POV: Kings Of Pastry
Airs Sunday, July 3, 2011 at 1 p.m. on KPBS TV
Thursday, June 23, 2011
Credit: Courtesy of Chris Hegedus
When Chris Hegedus and D A Pennebaker, award-winning filmmakers of "The War Room," "Startup.com" and "Don’t Look Back," turn their sights on the competition for the Meilleurs Ouvriers de France awards, the country’s Nobel Prize for pastry, you’re in for a treat.
Interactive Map of Chefs
Use this map to explore the whereabouts of the Meilleurs Ouvriers de France ("Best Craftsmen in France") who specialize in pastry making and find out more about their restaurants and backgrounds.
Do you know a great chef in your community? Add them to our map of Your Favorite Pastry Chefs!
Glossary of Pastry Terms
Have you ever wondered what the difference is between a coulis and ganache? Our glossary offers you mouth—watering definitions of the most delectable words you’ll need the next time you want to sample the crème de la crème of French pastries.
In “Kings of Pastry,” 16 chefs, including Jacquy Pfeiffer, co-founder of Chicago’s French Pastry School, whip up the most gorgeous, delectable, gravity-defying concoctions and edge-of-your-seat drama as they deliver their spun-sugar desserts to the display table. The inevitable disasters and successes prove both poignant and hilarious.
"Kings Of Pastry" follows Pfeiffer to his childhood home of Alsace, where he spends weeks creating and testing recipes in the bakery shop of an old friend. Lazard, who is competing for the second time — he tragically dropped his sugar sculpture the first time — and Rigollot, who emerges as a favorite among contestants and judges alike, undertake similar preparations.
During the competition’s three days of mixing, piping and sculpting, the 16 chefs create an astounding array of colorful desserts, from tiered wedding cakes and precarious six-foot sugar sculptures to delicate cream puffs, tea pastries and jams. Each chef must also create a bijou — a small, museum-quality sugar sculpture specially designed for the MOF and presented in a glass box.
The final challenge is a nail-biting race against the clock in which each chef must hand carry his fragile creations — without shattering them — through a series of rooms to the final display area. To top it off, the contestants must work spotlessly and with amazing composure under the constant scrutiny of master judges.
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