NEW YORK (FOX5NY.COM) - They say "vous de vivre" in French, which means "people can live here." That's how Eric Kayser describes his Maison Kayser shops. And he would love it if New Yorkers lived their lives here.
The master French baker opened his first Maison Kayser on the Upper East Side five and a half years ago. He now has 16 restaurants in New York, where they serve breakfast, lunch, tea. You can come at any time of day to get coffee and buy a baguette or croissant.
Kayser spent more than a decade learning how to make the finest bread, before opening his first shop in Paris in 1996. He says he went back to the old recipe which means a very long fermentation. It takes more than 12 hours to make his baguettes from scratch, working with natural sourdough. Kayser uses only natural ingredients in his bread: no added butter, sugar, or preservatives.
And it didn't take long for the Parisians to fall in love with his bread. Kayser says he was nervous because he put all of his money into that first shop. But it's been quite a success.
He now has more than 200 bakeries around the world. His hope is to bring quality carbs to everyone.
He has even opened bakeries in Cambodia and in some countries in Africa, where he teaches people how to make high-quality bread and pastries.
Valentine's Day is one of Maison Kayser's busiest times.
So Chef Kayser showed me how to make one of their February specialties, a raspberry tart. There are three stages: the dough, the cream, and then the tart. You begin with butter, mix in eggs, then add flour, salt, sugar, cornstarch, baking powder, and almond flour.
Eric prefers to work with his hands. He believes that if you touch the dough with your hands you give it some power and it's much better.
Once you've shaped the dough, bake it at 300 degrees for 30 to 45 minutes until golden brown. Top with Chantilly cream, then raspberries (taking care to put them everywhere). Add a little dark chocolate, powdered sugar et voila: You have a beautiful raspberry tart.