Each day (or as I remember), I enter a cookbook sweepstakes at Gourmet Magazine Cookbook Club. There I enter to win a Gourmet Cookbook Club selection of the month. There's a new winner every day, so you can come back and enter each day...
and I finally won a cookbook...! ! !
The book that I won was the cookbook for the month of October, The Art and Soul of Baking. It took me very little time to discover what a very informative and beautiful baking guide that I now owned. (In addition, the book was autographed by the author…!)
The author of my new book was Chez Panisse alum, Cindy Mushet. She has been a Pastry Chef and teacher for 20 years and has put her best tips, tricks and techniques in this book.
Her recipes strike just the right balance and her writing style is quite engaging and never intimidating. There are new takes on old recipes, but the recipes are approached with simplicity. The recipes are broken down into sections in a very appealing and easy to follow graphic layout.
The two colors on each page, text selection and colors make this large 454 page tome a pleasure to use. It also opens and lies flat for easy reading as your are working on a recipe.
I also appreciated the many sidebars "what the pros know”, equipment lists, and getting make-ahead tips for each recipe.
It gave me a feeling of empowerment, and made me feel that I could confidently tackle each recipe. They were also interesting reading when I was just perusing the book, stating what recipes freeze well or what steps of the recipe could be done in advance.
And for those of us who love to photograph food and look at superb food photography…this book is a must have for insipration. The stunning images of Maren Caruso take you into the kitchen to see beautiful vignettes that would not capture the attention of most. For me, the images of flour being sifted, the layers of a banana crème pie, a collage of pans, silpat whisks eggshells, knives, spoons and spatulas after a hard day baking were so captivating, I was in awe and definitaely inspired.
If you love to bake and want to refine your skills, or are like me, a green novice that needs all the help they can get, or just love beautiful food photography in a well crafted text that feels good in your hands, this book is worth a look.
This is the time of year that baking warms our homes and hearts, and this book provides ample inspiration.
Splurge on yourself and get a copy of this book to help with your Holiday baking.
It will inspire you to bake something new for friends and family.
Or perhaps put it on your Christmas list and hope Santa will put it in your stocking for a new year of baking joy. This is a book that is a must-have in the library of every baker; those with many years of experience or the green beginner.
This green beginner baker was so glad to welcome this book to my humble library.
I hope that I will have many future posts on the recipes that I have tried from this book.