Le Cordon Bleu Paris Pastry Grad, Living and Traveling Around France

Pastry Courses

Pastry Weekend Adventure at Camont~ September 21-23

**DATE CHANGE** We’ve moved this fabulous weekend to September when the days will be a little cooler and that much better for pastry making.

UPDATE: Sold Out! We are talking about dates for the next one and would love for you to join. To keep up to date, sign up on Kate Hill’s site to be notified when new courses are listed here. You can also keep an eye on my blog and instagram .  🙂

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Imagine a weekend for those that dream of sugar clouds; who make sure every decadent crumb is devoured; and especially don’t mind a bit of flour dust in their hair (or is it fairy dust?). Escape to Gascony and Camont, Kate Hill’s 18th-century farmhouse along the Canal de Garonne in Southwest France September 21-23, 2018.

Bake away and throw flour in the air as we make French pastries and have a raucous good time with an unlimited supply of butter, fresh eggs, and sugar. Delve into classic French recipes as we make fanciful sweet creations with fun flavors, meringue accents, and of course, all that comes with decoration (aka gold luster dust!).

Kate Hill will be joining in on the fun and cooking lunch for us. Kate is an extremely talented cook, who has been living and working in her little spot in France for the last 25 years. With this comes her knowledge of Gascony, local producers and French cooking, including the Cassoulet! We are lucky enough to be cooking in her restored 18th-century farmhouse, in the original and the professional kitchen (oui oui, she has TWO kitchens!). We will also make use of the kitchen garden and edible flowers on the property.

Instruction is in English (although Kate and I both speak French) and is suitable for all (just bring your love of baking!).

Each person will leave with a Oui Sucre! Bag, including the tools you’ll need to make the recipes we learn over the weekend from a French rolling pin to piping tips and bags.

We will be covering the following techniques:
– Pate Sucrée
– Chantilly Cream
– Italian Meringue
– Créme d’Amande
– Lemon and Peach curds
– Pastry Cream (several different flavors)
– Pâte à Choux
– Caramel
– Rough Puff Pastry
– and more!

I will be breaking them down and filling your apron pocket with go-to, tried and true recipes. The focus is on non-fussy, beautiful pastries that are fun to make and even better to eat. We will be allowing plenty of time for decoration and demoing techniques to add those special finishing touches that take your creation to “oh la la.”

Weekend Outline

Friday:

7:30 pm Let’s meet at Camont for dinner and get to know each other before the baking fun begins.

Saturday:

It’s off to the local open-air market in Nérac! There we’ll meet the producers, including the darling baker who makes incredible canelés to learn his secret technique, and pick up some seasonal fruits to make a dessert for lunch. After enjoying a fabulous lunch prepared by Kate, it’s off to the professional kitchen for a full rundown on tarts. We’ll be making tarte au citron (lemon tart) three different ways and as an added bonus a peach curd tart. We’ll be learning several different techniques which you can later mix and match to concoct your own creations (including how to infuse creams).

Sunday:

Today is all about whipped cream, caramel and pastry. We’ll be working our way through more key pastry recipes to make the components for individual sized St. Honoré, a classic French dessert that revolves around cream puffs and caramel. First up is making a rough puff pastry, something so much easier and useful than the formal puff pastry, that can take hours to make! Then we’ll master pâte à choux and caramel. For the filling, we’ll be snazzing it up with several different options for you to choose from for your final dessert: including the classic vanilla and chocolate pastry creams, but also hibiscus and violet as well. The last bit is a show-stopping surprise that we’ll be making as a group, but maybe you can guess it by the photo below.

Dates: September 21-23, 2018

Location: Camont is located about 15-20 minutes drive from the train station at Agen, France.

Price: 875€ or $995

The Pastry Weekend Adventures Includes:

  • Two full days of pastry instruction (approximately 9:30am to 4:30pm)
  • Market Tour at Nérac
  • VSP- Very Small Group (6 max)
  • The Oui Sucre! Bag full of pastry equipment and supplies (including a French rolling pin, piping tips, and tart rings)
  • All recipes
  • Coffee, Lunches, and “Gouter” where we’ll try what we made
  • Refreshments (including local wine, bien sur!)
  • A Camont professional apron
  • All ingredients and materials

Does not include: accommodation, other meals, personal expenses and travel.

Sign up for this very limited (Just six students!) sweet adventure is on Kate Hill’s Website. Just scroll down to before the croquembouche and click Sign Up Now.

Contact me at: toffeebitsandchocolatechips@gmail.com with any questions. Hope to see you soon!