Joe Pastry…


…is a guy who believes that if a man feels like whipping up a nice almond cocoa genoise or a few madeleines, well…he should be able to. And if he feels like talking a little science or history along the way…well, what harm does that do anyone?

Joe was born and raised in the Chicago area. He started his career in food at age 15, working as a line cook on weekends. Through his high school and college years he worked a variety of food service jobs, never earning more than five dollars an hour. So he went into marketing.

For the last twenty years Joe has worked as a marketing consultant specializing in food. He has helped food and ingredient business of all sizes — from mom-and-pop organic farmers and street vendors to Cargill and McDonald’s — take their products to market.

Joe was diagnosed with stage 4 lymphoma in early 2001 despite years of yoga, t’ai chi and mostly vegetarian eating. As part of his therapy he took a job at one of the Chicago area’s top bakery/pastry shops. He credits steak, chocolate chip cookies, first class Western medicine and hand-laminated dough with his recovery. He has been in full remission since late 2001.

In 2004 Joe moved to Louisville, Kentucky with his wife, Jo, and shortly started both a family (daughters Jo and Joan) and a small baking business. The business failed in 2006, but his wife, for reasons that have yet to be explained, kept him. Today Joe leads as balanced a life as he can under the circumstances.

He can be contacted at:

His Blog…

…is all about baking, science and history. It is not, nor does it aspire to be, the last word on anything. The recipes it contains are uncreative by design as the emphasis of the blog is techniques. Frequently inauthentic — indeed Joe regards the very word “authentic” as meaningless — the recipes are exemplars of classic preparations from around the world, simplified to as great an extent possible in hopes of making them accessible to the aspiring baker. Make them launching pads to your own adventures.

Use the blog by simply starting to read it since it’s written (hopefully) in such a way that nothing is assumed, so new readers can dive in anywhere. There’s a catalog of recipes in the left-side menus. Each contains a photo tutorial with the recipe in a separate post below. To learn more about a food item, use the calendar feature at the bottom left to go back to the date of the tutorial or recipe post. Much nonsense will be found there. Have fun!

155 thoughts on “Joe Pastry…”

  1. I came across your recipe for raised donuts – my son is so excited for me to make these! I am having trouble understanding your measurements (ounces as opposed to cups?). Is there a way to translate the 4.2 ounces for the sponge and 5.8 ounces of flour for the doughnuts into cups? Also…. .6 ounces of dry milk?

    I guess if the whole recipe ingredients could be put into a standard (American) measurement – it would be really helpful. I know when baking measurement is critical …

    Thank you! Can’t wait to try them – you’re website is visually wonderful!

      1. Its my feeling that every home kitchen should have a scale, for reasons as stated above. They are relatively inexpensive and can be found at places such as Target; Bed, Bath and Beyond; etc…then, when coming across a recipe that is listed in ounces (or grams) making the conversation from cups to ounces is as easy as making apple pie! Shrn57

        1. Yep, and the results are much more consistent as volume measurements can vary from person to person, day to day, and package to package of flour.

          If you think you measure consistently, borrow a scale and measure out a cup of flour 3 or 4 times in a row. How wrong you are!

          1. Ditto on the scale, and not just for measuring ingredients. I bake several kinds of quick breads in mini-loaves for the Holidays. I had trouble with getting all the pans to be done at the same time (I buy 1 lb foil pans in bulk from a commercial source), even on a convection bake setting. Suddenly, that little light in my head lit up and I started weighing the pans as I filled them. Voilà! Now they are all done at the same time.

            A good scale can be found fairly inexpensively online.

          2. Indeed, Sandy. I’m even starting to see them in supermarkets, which is great!


            – Joe

    1. I think everyone should go strictly by weight. Shockingly, I am finding that there are a lot of discrepencies of how many grams/ounces are in a cup of flour that even contrasts with what the manufacturer states on the package. A lot of it must be how people measure their flour in the cup (scoop vs. spoon it in). You really need to get a scale to take the guesswork out. Also, it eliminates having to make a mess measuring.

      1. An excellent point, Judy. Measuring spoons are especially variable, especially the chic designer ones.

        Thanks for the note!

        – Joe

  2. first of all
    i am sorry if my english is not good. but i hope u can understand question.

    can you explain and give us an understanding about ‘asian bread’ ? and of course make a ‘step by step’ instruction which is very useful for us especialy the newbie like me 🙂

    asian bread is very fluffy and its design is very atractive and have a lot of variations

    sir, if it is ok , i will link the pic ..

    link :


    this kind of bread is very popular in south east asia 🙂

    thank you .. 🙂


    1. I would be very happy to do that. Can you give me the names of some of the breads you’d like me to try? I’ve been wanting to do some Asian-style breads for a long time now. Those buns with the herbs on top look wonderful.

