At Maillard Pastries in Hampden, Baking is Both Art and Science

Caitlin Kiehl first turned smitten with baking whereas making an Oreo cheesecake in a high-school cooking class on the age of 15.

“By the third week of sophistication, I used to be like, ‘I’m going to personal a restaurant sometime,’” says Kiehl, laughing. “That cheesecake was tremendous simple and probably the most scrumptious factor I’d ever eaten. I used to be like, ‘So that is what I’ll do.’”

After highschool, Kiehl studied pastry at a culinary college in Lancaster, PA, then interned at a chocolate store with a pastry chef. Employment quickly adopted, with stops alongside the best way on the famed Proof Bakery in Los Angeles and, finally, Charleston and Woodberry Kitchen in Baltimore.

In early March, Kiehl opened Maillard Pastries, a cosy storefront in Hampden, the place, after arriving at 3 a.m. (and toiling till 8 p.m.), Kiehl makes every part from morning buns to chocolate-chip cookies to scones.

“Folks right here care about small bakers and eating places,” says Kiehl. “I'm nonetheless shocked that folks are available in and purchase a lot.”

What impressed the title Maillard?
I like studying about how issues work and why they work. I've an enormous e-book on the scientific causes behind issues. I used to be paging via a chocolate e-book, and so they had been breaking down chemical reactions and Maillard is certainly one of them that spoke to me. [In a Maillard reaction], the sugars and amino acids react with the warmth the place you get that stunning brown coloration, which is an enormous a part of what makes croissants look so scrumptious.

Why baking?
My dad is an engineer and I feel that I've that sort of mindset. I wish to know the way issues work, why they work; I must know all of the issues about all of the issues. That’s an enormous distinction between bakers and cooks. Bakers do issues extra by really feel.

With so many bakeries right here, what did you need your area of interest to be?
The bakery I first realized to make croissants at was Proof. I loved working there. The vibe there was like, “If there’s one thing you need to attempt, we'll attempt it and see if it really works.” It was largely girls who labored there, and it was actually supportive, collaborative, and respectful—I’ve modeled my entire baking companies off that.

What ought to a first-timer get?
In the event that they get right here early sufficient, they need to get chocolate croissants and almond croissants—we promote out so quick. And get the chocolate-chip cookies. They’re my favourite factor. I eat no less than one a day.

What’s probably the most labor-intensive product to make?
The croissants are particularly time-consuming. I make the dough at night time, and it sits in a single day. I laminate it the following day. They get sheeted and formed and sit in a single day once more. Then I proof for 2 hours after which I bake them. It’s a three-day course of and takes up an enormous portion of each day. I’ve solely ever been a scratch baker, however I typically neglect to pro- mote that. I’ve all the time had a dedication to that high quality—it makes a distinction.

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