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Roland Mesnier's Basic to Beautiful Cakes Hardcover – Oct 16 2007


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster; 1 edition (Oct. 16 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0743287894
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743287890
  • Product Dimensions: 23.9 x 19.3 x 2.6 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 816 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #882,165 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Roland Mesnier is the former Executive Pastry Chef of the White House. He developed the first professional pastry program in the Washington, D.C., area, at L'Académie de Cuisine, in Bethesda, Maryland. He is also the honorary president of the World Cup of Pastry, and every year L'Académie de Cuisine awards a scholarship in his name. He lives in Virginia.

Lauren Chattman, a former pastry chef, is the author of Instant Gratification, Cool Kitchen, and Mom's Big Book of Baking, among other cookbooks. She lives in Sag Harbor, New York.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 14 reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Wonderful Book. Easy to follow. Aug. 29 2008
By C. Wallace - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I purchased this book after attending a cooking class that Mesnier had at a local cooking school I like to occasionaly visit. He was great. This book is just as a great. I'm not the best cook or anywhere near the best cook but the Cherry Trifle cake helped me when a cook-off at work for best Dessert. The American crust-less cheesecake is to die for; it even list sauces to top with -- fresh chunky strawberry sauce is my favorite. All I can say about this book is buy it, buy it, buy it.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Absolutely Fabulous and Surprisingly Versatile Dec 9 2009
By jehren - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
So far I've tried the Hazelnut Dacquoise Cake, Coffee Genoise, and the Summertime Strawberry Cake. Mr. Mesnier layers recipe over recipe, which has actually enabled me to be more versatile. The hazelnut meringue cake layers can be made in smaller sizes for the best tasting cookies you've ever eaten, and you can stuff them with the sinfully delicious freezable chocolate mousse (the best I've ever had) and serve as "ice cream" sandwiches. The pastry cream for the Strawberry cake (without Grand Marnier)is perfect for eclair filling. Great instruction on how to make ganache and how to temper chocolate. I do have two suggestions for any who attempt many of the cakes in this book- there is A LOT of folding of ingredients. Do yourself a favor and buy a large folding spatula, and! try freezing your egg whites the day before and defrosting them to room temperature when ready to make your cake. A proper spatula and this nifty freezing trick will keep your batters or meringues from deflating. And I'm pretty sure that you'll want to have use of a stand mixer, bc some of these (cake) recipes will not be easy w/o it. Mr. Mesnier gives you a list of supplies at the beginning of the book, too. Everything I've made from this book has been exceptional.
Update: I thought I'd note for the vanilla custard sauce that goes into the hazelnut dacquoise cake- Messnier says that egg must be cooked up to 160 degrees to reach the safe zone, but I have found that in order for this sauce to thicken, it must reach about 180 degrees. Also, for the Summertime Strawberry Cake- do not try and fold the flour mix into the egg mixture while it's in the stand mixer bowl AND the flour should be added slowly (I sift small amounts at a time) and fold. Kind of tricky :)
20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
Wanted more pictures Jan. 7 2008
By Lorraine Hooper - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I have such respect for Mesnier as a pastry chef and am fascinated by the idea of his creating special desserts for all the special occasions at the white house. I was only disappointed that there were not more photos of his fabulous creations. This book has only 16 pictures. I craved much more visually.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Stunningly July 22 2008
By J. Strauss - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
In Roland Mesnier's Basic to Beautiful Cakes, Chef Mesnier offers a stunning selection of delicious and dependable cake recipes. From the basic but "Perfect Yellow Cake," to the more time intensive and skill demanding (but oh so worth it) "Mouse-filled Chocolate Soufflé Cake," each recipe guides you to a spectacular and delicious result. The "Peach and Spice Upside-Down Cake" is a truly a summertime gem. Alas, if only there were more color photos showcasing Chef Mesnier's breathtaking artistry...
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Lots of pictures and clear explanations Sept. 18 2009
By Kerryann Kenney - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am a good cook but I am not a good baker. I learned about baking technique in this book and I appreciated how Mr. Mesnier took the time to explain why he chose which cake for a particular occasion. He also describes a cake and progresses through three versions of a similar recipe from simple to spectacular so you can vary it as your expertise grows. Lovely addition to my baking library. I have not used any recipes in this book but I plan too as he did not list too many recipes with obscure ingredients or complicated recipes. Many of these cakes seem possible for the novice baker. Also, as a White House Buff I appreciated the narrative of Roland Mesnier.

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