      1. dear sir joe…

        actualy there are no exact name for the bread like that .. but, can i give to you the link ? 🙂

        example :




        and especially thissss, you have to clik this link – CLIK— ya bakeryindonesia , becouse i am in jakrta ;p


        i hope u can understand, what i mean 🙂 hahahaha

        anyway, i want to say thank you becoz of your website is very very useful for me .. 🙂

        thank you


        1. It is my pleasure, Gbu! I think I understand now. I will try these soon, probably in about two weeks. – Joe

          1. Joe, you are awesome! So responsive to your readers. You keep it real, and that’s why I keep reading. 🙂

          2. Ha! Thanks Ann, that means a lot. Have a great weekend!

            – Joe

          3. wow! I got here from a google search on whether my first king cake should have turned out so dry. And now I find that you may have some Indonesian roti recipes on here! My husband is Indonesian and I fell in love with their bread over there when we visited in 2008. Now I’m going to comb through your archives… (and definitely trying the liquid butter tip on my next king cake, thanks!)

          4. Let me know if I can help any! Welcome and please come back!

            – Joe

          5. I actually found your site after google searching your melonpan recipe! I’ve started exploring the site some more and I am very impressed with the variety of information you’ve posted and how easy they are to understand for self-execution.

            (I especially like your “VS Pollan” series XD )

            Thank you so much for making this information available.

          6. Thank you for the wonderful comment, Czarina. You made my day!

            Paeans come back soon!

            – Joe

  3. sir joe , thank you very much 🙂

    i have question ..
    i am confusing. which one is better ?
    swiss buttercream ? or italian buttercream ?

    and what personally you choose ? 🙂

    thank you ..

    sory, if i ask u a lot of questioon 🙂

    thank you

    God Bless

    1. No problem! I like them both, but prefer Swiss buttercream because I think it’s easier to make and is a little more durable. Get back to me with any questions at all!

  4. thank you sir..

    ok, from now i will ask u a lot of . becoz my basic is not in pastry or anykind of culinary art .. i am majoring civil engering ( and i will be graduated maybe these mid-year ) 🙂

    i just tried italian buttercream and it is lighter than french buttercream 🙂 …

    oh swiss buttercream ? .. i will try next day hehehhe
    but, should we use double boiler ? becoz i dont have doouble boiler .. . hemmm…… 🙂

    ^^ tq

    1. Engineering is excellent training for pastry, there is no question, so keep pursuing your craft! Concerning the double boiler, you don’t have to use it, you can simply put the bowl of your mixer over a pan of simmering water!

  5. I was reading through your wonderful blog (laughing and printing out recipes like a woman possessed), then I checked out your About page. As a born & raised Kentuckian, I just had to give you a shout out! We lived in the Louisville area for years (Owensboro, Kentucky is home now – hometown of Johnny Depp… I dunno, I just always have to say that).

    Thanks for your labor of love – as someone who’s days (and nights) revolve around food in some fashion, I appreciate and applaud anyone who does their part to keep the beautiful art of cooking alive and well for generations to come.

    In keeping with the spirit of the south, Ya’ll rock!

    1. You made my day, Joi! Thanks for the wonderful email. I love my new home state where, as you know, my wife and I are raising two Kentucky daughters. We wouldn’t want to be anywhere else. Stop by anytime and email me if you have any questions at all. – Joe

    1. Sure. I’ll warn you though that I make a terrible e-friend, though. I’m very rarely on Facebook…I have enough trouble keeping the blog populated on a daily basis. But who knows? Maybe that will change. Thanks for the invite!

    1. Hey! It’s been a long weekend…give me a break, will you? 😉

      I don’t have a bakery anymore, but I once did. I miss the fun, but not the hours.

        1. Ann is a great person. I need to talk her soon, it’s been a while since we caught up!

  6. Hi Joe,

    I love your site. Thank you so much for keeping the art of cooking and baking alive and sharing with us all. I was interested in your doughnuts but was wondering if you had attempted to make a Canadian Dutchie . They seem to be an illusive recipe and wondering if you had any thoughts and tips.

    1. Thank you, Kate! I have a vague recollection of a Dutchie as a square yeast-raised doughnut without a hole, is that right?

  7. Hello Joe,

    I hope this doesn’t sound patronising, but you do have an unique (and absorbing) voice. If nothing else, it’s given me a reason to put off writing an important paper. (Since an excuse is in order, I might as well offer a compelling one…)

    On the subject of Asian breads, have you heard of the ‘water roux’ method? Like you, I’m a skeptic, although admittedly an uninformed one. If you can spare some time one day to check it out, I’ll be interested to see what you think of the science behind the method.

    In the meantime, I look forward to reading more of your baking exploits.

    1. Why would that be patronizing? It’s a terrific compliment. Sorry about the paper, though. 😉 As far as the “water roux” method, I have heard of it, but it doesn’t seem all that different than a starter (sponge) method to me. But I really should investigate it a little more closely. Thank you for the email, Audrey!

  8. 🙂 sir 🙂

    this morning i try to make a brownies 🙂

    so i melted chcolate with butter ( 50 %)+ margarin(50%) >< but the results is unbelievable 🙂 … ya unbelievable horrible

    maybe , i should try to melt chocolate with butter ( 50%) and shortening ( 50%) ..

    any suggestion sir ? ?

    becoz in my country .. butter is very expensive 🙂

    sir, if i melt chocolate with salted butter , what will happend to the taste ? ? ? 🙂

    tq sir 🙂


    1. Hi Daniel! If the chocolate and margarine is horrible, you definitely won’t be any happier with the shortening. Try vegetable oil. Also, if salted butter is all you can find, use it. Many people use salted butter to make sweets like brownies and cookies. The small amount of salt is hard to detect, and can add to the flavor in a subtle way.

