Gâteaux - Christophe Felder & Camille Lesecq

Gâteaux: 150 Large and Small Cakes, Cookies, and Desserts
by Christophe Felder and Camille Lesecq is a masterpiece of pastry. This book is stunning and is on par with Felder's other titles such as Patisserie: Mastering the Fundamentals of French Pastry

Every page of Gâteaux invites a world of inspiration from stunningly perfect pastries, step-by-step technique photographs, detailed instructions and photos as lovely as the cake on the cover grace every page of the book.

Pastry level ranges from a Walnut and pecan sponge and Breton butter cookies to a spectacular Saint Honoré cake or Toulouse violet macaron cake with mixed berries.

The publisher, Rizzoli, is sharing the Bee sting cake recipe with our members today as well as providing one copy of this book to our members in the US. Be sure to enter our contest at the bottom of this post.


Bee sting cake (Alsace-lorraine) 
Add this recipe to your Bookshelf (click the blue +Bookshelf button).

This cake shares some characteristics of the Tarte Tropézienne, a specialty of St Tropez, but I'm pretty certain that the recipe is considerably older.  If you choose to give it a hint of 
the sunny south, flavor the pastry cream filling with orange flower water. In that case, do prepare it a few hours ahead so that the aromas can develop fully.

prep: 25 minutes
chill and freeze: 4 hours
cook: 20 to 25 minutes
serves 8 to 10

Simple brioche dough

  • 4 cups (1 lb. 2 oz. / 500 g) all-purpose flour, plus extra for the work surface
  • 1 ½ cakes (1 oz. / 30 g) fresh yeast
  • ¼ cup (2 oz., 50 g) sugar
  • 2 teaspoons (10 g) salt
  • 6 eggs
  • 2 2/3 sticks (10 oz. / 300 g) unsalted butter, softened and diced

Pastry cream

  • 1 cup (250 ml) whole milk
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons (3 g) skimmed powdered milk
  • ½ vanilla bean, seeds scraped
  • Scant ¼ cup (2 oz. / 60 g), about 3
  • ¼ cup (2 oz. / 60 g) sugar
  • 2 ½ tablespoons (1 oz. / 25 g) cornstarch

Bee sting cream

  • 2 ½ sheets (5 g) gelatin
  • 9 oz. (250 g) pastry cream
  • 1/3 cup (2½ oz. / 75 g) egg whites, about 2 ½
  • 2 tablespoons (1 oz. / 25 g) sugar
  • 2 teaspoons (10 ml) kirsch
  • 1/3 cup (90 ml) whipping cream, whipped to firm peaks
  • Almond-honey topping
  • Scant 1/3 cup (3½ oz. / 100 g) multi-floral honey
  • ½ cup (3 ½ oz. / 100 g) sugar
  • Finely grated zest of 1 unwaxed orange
  • 6 tablespoons (3 oz. / 90 g) butter
  • 1 cup (3 ½ oz. / 100 g) sliced almonds

Equipment: A 9-inch (23 cm) pastry ring or cutter

Make the brioche

1. Pour the flour into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle beater (or dough hook). Place the yeast on one side of the bowl and the sugar and salt on the other. Begin kneading at low speed as you add the eggs, one by one.

2. Increase the speed to high. Gradually add the diced butter and knead for a further 10 minutes, until the dough is smooth and pulls away from the sides of the bowl.

3. Cover the bowl with a clean cloth and refrigerate for 2 hours.

4. Dust the work surface lightly with flour. Weigh out 1 lb. 2 oz. (500 g) of the brioche dough, and roll it to a 9 ½-inch (24 cm) disk that is ¾ inch (2 cm) thick.

5. Cover with plastic wrap and return to the refrigerator while you proceed with the recipe. Use the leftovers to make yourself a small brioche!

Make the pastry cream

1. Bring the milk, powdered milk, and half vanilla bean and seeds to a boil in a saucepan over medium heat.

2. In a mixing bowl, whisk the egg yolks with the sugar until very smooth. Sift the cornstarch and carefully incorporate until smooth. Whisk a little of the hot milk into the mixture. Gradually pour in the remaining milk, whisking to combine. Return the liquid to the saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture comes to a simmer. Remove from the heat.

3. Immediately transfer to a mixing bowl and press a sheet of plastic wrap over the surface to prevent a skin from forming. Place in the refrigerator until cooled.

Make the bee sting cream

1. Soften the gelatin in a bowl of very cold water.

2. Whip the pastry cream briskly for 2 minutes until very smooth

3. Make the meringue: whisk the egg whites with the sugar until they hold a soft peak. Squeeze the water from the gelatin sheets. Warm the kirsch slightly in a saucepan or in the microwave oven and dissolve the gelatin in it. Spoon some of the pastry cream into the kirsch-gelatin mixture and whisk briskly. Scrape into a large mixing bowl and whisk in the remaining pastry cream. With a flexible spatula, fold in the meringue. Carefully fold in the whipped cream.

