Thomas Keller strikes again
The new Bouchon Bakery cookbook is out - have you seen it? The fifth in TK’s collection of books featuring photographs of TK himself filling sandwich cookies and peering through holes in freshly cut doughnuts. Pretty sweet.
Now, it’s true I have a special spot in my heart for TK. He has this philosophy on food that is genuine and sincere - he’s a superstar, but at the end of the day you can imagine that he’s simply happy that he gets to make good food for people. Again, pretty sweet.
Here’s something he said recently to Eater National:
The food at Bouchon Bakery has a connection with the inner-child. A chocolate chip cookie has meaning to a 90-year-old and a 7-year-old. The croissant has the same thing, even in America. When we were young, Pillsbury made those pop-open tubes. And there’s a fine line from what culture it comes from. It ends up being more about the quality of the experience. The best thing I can have happen is a young child to have their first bouchon, and it creates a reference point for the rest of their lives. And that’s very special to me.
“It ends up being more about the quality of the experience”…amen, TK. Amen.
And then there’s the technical stuff in the book - all measurements for eggs are given in weight - not per egg as in a typical baking book. There is a suggestion that you allow your oven to cycle three times before baking - that’s a warm-up of around 45 minutes! There is a detailed explanation of the KitchenAid mixer used to test all the recipes in the book - complete with a a breakdown of mixer speeds and how they correspond to the recipes in the book. They’ve even included a way to test your oven for hot spots.
Basically, this level of detail is something that blows my mind while simultaneously bolstering my spirit. Not being one to ever wing anything, I feel like I’ve finally met someone (in book form) who understands me instead of constantly referring to me as a control freak.
So, once again, thank you TK.
Not that I’ve ever doubted you, but you speak my language and it’s pretty much the least spoken language on the planet.