From a master patissier comes an inspirational-and equally practical and achievable-guide to delicious French-style baking in the home kitchen. The French Baker features 95 recipes accompanied by beautifully shot and styled images; the more complex and technical baked items are supported by step-by-step photography and further hints and tips. Throughout the book, recipes are interspersed with narrative sections that feature French-born Jean Michel's stories of his training and work in patisseries in France and give insights into the place of bakers and baking in French society. Introductions and breakouts also provide information about the recipes' history, traditions and cultural significance. The recipes are a mix of sweet and savoury, and following on from a basics/techniques/ equipment section they are grouped into chapters focusing on biscuits; cakes and muffins; tarts and pies; choux pastry; brioche; flaky pastry; breads; spreads and jams; and creams and curds.
Jean Michel Raynaud is head patissier of Sydney's Renaissance Patisserie and Baroque restaurant. He began his career under the tutelage of master patissier Robert Schicchi in Marseilles in France and was a head pastry chef by the age of 20. After settling in Australia he specialised in the exclusive wedding cake market as head chef of Sweet Art and Planet Cake in Sydney. Jean Michel has appeared on television, written for magazines and contributed recipes to several books.