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Desserts/Pastry in a hot climate

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Question
QUESTION: Hi
I live in a very hot, humid, climate (in Central America) and do not have a fridge or any cool place for keeping ingredients or dough (ingredients are bought from local shops as they are required). I wonder if you have any suggestions for pastry making in such conditions, or perhaps a type of pastry that might be particularly suitable for making out here.
Any suggestions gratefully received.

ANSWER: This is a problem. I would divide your recipe up and make only for immediate consumption. You won't be able to keep any of these doughs without refrigeration for very long. Even in Florida I have problems with breads and pastries molding at room temperature. They all have to be refrigerated right away.  

I don't know what your circumstances are, but at one time I had a gas refrigerator that worked very well. If you have any more questions I would be happy to help.

Best of Luck.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Hi. Thanks, but it's not the keeping of the dough I'm worried about - I'll use it immediately - it's the making itself. I find hot and humid conditions make it hard to produce a good short crust as the dough gets very sticky. Thanks anyway though.

ANSWER: Have you tried cutting back on the shortening and the liquid? What does the humidity and temperature run where you are?

I will go through my recipes and see if I can come up with something to help you but I will need the humidity level.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thanks. It's generally very humid - 100% - and around 95F

Answer
Pastry dough needs to be made with cold ingredients and kept cold through the process. Is there anyway you can chill the dough and ingredients after you make it? Maybe on ice? Also if you could use a chilled marble slab for rolling it.

There is no recipe (that I know of) for pastry dough that can be made under these circumstances. In order to make this pastry dough under your described conditions, you would have to chill the ingredients, then chill the dough and then roll it out on a chilled stone slab before immediately baking.  

If I can help any further let me know.  

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Frances

Expertise

I started cooking and baking when I was eight years old which gives me over fifty years of experience. My love has always been desserts. Although I am sure there is a question out there that I cannot answer, I have yet to come across it.

Experience

My experience includes both domestic and professional. My husband and I both came from large families and we had four children of our own. I have cooked and baked for all of the holidays, birthdays, graduations and weddings. Professionally, I trained in a French restaurant and worked at various country clubs and at the Grand Floridian Hotel at Walt Disney World.

Publications
I have several articles and restaurant reviews published on ezine article, buzzle, article biz, selfgrowth.com and several others. I have authored two cookbooks and am currently working on a third.

Education/Credentials
I am certified by master chef Paul Bucose.

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