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Het Gebak of Claudia Allemeersch and Roger van Damme


The pastries of Claudia Allemeersch and Roger van Damme
I notice that the Belgian section among my baking books is of remarkably high quality. Now there is another gem on the market. Claudia Allemeersch (former winner of Best Hobby Chef in Flanders) and Roger van Damme (Top Chef -Patissier) met in a kitchen in Dubai. Claudia told Roger that she had all his books but she didn't actually use the books because it all looked so complicated. They decided together to do something about this. This is how, after patient work and a lot of tasting, Het Gebak of Claudia Allemeersch and Roger van Damme was born. More than 100 recipes, some of which are easy to bake and with which a luxurious version has been developed with refined creams, fillings and decorations.

Roger about Het gebak: "Claudia's perfectionism and enormous patience have ensured that here is a book that everyone can get started with. Grandmother who wants to make a simple cake with the children on Wednesday afternoon, or the advanced hobby chef who likes to surprise his or her guests during a gastronomic dinner with a special creation."

Does this make you as curious as I was?


The pastries of Claudia Allemeersch and Roger van Damme

Introducing yourself

Far right: Claudia Allemeersch; the very first winner of the program 'Best hobby chef in Flanders' and author of several cookbooks.

Left of Claudia: Roger van Damme; top chef-pastry chef. His lunch lounge in Antwerp 'The gesture' received its first Michelin star in 2010. Roger is also known on NJAM, the Belgian version of 24 Kitchen.


Far left: Martine; friend of Claudia and owner of a fruit farm.

To the right of Martine you will find Wendy; from the first episode of 'Best hobby chef in Flanders' Claudia's right hand.


Contents The pastries of Claudia Allemeersch and Roger van Damme

What kind of recipes can you expect in Het Gebak?

The contents show a fair amount of recipes for cakes followed by a deluxe version, a chapter on small pastries and a large chapter with creams, fillings and decorations used in the cake recipes.


Pain the embarrassments

The recipes all contain a clear step-by-step explanation and are all provided with a beautiful photo of a culinary work of art. There is so much to see on the deluxe versions that I might be able to look at them longer than an average painting. What do you see? what kind of cake is it, is the cake filled, what decorations can you find on top and can you make them yourself?


Sacher cake and on the right Sacher torte in Belgian style based on orangettes

A wonderful example of how the book is structured. Both the classic basic recipe and the luxury variant with the basic recipe are described separately. But to show you better, I'll put the two side by side. In The pastry the recipes are described separately, but one after the other.


On the left the classic Sacher: Chocolate cake filled with apricot jam. The original recipe is of course a secret, but this own version will certainly wake up the taste buds.


Right: Sachtertorte in Belgian style; based on orangettes. This cake contains batter from the classic Sacher and contains, among other things, dollops of orizaba cream; a creamy cream with egg yolks, cream, mascarpone and Orizaba milk chocolate from Valrhona.


Chocolate cheesecake on the left, Caramel banana cake in the middle and caramel date cake on the right

Left: Based on the classic cheesecake recipe: Chocolate cheesecakewith lots of fruit, grandma's crumble and white chocolate.


Middle: Caramel banana cake with banana cake in the base. Including star anise, caramel paste and mango coulis in chocolate cups.


Right: Caramel date cake based on the recipe of classic date cake with the flavors of Dubai including date syrup, orange snips, gingerbread spices and caramelized dates.

In addition to the classic cakes and the recipe upgrade, you will also find basic recipes for classics such as tuiles, cannelé, brownies, scones, madeleines and financiers

Creams, fillings and decorations to make your cake look beautiful

A large part of the recipes can be found in the magical chapter with creams, fillings and decorations. Here you will learn to make many decorations with subtle flavors and structures. It is clear to me; I can still learn a lot here.


Left spice cake, right Pain d'épices

Alright, finally a delicious example of two recipes based on:

Left: Spice cakewith part wheat flour and part almond flour.


Right: Pain d'épices: This cake is literally made with rings of cake from the spice cake and decorated with, among other things, tonka cream, caramelized hazelnuts, chocolate decoration, chocolate and grandma's crumble and tuiles .


Het Gebak of Claudia Allemeersch and Roger van Damme, what can you expect?

Anyone who likes to bake cake has ended up in heaven with the Pastry by Claudia Allemeersch and Roger van Damme. Don't expect ordinary cakes with proportions of 1:1:1:1 butter, sugar, egg and flour, but your own classic variations with sometimes special ingredients. The cakes are just the basics of this cake bible. In the chapter about fillings, decorations and ... Roger van Damme teaches you how to give classic cakes a professional look. These decorations are also very suitable for use with other cakes and desserts.


The book is suitable for both beginners and advanced students. Don't be scared by the beautiful photos full of decorations that I have shown you. You can also start with a single decoration and then learn through experimenting and discover that you can do this too.


Het Gebak of Claudia Allemeersch and Roger van Damme

Available at the bookstore

ISBN: 9789401496193

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-- COURTESY OF - -

I would like to Uitgeverij Lannoo thank you for the opportunity to write a review of The Pastry of Claudia Allemeersch & Roger van Damme. The photography is by < a href="https://heikki-verdurme-uene.squarespace.com/food" rel="noreferrer" target="_blank">Heikki Verdurme.

“Some of the photos from the book that I photographed only show part of the actual photo . In reality the photo is often a lot bigger and more beautiful. However, by using part of the photo, the whole often fits better into my blog.”





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