There’re really aren’t many to begin with. On the Food Network the only actual pastry show is Sweet Dreams with Gale Gand, which is a really good show. Other than that you’ve got Sugar Rush, which is of almost zero use to the home baker, and then the various Jaques Torres chocolate shows. And while I can’t say chocolate sculpture has ever been my thing, at least Mr. Chocolate shows you how to do it. Often he does so in painstaking detail. But that’s a good thing, since that way people who want to learn how to make the stuff can actually try it.
But I have to say I have a personal chip on my shoulder about Jaques Torres. It all goes back to a visit the missus and I paid to her old stomping grounds of lower Manhattan about three years ago. She had her own pastry in the oven at the time, yet she crossed both Manhattan Island and the Brooklyn Bridge on foot because she wanted to visit his store in the D.U.M.B.O. (Down Under Manhattan Bridge Overpass) district. We spent two hours geting there, and when we did, it was closed. She sat down on the muddy curb and wept. Maybe there are those of you out there who could dismiss the sight of your pregnant wife weeping in gutter. But Joe, he is not so quick to forgive.