By the numbers: A lot of little petits fours


10,000: The number of petits fours that Valerie Confections makes every month.

That’s 40,000 1-1/4-inch squares of cake, as each petit four is composed of four layers of cake. The cake is baked in sheets and then cut into those little squares with a guitar (a taut wire used to cut desserts) before being dipped into dark or white chocolate. Those 10,000 petits fours require 85 pounds of butter, which translates into 1,020 of pounds of butter per year.


The busiest months for petits fours, says Valerie Gordon, who owns and operates Valerie Confections with her partner, Stan Weightman Jr., are December (Christmas), February (Valentine’s Day) and May (Mother’s Day). Consider this a reminder to get some tiny cakes for your mother, if you’re not planning on baking her some yourself.

As for what kind of petits fours, Gordon and her crew make theirs in rose petal, ginger, lemon, orange, Champagne (topped with edible 23-karat gold), chocolate, lavender, Earl Grey, matcha, mint and cassis. (Note to my children: The orange petits fours are the ones with marzipan.)

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