Kelly Fields

King Cake with Caramel Crunch
Rating: Unrated
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Every year in New Orleans, the game of king caking starts to feel more and more like a full-contact sport. Local shops create and serve (and ship!) these cakes each year from Twelfth Night through Mardi Gras day (and yes, it is absolute blasphemy to consume king cake outside of season here). A traditional part of Mardi Gras for the last three hundred years in New Orleans (and beyond), these cakes are more like brioche than “cake” as we know it. The yeast-raised dough is braided, sometimes around various fillings, formed into a ring, and baked. Afterwards, it’s topped with green, purple, and gold sugar to represent faith, justice, and power, respectively, a nod to the “three kings.” A token of some sort, be it a bean or plastic baby, is stuffed randomly inside, and tradition states that whoever gets the slice of king cake with the token has to host the next party! There are as many thoughts, feelings, opinions, and preferences about king cakes in New Orleans as there are king cakes themselves. I take a pretty traditional approach with the dough, but my team and I dreamed up the idea of adding a layer of caramelized sugar to give our cake a fun, shattering crunch. With cream cheese icing for a less-sweet approach, I find myself craving this cake year-round.
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Pastry chef Kelly Fields partnered with baking legend Claudia Fleming to create the ultimate dessert table for the holidays.
A masterpiece of technique and flavor, this stunning collaboration between pastry chef Kelly Fields and baking legend Claudia Fleming has many delicious components, most of which can be made ahead. Layers of crumbly cornmeal cake and fresh and candied citrus float on billowy drifts of barely boozy sabayon, topped with a sweet, crisp peaks of toasted Italian meringue. The flavor of the Prosecco will come through strongly in the sabayon, so choose a quality bottle. To easily trim the cake layers to fit, invert the trifle dish and trace its border on parchment paper to create a guide.
The secret to nailing these classic cookies is to bake them just until they’re set but not browned. They’ll finish cooking as they cool on the baking sheet, delivering their craveable tender-chewy texture.
Pastry chef Kelly Field's great-aunt Jean, who first made this pie during the Great Depression, swapped pricey graham crackers in the crust for less-expensive saltines, which play well with the tart lemon filling. To create the voluminous filling, be sure to whip the egg whites to stiff peaks; if they’re too soft, the filling will be dense instead of airy.
Kelly Fields of Willa Jean in New Orleans makes outstanding, next-level pumpkin bars with an amazing Valrhona Dulcey chocolate crust.
Praline Brownies
Rating: Unrated
1
Pastry chef Kelly Fields of Willa Jean in New Orleans makes her delicious fudgy brownies with brown sugar, dark chocolate and cocoa powder, and studs them with crunchy bites of nutty pecan praline. Slideshow: Best-Ever Brownies
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Praline Brownies
Rating: Unrated
1
Pastry chef Kelly Fields of Willa Jean in New Orleans makes her delicious fudgy brownies with brown sugar, dark chocolate and cocoa powder, and studs them with crunchy bites of nutty pecan praline. Slideshow: Best-Ever Brownies