The Last Course

A Cookbook

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A beautiful new edition of “the greatest dessert book in the history of the world” (Bon Appétit), featuring 175 timeless recipes from Gramercy Tavern’s James Beard Award–winning pastry chef.

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST COOKBOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The New York Times Book Review The Atlantic Food Network

Claudia Fleming is a renowned name in the pastry world, acclaimed for having set an industrywide standard at New York City’s Gramercy Tavern with her James Beard Award–winning desserts. With The Last Course, dessert lovers everywhere will be able to re-create and savor her impressive repertoire at home.

Fleming’s desserts have won a range of awards because they embody her philosophy of highly satisfying food without pretension, a perfect balance for home cooks. Using fresh, seasonal ingredients at the peak of their flavor, Fleming creates straightforward yet enchanting desserts that are somehow equal to much more than the sum of their parts. She has an uncanny ability to match contrasting textures, flavors, and temperatures to achieve a perfect result—placing something brittle and crunchy next to something satiny and smooth, and stretching the definition of sweet and savory while retaining an elemental simplicity.

The Last Course contains 175 mouthwatering recipes that are organized seasonally by fruits, vegetables, nuts, herbs and flowers, spices, sweet essences, dairy, and chocolate. In the final chapter, Fleming suggests how to combine and assemble desserts from the previous chapters to create the ultimate composed desserts. And each chapter and each composed dessert is paired with a selection of wines.

Recipes include Raspberry–Lemon Verbena Meringue Cake, Blueberry–Cream Cheese Tarts with Graham Cracker Crust, Cherry Cheesecake Tart with a Red Wine Glaze, Concord Grape Sorbet, Apple Tarte Tatin, Chestnut Soufflés with Armagnac-Nutmeg Custard Sauce, Buttermilk Panna Cotta with Sauternes Gelée, Warm Chocolate Ganache Cakes, and more.

Beautifully illustrated with more than eighty color photographs throughout, The Last Course is a timeless, one-of-a-kind collection filled with original recipes that will inspire dessert enthusiasts for years to come.

Praise for The Last Course

“While I must admit to being particularly partial to Claudia’s Buttermilk Panna Cotta, every dessert in The Last Course made me salivate. Claudia’s inspired recipes are so beautifully transcribed that even the most nervous of home cooks will feel comfortable trying them and will be a four-star chef for the day.”—Daniel Boulud

“The Goddess of New American Pastry.”Elle 

Under the Cover

An excerpt from The Last Course

Chilled Rhubarb Soup with Rose Parfait, Strawberry Sorbet, Candid Pistachios, Strawberries, and Rhubarb Chips

This dessert features a fruit, a vegetable, and a flower, all with a natural affinity for each other. The rhubarb soup is sweet and tangy, softened by a delicate and creamy rose parfait. The crunchy pistachio nuts fit right in with these sweet, distinctive flavors, and the more delicate crunch of the rhubarb chips is a nice tart contrast to the rich, nutty garnish. The warmth of the rhubarb, rose and pistachio flavors is in pleasing opposition to the cool temperatures of the soup, parfait and sorbet.

Components
Chilled Rhubarb Soup
Rose Parfaits
Candied Pistachios
Strawberry Sorbet
Rhubarb Chips
Fresh hulled strawberries, quartered

Directions
Ladle the soup into shallow bowls. Place a rose parfait in the center of each bowl and scatter strawberries around the parfait. Sprinkle with candied pistachios. Top each parfait with a small scoop of sorbet and finish with a rhubarb chip.

- About the author -

Claudia Fleming is a pastry chef, restaurateur, and author. She has worked in New York restaurants such as Union Square Cafe, Montrachet, TriBeCa Grill, and Gramercy Tavern, and at Fauchon in Paris. Fleming and her husband, chef Gerry Hayden, opened The North Fork Table & Inn in Southold, New York. She is currently executive pastry director at Union Square Hospitality Group. Fleming has been named Outstanding Pastry Chef by the James Beard Foundation, and her recipes have appeared in publications such as Town & Country, Martha Stewart Living, and Vogue. Fleming has appeared on Barefoot Contessa and Beat Bobby Flay and served as a judge on Chopped and Top Chef: Just Desserts. She lives in New York City and Long Island’s North Fork.

More from Claudia Fleming

MELISSA CLARK is a staff writer for the New York Times where she writes the popular column "A Good Appetite," and stars in a weekly complementary video series. The winner of James Beard and IACP Awards, she is a regular on Today and NPR (The Splendid Table, The Leonard Lopate Show). Melissa earned an MFA in writing from Columbia.

More from Melissa Clark

The Last Course

A Cookbook

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The Last Course

— Published by Random House —