Photo of 3 Moelleux Au Chocolat on a white plate on a blue flowered background
Cookbook Reviews

French Pastry Made Simple

Cookbook by: Molly Wilkinson

Cookbook Cover of French Pastry Made Simple

“I want to build your pastry-making confidence and give you the information you need to succeed whether you’re a beginner or seasoned baker,” Molly Wilkinson. 

I have been following @mollyjwilk on instagram for a while and was super excited to see that she wrote a cookbook, French Pastry Made Simple. As we all know I’m obsessed with France and all the deliciousness it offers, so making these desserts at home is a must for me. Over the years I have tried many different French cookbooks but I find the recipes in French Pastry Made Simple to be the easiest I have made. The cookbook offers a variety of recipes for eclairs, tarts, macarons and such much more. 

Photo of 5 glasses of The Frenchman’s Chocolate Mousse on a burgundy placemat

The Frenchman’s Chocolate Mousse

I have made chocolate mousse from scratch a few times and all were successful. The recipe was very detailed and descriptive, which is needed when you are dealing with French meringue. For me the most important thing to remember is to be very gentle when folding the ingredients together to keep as much air inside the mousse. 

To serve the mousse I used some pretty glasses including some of the crystal glasses my Dad bought for my Grandma from Japan in the 1960s (one of the few items I was able to salvage from the fire). They were the perfect size for the mousse. These light and airy desserts didn’t last long in the house. It was a good thing no one was counting how many I had – it might be embarrassing if they had. 

I will make them again, especially for a dinner party as they are the perfect dessert to serve with coffee. 

Photo of 3 Moelleux Au Chocolat on a white plate on a blue flowered background

Moelleux Au Chocolat

Chocolate cake is always delicious but add some chocolate ganache inside and it become irresistible. The recipe for the Moelleux Au Chocolat is very simple to follow, once the eggs are at room temperature it took less than ten minutes to have the cakes ready to go into the oven. I used a muffin tin to make them and it worked out great. The recipe calls for either bittersweet or milk chocolate or a combo, I used all bittersweet but next time I make them I am going to do a mix of the two. The cakes cook for 8 to 10 minutes in the oven, for mine I did 8 minutes but I believe they would have been perfect if I had taken them out about 30 seconds earlier. All of our ovens cook differently so just be aware if yours tends to cook a little quicker then pull them out a little sooner and check them. 

I was a little bummed that we had run out of ice cream as it would have been the perfect complement to the cakes. This recipe will be something I will make again and again. The effort required is minimal and the resulting Moelleux Au Chocolat are delectable. Plus your guests will think you worked all day in the kitchen making them. 

Cookbook Ratings: Recipe directions easy to follow: yes, Ingredients easy to find: yes, Specialty ingredients needed: no, Specialty equipment needed: no, Accurate time estimates: yes, Best for home chef skill level: novice, Taste/flavor: delicious, Family friendly: yes, specialty diet: no, How many recipes are unique: most, overall cookbook rating: love it

As a self proclaimed Francophile I have tried many different French cookbooks. French Pastry Made Simple is my favorite French dessert cookbook. I have seen so many people afraid to try a lot of French recipes as they are afraid they will be too difficult, however, the recipes in this cookbook are broken down so home chefs of all levels can be successful. Even a beginner home chef could make a delicious dessert with French Pastry Made Simple.

I am going to make meringue kisses soon, or at least when the humidity isn’t crazy here with all the rain – I am well aware that meringue and humidity do not mix well. What’s the first recipe you want to try from French Pastry Made Simple?

And don’t forget to check out Molly’s website and her pastry classes she offers both in person and virtually. Click here to learn more. I can’t wait til I am in Paris again and can go take one of her classes. 

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