The winner of this giveaway is Krystyne Wilson!
If you follow Jenni, i.e. The Urban Poser, on Instagram you have likely shared our intense level of anticipation for her long-awaited first release, My Paleo Patisserie. From the many recipe teases she shared on her feed, we knew that this book would be nothing short of incredible. However, when the moment came for us to finally flip through the pages of this book we were absolutely floored by the range of recipes, beautiful assembly of the book, and so much more! The book arrived just in time for Finn’s birthday celebration and we broke in our copy by creating a skillet chocolate chip cookie and the Neopolitan Cake – both recipes were out of this world!
We learned to make paleo marshmallows thanks to Jenni, and couldn’t be more excited to share a sneak peak look at the raspberry marshmallow recipe from My Paleo Patisserie! In addition to the recipe share, we will be giving away a copy of this book to one lucky reader – but before you scroll to the recipe and giveaway, our team member Crystal is here to tell you why you CANNOT LIVE WITHOUT THIS BOOK. Take it away Crystal!
Hi, I’m Crystal, also known as the Content Coordinator for the Paleo Parents Team. My fiancé and I blog at Whole-Fed Homestead, where we share about grain-free life on our farm, the adventures of raising our own food and living life close to the land. I’m the cake-maker of the family… the one that always brings dessert, who provides the celebratory sweet treat at all of the get-togethers, so I jumped at the opportunity to review My Paleo Patisserie!
I had visited The Urban Poser’s blog in the past, but didn’t know much about Jenni Hulet’s history or how she found herself in a grain-free lifestyle. Upon opening her new book, My Paleo Patisserie, anyone will see that it is undeniably gorgeous, but what struck me as I was flipping through the first few pages was her story about growing up in a unique culture that lent itself to a strong “sense of occasion,” and her opinion about dessert. That celebratory foods are a common language, and “whether it’s a special occasion like Christmas or a birthday or simply being able to invite friends over for an evening of dinner, dessert, and conversation, we lose something fundamental when we are prevented from participating in the intentional and meaningful act of preparing and sharing beautiful, delicious desserts with the people we care about.” —> Hit the nail on the head. I just love this statement! And it really does set the tone of this thoughtful book.
The book is divided into sections, and each section follows the format of teaching you how to make the base recipe perfectly, often providing flavor alternatives and a nut-free option. Then Jenni shows you her favorite flavor combinations with the most stunning photos, and lastly encourages you to build upon recipes from the book and put them together to create your own beautiful dessert. She even offers a “check list” for each section that puts all of the frostings, fillings and glazes on one page so you can choose your own adventure without having to flip back and forth. This is a great concept for those with allergies, as it allows you to pick and choose not only what sounds good, but what works for your restrictions.
Every recipe is dairy-free, many are nut-free or egg-free, and there are no grains or off-the-wall ingredients. She uses standard paleo pantry staples, but with creative and thoughtful technique, to make some of the most stunning Paleo deserts you’ll find. At the back of the book is a helpful photo index of all the recipes, and a most-impressive step-by-step photo tutorial section – so that if you’ve never made some of these recipes before, you can check to see if your creation looks like hers at any step during the process. And if you are looking for egg-free or nut-free recipes, there is an index of all of those as well.
You do not have to be a seasoned baker to use this book. It might sound fancy with the word “patisserie,” in the title – and don’t get me wrong, it is. But, the simplicity in these recipes and the way that Jenni wrote the instructions will allow someone of any skill level to recreate them.
There is a little bit of everything in here… frostings, fillings, and glazes to pair with cream puffs, eclairs, cakes and tarts. There are cookies and ice cream and ice cream cookie sandwiches, plus several awesome marshmallow flavors (including the one we’re sharing below!). The savory chapter includes such things as Italian Pesto Pizza, Bruschetta Tart, and the most incredible looking Baguette Sandwiches.
Perhaps what I appreciate most about this book is its credibility. The instructions are impeccable: they are clear and concise, easy to understand, with just enough information to make the recipe a success, but not too much information that you feel overwhelmed. When I am working with quality, high-dollar ingredients, I want to know that what I making is going to turn out. Jenni did a perfect job of describing both the science and art of pastry making, so that her recipes are fool-proof and you won’t waste your time or your money.
The first recipe I chose to make was the Grissini Breadsticks, which use the base pâte à choux dough. I can’t even tell you how excited I was to try this dough. It is very simple to make, and infinitely useful- it is the same dough that is used for cream puffs and éclairs. To make the breadsticks, Jenni recommends a pastry bag, which I have but was too lazy to dig out of the closet, so I used a zip top plastic bag and it worked just fine. I topped the breadsticks with coarse salt and poppy seeds and they came out crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. They did taste like an egg-based dough, which I expected, and liked very much. Now that I have mastered the base recipe, I think I’ll add fresh herbs and garlic to it next time!