Make the almond-honey topping

1. Place a sheet of parchment paper on the work surface and have another sheet at hand.

2. In a saucepan over medium heat, heat the honey and sugar. Stir in the orange zest.

3. Stir in the butter and bring to a boil. Allow to boil for 1 minute.

4. Stir in the sliced almonds and mix to coat them well.

5. Pour the almond-honey mixture over the parchment paper and cover with the second sheet. With a rolling pin, roll it to a thickness of 1/8 inch (3 mm). Place in the freezer for 30 minutes.

6. Peel off the top layer of parchment paper and cut out a 9-inch (23 cm) disk. Return it to the freezer.

To assemble 

1. Place the firm almond-honey topping over the brioche dough disk. (If it is not firm enough, return it briefly to the freezer.)

2. Allow the dough to rise at room temperature for 1 hour 30 minutes.

3. Preheat the oven to 375°F (200°C).

4. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the sides and base are golden.

5. Allow to cool on a rack.

6. Cut the brioche in half horizontally. Spread a ½-inch (1 cm) layer of bee sting cream over it and place in the freezer for 30 minutes, until firm. Place the upper half of the brioche with the topping over the cream, pressing lightly so that it holds together. The cake is ready to serve!


The publisher is offering one copy of this book to EYB Members in the US.  One of the entry options is to answer the following question in the comments section of this blog post.

Which recipe in the index would you try first?

Please note that you must be logged into the Rafflecopter contest before posting or your entry won't be counted. For more information on this process, please see our step-by-step help post. Be sure to check your spam filters to receive our email notifications. Prizes can take up to 6 weeks to arrive from the publishers. If you are not already a Member, you can join at no cost. The contest ends at midnight on November 17th, 2017.


  • kmn4  on  10/16/2017 at 3:59 PM

    Lemon loaf

  • BookWorm53  on  10/16/2017 at 4:15 PM

    Le breton far.

  • ravensfan  on  10/16/2017 at 4:18 PM

    Cream puff sandwiches with Chantilly cream

  • annmartina  on  10/16/2017 at 4:19 PM

    The bee sting cake.

  • skipeterson  on  10/16/2017 at 4:27 PM

    Norman lemon-almond cake

  • heyjude  on  10/16/2017 at 4:30 PM

    Almond Meringue Cookies

  • lgroom  on  10/16/2017 at 5:31 PM

    Mmmm ... the Norman lemon-almond cake.

  • Pook  on  10/16/2017 at 6:52 PM

    Champagne Ladyfingers

  • CRT  on  10/16/2017 at 8:12 PM

    Almond pine nut cookies

  • LaurenE  on  10/16/2017 at 10:26 PM

    Norman lemon-almond cake

  • cheftina888  on  10/16/2017 at 10:44 PM

    bee sting cake because it looks awesome

  • matag  on  10/16/2017 at 11:08 PM

    Strawberry-rose tart (Cœur de rose)

  • jr0717  on  10/16/2017 at 11:25 PM

    The Champagne Ladyfingers sound divine!

  • FrenchCreekBaker  on  10/17/2017 at 9:48 AM

    Strawberry pistachio layer cake with verbena

  • laffersk  on  10/17/2017 at 10:10 AM

    What a beautiful cookbook. WOW Orange-lemon loaf

  • sipa  on  10/17/2017 at 12:24 PM

    Pink praline brioche

  • sgump  on  10/17/2017 at 1:39 PM

    The filled gingerbread cakes sound lovely!

  • ktwalla  on  10/17/2017 at 1:55 PM


  • alemily  on  10/17/2017 at 5:14 PM

    Orange-lemon loaf (

  • rchesser  on  10/17/2017 at 8:01 PM

    Passion fruit and hazelnut mousse cake!!

  • ebs  on  10/17/2017 at 8:50 PM

    Semolina cake with almond , orange and raspberries (Gateau Olga)

  • Shelley.b  on  10/18/2017 at 4:42 AM

    Bee sting

  • JamieSchler  on  10/18/2017 at 7:48 AM

    Definitely the mocha roulade!

  • Siegal  on  10/18/2017 at 9:15 AM

    I want to try the almond merengue cookies

  • kitchenclimbers  on  10/18/2017 at 12:50 PM

    almond pine nut cookies

  • milgwimper  on  10/18/2017 at 2:40 PM

    Bee sting cake and passion fruit and hazelnut cake

  • BMeyer  on  10/18/2017 at 4:32 PM

    mocha roulade

  • mikejunew  on  10/18/2017 at 6:46 PM

    chocolate almond ladyfingers

  • hibeez  on  10/19/2017 at 8:09 AM

    my husband loves passion fruit, and donuts, so I think I'd try the jam filled donuts. Question tho - can you substitute other gelatin for the sheets of gelatin? I'll google that...

