Greg Patent is a skilled baker and cookbook author, whose 2002 book Baking in America won a James Beard Award. Patent’s new book, A Baker’s Odyssey, explores immigrant baking — recipes brought to the United States from people coming to live here.
From folhados (Portuguese puff pastry) to jian bing (Chinese flatbread) to casatelli (fried pastries with a sweet-and-spicy garbanzo filling — a Sicilian specialty), Patent introduces us to unfamiliar but wonderful techniques and ingredients. His book includes a DVD of Patent (a longtime cooking-show host) baking nine of his recipes.
Patent told us that one of his goals in writing this book was to get these recipes written down before they were altered by American cooking habits. So he worked primarily with immigrants themselves, or their first-generation offspring. To hear more about what was involved in creating this cookbook — and to hear more about Patent’s unusual early life — tune in here.
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