      1. vegetable oil ?


        vegetable oil + chocolate ? 🙂

        how about vegetable oil + chocolate + butter ? :p

        is shortening bad if i melt with chocolaTE ?


  9. Long time reader. Helpful, enjoyable post. Family loves Joe Pastry
    goodies. Just now navigating fairly new reconditioned site. Read about Joe, and saw Stage 4 2001. So glad you made it to give us this great Blog. I started reading Joe Pastry when I had same and under medical care. Lifted my spirits and just had to go to kitchen and practise all of Joe’s ways of doing things. During that time I thought of Joe’s as a kind of therapy. Thank you.

    1. VERY nice to hear from you again, Sandra. Thanks for the note — and congratulations to you! Amazing, isn’t it, the power of positive thinking and good food to rejuvenate both the mind and the body. I couldn’t be happier or prouder to have played a part in your recovery. Your email has truly made my day. – Joe

  10. Hi Joe,
    I have a lil crisis on my hands. When re-arranging the contents of the fridge, the husband accidentally left out 3 blocks of butter in room temperature overnight. I woke up the next morning to find 3 blobs of butter 🙁 I popped them back into the fridge but remembered someone telling me that once melted, the butters are useful no more (for baking, that is). Is that true? Is there some way I can use the butter (besides for cooking, which I don’t do much)? I’m so annoyed by my husband’s carelessness, and he is so annoyed, in turn, by my obsession with the butter and has offered to “pay” me back for the butter. It is not payment that I’m looking for here!! In my moment of despair, I thought of you…

    ps. I love surfing baking blogs but I like yours the most. really truly.

    1. Thank you Nina!

      Don’t worry about the butter, it’s just fine for baking, no worries there. Warming it to the point of extreme softening doesn’t do it any harm. Melting it completely causes graininess once it firms up again, but even then it’s completely fine for cakes and cookies. In fact there are some bakers out there that prefer melted, even clarified, butter for their cakes. So take a deep breath — it’s all OK! Your friend, – Joe

  11. Thank you, Joe!! I knew I could count on you! Keep up the great work with the site 🙂

  12. Hello ,from Greece.I accidentally came accross your blog and I was amazed.I was trying to figure out, how old this lady is by lookind at her hands at the photos,when I read that you actually are a man.How refreshing to watch all this fine recipes created by a man.Thank you for sharing.

    1. Hello Stella! Thanks very much for visiting and for all your kind words. But no, I’m not an old lady…although sometimes my wife tells me I act like one!

      I hope you will come back often!

      – Joe

  13. Hi Joe,
    It is 5 am and I am going to make scones. I wanted to make scones for years and read dozens of recipes but never had enough courage to try one. Today is the day! I like coking and reading, especially your blog, I’m not too good in baking though.


  14. Joe,
    I’m not sure if you had many commenters from Ukraine – well, here you go anyway 🙂
    Your site is a true work of love, I’m amazed with your style of presenting the material, your good-natured jokes, your going into detail (I loved your cooking thermometer, an amazing thing I feel I’ll never have 🙂 ), and then I come to the about page and see how it all rounds up, you are a big man! Fighting (and winning) against the disease proves that you do have around you things worth living, and I feel that your site is one of them (I may be wrong, but I don’t think I am).
    I came to your site to see what the damn PATE A BOMBE is (it’s a real shame, the Wiki does not have an article for that, even the French one!) – but my interest was not entirely practical, I’m translating into Ukrainian a cookbook for Kenwood Cooking Chef (have you tried the machine yet?) – thanks again, I have the info I needed and even more, I have found a cooking site with a human face, and I feel that I’ll pay you some more visits, unrelated to that cookbook 🙂 (sorry for wordiness, it’s the habit that is extremely useful when learning languages 🙂 )

    1. Alex! I’ve been close to the Ukraine but have never actually been there. Thank you for your very kind email — I’m very pleased to (virtually) meet you. You’re right that having things to live for makes a fight against cancer much more winnable. My wife and family chief among them, but also things like this blog, which allows me to makes friends all over the world!

      It’s a very exciting project you’re working on. I’ve heard of that machine: a mixer that cooks, right? I’ve never seen one, but I’d be interested to try it. Perhaps I can some to the Ukraine some day and you can teach me! Let’s stay in touch — I’d be happy to help in whatever way I can. Also, I’m sure there are things from the Ukraine that my readers would love to bake!


      – Joe

  15. Hi, Im about 17 years old and I love your website. You’ve inspired me to become a professional pastry chef. The first thing i ever made from this web site was of course my favorite, Golden Lemon Almond Cake it was AWESOME! I’m applying to culinary colleges soon and my first choice it Culinary Institute of America requires an essay about the person who inspired me to be in this field and I thought you should know I picked you. Who knew eating one damn good cake could bring to me my career choice. Thanks a bunch and Keep doin what you do.


    1. I’m very flattered, Bryanna! Thank you. Best of luck to you with your applications — let me know how it all goes!


      – Joe

  16. Hi, Joe…

    Greetings from Malaysia^^. My search for macarons led me here. You have a very nice blog here. Can’t wait to try some of the recipes here.

