Pastry Cook
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Basic Information

A pastry cook is, unsurprisingly, a cook that specialises in working in pastry - usually in the sort of advanced pastry work that is above the expected trade of a baker.

This is often perceived as a fairly high end speciality, producing delicate and luxurious foods and demanding a high degree of sophistication. It may also be perceived as somewhat effete, especially in Anglo-Saxon cultures and others where simplicity in food is considered a virtue. The role also assumes sweet pastry - what the French call patisserie - rather than the engineering grade stuff found in English cooking. You may need a pastry cook to turn out delicate finger buns and profiteroles, but someone who can't raise pie-crust or make a pasty isn't any kind of cook (by the English reckoning at least).


1. full source reference

Game and Story Use

  • An interestingly subversive trade for a macho character.
  • Also an interesting NPC/retainer that a PC may have (or wish) to track down to enhance their social status when giving a banquet (or for an employer who is entertaining).
    • Equally, the sort of person a PC may find himself paying after taking on a high-maintenance wife.
    • Or a retainer that a spoilt and effete noble might expect to bring with him on an expedition.
  • The royal pastry cook needs exotic fruit for the midsummer feast, and something happened to the trade expedition! Can the PCs go fetch some?
  • Also good for misunderstandings: "Yeah - I can make pastry, but not like that. Didn't realise they meant that sort of pastry … how the hell do you do that" … or have a cook who doesn't even question the matter and substitutes piecrust for filioux pastry.
  • Traditionally a fat and fussy character - and, in English literature at least, typically French or Belgian. A Viennese (since Vienna is also well known for its tradition of sweet pastry) would be a subversion, an native even more so … and a thin, austere or similarly unusual character…
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