Monday, 30 May 2016

French Butter Cream

One of the most used butter creams in my recipe file, it draws  inspiration from a French Crème au Beurre, where the eggs, made into a pâte à bombe, enrich its velvety texture, flavour and give it a natural yellow colour.

It’s nowhere near as sweet as the English versions we’re used to. Also, I can’t stand the whole icing sugar texture on my teeth, reminds me of the time when I got beach sand in my mouth and I bit down... yuk, I can just about sense the grinding sound just thinking of it.

A Crème au beurre has many uses, from filling gateaux, covering cakes, tothe topping of cup cakes. It’s versatility comes from its ability to take on flavour and liquids easily, like if you wanted to change a vanilla one to a coffee one, it’s as simple as just adding in a couple of shots espresso, and if your wish was for a fruit version-just add in some puree to taste.

It takes a little bit of planning and a few more pieces of equipment compared to its English cousins. To make this recipe, things like a temperature probe are essential, because the correct temperature is key to cooking out any potential nasties in the eggs. It also ensures that the correct temperature of the sugar is reached before adding to the eggs, which will result in the lowest amount of water being left in the mixture so that the final product isn't too wet or runny.
It is also definitely not suitable for children to make, so adults please make sure you take precautions when making it as no one wants to get burnt.

* 3 whole eggs
* 325g caster sugar
* 60g water
* 500g Unsalted butter
* 1 vanilla pod

- Crack the eggs into a mixing bowl, then attach it to your stand mixer and using the whisk attachment switch the mixer on to a medium – high speed to whisk the eggs
- Leave the eggs whisking
- Into a small sauce pan, add in the caster sugar and water, give it a stir before placing it over a medium- high heat.
- Boil the sugar until it reaches 121 deg C on your sugar thermometer.
- Cube your butter whilst waiting
- When your sugar has reached 121 Deg C, remove the pan from the heat, and slowly pour the hot sugar down the side of the bowl of whisking eggs (being careful not to add it too fast, and not pouring it onto the spinning whisk causing the hot sugar to spray out)
- When all the hot sugar has been poured over the whisking eggs, continue to whisk the mixture until the heat cools to where you can comfortably hold the base of the bowl.
- Slowly start adding the cubed butter. Also add the scrapings of the vanilla pod.
- You will see the mixture start to emulsify and thicken, if for some reason the mixture splits and doesn’t look thickened, do these to rectify it.

- Your mixture was either too hot or too cold when you were adding the butter, so try whisking it a little longer to see if it thickens...
- Or if it was too cold, and the mixture isn’t smooth, use a blow torch on the sides of the bowl being careful not to use it too long in one place and burning the mix inside. This will melt the butter slightly and get the mixture re-emulsified.

- Place into a piping bag and use for what you wish

Raspberry butter cream, where 150g of raspberry puree was added to this recipe.

Sunday, 22 May 2016

Creme Patissiere

Often forgotten for playing a part in so many desserts and pastry recipes is the classic French Pastry Cream, also known as Creme Patissiere, or  confectioner's custard.

Made correctly, the texture and flavour of this versatile thick custard does wonders for simple desserts like trifle or fruit tarts, or in more elaborate recipes such as in a mousseline and even soufflés.

A batch of crème pat can last up to 5 days refrigerated, but common practice in the hospitality industry is a 3 day stock rotation.

None the less, it’s not very expensive to make and can be used in so many ways, I’m sure that you will use this recipe quicker than you would expect.


* 2 Large eggs
* 100g Caster sugar
* 50g Plain flour
* 10g Custard powder
* 500ml Whole milk
* 1 vanilla pod

- Cut the vanilla pod in half lengthways, and scrape the insides vanilla pod of all the little vanilla seed. Now place the seeds and pod into a small saucepan and add the whole milk. Over a medium heat, place the saucepan to heat the milk.

- In a bowl, crack in the 2 eggs, and beat it with a whisk until the yolk is mixed and broken through the egg white, now add the sugar, flour and custard powder and mix it in together.

- Just as the milk is heated to just below boiling point (scalded), take the pan off the heat and slowly pour the hot milk through the mixed egg whilst whisking. Only do this a little at a time also being careful not to splash hot milk over you.

