Elizabeth Falkner likes to play the naughty girl in the pastry kitchen. She breaks all the rules. Goat cheese ice cream? Cayenne in a parfait? Basil in an ice cream sandwich? The very form of her desserts, full of trompe l’oeil and sly juxtapositions, stretch the imagination. She picks up ideas from every dessert tradition — Japanese, European, Latin American, American, South Indian — throws them up into the air and lets themfloat down to the plate.
Her new “Demolition Desserts” (Ten Speed Press, $35) lets the reader toy with dessert. Detailed instructions and gorgeous full-page color photographs help you understand what she’s talking about in her own inimitable voice. My gut feeling is that Demolition will be scooped up by many professional pastry chefs. Personally, I hope to stumble onto an Upside-Down Pineapple Parfait, the photo and concept of which drives me crazy with desire, at Citizen Cake, her newly remodeled bakery and restaurant. The book, however, works as an aphrodisiac for kinky dessert lovers who don’t live nearby.
WHITE TRUFFLES AT PERBACCO
On Nov. 8, Perbacco will celebrate a wildly successful first year by donating the profits from a seasonal white truffle tasting menu, as well as its regular a la carte menu, to Meals on Wheels. Indulge in these pungent fungi, drink old Barolo and contribute to a good cause. Call (415) 955-0663 to reserve.
230 California St., San Francisco; www.perbaccosf.com
Patricia Unterman is author of the “San Francisco Food Lovers’ Pocket Guide” and a newsletter, “Unterman on Food.” Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.