By Caitlin Gunther
“Two bites: It’s about moderation but also about sophistication and elegance—two very French traits.” An excerpt from the introduction of ICE chef instructor Kathryn Gordon’s new cookbook Les Petits Sweets: Two-Bite Desserts from the French Pâtisserie, co-authored by Anne E. McBride. Chef Kathryn, who takes annual excursions to taste her way through the best pastry kitchens and neighborhood bakeries of France, has a deep knowledge of French culture and food, particularly the sweet side. The cookbook takes readers on a journey through classic and innovative recipes for macarons, financiers, tartelettes, petits fours and much more. But the idea behind petit sweets isn’t just about moderation—it’s also about choice, as Chef Kathryn explains, “[What] I appreciate when making two-bite desserts is that my guests can try more of them. There’s no need to chose, and that allows me to cater to more tastes at once.”
From Armagnac-vanilla cannelés to banana-brown sugar madeleines, Chef Kathryn’s cookbook is a comprehensive and creative guide to tiny French confections, replete with baking tips from the chef herself, who has measured, mixed and baked these recipes more times than she can remember. In anticipation of Chef Kathryn’s book release party on October 10, I sat down with her to chat about the making of Les Petits Sweets.
What was the inspiration for your new cookbook, Les Petits Sweets?
It was a follow up to my first cookbook, Les Petits Macarons: Colorful French Confections to Make at Home. The sweets in this book are the same size and have the same vibe, but the new art director gave the book a fresh take with color changes and some old-fashioned flower prints—the French look.
Keep reading to get a sneak peek inside Les Petits Sweets!