- When all the hot milk has been added to the egg mix, return the whole mix to a pan and place it back onto the heat.

- Cook the mixture out now over the heat, stirring or whisking continually. The mix will slowly thicken, once it becomes very thick, cook it out for 1 minute to ensure the flour and custard powder is properly cooked out before removing it from the heat.

- Pass the mixture through a fine sieve to remove any lumps or any other traces of foreign textures and place into a container to cool.

- It's important to cover the creme pat with a layer of cling film, or baking parchment pressed against it, to stop a skin from forming over the top of the custard.

Monday, 9 June 2014


My light pipeable marshmallow recipe is quick and easy to do if you have a mixer. It's based on the Italian style meringue recipe... how ever if you fancy a work out - you could always try - a Swiss meringue recipe over a bain marie.

* 200g Caster sugar
* 400g Egg white, (12  egg whites)
* 3 sheets Bronze Grade gelatine leaves.
* a touch of cold water

- First place the sugar into your pan, and stir a little bit of water into it as to wet it. Don't make it too runny, just enough to loosen the sugar and water together.
- place the sugar over a medium - high heat and allow to come to a boil without stirring.
- Use a temperature probe to grade how hot the sugar is, we're looking for 121 deg C so well before any hint of caramelisation, and of course, very very hot.
- in your mixing bowl place your egg whites and connect it to the machine with the whisk attachment.
- Place the gelatin into cold water to loosen it up.make it rubbery and limp as to crisp. Cold water is essential so allow the gelatin to soak for up to 2 minutes, or even 3-4 if multiplying up the recipe by batches.
- When the sugar boils to 121 deg C
- Add only the softened gelatin to the boiling sugar, by dropping in the gelatin sheets using your finger from a safe height away from the hot sugar, discard the water away.
- place the mixer on a medium to high speed, and count to 12 seconds to watch the white foam before pouring the sugar in at a slow and safe speed.
- allow the mixer then to whisk the meringue firm. The bowl will be hot, so allow the mixer to spin at a relatively high speed for a white until the bowl is at a cool body heat or room temperature.
- The mix when we can ripple it, is ready to go into a piping bag to be piped.
- Alternatively onto a oiled baking tray to cut up later.
- Refrigerate until required as part of your recipe, and if possible bring to a safe room temperature before consuming. Never chance the rules in catering, where possible only display open food to room temperatures for a maximum of 3 hours. The recipe stands well refrigerated for up to 2-3 days.
-Also perfect for marshmallows on top of hot chocolate

Monday, 6 January 2014

6th January 2014


Working with paperwork and recipe workshop listings
Figuring out flooring
Sorting out hot water still for the kitchen
Still looking for tables 

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

The Pastry King & Hospitality Action

It's that time of year again where Brett Pistorius attempts to raise some more much needed funds for a worthy and incredibly essential charity.

Hospitality Action is the hospitality industry benevolent organisation, helping past & present workers of all ages who are in crisis, such as the bereaved, the ill & the disabled. 
Hospitality Action offers financial aid & information, and also supports a youth guidance scheme educating on alcohol and drugs misuse.

This time last year Brett was spotted delivering and transporting goods across Cheshire and Greater Manchester in a big pink baby outfit, completed with a bib and frilly hat and even a pink frilly skirt. This year however Brett's decided to go a more modest route...

Surprising as it was to us, The Bupa Great Manchester Run caught Brett's attention this year-no one knows why, or how?!?...but he's doing it this coming Sunday!! He's not got that much training in, so it's going to be a hard slog :)

The Bupa Great Manchester Run is staged over a course of 10km, which has been officially measured and certified.  The 2012 start line is on Portland Street near the junction with Oxford Street while the finish line is on Deansgate. 

There is an Aqua-Pura water station on the course just before the 5km marker, just past Old Trafford. Other facilities for runners in 2012 include the “run-through" shower just before the end of Trafford Wharf Road at around the 6.5km point. 

In addition, there will be several Bands on the Run positions throughout the course to ensure runners received that all-important musical boost at regular intervals.
As a keen supporter of Hospitality Action, Brett would like you to know ''I would like to highlight how important the work of the charity is in offering vital assistance to all who work, or have worked within hospitality in the UK''and find themselves in crisis.