  • RSW  on  10/20/2017 at 6:28 PM

    Caramelized hazelnut financiers

  • Scotsman61  on  10/20/2017 at 10:56 PM

    Champagne Ladyfingers Then create a luxurious Tiramisu

  • Su2cool  on  10/21/2017 at 9:48 AM

    This book looks so good, I'm not sure where I would start. but do like meringues

  • contest718  on  10/22/2017 at 9:43 AM

    They have some interesting creams I would like to make and test out on my own cake and pies to add different layers of flavors too.

  • Jenamarie  on  10/22/2017 at 2:56 PM

    Breton butter cookies

  • lhudson  on  10/24/2017 at 3:57 PM

    Sweet mini pretzels

  • kateivan  on  10/25/2017 at 12:46 PM

    Schwoewebredle (lime-glazed spiced shortbread cookies) would be the first recipe I'd try.

  • Julia  on  10/25/2017 at 8:46 PM

    Bee Sting Cake.

  • Dmartin997  on  10/25/2017 at 9:53 PM

    Lemon mousse cake

  • t.t  on  10/25/2017 at 11:10 PM

    Breton butter cookies

  • motherofpearl81  on  10/27/2017 at 9:31 AM

    What a gorgeous book! I would be over the moon thrilled to win this one! Macaron-topped meringues

  • AdeleK  on  10/27/2017 at 9:00 PM

    Since I love anything with hazelnuts, Carmelized Halzelnut Financiers

  • elisabethferg9  on  10/27/2017 at 9:54 PM

    Breton butter cookies sound especially divine right now!

  • sequoia55  on  10/27/2017 at 10:38 PM

    filled gingerbread cakes

  • OldbearandHoneycookin  on  10/27/2017 at 11:33 PM

    Green Anise Cookies is the recipe I would try first!

  • Bakersdozen  on  10/28/2017 at 12:10 AM

    I want to try the Breton butter cookies.

  • lisambb  on  10/28/2017 at 7:22 AM

    Breton butter cookies.

  • Maefleur  on  10/28/2017 at 9:15 AM

    The Bee Sting Cake!

  • rrwrites  on  10/28/2017 at 2:34 PM

    chocolate puff pastry

  • echilt5  on  10/28/2017 at 9:33 PM

    Champagne Ladyfingers

  • annieski  on  10/30/2017 at 4:45 AM

    Canelés - I bought a mold!

  • RickPearson54  on  10/30/2017 at 9:45 AM

    lemon loaf

  • Amandaspamanda  on  10/30/2017 at 2:09 PM

    There is a big place in my heart dedicated to the love of anything hazelnut, so I would have to make the crunchy hazlenut cookies first! Then, go onto something big and fancy like one of the elaborate cakes

  • VeryVigario  on  10/31/2017 at 8:37 AM

    I would love to try the lemon loaf!

  • bibliophile02  on  10/31/2017 at 8:43 AM

    Pears in pastry

  • fiarose  on  10/31/2017 at 8:38 PM

    the spit-roasted cake sounds so cool!

  • tararr  on  11/1/2017 at 12:53 PM

    mini pretzels

  • Sfgordon  on  11/1/2017 at 2:08 PM

    strawberry and pistachio creme tartlets sound great.

  • Katiefayhutson  on  11/4/2017 at 11:06 PM

    Lemon mousse cake

  • RoseMGenuine  on  11/5/2017 at 9:44 PM

    Salted caramel and lemon mousse cake

  • lpatterson412  on  11/7/2017 at 11:42 PM

    The Fir Honey Madelines sound exquisite!

  • KarenDel  on  11/8/2017 at 8:12 AM

    I'd make the Crunchy hazelnut cookies

  • Karla123  on  11/12/2017 at 8:34 AM

    I'd like to try this fancy French "Rum-citrus baba."

  • dvajefink  on  11/13/2017 at 5:41 AM

    Christmas stollen

  • JenJoLa  on  11/13/2017 at 1:11 PM

    Mmm... Lemon tartlets

  • sdg8trgrl  on  11/14/2017 at 6:06 PM

    Need me some Waffles

  • madelainelc  on  11/15/2017 at 10:25 PM

    Cream puff sandwiches with Chantilly Cream!

  • orchidlady01  on  11/17/2017 at 6:48 AM

    Crunchy hazelnut cookies and Apple and rhubarb tart

  • bstewart  on  11/18/2017 at 5:58 PM

    Orange-lemon loaf!

  • AnnaZed  on  11/20/2017 at 1:15 AM

    Sebastian's hazelnut-vanilla cookies

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