book by Australian-based writer Olivier Dupon (His previous books include The New Jewelers and The New Artisans.). The hardcover book, to be released Oct. 8, explores each chef’s style through biographies, photographs of them in action, and recipes of their mouthwatering cakes, tarts, chocolates and other sweet works of art.

Reid’s three recipes published in this cookbook require experience and fairly sophisticated kitchen equipment. But for those who appreciate masterful, modern pastries, this coffee-table book can serve as a window into current trends in pastry and sugar arts. For Reid, who joined the culinary team at the Clayton hotel this year, those trends include “more exploration of shapes and colors than in the past.” Named one of the top 10 pastry chefs in America by Dessert Professional magazine in 2011 and honored with the title Pastry Chef of the Year at the U.S. Pastry Competition in 2010, Reid explained his approach is to push boundaries, while still keeping his pastries approachable using timeless flavors like caramel, chocolate, red fruits, tropical fruits, hazelnuts and pistachios. Another trend he embraces is dialing down the sweetness of a dessert by using savory ingredients or offering cakes that are “more cake, less mousse. People are bored of mousse,” he said.

Reid’s desserts published in The New Pâtissiers are not on the menu at The Ritz-Carlton, but you can find The New Pâtissiers for sale in the hotel lobby. The book can also be ordered online at Amazon, Barnes & Noble and IndieBound for $60.

-Photo by Erik Kellar



By the Book: Arthur Schwartz’s Chocolate Babka

Tuesday, September 17th, 2013


Arthur Schwartz’s Jewish Home Cooking: Yiddish Recipes Revisited should be subtitled A Crash Course in the History of Jewish-American Gastronomy. The lengthy introduction goes into great detail about the steady migration of Eastern European Jews to New York City, bringing with them the kosher dishes of their homelands. As Jews assimilated into American culture, those traditional dishes evolved. Most of the recipes in this book were collected from New York deli owners, restaurateurs and ordinary people who’ve put twists on their family’s longtime recipes. The history and evolution of each dishes proved as intriguing as the recipes themselves.

The chocolate babka is a prime example of how a simple coffee cake became a luxurious treat. According to Schwartz, the word “babka” comes from “baba,” the Polish word for old lady or grandma. The cake got its name because its original incarnation was “stout and round, just like grandmothers used to be before they went to aerobics class and practiced yoga.” These dry-ish cakes were traditionally plain and served with coffee or tea, but today, Schwartz says their purpose is largely to serve as a vessel for chocolate and sweet stuffings.




He had me at chocolate. This babka is simple to make, but it does require some time. The buttery yeast dough must rest refrigerated overnight, then rest another two hours after the rolls are assembled. Plan accordingly.




Since there’s a generous amount of sugar in the dough and filling, and I’m not one for overly sweet desserts, I used dark chocolate chips instead of the called-for semisweet.




In lieu of a second loaf pan, I tucked most of the slices into a 8-inch round, cinnamon-roll style. Two hours later, they had puffed up against each other in a lovely, chocolate-studded nest.




The end result was definitely still a coffee cake: dry with enough sweetness to warrant a bitter beverage. Though technically included in the dessert section of this book, the coffee pairing necessitates that – like doughnuts or sticky buns – you eat this for breakfast. After all, chocolate in the morning makes the day just a little easier.




Chocolate Babka
Makes 2 loaves

3 cups all-purpose flour
Pinch of salt
A generous ¾ cup sugar, divided
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, cut into tablespoon-size pieces
½ cup whole milk
1 package (about 2 ¼ tsp. active dry yeast)
3 eggs, separated
1 tsp. ground cinnamon, plus more for sprinkling (optional)

2 cups (12 oz.) semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup walnuts (optional)

• To make the dough, in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade, combine the flour, salt and 3 heaping tablespoons of the sugar. Pulse to blend.
• Add the butter to the flour mixture and pulse until crumbly.
• In a small saucepan, heat the milk over low heat until warm, not hot, to the touch (no more than 110 degrees). Stir in 1 level tablespoon of the sugar and the yeast. Allow to stand 7 minutes, until bubbly and risen.
• Add the egg yolks and yeast mixture to the flour mixture. Pulse several times, scraping down the bowl once or twice, until a ball is formed. Remove the dough and place it in a large bowl. Cover with a clean towel and refrigerate overnight.
• Grease 2 8½-by-4½-inch loaf pans. Flour a work surface and a rolling pin.
• To assemble the babkas, in a stand mixer fitted with the whisk, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form.
• One tablespoon at a time, add the remaining ½ cup sugar, then the cinnamon. Beat until the whites form firm peaks.
• Divide the dough in half. Keep one half refrigerated while working with the other. For each half, knead the dough a few times. Roll out on a floured surface to an approximately 22-by-18-inch rectangle. It will be thin.
• Spread the rectangle of dough with half the beaten egg whites to within 1 inch of the edges. Sprinkle evenly with half the chocolate, half the walnuts, and lightly with more cinnamon.
• Turn in about 1 inch of the short edges of the dough rectangle, then carefully roll up jelly roll-style. If the dough is sticking slightly, use a bench scraper (pastry scraper) to ease it off the work surface.
• Slice each roll into 8 even pieces. For each babka, place 8 slices sections in 1 loaf pan, cut sides up like a cinnamon roll, packing them so the edges touch. Cover each with a clean towel and let rise at room temperature for 2 hours. The dough should come up higher than the sides of the pans.
• Position an oven rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Bake the loaves for 35 to 40 minutes, until light brown. Cool the babkas in the pans for about 5 minutes, then invert them onto serving plates.
• Serve with a serrated blade, or break apart into natural segments.

Reprinted with permission from Ten Speed Press

What’s your favorite sweet breakfast treat to pair with your morning coffee and why? Tell us about it in the comments section below for a chance to win a copy of Jewish Home Cooking by Arthur Schwartz. We’ll announce the winner in next week’s By the Book column.

And now, we’d like to congratulate Joe, whose comment on last week’s By the Book has won a copy of The Mile End Cookbook by Noah and Rae Bernamoff. Rebecca, keep an eye out for an email from the Sauce crew.



The Scoop: The Ritz-Carlton hires new exec pastry chef

Monday, April 15th, 2013

Nathaniel Reid, a native of Farmington, Mo., and an award-winning pastry chef, has been named the new executive chef at The Ritz-Carlton, St. Louis and will be overseeing pastry operations for the luxury hotel in Clayton. Reid replaces Simone Faure, who left the position at The Ritz last fall to open her French patisserie, Chouquette.

Reid graduated from Le Cordon Bleu in Paris with a Grand Diploma in Culinary and Pastry Arts. He’s also a graduate of the University of Missouri–Columbia. Prior to joining The Ritz-Carlton, St. Louis, he served as pastry chef for Norman Love Confections in Fort Meyers, Fla. His resume also includes time working as the executive pastry chef at St. Regis Monarch Beach, a Forbes Five-Star and AAA Five-Diamond resort in Dana Point, Calif.; a pastry position at Joël Robuchon Restaurant at The MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas; and a pastry position at The Ritz-Carlton Hotel (now called Ravella) in Las Vegas.

Reid was named one of the Top 10 Pastry Chefs in America by Dessert Professional magazine last year, and, in 2010, he was named Pastry Chef of The Year at the U.S. Pastry Competition in New York. He also served as a judge for the highly regarded competition in 2011 and 2012. In 2009, he placed first in the best chocolate/confection category at the Golden Scoop Awards. That same year, he helped Team USA take home third place at the International Patissier Grand Prix in Tokyo.

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