    – Linda

    1. Hello, Linda — and welcome! Let me know if I can be of any help as you try things!

      – Joe

  17. Hi Joe!
    I stumbled my way here,reading about couscous and now look forward trying your recipes! As a (part time) St Louisian, I can just imagine the yummy stuff you can turn out 😉 I’ve started giving cooking classes in my hometown, Kochi(state of Kerala), India, recently. The history , the global reach ,the fascinating ways that humans eat are all so interesting to me and I try my best to pass that on to those in my classes, my family, friends ….. Probably till their eyes glaze over :)) Thanks to you I’ll have more ammo!!!
    The sad thing is the non availability of good chocolate, flours and nasty stuff put out here by companies and bakeries in the guise of providing western dishes.
    Keep baking, keep up the good fight, 10 years past Stage four is fabulous (my mom too)…..

    1. It is a pleasure and an honor to meet you, Madhu! Please write frequently with any questions you have about any of the recipes. There’s a lot of material here and I love to discuss it!

      I look forward to getting to know you. All the best to you…and your mother. Congratulate her for me!

      – Joe

  18. I came across your website when looking for a napoleon pastry recipe. I have made the pastry dough already and will start the puff pastry tomorrow. Fingers crossed, I hope it turns out all right. Your website is amazing. Thank you so much for providing details…and witty commentaries with your instructions. And the pictures really help a lot!!! Thank you again!!!

    1. Very happy to be of help, Cecilia! Let me know how the Napoleons turn out!

      – Joe

      1. The napoleons were a complete hit with my family. I made it with a prepared puff pastry but used your pastry cream recipe. It took a lot of will power not to finish the pastry cream before assembling the pastry. Such a good recipe!!! I will make my puff pastry from scratch next time. Thanks again!!!

        1. Great news, Cecilia! I appreciate you checking back in with me. Happy New Year!

          – Joe

  19. Wow… I’m amused with your work, your talent and your beautiful presented steps for bake pastries. I live in Indonesia, but my lovely sister is now study at SBTS start from June 2011 in Louisville too…. Such a small world I just knew someone from Louisville accidentally. Keep on doing the good job Joe!! God bless us all 🙂

    1. Thank so much for your kind compliments, Phoenix…and welcome! Very nice to meet you. Tell your sister she’s always welcome at the Pastry family house! 🙂

      – Joe

  20. G’day Joe ,

    yes, your site has picked up another devotee today, this time an Ausssie living in Melbourne (Australia, not Florida)

    I am rapt (=psyched?) to find your page, and I am thinking of undertaking a kind of self-led apprenticeship – if I try one of your recipes a week, I figure that in just a couple of years I’ll be a home-patissier extraordinaire. Well, OK, maybe I’ll just be more confident, experienced and adventurous than before .

    PS My day job is as a uni (College) lecturer, in Law.

    Thanks for your dedication to your craft and to your extreme generosity in sharing it with us all around the world

    1. Jennifer…welcome! I’m quite charmed and deeply flattered by your email. But I feel compelled to offer the following legal disclaimer, that over-exposure to Joe Pastry has been shown to cause brain damage in laboratory animals. So browse freely but be careful not to compromise the investment you’ve made in your education!

      That said, welcome aboard!

      – Joe

  21. Thanks a lot joe. I ordered a 25 lb bucket of almond paste for my bakery (where we make everything from scratch) so I could make bear claws. You see, all the recipes I found called for the stuff and it’s pricey just buying small amounts at a time. Then I found you. Your bear claws are exactly perfect and you don’t use the paste. great. So now oh mighty joe, can you tell me what to do with it?

    Thanks 😉

    1. Ever considered getting heavily into marzipan sculpture? 😉

      – Joe

      PS – I’m only half joking.

      1. You could also try making pignoli–Italian cookies made with pine nuts and almond paste. Pine nuts aren’t cheap either, but the cookies are darned tasty!

  22. You have done all the recipes that I can only dream of!
    good tutorials too, thanks for sharing.

  23. I just discovered your site and I have to say: OMG YOU ARE AMAZING! This site is well-made, the photos are beautiful, the tone is personable, and the design is simple and elegant. You are THE man. *bookmarked*

  24. I want to echo the exact thoughts of Aspiring Baker. Thanks, Joe for an awesome web site! What an incredible resource.

  25. Hi Joe. I just found your site when I was trying to explain the difference between lard v butter and googled the question. I loved your reply – so succinctly put! I hope you don’t mind, but I posted a link to your article on FB so my friend can eat lard without guilt (she had been substituting butter thinking it was better!)
    Great site Sir! I am an English woman who is a mad, possessed Cook. I bake all my own bread (Kitchen Aid, not Breadmaker) , every week making rolls and loaves. Make a big cake every week and biscuits (Cookies to you!) Have chickens so make mayo and friands weekly (to use up the whites left over!) I won’t let a ready meal into my house! Wonderful to make your acquaintance!

    1. Delightful to mee you, Joy. Thank you for your kind compliments and by all means post whatever you like to Facebook! If you go back to that month on the site you’ll find lots more on lard if you’re interested. It was a fun week, that!