Previous to my Paleo journey, I considered myself a connoisseur of fine pastries. In fact, my fiancé proposed to me over breakfast éclairs at a fancy French bakery in Napa Valley! The pâte à choux dough in this book rivals its gluten-filled counterparts from some of the best bakeries I’ve tried them at. I can’t wait to use this dough with a sweet filling, and am especially excited to try the Praline Pastry Cream!
I heard (and saw on Instagram) rave reviews from Stacy and Matt after they made the Neapolitan Cake from this book for Finn’s Birthday, so naturally I had to try a cake recipe next. I actually based my cake selection on the frosting that I wanted. I just adore anything maple, so I knew I had to make something to try the Maple Fondant Glaze on, and a simple Vanilla Cake sounded like the perfect vehicle.
In making the cake, there were a couple extra steps above your simple “combine the wet and dry ingredients,” but this is what makes the cakes in this book so moist and light with wonderful texture. Jenni does mention that this book is about the art of pastry making, not necessarily for a quick fix treat. Although I still found the recipe to be simple and not overly time-consuming at all.
As expected, the cake was wonderful. Making the Maple Fondant Glaze was straightforward, took less than five minutes and it had an incredible maple flavor. To put a finishing touch on the cake, I used the simple dried violet sprinkles from my blog! See, even a rustic backwoods girl can make beautiful pastries!
And the popovers, oh the popovers! The third recipe I made from the book might be best summed up in the words of my fiancé after taking a bite of warm popover slathered with honey butter: “I feel like I should write this lady a thank you letter.”
This recipe is like gold. These Popovers looked, behaved like, and tasted just like the normal popovers I was used to having in years past. Imagine me peering into the oven window and squealing in delight to see them puff up just like they are supposed to! I love that they are based in coconut but don’t taste like it, and they took me about 5 minutes to prep. No doubt these will be a weekly staple in our house!
The way that Jenni is able to take normal ingredients, and use nothing but thoughtful, creative and simple technique to turn them into fine pastries is masterful. If you are looking for a book with solid recipes and new flavors, the kind of book that has just the recipe for your special occasion, or that perfect popover that helps you sustain a Paleo lifestyle- this is the book for you.
Need to test a recipe from this beauty of a book ASAP?!?! Here is a sneak peek recipe share for Raspberry Marshmallows!
Jenni was kind enough to share her recipe for Raspberry Marshmallows from My Paleo Patisserie with you! The marshmallow master herself was the one who first taught the Paleo community how to make a healthier marshmallow years ago, which we are so thankful for!
- ¼ cup (30 g) arrowroot flour, for dusting
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 3 tablespoons raspberry powder (freeze-dried raspberries, ground and sifted)
- 1 cup (240 ml) water
- 2½ tablespoons powdered gelatin
- ¾ cup (180 ml) maple syrup
- ½ cup (120 ml) honey
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Grease an 8-inch (20-cm) square pan and line it with parchment paper, leaving some length on both sides to use as handles when removing the finished marshmallows. Dust the parchment with a light layer of arrowroot flour.
- In another bowl, whisk together the lemon juice and raspberry powder till it forms a paste. Add 1/2 cup (120 ml) of the water to the bowl of a stand mixer, then sprinkle the gelatin evenly over the water. Add the raspberry paste and mix to combine. Leave the gelatin mixture to bloom while you prepare the rest of the recipe.
- Combine the remaining ½ cup (120 ml) of water, liquid sweetener, and salt in a medium-sized saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat (watch closely, as it tends to foam up). Place a candy thermometer in the mixture and continue to boil till it reaches 240°F (114°C). This usually takes 12 to 15 minutes after the first boil, but times can vary.
- Secure the bowl to the stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. With the mixer running at medium-low speed, pour the hot syrup into the bowl in a slow, steady stream. Be sure that it melts all of the gelatin mixture. Try to avoid hitting the whisk or you will fling syrup all over the bowl. Turn the mixer up to high speed and continue beating till the mixture nearly triples in volume and the marshmallow crème is just cool to the touch (this usually takes 5 to 7 minutes, or longer if using a hand mixer). To check whether the marshmallow crème is ready, stop the mixer and lift up the whisk. The mixture should fall slowly off the whisk, like lava, before melting back into itself.
- Transfer the marshmallow crème to the prepared pan, using a rubber spatula to clean the bowl. The crème should fill the pan about two-thirds full. Working quickly, smooth the top with an offset spatula, then dust with a light layer of arrowroot flour.
- Leave to cure (set), uncovered, for at least 4 hours. If leaving overnight, cover the pan with a light flour sack towel.
- Lift the marshmallows from the pan and cut into 11/2-inch (4-cm) squares. Lightly toss with more arrowroot flour.
- Store in an airtight container for up to 1 day, or freeze for 1 month. Let thaw to room temperature before serving.
Need a copy of this book in your house STAT?!?! We are giving you a chance to win a copy! Simply follow the instructions in the Rafflecopter app below!
We’ll pick and announce the winner on this post in one week.
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