Please help Brett hit his target to raise £250.00 for the charity, help him finish the run by digging deep and visiting to donate 

or you can also donate by phone by texting  BRET82 £10 to 70070 to sponsor him today. Thank-you :o)

Friday, 2 September 2011

chouxchouxbedoo: Simple pleasures

chouxchouxbedoo: Simple pleasures: Sometimes the simple things are the best and just lately I've really appreciated some really quick and easy recipes that give great results....

Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Marshmallows made at home-Easy done :) here's how!

Just in case you need a recipe to make marshmallow to glue your Dutch Butter biscuits together, here is a simple recipe to make it at home :) Enjoy!!

• 8 sheets sheets leaf gelatine

• 500 g castor sugar

• 100 ml water

• 3 large egg whites

• icing sugar

• cornflour

- First you need to mix the sugar with the water and ensure it’s all moistened to the same level, and we need to bring it to a boil over a medium high heat.

*Warning: Hot sugar causes serious harm, so please be careful so not to hurt yourself or others when cooking it*

- In a jug of cold water, soften your gelatin. This recipe uses Bronze leaf gelatin.

- You need a sugar thermometer to do this properly, and the sugar needs to boil to a soft ball stage which is 235 deg F, or 112deg C

- As your sugar starts to get close to the soft ball stage, in a mixer start whisking the egg whites on a medium slow speed, this will allow for more uniform smaller bubbles to go into the egg whites :)

- Add the softened gelatin to the hot sugar when ready, and remove from the heat, and add into the whisking egg white.

- Whisk until cool, so this can be around 5-10 minutes in the miser, and add colouring if required. Some chefs add beetroot juice and even purees of fruit-the trick is to not add too much, dashes yes! As too much liquid going in may require a higher level of gelatin in the recipe

- I normally spread the mix over a tray and chill before slicing it, and then adding the cubes to a cornflour icing sugar mixture. However you can also pipe the mixture onto your biscuits and make your own biccie sandwich :)

Hmmmm. Dutch Butter Biccies

For a quick fix for something to dip into your cuppa tea this afternoon we recommend a Dutch Butter Biscuit. If you have a food processor it’s alot easier but can be done by hand all the same, so all you need to make 600g batch is:

100g Icing sugar
200g Unsalted butter/salted butter if you like it like that
300g Plain flour

Just mix it to a dough, roll into a sausage and slice into 1cm thick coins :)
I bake them myself at 160 deg C till gently browned (normally 20 minutes), but 180 deg C for about 10 minutes is also fine (That way you get to dunk it into the tea faster ;0)

Oh, and if you prefer shapes, the dough can be rolled out and cut, filled or garnished like in the picture!

I hope you enjoy making this very simple delightful recipe, any questions, just ask it here or put it to us on twitter :)

Friday, 22 July 2011

What I think about the training of new pastry chefs

As one of the lucky few I was trained by members of the South African Culinary team back in South Africa, my belief is that the pastry section is highly regarded back in South Africa, more so than here in the UK.

My experience of newly trained Chefs and pastry chefs straight out of college is that they really haven’t been shown the basics of cooking; just the other week I had an apprentice say that he’d never cut a cabbage and didn’t know how. 5 Minutes later I had shown him and he was on his way-surely the college should have taught him this? Industry leaders and organisations do try their best in getting new talent to flourish, through awards like the Annual Awards of Excellence, The chocolate dessert of the year, and the Pastry Chef dessert of the year.

My opinion is that we need more from the industry to bring talent out in young pastry chefs, where this can be best accomplished would have more skills shown and taught to them at college.

I have also had commi pastry chefs with their new NVQ’s joining my brigade in the past, also with no clue as to the different mixing methods, or even the basic knowledge of reading a recipe.

It is sad that individuals are let loose in our industry not knowing the basics. For example, I regard food science in pastry to be incredibly important, with regards to cooking temperatures (coagulation, over-coagulation, syneresis) and when a sol becomes a gel, cereals also need great attention, and so on.

I love teaching people what i have learnt, and continue to learn myself. My dreams for a Britain with fabulous new pastry sections need enthusiastic Pastry talent. Let?s not spoil it and let?s train them well.

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

North West Fine Food Awards


The Pastry King has scooped a top award at the Fine Food Awards 2011, which celebrate the best fine foods in the Northwest.

