Chef Alain Roby is a world-renowned master pastry chef.  He is Hyatt Regency Chicago’s Executive Pastry Chef, and his fabulous Orange Sponge Custard in individual ramekin portions at the recently concluded Viatimes Hall of Fame Awards, was simply a “perfect finale”. And I had the pleasure of being in the kitchen with Chef Roby (thanks Brenna O’ Leary for setting up the interview/cooking demo) when he re-created this “spongy on the top and pudding-like custard at the base” Orange Sponge Custard recipe for CPRTV viewers.

Chef Roby holds two Guinness World Records for the World’s Tallest Cooked Sugar Sculpture and World’s Tallest Chocolate Building. He is a world-renowned pastry chef; he has been featured in food magazines such as Food & Wine and Chocolatier, and also in cable TV shows, Food Network and The Learning Channel.

I really like the design of Chef Roby’s Book. The recipe categories are simply spring, summer, autumn, winter and the recipes are not lengthy, easy to follow and merely call for really common ingredients. Even creamy mashed Idaho potatoes are added to make his Chocolate Mashed Potato Cake moister and richer (mmm, that really grabbed my attention). His to-die-for Chocolate Hazelnut Mousse is now in my all-time-favorite list, and I top this with our own MY San butter cookies or barquillos. And you have got to try his “always hit with the kids” Brioche Pizza with freshly-sliced strawberries, Chocolate Salami slices, and melted white chocolate drizzles…it’s truly amazing! His spring offering, Chocolate Pudding in a Chocolate Flower Pot is a feast for the eyes indeed, and just typing this title alone make my mouth start watering.

Chef Roby signed his book, did some photo shoots, and mentioned his book is perfect for anyone who loves to bake and a portion of book’s proceeds benefit the Saving Tiny Hearts Organization, an organization for congenital heart defect research.

Please visit Chef Roby’s website for additional information about his baking book,

Here’s Chef Roby’s easy-to-make and party perfect “Orange Sponge Custard”:

ORANGE SPONGE CUSTARD (from Chef Alain Roby’s book: American Classics, Casual and Elegant Desserts)

3/4 cup sugar

1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 tablespoons orange zest

 3 egg yolks

 3 egg whites

3 tablespoons flour

1/2 cup orange juice

1 cup milk

powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 325 F.  In a large bowl, mix together butter, sugar and orange zest until creamy.  Add egg yolk one at a time and beat well. Stir in flour, orange juice and milk.  In a small bowl, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form.   Fold egg whites into the egg yolk mixture, blending gently.  Pour into 3 or 4 -ounce buttered ramekins and bake in a bain-marie (ramekins placed inside a larger pan partially filled with water/steam bath) for 40 minutes. Serve topped with powdered sugar.




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