Who can forget the famous lion bread sculpture from the 2015 season of The Great British Bake Off? That's what inspired me to make this sun-moon medallion bread sculpture, featuring a dark rye moon and turmeric-basil bread for the sun, surrounded by pesto and mozzarella stuffed rolls for the sun's rays.
This gingerbread Mad Hatter's hat is filled with 36 Queen of Hearts Linzer Tarts, perfect for an Alice in Wonderland themed tea party. I hope this will inspire you to make your own!
Black Forest cherry cake is made of multiple layers of chocolate cake filled with cherries and whipped cream and garnished with additional cream, cherries and chocolate. My retro interpretation incorporates a chocolate chiffon cake and dark sweet cherries with the traditional German flavor of kirschwasser.
The pièce montée was the pièce de resistance for the 2014 season of the Great British Bake Off. I dubbed mine The Magic of Halloween. It features a dark chocolate cake with cherry filling topped with a pumpkin cake, which in turn is topped with a croquembouche. The profiteroles in the croquembouche are filled with orange pastry cream, drizzled with dark chocolate and spiraled with spun sugar. Spiced macarons and gingerbread black cats round out this tower of treats.
Entremets are desserts with multiple layers of different flavors, textures and colors meant to show off the pastry chef’s prowess. My Chocolate Cherry Bombes and "Twofer Tea" Blackberry Pistachio Entremets feature complementary flavors and bright colors that are a feast for the eyes as well as the tastebuds.
Doughnuts — or donuts, as they're more popularly known in the U.S. — have strong ties to Americana, from the Donut Dollies of World War II to the invention of the automatic donut-making machine. So my doughnuts are inspired by another slice of Americana — the state fair. These are my maple-bacon doughnuts and sweet-corn doughnuts with spiced apple filling!
The bakers in the Great White Tent were given the challenge of making 24 éclairs — 12 each of two different flavors. I chose to make Key lime éclairs topped with toasted Swiss meringue and chocolate éclairs filled with a stracciatella cannoli filling.
Dobos torte is generally made with five to seven thin cake layers filled with chocolate buttercream and topped with caramel. My Coffee and Walnut Dobos Torte consists of two tiers of six layers each, one filled with coffee buttercream and one with praline buttercream. The cake is flavored with finely chopped walnuts and covered in chocolate ganache.
The inspiration for my three-tiered pie tower comes from the turducken, which is a chicken stuffed inside a duck stuffed inside a turkey. Rather than debone and stuff three kinds of poultry, I made a separate pie for each bird, dubbing my creation “a poultry excuse for a pie tower,” otherwise known as a Fowlty Tower. While the turkey pie is the epitome of comfort-food-in-a-crust, the duck pie is a gourmet feast of flavors. The chicken curry pie offers a nice contrast to the other two — the warmth of the curry offset by the slightly sweet mango chutney.
Originally called Omelette Norwegge by the French, Baked Alaska was renamed this side of the Atlantic to mark the purchase of the Alaskan territory by William Seward. My Baked Alaska was inspired by the frozen Italian treat spumoni and features a pistachio joconde sponge, chocolate ganache and cherry almond ice cream. It takes cake and ice cream to a whole new level!