Sunday, March 10, 2013

Industry Professional Interview: Salvatore Hall, Pastry Chef Extraordinaire

He's on the left.  Who's that other guy?

Who is he?

Well, he's a pastry chef.  More than that he is the Lead Pastry Chef Instructor teaching Advanced Baking and Pastry at the Oregon Culinary Institute in Portland, OR.  More than that he's one of the nicest men you'll ever meet, with a penchant for Disney songs and the most infectious (and when directed your way, most annoying) laugh in Portland. Chef Salvatore Hall everyone. 

What does he have to say?

We asked him a few cookbook related questions in the few minuets he had between classes, here they are:

Do you own many cookbooks?

No, well, at lest 30.  You have to keep these things limited or there'll be no end.

Have you ever purchased a cookbook only to find it useless?

Yes, I have definitely felt like I've wasted my money before.  I usually give those ones away.

Have you ever been involved in writing a cookbook before?


Have you ever considered writing your own?

No, not really.  There are to many details to try to impart, to much information to give.  Its a lot of responsibility. I wouldn't want the book to be tempered or watered down.

What book/s have you learned the most from?

Number one would be the Joy of Cooking for sure.  Number two would be Baking with Julia.

Are there any books that you don't necessarily use much but you return to for inspiration?

The American Boulangerie. Its a gorgeous book.

What are the two books you would never get rid of?

There are three.  The Joy of cooking, The Bread Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum, and Wild Fermentation by  Sandor Katz

That's all we had time for I'm afraid.  Still, it was wonderful to get even a small glimpse into the iner workings of a great chef and great instructor.  Next time we will start our review of The Homemade Pantry: 101 Foods you can Stop Buying and Start Making.

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