Baking and Pastry Arts II: Coursework Overview

Advanced baking and pastry arts courses allow students to develop professional skills in bread, cake and pastry baking, as well as decoration, plating and production. Learn about what topics are taught at the elevated levels, and find out where these classes are usually available.

Essential Information

These courses are typically offered as part of a baking and pastry arts and culinary arts certificate, associate's degree or bachelor's degree program. The associate's and bachelor's degree programs will include general education classes, while a concentrated certificate program will feature core baking and pastry arts classes. Students gain practical experience through externships and in-class exercises. Skills attained in these classes include:

  • Artisan and specialty bread making
  • Advanced cake decorating
  • European and American dessert cuisine
  • Candy creation and decor
  • Food presentation and storage

List of Common Advanced Baking and Pastry Arts Courses

Advanced Baking and Breads Course

This course builds upon basic baking methods as students learn to produce a variety of breads and baked goods. The elements of artisan bread making, including flour qualities, fermentation processes, food chemistry, flavoring and mixing methods, are explained. Laminated dough, quick breads, breakfast pastries and gluten-free breads are also typically covered.

Advanced Pastry Techniques Course

An advanced pastry techniques course introduces American and European desserts, such as pies, classical and contemporary tortes, custards and petit fours. Students are also taught to produce frozen desserts, cookies and teacakes. Bulk production, storage and finishing skills are often discussed, along with scaling, costing and sales considerations. The design and presentation of sweet tables may also be incorporated into the coursework.

Basic and Classical Cakes Course

This course covers all elements of cake baking, from the weighing and scaling of ingredients through the delicate finishing work with fondants and gum pastes. Students learn to garnish with flowers, marzipan and chocolate, and they practice their piping skills with royal icing. Courses may require students to design and produce a wedding or celebratory cake as a final project.

Plating and Production Course

The aesthetic and practical aspects of producing and plating desserts are covered in this course. Flavor combinations, color theories and plate decoration of both hot and cold desserts are covered. Students study bulk production of desserts, which includes the proper set up of the pastry or baking section in a professional kitchen.

Chocolate and Confections Course

This course allows students to master the design and production of decorative elements and centerpieces. Tempering and enrobing with chocolate, along with the production of truffles, liquid-filled chocolates, marzipan and nougats is practiced. Students may have the opportunity to work on rolled fondants, chocolate garnishes, caramels and pulled sugar.

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