The company won a FOOD NW HEART AWARD for its Chocolate Box Selection.

Organised by Food NW* the awards recognise the best fine foods produced across Cheshire, Cumbria, Greater Manchester, Lancashire and Merseyside.

Celebrity chef, Nigel Haworth, chef patron of Northcote in Lancashire and chair of the awards’ judges, announced the winners at his ‘Fantastic Food Show’ at Ewood Park in Blackburn on June 12, 2011.

The Chocolate Truffle selection consists of truffles made from quality Valrhona chocolate, which is hand blended and emulsified by the Head Pastry Chef, Chocolatier Brett Pistorius. The assortment is an arrangement of classic flavour combinations developed and refined over his extensive career in many high class eateries and establishments, both here in the United Kingdom and South Africa.

Six lovely and bespoke chocolate truffles, with flavored ganache ranging from sea salt and bitter dark chocolate through to a white chocolate, almond, vanilla and Amaretto are brilliantly enrobed in hand tempered chocolate and garnished with love. So much love and attention to detail is put into The Pastry King Chocolate Truffle selection that even a touch of 23 carat gold leaf makes an appearance on the Baileys Milk chocolate truffle.

The Food NW Gold Heart Awards, which recognise ‘exceptional’ products, were awarded to 12 fine foods. Over 100 products, which were deemed as ‘excellent’ by the judges, secured a Food NW Heart Award.

Brett Pistorius has said ‘’I am extremely proud that one of my products have won an award, they really are a labour of love with exceptional ingredients being used to make them. I am thrilled!’’

An independent benchmark for the region’s best foods, in 2011 the awards were judged by a select panel of food experts including top chefs, food buyers and food writers, through a series of heats held across the region.

Pat Foreman, chief executive of Food NW, said: “The Fine Food Awards honour the very best of the fine foods to be found in our region. Brett Pistorius should be proud of their achievement, which is testament to the hard work, creativity and innovation that has gone into making their award-winning product. We are delighted to be able to help promote and support the finest foods our region to offer.”

This year’s awards saw nearly 400 products entered by 132 companies from across the Northwest.


For further information contact:

Brett Pistorius can be contacted direct on 07894519462



Issued: 14/06/2011


The Pastry King is a bakery that produces fantastic quality desserts, chocolates and cakes as they are ordered. From dinner parties to wedding cakes, we can help you.

We believe that fresh is best, local is better and that premix is bad. This is why we make to order, use local when we have it and make everything from scratch using nothing but the best we can buy and our favourite recipe's. At the end of the day, our produce is our passion and we love what we do!

The best way to discover what makes us so special and truly unique is to try it yourself .

About the Fine Food Awards 2011

The Fine Food Awards 2011 are organised by Food NW, which aims to help businesses in the food & drink industry maximise their economic potential and increase productivity and output.

Food NW is managing the Food & Drink Growth Programme with support from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), which aims to stimulate and develop the higher value sub-sectors of the region’s food and drink economy, whilst ensuring a safe and sustainable environment in which to grow. For further information please visit

About The Fantastic Food Show

In 2010 Nigel Haworth’s Fantastic Food Show was launched with relatively little publicity and a simple belief that a premiership stadium, such as Ewood Park was as good a place as any to stage a show, due to the main fact that there are indoor and outdoor areas. This year, it was held over two days to give everyone a chance to enjoy the very best of food the region has to offer.

About Me

My photo
The Pastry king was started in July 2009 when professional Pastry chef Brett Pistorius noticed a need for bespoke cakes, chocolates and desserts in the North West of England. What started out as cakes made at home for friends and family, grew steadily, as word of his creations spread to retailers and food businesses alike and business grew fast. The business quickly outgrew the home kitchen and in September 2010 it moved into premises based in Chelford, Cheshire. This move helped drive forward a still growing business that supplies products to an impressive portfolio of clients, both private and commercial, in Cheshire and Manchester. The Online service The Pastry King offers is becoming increasingly popular for many of our national clients; we put the same care and attention to detail in getting our creations to you as we do making the actually products. At The Pastry king we produce such a variety of patisserie related products, the best way to discover what makes us so special is to order from us online, by phone or e-mail and try it for yourself. So why not get in touch and see how we can help you.