      Wish it were easier for me to stop by for tea! Where do you live, if you don’t mind my asking? I spent a year of my life in Devon and miss it most days! Thanks again for the wonderful note,

      – Joe

      1. If you are ever in the UK, you are welcome to drop by any time you like!!
        I live in Leicestershire in a small village situated between two small towns called Loughborough and Melton Mowbray. Melton Mowbray is famous for its delicious Pork Pies and Stilton cheese, so I live in an area with some great food producers! Devon is a wonderful place – have only been there on holidays.
        I am so please I found your site. I love to ‘mix it up’ when cooking/baking and it’s nice to know some of the basic science behind how ingredients work together (or not!). It help me to understand how to improve things!
        Keep up the good work!
        Kind regards,


        1. Oh, pork pies, I haven’t had a good one in twenty years, since my year-long stint at the University of Exeter ended. Seems as though this will be the beginning of a beautiful friendship, Joy!

          – Joe

  26. Well, I have been telling my students for 8 years that “Joe’s pastry site” is probably not a good resource for their papers. Now I find that I am wrong. Darn you, Joe!

    Great site! Nice job!!

    1. Chef, I don’t blame you one little bit. Impressionable young minds have been placed in your care. The last thing they need is my brand of nonsense!

      But I thank you very much for your visit and your generous compliment. Cheers and have a great weekend!

      – Joe

  27. Joe–

    I came across your blog while looking at galactoboureko recipes, and found all your other delightful posts as well! My interests in the science and history of food have brought me to many interesting Web sites, but yours is one of the most fun and accessible. Now you’re bookmarked, and I’ll definitely report back on my first attempt at brik pastry (whenever that happens!)

    Thanks! Keep up the good work 🙂


    1. Hey Eva! You made my day with that, so first off, thank you. I work hard to keep the “happy place” vibe going…I’m very gratified that it shows. Please come back often! Also, if you’re interested in very thin pastry like brik, have a look at the spring roll (popiah) skins I just did. The recipes are interchangeable for the most part, however the technique might be more fun and/or appealing. Scroll down on the main page and you’ll see them.

      Thanks again and have a great weekend!

      – Joe

      1. How do you know “Popiah”? That term is only used in Singapore/Malaysia/Indonesia area.

        1. Just research, M! To find out how to make those the right way I had to search quite a few sites in your part of the world!

          – Joe

  28. I came over from Lily’s and I see this wealth of information. Everyone can type recipe up, but there are always secrets and tips to make a recipe great, thanks for sharing those secrets and tips (and pictures!!!!!!). You remind me of Jacques Pepin who always share little secrets in his cooking shows.

    1. Hi M!

      It’s very funny you should bring up Jacques Pépin. I’m nowhere near as talented as he is, not by a long shot, however his book “Complete Techniques” was one of the main inspirations for this blog. David Attenborough was another. I’ve always loved is quirky explanations about natural phenomena. Add in a healthy dose of Alton Brown and you’ve pretty much got Joe Pastry!

      Thanks so much for the delightful and flattering email.

      – Joe

    1. Thanks Erin!

      Come on in and have a look around. And if you have any questions please feel free to get in touch! Cheers,

      – Joe

  29. Just found this site and will visit often. Can’t wait to try several of your recipes… especially Floating Islands. I’ve never heard of anything like it before!

    1. It’s a (French) classic! Let me know what you think. And please do come back often!

      Very nice to have you aboard,

      – Joe

  30. I came across your website as I was looking for an easy to follow recipe for melon pan, and I gotta say that I will be coming here more often 🙂

    I have a question regarding the types of flour for the melon pan, what is the difference between cake/pastry flour and bread flour? In my country the flour types that we have are all purpose flour, flour number 2 (with some wheat) and whole wheat flour (or flour number 3)..

    Thank you very much for your hard efforts to put all those recipes for us and pardon my bad English :<


    1. Hello Hind!

      Welcome! The difference between pastry flour and bread flour is its “strength”. Bread flour has more gluten, so it produces a firmer, chewier product. Does that makes sense?

      Tell me, where are you writing from?

      – Joe

  31. Joe-
    I think you’re amazing. Your posts are packed with information yet are practical and enjoyable to read. I needed a recipe for panettone and of course you have one, thoroughly spelled out with answered questions. Someday I’m going to work my way through every one of your recipes. Thank you again!

    1. Jyll, you made my day!

      Thanks so much for your very generous compliments. I deeply appreciate them. PLease stop by again soon and don’t hesitate to ask me questions about anything you see! Cheers and have a great weekend,

      – Joe

  32. Hi Joe,
    Happy Thanksgiving!
    I love your site! I lurk occasionally when I have time just because I enjoy reading your posts but this time…SOS!!
    Q I accidentally bought pourable fondant instead of the kind you can roll or mold, can I transform the pourable fondant into a dough?? I need it like yesterday.. Sigh!!
    Thanks, Frances

    1. Hey Frances!

      Hm. I don’t think so. You can do the reverse, and many bakeries do as a matter of course. They keep block fondant around and when they want to make it pourable they warm it and add a little water or syrup to thin it out.

      The main difference between poured fondant and rolled fondant is gelatin and syrup. Compare the recipes here on the site (doubling the poured fondant) and you’ll get a sense for the general proportions. To a pound of sugar they both have about four ounces of water, but where the syrup is concerned the poured has 3 ounces and the rolled has 11. The thing that makes the rolled fondant thicker is that syrup and the gelatin.

