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Wild Sweets: Exotic Dessert & Wine Pairings Paperback – January 1, 2010

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Dominique and Cindy Duby are the chefs and owners of DC DUBY Wild Sweets, a critically acclaimed chocolate atelier and virtual boutique. They are the authors of several cookbooks including Wild Sweets: Exotic Dessert & Wine Pairings, which won the 2003 Best Book for Food & Wine Matching from the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.


Pastry-making is more than recipes and techniques; it is a unique blend of art and science that appeals to the senses and the emotions. For us, pastry-making is all about taste, and its purpose is to evoke emotions that will live on as unforgettable memories.

It is true that we do not eat desserts and other sweets to acquire our daily intake of vitamins and minerals; however, they contribute to our well-being at the sensory level. They provide pleasure. A moralist might say that we have to eat to live, not live to eat. Yet, as pâtissiers/chocolatiers, we know that many people still find pleasure in eating and drinking well.

Creating an unforgettable sweet experience takes time. Although many of the desserts in this book can be made relatively quickly, they are not fast foods. Preparing desserts that evoke emotion means investing effort and devoting passion for the sole purpose of providing pleasure for you and your guests. These are the memories that will last forever.

The recipes in this book are our memories, the documented account of our evolution. They are dishes inspired by the people, cultures, customs and traditions we've encountered in our international travels that have forged our philosophy and shaped our approach to pastry and chocolate design. These recipes reflect our style of desserts--the way we like to eat them, the way we like to create them and the way they evoke emotion for us.

We believe that food preparation is 60% ingredients and 40% technique; that is, the success of a dessert relies in large part on the quality of its ingredients. Prepare your desserts with the purest and finest foods at their seasonal peaks--including as many wild foods as possible--and you are already two-thirds of your way to success. The rest depends on techniques, tricks and, most importantly, chemistry.

To turn out perfect desserts, it helps to understand something about this science. Pastry-making and chemistry are identical: they are both based on time and temperature. The basic premise is that foods exposed to heat for a certain amount of time change from a raw state to a cooked one. If you understand the stages of the process and the potential pitfalls, you can anticipate and/or prevent failure. Throughout this book, we have included information on several of the main processes so that you can confidently tackle any preparation--and yield consistently great outcomes.

We sometimes hear that nothing's really new anymore in pastry-making, that any possible recipe has already been created. We disagree. We continue to find new ways to innovate by using non-traditional exotic and wild ingredients--Szechwan pepper, salmonberries, bee pollen, Hon pears, shiso, black truffles--and emphasizing multidimensional tastes, such as sweet and sour and the less-common bitter and salty combination. Our desserts are full of aroma, character and intense flavours, they're light in texture and healthful in content, and they are not too sweet in taste.

Although you will need to be precise--using a scale and other measuring tools--to successfully reproduce these recipes, there is a lot of room for interpretation. We encourage you to use our recipes as starting points for your own experimentation. Substitute other ingredients if certain foods are unavailable, out of season or not to your liking. For example, if you do not like curry or you do not want to use it in desserts, replace it with cinnamon. If using chicon seems too daunting, use a braised apple instead. If you're pressed for time, just omit the décor. Or plan ahead: many of the components can be made ahead of time and stored frozen and/or in airtight containers without any loss of quality. However, never compromise on the freshness and quality of the ingredients.

Experiment too with various wines. Pastry matrimony, or the pairing of wines and desserts, also plays a big part in our dessert philosophy. Just as wines enhance savoury dishes, sweet wines complement desserts. Most of our recipes include wine suggestions. Use these as guides, and try your own pairings to determine what you like best-and to discover new and exciting possibilities.

As you read through this book, we hope that you will be inspired to recreate these recipes and to fully experience and appreciate their many pleasures. We hope too that you'll begin to experiment with your own dishes, to evoke your own emotions and to create your own memories-all it takes is a little imagination. It has been said that to be good, one must seek change. To be great, one must change often.


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Product Details

  • Series: Wild Sweets
  • Paperback: 162 pages
  • Publisher: Whitecap Books Ltd.; 1 edition (January 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1552858367
  • ISBN-13: 978-1552858363
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 0.5 x 12 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #487,056 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Reginald Abalos on April 6, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Very avant-garde in flavor combinations. Crossing the border on what ingredients are "sweet" and "savory", stunning photography, extremely useful wine pairings and general information on some raw basic ingredients. Nice layout/format and easily readable font. Useful base recipes are a nice addition to any professional's repetoire. Highly recommended.
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6 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Flavio on November 9, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Wonderful book. Very interesting combinations of flavors on the desserts and great choices for the wines.

Try the grilled pear with polenta frites and orange-tarragon sauce. It's umbelievable.

I just don't know why they didn't use hardcover.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Caro Diaz on July 27, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm a professional cook and this book it's just gorgeous! I took lots of ideas for my own creations and it works perfectly! Full of great recipes, beautiful plating, tips, beautiful pictures (for me this is very important in a cooking book!)..totally recommend it!!
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By Glacia on September 25, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Definitely some interesting combinations of flavors. It's fun to read and look at the pictures.....can't wait to try some of the recipes.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful By N. Djuric on January 21, 2008
Format: Paperback
This book contains some of the most amazing ideas and concepts I've seen in the field of desserts and sweets. It explores new ingredients and their application in dessert making. I highly recommend this book for anyone intrested in pastry, desserts and molecular gastronomy.
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