It was the book trailer for this book that attracted me, but I won't show it here. Instead, I'll refer you to Bermudaonion's blog, since that's were I first saw it. I don't know if I should thank her or not. Just reading Gesine Bullock-Prado's Confections of a Closet Master Baker could add five pounds. It's that luscious.
Somewhere in life, Gesine Bullock-Prado was sidetracked. She spent so much of her childhood in Europe, accompanying her German opera singer mother, that she was exposed to wonderful German baked goods. She admits she was obsessed with sugar as a child, and she should have known early-on that she was destined for pastries. (She still remembers details of confections she had as a child.) Instead, she moved to California to be with her sister, actress Sandra Bullock, and then, upon graduation from law school, became a film developer. She ran her sister's production company for nine years, although she hated everything about Hollywood, except Sandra, and Ray, the film illustrator she married.
Fortunately for her, and the citizens of Montpelier, Vermont, Gesine took her Hollywood frustrations out by baking. With plans to take classes to be a master baker, Gesine and her husband bought and renovated a shop in Vermont, pouring all of their savings into Gesine Confectionary. And, this book is the story of that journey to bakery heaven.
Gesine takes the reader through a day at the bakery, introducing us to her staff, the customers, and, most of all, her pastries. As she charts the course of the day, she fills in the day with the appropriate recipes. There are ones for standards such as scones, sticky buns, and focaccia. But, there are also magical recipes for Golden Eggs, Espresso Cheesecake, and a plum tart called Zwetschgendatschi.
It's hard to put this book down without wanting to head to a good bakery, preferably Gesine Confectionary in Vermont. However, Gesine and her husband, Ray, sold the bakery at the end of 2008. Since you can't get there now, Gesine Bullock-Prado will allow you to visit, in the delectable book, Confections of a Closet Master Baker.
Gesine Bullock-Prado's website is Confessions of a (Closet) Master Baker
Confections of a Closet Master Baker by Gesine Bullock-Prado. Broadway Books, ©2009. ISBN 9780767932684 (hardcover), 240p.
FTC Full Disclosure - Library book
Seventh thing about me you didn't know - Before grad school, I worked as a high school librarian, renting a room from an Armenian immigrant. She baked the most heavenly apple strudel I ever had, making it from scratch. It was quite a sight to walk into her kitchen, and find her with pastry rolled paper thin on her entire table. Aaahhh. The perfect landlady - a baker.