Introducing The Online Pastry Chef

If you’re a new reader you might have missed the previous mentions that my second book is just about done. (I’ve got the cover picked out, and just need to shoot a couple new photos and it’s ready.) So it’s time to introduce the last two co-authors.

First up is Jenni Field, AKA the Online Pastry Chef. Those who read the comments will have seen her pretty frequently, answering questions about bread and pastry that take a bit of expertise in those areas. And boy, does she have that.

A former special education teacher turned working pastry chef, Jenni is now forging a third career by marrying her teaching and pastry backgrounds. Part of that is her Online Pastry Chef, which mostly focuses on methods and techniques that will make your life in the kitchen easier.

Whether focusing on an ingredient and its functions in baking, or giving ideas for ways to use apples, her intent is that it be both educational and entertaining in equal parts.

Jenni thinks that too many people are intimidated by baking, and that keeps them out of the kitchen. This is a sad thing, because Great Stuff can happen in the kitchen. She hopes that, armed with some kitchen science and an understanding of mixing methods, you will be excited to get into the kitchen and make some Great Stuff!

Jenni’s first appearance up top here was when I asked her how to read a cake recipe. I had asked all of you for your best can’t-fail birthday cake recipes, but I had no idea how to tell which would be moist, or dry, or chocolaty, or … well, let’s just say I was pretty confused. I asked her to tell me how they would compare, and Jenni put several days worth of cooking classes into a single post that just blew me away.

When I started working on the book, I knew I was going to have to include that lesson. And along the way I also got a whole bunch of great info on bread making … stuff I’ve already used myself.

Last but not least …

The final contributor is Michael Roberts. Michael doesn’t have a food blog, but rather showed up one day with an explanation of why my fudge failed that was worthy of a blog post all by itself.

Michael’s interest in food began in infancy when, inspired by a bottle of milk, he reportedly uttered his first words: “Good body. Some grassy notes. Probably Vermont.”

While growing up in New York City, his interest in the sciences was piqued after his mother accidentally threw out his collection of etchings. After earning a Ph.D. in chemistry, he decided to quit fooling around and finally get an education.

To date, his work has required him to learn disciplines such as neurochemistry, pharmacology, computer programming (a field in which he does a lot of his consulting), analytical chemistry, and, after someone told him he could eat his own experiments, food science.

He has also been convinced to occasionally lecture to the public on a variety of scientific topics. But when pressed, he will readily confess that he still doesn’t quite know what he wants to do when he grows up.

Michael is currently having a happy adulthood in Cincinnati, Ohio, with his family and many friends, and two cats and two dogs, mostly because he doesn’t owe money to any of them.

Depending on what day it is, he can be found consulting for businesses in the public and private sector, teaching chemistry in The College of Engineering at The University of Cincinnati, and fending off lawsuits from former colleagues.

Having given up his former life’s ambition — to play second base for the New York Mets — he will now settle for: the perfect lasagna recipe, and a citation by The Department of Homeland Security as “a person of interest”.

How / When can you get the book?

Like I said, I just have to shoot a few photos and I’m done. Then I’ll get a proof from the printer and one last round of checking it out and it’s ready.

You can get a sample chapter now, and I’ll add you to a list to email you and let you know the second it’s available. I’ll have a special bonus for the first 20 people to order, so you’ll want to be on that list.