Joliet Junior College’s award-winning chef, Andy Chlebana, has been busy teaching students and appearing on the Food Network. He’s also been busy writing his own textbook.
“The Advanced Art of Baking & Pastry” was published in 2017 after six years of working with his publisher to document Chlebana’s professional knowledge.
“The book took me longer than planned to complete, but at the end I feel that I have presented many areas of advanced pastry techniques that I have learned throughout my career,” Chlebana says, “I believe that this is the most up to date advanced pastry textbook available to baking and pastry students. I am looking forward to students using the book to see how they are inspired by it and how they can take what I have written and innovate on my techniques.”
His book delves into the world of complex recipes that use ingredients most everyday households don’t have in their pantries, like trimoline and star anise.
Chlebana is hoping that professors will incorporate his textbook into their classes this fall semester.
He’s is especially pleased with the book’s images. Photographer Anthony Tahlier’s shots range from colorful fruit tarts to the golden bird of paradise, which appears on the front cover.
Chlebana has taught at JJC for 12 years and is also a JJC culinary arts alumnus. After graduating from JJC, he joined his brother at the Culinary Institute of America in New York, earning a baking and pastry certificate. He worked for some of the most prominent hotels in the hospitality industry before returning to his alma mater to teach aspiring chefs the art of baking and pastry. Chlebana says that he loves what he does and enjoys passing his knowledge on to JJC students.
Chlebana submitted “The Advanced Art of Baking & Pastry” to the prestigious James Beard Foundation Awards, one of the food industry’s highest honors. The semifinalists will be announced in mid-February. Though Chlebana has been recognized for his work over the years, winning a James Beard Award, he says, would be a dream come true.
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