Saturday, June 18, 2011

"Kings of Pastry" In A Class By Itself

I was lucky enough to see the documentary about French Pastry chefs, “Kings of Pastry”, last week at a screening with filmmakers, D A Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus. What a fabulous story of passion and travail! Read more about it here.

Filmmakers D A Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus
In addition to following a few pastry chefs along in their quest for the Meilleurs Ouvriers de France (M.O.F. or Best Craftsmen in France), we also experience the intensity of the judges as they watch the chefs struggle through the 3 day ordeal.

I particularly loved one judge explaining how hard it was to be the arbiter of such excellence: “Each product is a moral dilemma” for the judge, he says. Plus they sweat right along with the chefs. “If someone breaks something, we all cry.” In fact, as the head judge is announcing the winners, he is weeping for the names he ISN’T calling.

You can check it out next Tuesday, June 21st at 10 pm on your local PBS station.

Here are some important lessons I learned from “Kings of Pastry” as the chefs strove to win the M.O.F.
  • Humidity is sugar’s worst enemy.
  • Don’t think you can win by cheating. Even the garbage will be checked.
  • Just like the Olympics, you have to be good on THAT day.
  • You can’t regret anything. Give it your all.
It’s rare to find such heart and soul in any area of life these days. And the fact that you can watch chefs (and they’re French!) perform at such a high level, producing such rarified creations, is a complete revelation and delight. Don’t miss it.


Lys said...

Sue - this sounds fascinating! I will def. set the DVR :)

Sue said...

Hiya Lys,
You won't regret it.

Abandoned By Wolves said...

Funny, in'it, how the French make baking and pastry an art form, and yet most of 'em are far skinner than Americans who just stop at the local donut shop for a bear claw.

(Not that I have anything against donut shops or bear claws!)

Sue said...

Hiya Abandoned,
SO true, but I could sure use a bear claw right about now.