The holidays are officially upon us. Between shopping, cooking, decorating, and everything else, who has time to bake? Luckily, James Beard-decorated and Southampton resident Chef Francois Payard is debuting some of the holiday’s most festive treats via Tastings NYC for pickup and delivery across NYC and the Hamptons.
As dessert fans know, baking is in Payard's blood. He is a third generation French pastry chef, born in Nice, reknowned for transforming traditional desserts into exquisite plated presentations. One of the city’s most acclaimed pastry chefs, Payard helmed the dessert operations at Le Bernardin and Daniel before opening his three now-shuttered bakeries.
He is known for his French pastries, particularly his macarons. A member of Relais Desserts International, an association of the 80 premier pastry chefs in the world, Payard is also the author of the popular cookbooks including Payard Desserts, recently published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. In other words, the man knows his way around a cake.
This Christmas chef Payard has crafted two delicious versions of the bûche de Noël, a traditional Christmas “log cake," beloved in Belgium, France, Switzerland and Canada. The cake in question was cleverly created in the late 1800s by Parisian pastry chefs who embellished the Yule log tradition with elaborate decorations. The new, gastronomic creation caught on in spectacular fashion, and the Christmas dessert is now celebrated worldwide.
Payard's limited-edition flavors include the Night Before Christmas (chocolate biscuit, chocolate mousse, chocolate cremeux) as well as the White Christmas (mango and passion fruit mousse, roasted pineapple with farm apple juice, coconut biscuit and meringue). At $65 each, orders can be placed online for pickup and delivery.