Exclusive: An Inside Look at the Upcoming "Bouchon Bakery" Cookbook with Bouchon Bakery Sous Chef Scott Peabody

August 20, 2012 7:04 PM EDT | By Anthony Smith
Bouchon Bakery's Nutter Butter
Bouchon Bakery's Nutter Butter cookie (Photo: Creative Commons)

When you think of the American pantheon of wonderful, store-bought cookies, it's easy to overlook the Nutter Butter, a slightly larger-than-average peanut-shaped cookie that admirably balances the saltiness we love from peanut butter with the sweetness we come to expect from a sandwich creme. It's exactly the kind of treat that gets people excited and chefs inspired.

It's no surprise, then, that Thomas Keller's Bouchon Bakery should hail their take on the Nutter Butter as something of a signature pastry dish. Sous Chef Scott Peabody of Bouchon Bakery dishes on what makes this Nutter Butter restaurant ready.

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"The Bouchon Bakery Nutter Butter, which is on the cover of their cookbook, is obscenely indulgent," said Peabody with a sort of coyness that's as much critical of cookie's decadence as it is proud of it, "The thing that makes it the n'est plus ultra of peanut desserts is that the cream in it is a buttercream with peanut butter added to it-- it's a Nuttercream."

And if this cookbook has the attention to details that Keller's others do, it will show home cooks and bakers how they can bust out some Nuttercreams themselves. Alongside the Bouchon Bakery Nutter Butters, we'll see Keller's take on Oreos and Hostess's Ho Hos between the cookbook's considerable pages. What makes them different from what we'd get in stores?

"You can definitely expect the signature Thomas Keller outlook on American desserts, which is an incredibly high butter/sugar impact, because all the desserts there are incredibly indulgent," continued Peabody. However, he added "the Ho-Hos are good, but they're almost a perfect facsimile of store-bought Ho-Hos."

We'll take that to mean they're very good.

But beyond a high-minded homage to Betty Crocker, we'll look at some more traditional stuff. Take Bouchon Baker's sticky buns, for instance. Peabody notes: "Not only do they make the brown sugar and butter mixture and use a buttery brioche, they roll it with pastry cream... It's not just satisfying, it's indulgent. They're honestly the best, but they probably have a thousand calories."

The Bouchon Bakery Cookbook, which hits bookstore shelves on October 23, 2012, boasts the tagline "[baked] goods that are marvels of ingenuity and simplicity from the famed Bouchon Bakery."

It's here that we take just a little issue. Much of how the high culinary gets packaged and sold to home cooks is through a line about simplicity. Often, that simplicity couldn't be farther from the truth, and a home cook ends up purchasing a tome that ends up intimidating hir.

Where, then, do we rank this cookbook on a level of difficulty? Peabody recommends it for home bakers with a moderate to high level of skill, but he notes that "there are probably basic recipes that might be workable."

Check out the book on Amazon here. 



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