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Carving Out an Autumn Pastry Menu

Carving Out an Autumn Pastry Menu

It's autumn and it's time for gingersnaps!

Jennifer Grantham | Chef's Blade

I’m the pastry chef at Zuni Café, a somewhat legendary restaurant in the city of San Francisco. With the guidance and knowledge of the chef and owner Judy Rodgers, we make simple, rustic, sexy, seasonal, Mediterranean inspired food from local, sustainable, and organic products.

One of my favorite parts of working at Zuni is the availability of awesome ingredients. We are lucky to live in an area with so many farms with delicious fruits and I get to use them when creating desserts.

I change my menu daily based on what is ripe and how the weather is making me feel. I rarely know what I am going to put on my menu more than a few days in advance. I sort of let the circumstances guide me into the desserts. The weather has finally turned and I feel like I can fully be into autumn and the ingredients that come along with it.

Last week was so sunny and summer-like that it would have been a shame not to give my last homage to summer with pluot sorbet, lavender honey ice cream sandwiches with Adriatic figs, and semifreddo.

But this week’s weather and the Halloween spirit has me feeling like it’s time to break out the spices that warm our senses. I’m giddy with the idea of making squash tarts, gingersnaps, caramelized pears, warm bread pudding, and Nocino pot de crème.

So this is a little bit of insight on how I work on menus, into how I see cooking, and what I’ll be writing about from here on out on Chef’s Blade. The fun will continue!