      You might try an experiment. Soak a 1/4 ounce of gelatin in a few tablespoons of cold water. Heat 3/4 pound of poured fondant and stir in the gelatin plus about 2.5 ounces of corn syrup or glucose if you have it. Let the whole thing cool and see what happens! It might just do the trick.

      Or, just make your own rolled fondant from scratch depending on how much you need. It has a much cleaner taste than the pre-made stuff for sure. Good luck!

      – Joe

  33. Hi Joe,
    I am planning to open my whole sale bakery,and need to make a dry mix for some products so i can add only the liquid components to the dry mix,i will deeply appreciate it if you can tell me how to make the dry mix for following products:brownies,cinnamon rolls,cake donuts,chocolate chips cookies,croissannst,cupcake,danish and honey buns,i w

    1. Hello Kamal,

      I have recipes for most of these items on the site. You can convert them to dry mixes using milk powder in place of milk, then using water to make up the difference. Regarding butter or other fats, there are powdered butter or powdered shortening products on the market that you might try. Those are my best recommendations. Best of luck with your business!

      – Joe

  34. Cute bio 🙂 and amazing site, I have Dobos on my list now.

    Ps I agree ;a man can enjoy kneading dough (better than hitting, right?) just as much as the other sex:)

  35. Joe, you are a blogger yourself, but do you follow/read other baking/cooking blogs?
    I ask that because it’s been less than half a year since I’ve discovered your blog. It’s a shame that I spent a little shy of two years before that reading all sorts of baking-related material on the Internet (of which much was highly irrelevant) before coming across a very good extensive baking resource like It’s not like I regret spending literally my nights trying to discover the world of baking, but still… I think much of the unfortunate shying away from home baking would be prevented if all people knew about a bunch of web resources like joyofbaking, smittenkitchen, joepastry (and who knows what super cool blog/website is missing from my list).
    So are going to have some kind of blogroll (I hope that’s the term – I’m not very familiar with blogging terminology) anytime soon?

    1. Hey Silviu!

      I confess I’m not a big blog reader when it comes to food and baking. That sounds horrible I know. I do surf around a little when I have time, but that’s not terribly often. I pretty much devote the online time that I have to creating Joe posts. I once had a blogroll, but took it down because it was so hard to keep the thing updated. Blogs that I like and follow belong to Rose Levy Beranbaum, Nancy Baggett (Kitchen Lane), and Peter Reinhart. Jennifer Field’s is also excellent. Honestly there are so many really good food blogs out there. For all-around excellence and high production values you can’t beat, but that’s one that pretty much everybody knows.

      I wish I had more free time, but work and my young family keep me extremely busy. I suppose the best answer is that I created because there wasn’t a blogger out there writing what I was specifically interested in…so I did it myself! I hope to keep doing it for a long time to come!

      – Joe

  36. I request a crepe cake and a mont blanc tutorials! I figure it’s worth a try to make a request. Maybe you’ll want to try to make them one day and show us! :). Thanks for explaining everything in your tutorials. I love reading them.

    1. I would be very happy to do that, Pat!

      Thank you for the request and the compliment! 😉

      – Joe

  37. Wondering if you have any recipes for cakes/cookies etc that are gluten free. I can’t wait to try the frostings but just can’t come up with good tasting things to try it on. Everything is dense and seems gritty. Thanks for the frothing though, they are bookmarked! I so miss a light and fluffy dessert!

    1. Hi Deb!

      I confess I don’t have much on the site that’s gluten-free. Have you tried Gluten Free Girl? That’s a very well-known blog. I’ll bet she’d have plenty of interesting recipes for you.

      – Joe

  38. Hello joe.I’m parisa,Im front of Iran.sorry if my english is not good….. Your recipes of bread (lavash,chapata,naan)are very good.i love those so much.Im very happy when I make all.thank you very much

  39. I have a request please:I want to learn how can i make opera cake ???
    If you can please tell me (step to step)
    (I want cook it for my Husband’s brithday……)

  40. Oh sorry joe,I see the recipe of opera cake……..
    Thankssssssss a lot
    I love reading them…

  41. Hi Joe,

    You are, by far, the BEST, I have come across, over the net. Your recipes are so simple to understand with all the pictures you provide. Your width in terms of recipes cookies, cakes, bread and pastry is what I love. Would you happen to have a danish cookie recipe to share, which will taste like the Dansk cookies 🙂

    Take care, Anwesha

    1. Anwesha, I’m speechless. Thank you. I don’t have a recipe handy but I’ll look around and see what I can find. Parade get back to me and remind me tatI promised you a recipe…I could possibly forget. 😉


      – Joe

      1. Thx Joe. I will.

        The net is full of recipes, but it these lucid tutorials & tips that set you apart.
        Also additional thanks for your Danish pastry post. I tried out the danish dough, it worked well. The instructions are amazing, I was able to shape pinwheel, snails & classic rolls, at my first attempt. And yes your butter cream tip worked very well, mouth feel was very smooth.

        Looking forward to many more happy readings from your blog.

        TC, Anwesha

        1. Bless you, Anwesha! Thanks for all the praise, which will make me impossible to deal with tonight, I’ll be so pleased with myself. Your friend,

          – Joe

  42. Hi Joe. I found your blog while researching on Belshaw Type K handheld donut depositor. I’ve been looking for a second-hand unit but it’s hardly available in Asia. Any idea where to get one online that can be delivered to Singapore? By the way, your blog on cake doughnut is awesome!

