Burger Bar – A Book and an Announcement

11 10 2011

First, the announcement.

A week ago today, I gave my notice at work.  (You may already have seen this if you’re a friend of mine on Facebook, or if you read Lindsey’s blog, Lost in Cheeseland, where I’m the subject of her Franco File Friday interview this week.  And if you’re new here from Lindsey’s place, welcome!  Make yourself comfortable.)

You may remember, back in June, I mentioned a career dilemma I was having.  It was mostly resolved by July, which was a relief, but it’s been hard keeping it under my hat this long.  I’m so excited that I can finally tell you all what I’ve been up to.

Starting in November, I will be the executive pastry chef for a  brand new gourmet hamburger restaurant called Blend.  We’re hoping to open in late November or early December, so I get to spend most of the month of November working on getting the place up and running, testing recipes, and finalizing the menu.  I don’t think I need to tell you how awesome that is.  You can keep up to date on our progress by liking Blend’s Facebook page, if you’re so inclined.

“Why does a hamburger restaurant need a pastry chef, anyway?” you may be wondering.   Well, I’ll be keeping busy baking handmade buns and signature desserts, as well as developing new recipes for weekly specials that highlight seasonal changes.  Any extra time and energy I have will be funneled into salads, condiments, and best of all, developing the beer list!  The way I see it, this job is nothing short of defending the best parts of the American culinary tradition in France.  I can’t wait to get started.

And now, the book.  Lent to me by my soon-to-be boss, Burger Bar is something of a mirror image of what we’re doing.  Hubert Keller, a French chef, opened a now-iconic burger restaurant in Las Vegas, and the book shares some of his best recipes, from burgers to shakes.

There’s a very clever dessert burger, with a doughnut bun, strawberry tomatoes, kiwi lettuce, and so on.  I’ll probably never make it, but it delights me that it exists.  What I will be making are the condiments (piquillo pepper ketchup?  don’t mind if I do.) and the deceptively simple sides.  I can’t wait to try the panisse recipe – they’re a specialty of Southeastern France, like fried polenta sticks, only made with chickpea flour.  And I can tell you from experience that the oven fries, featuring unpeeled red potatoes and duck fat, are as delicious as they are easy to make.

before

after

All that, and then there’s the burgers themselves.  The flavor combinations range from classic to eclectic, with influences from cuisines all over the globe.  There’s even a little section about beverage pairings, and the photos are gorgeous, too.  My only complaint is that there aren’t any recipes for buns.  (Hey, a girl’s gotta do her research, you know?)

On this day in 2010: Luxury Leftovers – includes a recipe for Smoky Herbed Bread Pudding, which you should definitely try.

Originally published on Croque-Camille.

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32 responses

11 10 2011
marie Z johnston

Can’t wait…

11 10 2011
Julie Garfield

I am a San Francisco girl spending time in Paris every Fall. I am a devotee of the burger and love what they do at the SF outlet of Burger Bar, in the Macy’s building off Union Square. I am pretty sure this is the same outfit with which you are now associated. Kudos to you! I look forward to dining with you in Paris when I return next Fall. Best of luck!

11 10 2011
Lindsey

I think my burger review posts are going to get supercharged by year’s end! I can’t WAIT to try them, to taste all your treats and follow your new adventures! Bravo, Camille!

11 10 2011
Scott DFW

Best wishes with the new job, Camille!

11 10 2011
Monica

Congratulations! That’s so awesome! I’m a fan.

11 10 2011
sareena

Very exciting, Measly! So proud of you. We hit Keller’s Burger Bar in SF and were quite pleased.

11 10 2011
researchingparis

Hooray for announcements and new beginnings! I’m just letting you know that I’ll offer my services for taste testing any experiments you may have cooking. Promise I won’t expect the same commitment in return :P So excited for you!

12 10 2011
Fiona

Fabulous news Camille! Congratulations!

12 10 2011
nererue

That is so exciting! Congratulations and best of luck with the transition!

12 10 2011
nancie malmquist

Yay!! On your way to realizing yet another dream! You go girl!

12 10 2011
Kiran

Congratulations on the new gig! Hoping to come sample the sure-to-impress menu sometime.

12 10 2011
Hannah

You know how happy, happy, happy, ecstatic I am for you. So terribly incredibly excited to cheer you on in this journey! And thank you for the Blend Facebook link (finally :P); I don’t know why it wouldn’t show up for me before!

12 10 2011
Michel

Congratulations Camille on your new venture. Chef Keller has been one of San Francisco’s leading chefs, first at his gastronomic restaurant Fleur de Lys and then Burger Bar in Las Vegas and San Francisco. I have been to all three and highly recommend his food. His foie gras burger is quite amazing.

12 10 2011
Amanda

The best burger I ever had was at the Grammercy Park hotel, the bun must have been homemade, it tasted heavenly and the fries, best fries ever as well, thin, pale golden, no oil taste, crisp on the outside, melting inside, ok, I know I cannot get this everyday, but a good burger in Paris, with some nice beer battered fried onions, mesquite grilled meat, that would already be awsome.

12 10 2011
David

I always wondered why no one opened a great burger place here. Parisians (and Americans in Paris!) love burgers and the ones in the cafés are always lame – who wants Leader Price buns? (Especially for €14/burger) Glad to her H. Keller is opening here and you’ll be in charge of desserts : )

12 10 2011
croquecamille

Hi everyone! Thanks so much for all of your well wishes! It looks like there is a bit of confusion, so I want to make it clear that Blend is not affiliated with Chef Keller or Burger Bar in any way, other than that we’re both on a mission to serve great burgers. :)

12 10 2011
Corinne

Yumm I love a good burger! And those fries are making my mouth water! Can you share the recipe?

12 10 2011
Chez Loulou

What an exciting time for you! Can’t wait to check it out.

12 10 2011
Michelle Dimmick

Awesome news…you GO girl!!

13 10 2011
Sweet Freak

Congrats on the new job! Executive pastry chef?? Sounds pretty dreamy!

13 10 2011
Ann

Yayayay! Executive pastry chef has a wonderful ring to it. I can’t wait to try your creations!!! I dream about hamburgers every night.

13 10 2011
hungry dog

Camille, this is fantastic! Congratulations! I can’t wait to hear more about your adventures once you get started.

13 10 2011
laura k

Congrats, again. And that book might have to be added to my wish list. The ever expanding wish list.

13 10 2011
Katia

You’ll revolutionise the bun world, Camille! SO excited for you and can’t wait to come and try it out! xoxo

14 10 2011
erin

Missed this on fb and am SO excited!!! Excited for you taking a big step up, excited for quality burgers in Paris, excited for you keeping things real on the American front, and really, really excited about the condiments side project (and any tidbits that end up over here…). Congrats, Camille, you deserve it!

15 10 2011
Louise

How fantastic. Congratulations.

16 10 2011
Esme

Congratulations, you must be quite excited.

16 10 2011
croquecamille

Again, thank you so much, everyone, for your congratulations and encouraging words!

17 10 2011
emiglia

I already said this in person… but congratulations again! So exciting :) I can’t wait to stop by and see what you’re up to.

17 10 2011
Inger Wilkerson

Congratulations–how great to get in on the ground floor of a great new venture like this!

22 10 2011
Ryan

Congrats congrats congrats!

22 10 2011
croquecamille

Thank you all, I’m very excited for the new project!




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