Ann Seranne was a former editor at Gourmet magazine and wrote more than two dozen cookbooks. She was also well-known as an expert breeder of Yorkshire terriers the last twenty-five years of her life. But Seranne had a sweet tooth and many of her books involved desserts. Craig Claiborne said of Seranne, “She made the best pies in the world.” The late Maida Heatter, also a dessert authority, said of Seranne’s books, ”Those books got me started. They’re just as important today as then.”
This is a first edition from 1952. Maida Heatter was correct that these recipes are just as important today as in 1952. Not just for the recipes, but every chapter has an explanation and fascinating stories about the history behind the chapter entries, and also each chapter has whimsical illustrations of each subject.
Here are the chapters:
-Creams and Custards
-The Sweet Souffle
-Fritters and Fried Cakes
-Sweet Leavened Cakes
-Les Gros Gateaux
-Les Petits Fours
-Meringues and Baked Alaskas
-Fruit Tarts and Tartlets
-Pate a Choux and Cream Puff Pastries
There are recipes in this book that I have never seen anywhere else. Seranne’s instructions are detailed yet easy to follow. She expresses how some things may be hard to make, but not to give up, as she wants the reader to succeed. You can almost hear her cheering you on.
This is not just a book of recipes; it is a teaching book and history book. Food history is endlessly fascinating. It is one of those books that will help you to master the subjects (her puff pastry lessons are extraordinary!) and feel very proud of what you can accomplish. This is a book for the ages and I hope all you serious bakers will find this book and enjoy every page as I have. Ann would be so pleased.