Sweet treats. You can’t beat them. But out of all the sugary foods that you can make, pastries are often seen as the most difficult. You have to get the conditions just right for a perfect croissant or a pan au raisin.
But why should that stop you from making them at home? Even though some pastries can be tricky, with the right guidance, you will be able to make them in your oven with ease.
Whether it is Chelsea buns, sticky buns, cinnamon rolls, pies, or croissants, you could make them all even if you are an inexperienced baker. So, what are the best female-penned pastry cookbooks?
What are the best pastry guides for beginners? Are there cookbooks that deal with other sweet treats?
Well, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best pastry cookbooks written by women that we can find on the market. So keep reading to find out more.
What Types Of Pastries Are There?
There are generally 5 types of pastries: flaky, shortcrust, filo, puff, and choux. The thing that unites all 5 of these is the fact that they are all made with fat, water, and flour.
Flaky pastries are usually made for pie crusts and tend to shed a lot of layers when you eat them. These are usually made by butting the butter for the pastry in a food processor and whisking it until it is smooth.
You’ll need to make sure you don’t work this pastry too much. Shortcrust pastry is a lot thicker than other types of pastry and is usually made for tarts.
This usually requires half fat and half flour, which is what accounts for its dense consistency. Puff pastry takes the longest in the baking process and is usually used for the crusts in meat pies.
This is made by putting a rolling pin over cold butter. There is also a method of making puff pastry much faster. This is called rough puff.
Choux pastry is quite thin and comes in layers with a hollow center which is usually used to hold fillings. This pastry is made with eggs and rises due to the presence of air between each layer of pastry.
Filo pastry is another one that is formed of layers and is usually used for spring rolls and baklava. These sheets are laid on top of each other and baked until they turn crispy.
So now that we’ve learned about the different types of pastry, what are the best pastry cookbooks?
Well, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best female chef pastry cookbooks that you can currently buy on Amazon(see also: 6 Female Chef Cajun Cookbooks You Do Not Want To Miss). So what are you waiting for? Get the rolling pin out and let’s get stuck in!
5 Female Chef Pastry Cookbooks
OUR TOP PICK
OUR TOP PICK
This first book is made by an award-winning chef who runs a chain of very popular and internationally renowned bakeries.
This has over 125 recipes that utilize pastry and a lot of other ingredients to make sweet treats that range from cakes to pies and tarts.
This features recipes for a mean strawberry pie, mocha cookies, lemon sugar cookies and passion fruit crepe cake.
These recipes are varied in their difficulty, so you can be sure you’ll find a recipe for every different cookery experience level.
- Recipes for making cream pastry and puff pastry
- A great recipe book for beginners
- 125 great recipes to choose from
- Illustrated with photographs
- This might not have enough variety for experienced bakers
This is a cookbook that is written by an extremely experienced pastry chef and the judge of Junior Great British Bakeoff.
This starts from the ground up, discussing the principles of how to make a decent pastry, going from how to line your cake tins to understanding the importance of having the right fat content.
She then breaks down each different type of pastry, including pastries, custards, chocolate, cakes, biscuits and puddings.
Whether you are a beginner or an expert, you will find something new here. This comes with some amazing glossy pictures so you can see what you’re aiming for.
- Covers the main types of sweet treat
- The perfect place to start for pastry cooks
- Features the fundamentals of baking
- Great color photographs
- Might be daunting for beginners
This cookbook aims to take the most complicated of baking recipes and reduce them to some easy-to-follow guides.
This will teach you how to bake a layer cake in record time as well as give you an amazing recipe for chocolate cake that features only 3 ingredients (see also "Amazing Ina Garten Chicken Recipes To Try Today").
This also has recipes for blueberry buttermilk pancakes, golden genoise, white lilac nostalgia cake, and triple chocolate cake.
You can be sure there is a recipe in here for every occasion. This also tackles every type of pastry, from filo to choux.
- A comprehensive baking guide
- Plenty of pastries, cakes and biscuits
- Easy-to-follow recipes
- Winner of the James Beard Award
- This book does not contain pictures
This next cookbook will teach you how to make some of the lightest and fluffiest puff pastries that you will ever have tasted.
This book will also teach you how to make the silkiest pies and the moistest cakes. If you want to improve your existing baking skills, this is the one for you.
This is great for beginners who know nothing about the basics of baking, but also, it’s useful for experienced bakers as it will teach them about the techniques that they have been using and why they might be using them.
From fruit souffle to cookies, this has it all.
- Great for pros and casual bakers
- Teaches you a wide range of baking techniques
- Delves into the science of baking
- Unearths some long-lost baking secrets
- Some readers have described this book as repetitive
This is a multi-award-winning cookbook that has everything that you need for making your own pies and savory tarts (Also check out Female Chef Pie Cookbooks You Do Not Want To Miss). This covers everything from flatbreads, pizza breads, snacks and pastries.
There are also sugarless treats for those who are steering clear of the white stuff.
This will allow you to prepare treats for any time of the day, which is great if you are looking for something that you can rustle up quickly before work or unwind with some mindful baking at the end of a stressful day.
This also comes with hundreds of glossy color pictures.
- Hundreds of sumptuous recipes
- Covers flatbreads and biscuit dough
- This will teach anyone from pro baker to amateur chef
- Easy-to-follow recipes
- Some readers have complained that the layout of this book is confusing
Best Female Chef Pastry Cookbooks Buying Guide
If you are looking for a decent pastry book, there are a few things that you will not be able to do without. Here are just a few of them:
Covers All Pastry Varieties
There are some bakers who will only want to learn how to make the most popular types of pastry, whereas others will want to know everything about all of them.
If you are the latter, then you should make sure you have a pastry cookbook that covers filo, choux, puff, flaky and shortcrust.
Pastry can be one of the trickiest things to bake, so you’ll want to make sure that there are recipes that will guide you every step of the way.
Check to see that the recipes have correct measurements and there is not too much cooking jargon.
Something For Pros And Beginners
You can get some cookbooks that are aimed at just beginners and others that feature a mix of recipes for pros and newbies.
If you are new to baking, then you won’t want to be stuck with recipes that are beyond your capabilities.
Hopefully, our list of some of the best female-penned pastry cookbooks has helped you to decide which is the best one for you.
There are plenty of pastry-only cookbooks, whereas there are lots that deal with biscuits, sweet treats and cakes too.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Should I Remember When Baking Pastry?
Make sure that you are preparing your pastry in a cool environment, otherwise the fat could melt.
Also, make sure that you come into contact with the pastry as little as possible and that you allow a lot of air to get in. Finally, allow the mixture to relax so the fat can harden.
What Is The Sweetest Type Of Pastry?
The shortcrust can be made sweeter by adding some extra sugar. You should also put in extra water and eggs to enhance the consistency of your final sweet shortcrust.