The New Bakers Dozen
Thanksgiving desserts

The The Bakers Dozen: Thanksgiving desserts
By W. DeBord on Thursday, November 09, 2000 - 07:39 am: Edit

I'm just looking for a second opinion....obviously pumkin pie is the dessert of the day and I can list several others that land in the traditional Thanksgiving catagory etc...but this is my question:

I have to have pumkin, apple and mincemeat pies, cupcakes, cookies and ice cream(for the kids) but I'm leaning tward the idea of only making mini pastries to finish the rest of my buffet.

Last year no one saved room for dessert. I don't think I used more than 3 pies for 200 people. Although you never know how they'll eat this year...

Would you feel cheated if your sweet table didn't have ALL the classics or do you think mini pasties might be a hit?

By Claudia (Claudia) on Thursday, November 09, 2000 - 08:32 am: Edit

W. I love little pastries. They are so pretty and people who think they have no room may take a little pastry before they will take a whole slice. They may even take two or three! What about maple-walnut (or pecan) - I substitute 1/2 - 3/4 of corn syrup with maple syrup and then sprinkle the top with chopped white chocolate when the pies come out of the oven. Richard Sax has a great tart called Belgian Sugar Tart in Classic Home Desserts - I make it with flaked hazelnuts instead of ground almonds and people love it.

By Panini (Panini) on Thursday, November 09, 2000 - 09:52 pm: Edit

I would feel cheated if the chef did not make me something different than the usuals that I will probably have at home anyway. Make unusual desserts for the buffet and give them a small boxed pie to take with them for leftovers at home.

By vbean on Thursday, December 14, 2000 - 04:10 am: Edit

I prefer to make everything mini. My observation is that customers feel much more comfortable (everything is just a bite). I do an endless sea of buffet mirrors, and my style is all cakes, candies. pies, tarts. cookies are individual and bite sized.
Last weekend we made over 8000 "minis", this weekend 5000, but we have many more plated. I love making individual pastries, they are so pretty!
I will be happy when December is over! Oh yah, in addition to the banquets we are doing daily 900 plated desserts, 350 cafe desserts, 600 loaves of bread (this is all from the same pastry dept!)
We have one (5) deck oven and two convection ovens. We make all of our ice creams and sorbet too. We are not union, we do not have a lot of equipment. There is fun and laughter here though
We make everything, and most of our fruit is organic.

By vbean on Thursday, December 14, 2000 - 04:13 am: Edit

Also, it is pumpkin- not pumkin, FYI.

By MarkG on Thursday, December 14, 2000 - 01:13 pm: Edit

Vbean: Can you give us an idea of some of the different minis you create?


By momoreg on Thursday, December 14, 2000 - 08:08 pm: Edit

I agree. People will be more likely to take a little pastry or cookie than a huge slice of cake. This time of year, though, it seems like everyone just wants to pile food on their plates!

By VBEAN on Saturday, December 16, 2000 - 05:52 am: Edit

All my buffets are petit fours. I keep one dry rack continually full- plus one refrigerated rack, and 4 full frozen racks (sheet cakes, choux, cookies). Also in the freezer, brittle, toffee, truffles, fudge,
I make, truffles , toffee, brittle fudge glazed "packages", devils food petit fours, mincemeat tarts, pecan tarts, meyer lemon tarts, triple chocolate cake, double chocolate cake, chocolate cake, chocolate blood orange cake, caramel nut torte,gingerbread people and cake, mousse cake, mini buche de noel,9 different Christmas cookies,raspberry vanilla cake, persimmon cake,mocha cake, fruit cake,individual crisps. mini brulees,macaroons, pumpkin and apple tarts, eggnnog-cranberry cheesecake, vanilla bean cheesecake, zucchini bread, cranberry bread, lemon bread, banana bread.

By Pastrygrrrrl on Wednesday, December 20, 2000 - 03:15 pm: Edit

Wow! That's alot of stuff! It must get crazy at this time of year.

How big is your staff? Do you work at a hotel or resort?

We only have 45 seats at our little cafe, and a small staff, so not much room to store products.

Egnnog-cranberry cheescake sounds yummy, and might work well at our place. Can you post the recipe?

Thanks, Emma

By W.DeBord on Thursday, December 21, 2000 - 09:29 am: Edit

Sorry, I'm not Vbean but I do this also... you can also flavor creme brulee the same way. Add a spash of dark rum, brandy, nutmeg and vanilla to any creamy egg based dessert to call it eggnog flavored.

A simple way to add a cranberry topping is to buy canned whole berry cranberry sauce and use as is or add more thickener/cornstarch as desired.

For fresh cranberry topping/sauce you can start with either raspberry sauce or orange juice add sugar (to taste) and bring to a boil. Mix cornstarch and h2o or juice and thicken your sauce to the desired constistancy. There's one unusual thing about cranberrys...when they are brought to a boil and burst open they have a natural thickener so you won't need as much cornstarch as you would with other berries. Let it cool before you spoon it on top of your cheesecake.

By W.DeBord on Thursday, December 21, 2000 - 09:53 am: Edit

I have a couple of questions for you Vbean....what are brittle fudge glazed "packages"?

How do you make your caramel nut torte as a petit four? My recipe is more of a pie dough crust that totally encloses the carmel and nuts, which can ouzz filling once cut. How does yours differ?

My BIGGEST question is how do you cover your petit fours on your trays and cart etc...???? I've used the thin plastic covers (much like over sized garbage bags) and they are a pain...ballooning outward, ripping easily, etc... I also have one heavy plastic(with zippers) cart cover that's a pain opening because it requires both hands to throw the opening panel over the top of the cart.

The other part of my question do you keep your trays (on the cart) covered...plastic wrap can ruin decorated items and is a pain when your in and out contantly??????

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