Ah cake, that little piece of delicacy that grandma made for a dull rainy Sunday afternoon tea time. We remember this when we drink the industrial version with our first instant coffee in the morning. However, it is in such an ordinary pastry shop that we recognize the chef’s imagination.
Take Jean Sulpice, who played twice at the Auberge du Père Bise on the shores of Lake Annecy. In his latest book (1), he has made the cake as it is: vibration from morning to midnight, disturbing because he has as many ideas as he turns the pedals when he climbs the Col de la Forclas (1147 meters above sea level Haute-Savoie) by bicycle. In fifty recipes, Jean Sulpis wanted to show, through his know-how, his sensitivity and his teams, that it is possible to start from a very simple recipe based on pantry classics (flour, eggs, oil, yeast…) and completely reinterpret the taste, textures, By playing with shapes, forms, cooking methods. He explains: “If this book is possible today, it is also thanks to my sweet taste. I actually started with pastry. This playground is very inspiring. For these fifty new recipes, I combined my sensitivity as a pastry chef with my knowledge as a chef. When I’m in the kitchen, I spend time tasting, touching and smelling the products. A cook, unlike a pastry chef, who has to weigh everything, has more freedom, fewer boundaries. In my eyes, he is a fiery person who does not hesitate to touch the ingredients directly with his hands to check the cooking, because only our experience tells us when an ingredient is cooked…”
From ‘Cauliflower and Curry Stuffing’ to ‘Lovage and Hazelnut Steamed Cake’ to ‘Strawberry Lemon Cake’ and ‘Tart and Vanilla Sponge Cake’, this book is a new journey into the culinary world. By Jean Sulpice. who also drew on his memories of his “Farmer Blue Cheese and Celery Cake”: “The combination of blue cheese and celery is a childhood memory, he writes Indeed, my grandfather would always taste this strong cheese with a sprig of celery to give it freshness.” .
Try this cake for a weekend aperitif. 180 g of T55 flour, 7 g of salt, 8 g of baking powder are needed for 8 people; 3 eggs; 10 cups of milk; 30 g of walnut oil; 150 g celery stalk; 150 g of farmer’s blue cheese.
Mix flour, salt and yeast in a bowl. In another bowl, break the eggs and beat them with milk and walnut oil. Add this mixture to the previous preparation and beat until the dough is smooth. Cut the celery into large cubes and the blue cheese into cubes. Add everything to the cake batter and mix.
Heat the oven to 200 degrees. Line a 22cm cast iron pan with parchment paper. Pour the batter, cover the pot, then put it in the oven for thirty minutes at 200 degrees. Remove the lid and cook for fifteen minutes at 180 degrees. Let’s cool down. gently unmold.
(1) Amazing cakes by Jean Sulpice. Ed. Flammarion, 2022, €29.90