  43. Hi Joe!

    I’ve been searching the net for ages, looking for a blog about pastry that teaches the techniques and terms not only recipes, then I happen to stumble upon your blog which was exactly what I was looking for! Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge with us! It has helped me so much since I know absolutely nothing about baking but will be starting pastry school on January. This has helped me prepare for the my entrance examination a lot and helped calm my nerves since I know I’ll be prepared with the basics. 🙂

    Can’t wait to read future posts, your blog is just…AMAZING!

    1. Hey Frances!

      What a delightful comment, thanks so much! The archives are stuffed with information so don’t hesitate to use the search field. Also if there’s any particular pastry item from the menus that interests you, check the date on the post and use the calendar feature on the lower left to go to the month where it first appeared. You’ll find lots more information, technical, historical and otherwise! Get back to me with any questions and best of luck as you get ready for your first term!


      – Joe

  44. Joe-

    I just stumbled upon your blog whilst searching for a recipe for a traditional Apfelkuchen. I must say, why have I not been here sooner?! Your love of all things baking really shines through with how in depth your instructions are. You really care about us readers making a good product and not “fumble in the dark” as most recipes do. Your comprehensive instructions combined with easy to follow photos to guide us makes things so much easier rather then always asking the nagging question “am I doing it right?”. Thank you for this wonderful blog and for all you do!

    Now, to scour the archives, print recipes like a woman possessed and figure out exactly why my buttercream always melts on me.

    Warm wishes from Canada,

    – Jen

    1. You made my day, Jen! Thanks so much for your (too) kind comment. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch should you have any questions about what you find here!


      – Joe

  45. Well it sure looks like you have the whole world ablaze Joe – COZ GREETINGS FROM AUSTRALIA. I just found your website, and as a previous blogger said, “Why haven’t I been here sooner?!” You are very inspiring Joe – I really enjoyed your story.

    I can’t wait to try some of the stuff on here!! My oven is heating now…..BUT WHERE TO START!!

    T of Aus.

  46. Thank You for such a Wonderful and Informative site! Your our Bakery Guardian Angel lolol. Thanks for sharing your exquisite skillful knowledge also.
    Desire’ (Ansaldos’, South 9th. St.”North” Sicilian Baked Goods)

    1. Ha! I’m completely charmed, Desire’. Thanks so much for your delightful comment. We bakers are all in this thing together. Whatever I can do!

      Have a happy Thanksgiving in, where…Philly?


      – Joe

  47. I just found your site and am so excited. I was born in Bowling Green, Ky. and now live in Madison, IN. (about 50 miles from Louisville). But at heart am still a Kentuckian and always will be. After all it is only 5 minutes to the Milton-Madison Bridge. Have you thought of opening one of those little shops they are going to build on the bridge in Louisville. I can’t imagine it failing!

    1. Hey Brenda!

      Ha! Thanks so much for the encouragement! I think my foodservice days are over, at least for now. I have two young daughters who take up all my time! 😉

      Nice to have you aboard, check in often!


      – Joe

  48. Hey Joe,
    Are you still involved in marketing? I have an opportunity coming up and would like to talk to someone about the marketing potential. I have a small mini donut shop in a small town. There must be a hundred possibilities of which I’m completely unaware.

    1. Hey Kris!

      Marketing is what I do when I’m not doing this! Send me an email and tell me what you’re looking to do. I’m sure I’ll have some ideas for you.


      – Joe

  49. Hi Joe,

    Greetings! I stumble upon your blog when I was making my French Butter Cream where I thought the ingredients look suspicious! Lol.. That was the very same recipe I learnt at baking school (btw, I’m not a professional baker!)..and I hadn’t made it again in ages but somehow I thought something was amiss! You know how it is sometimes..a typo mistake kind of thing! When I googled, numerous sites appeared but out of instinct, I picked yours! True enough, yours said egg yolks whereas mine is whole egg! You can be sure I followed yours!

    And, I’ve been going through your blog diligently(!) have a zest for life, cared for your readers and are so meticulous in your explanation and the pictures very helpful! I like the way you interact/bond with your me the feeling that I know you personally. Lol..

    Thank you for the wonderful blog..I sure enjoy reading it! You can be sure I’ll be scouring for more recipes and tips!

    Take care n have a great day!


    1. Hey Cyndy!

      Welcome and thanks so much for the delightful comment! I love what I do and, hehe….I guess it shows! Come back often and don’t be afraid to chime in with any questions. I live for ’em!

      Very glad to have you aboard!

      – Joe

  50. Hi Joe
    I’m a professional pastry chef, who has been running a business from my home for sometime. I have been recently thinking about opening a bakery. You mentioned yours failed. I’m wondering if you would share why it failed and what advice you may have for someone making the leap?

    1. Hey Tracey!

      I’d be happy to help in any way I can. Please send me a regular email (link in the upper left of the site) and we can start a discussion!

      Very exciting project, I endorse it completely!

      – Joe

  51. I have been looking for a website like this that gives such good explanations on good echoey… I rely like your cooking style… Thankyou for this blog and for sharing your passion.

  52. Hi Joe,
    I absolutely love your blog. I have successfully made eclairs, hot cross buns, pastry cream and so much more from your blog. You explain everything so beautifully and it gives me great joy just to surf through your blog.
    Thank you!

    1. Pri, you made my day!

      Thank you so very much! It’s been a long day of answering questions after may vacation. Just as I was starting to get tired I came across your wonderful compliment. Now I have the energy to finish!

      Congratulations on all your successes and thanks again!

      – Joe

  53. Hello Joe,

    Love your blog, which I have just discovered.

    Is it possible to subscribe by email?

    Thank you.


    1. Hey Gina!

      You can click the RSS feed buttons on the left under the menus. You should get posts delivered right to your box!


      – Joe

  54. I just found your web page, while I was looking for Marjoliane recipe. I loved your page! Congratulations and big sincere thanks!!! This is a really “technical” and “trustworthy” recipe page. I would love to try all recipes one by one 🙂

    I personally believe in “sharing”. Everything multiplies with sharing. I have a blog as well, this is just few months old. I want to share my families recipes, culinary “adventures” in that Blog. I hope one day, my blog will be as rich and as helpful as yours.

    Best wishes and regards
    Pelin Ulger

    1. Thank you so much, Pelin! I’m going to make that pasta with the sausage slices tonight — my girls will love it!

      I look forward to reading your blog in the future, you’re off to a great start!

      Cheers and welcome to the blogosphere!

      – Joe

  55. Hi. I’m sure this is not the first time you’re hearing this, but your blog is amazing. I love desserts and when I’m not making them, I simply love reading about them. I feel like many blogs talk too much (I feel like I’m guilty of the same on mine :o), but yours is filled with substance and is very straightforward. I tried your choux recipe with the craqueline, and mother of god, for the first time ever, they turned out PERFECT. This is probably because you have explained each and every step so thoroughly. I think it is safe to say that for all my basic recipes, your blog is going to become my go to place! I really appreciate you taking time to include the history of the product which fascinates me so much. Thank you so, so much. Keep up the great work ! 🙂

    1. P.s: the pictures are a great help too! So basically, everything is just awesome. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

    2. What a great way to start the day, Neha! Thanks very much — I love what I do!

      And I’ll look forward to reading your blog!

      – Joe

  56. Hi Joe,
    I’m planning on following your instructions to make an opera cake. I have a simple question. For the jaconde you say use a half sheet pan. What are the exact dimensions of such a pan?
    Many thanks,

    1. Hello Trevor!

      Sorry not to mention that, it can be a little confusion. The dimensions of an American half sheet pan are 13 inches by 18 inches. Send me a picture of the cake when you finish it!

      – Joe

  57. Hello Joe,
    Thank you for your very wonderful website. I have been baking for many years and have recently launched my own cookie blog. I find that over time, with all that I’ve learned from all of my mistakes, and all of my redos, that I’ve become a little difficult to impress. Your site is impressive and after browsing through it a little, you have my attention! I too do tutorials and approach them very similarly as you. I am one of the Alpha Bakers for Rose Levy Beranbaum’s newest book The Baking Bible, and have a very adventurous spirit in the baking kitchen, am eager to learn, and eager to understand. Thank you for this site. I will subscribe if I can and will follow you on FB. If you have a minute to visit me at, I would appreciate it. All the best to you and your good work!

    1. Thanks very much Kimberlie!

      That’s some very high praise coming from a baker of your experience. I very much appreciate it. You do some lovely, lovely stuff. I’ll be checking in often!


      – Joe

  58. G’Day Joe,

    What a great website, your instructions, the series of photos you provide, and your wry humor all combine to deliver a wonderful site which I explore and use often.

    Me? Well I retired a few years ago and after a life in the corporate world I so enjoy preparing the evening meal and undertaking the challenges associated with occasionally presenting a delicious and appealing desert for my still working wife and family.

    My skills have improved over the years, there is always and I mean always, something to learn. I love undertaking a gastronomic challenge these days and will easily devote a whole day to preparing a delicous meal. is one of my go to sites and I hope you continue onwards and upwards!!

    Thank you from an Australian fan.


    1. James, you made my day!

      I’ve so glad the site has been so useful to you and I deeply appreciate all the very kind words. As things stand I’ll be taking what you might call a sabbatical for the summer, but the site will of course remain up and I’ll be around to answer any questions and (probably) put up the odd past. Have fun with the baking and stay in touch!

      – Joe

  59. Thank you Joe for a great resource website. I took a macaron class several years ago and did well until I stopped for a while. First challenge was dealing with hollows. Then we moved to a place at 6000 feet. I tried and successfully made macarons here once. Today I have made 6 sheets of them and five of the six turned to gigantic skirt spreads with hollow tops. I think my oven is just not heating right. I’m very frustrated and will begin again tomorrow with your recipe. I’ll report back my success or failure. Phew! That was long.

  60. Joe, I found your site when I was researching Paris Brest. Your recipe was wonderful and I have not tried even one recipe that wasn’t perfect and I have tried many. Thank you so much for your gentle nature and wonderful recipes.

    1. Talk about making a guy’s day, Jaynee! What a delightful note. Successes like your are the whole reason for the blog. I’m very glad to hear about it and hope you’ll come back to tell me more about your baking adventures!


      – Joe

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