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Baking for All Occasions Hardcover – September 1, 2008


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Baking for All Occasions + Sweet Miniatures: The Art of Making Bite-Size Desserts
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Every baker will be richly rewarded by this wonderful book." Chuck Williams, founder of Williams-Sonoma

About the Author

Flo Braker is the author of Sweet Miniatures and The Simple Art of Perfect Baking. She lives in Palo Alto, California.

Scott Peterson is a San Francisco-based photographer.

Chuck Williams is the founder of Williams-Sonoma.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 396 pages
  • Publisher: Chronicle Books; 1st edition (September 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0811845478
  • ISBN-13: 978-0811845472
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 1.5 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #413,369 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

48 of 48 people found the following review helpful By Milda Ruffo on December 3, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I am a baking book collector and own dozens of books on the subject. This one stands out from the pack in many ways. First of all, the book is very well laid out with good clear large-enough print, excellent directions and photographs of many of the recipes. The recipes themselves are most interesting and include some very original ones that I haven't found in any other books. So far, I have made the Banana Bottom Pineapple-Swirl Cupcakes (Banana cake and pineapple cheese cake baked together). What a heavenly combination! I also tried the Banana-Poppyseed Cake with Lemon Icing drizzled over, another smash hit. If you are looking for a spectacular bar cookie to add to your Christmas goodies, try the Neapolitan Bars (pastry bottom, almond filling with a layer of raspberry jam and topped with a chocolate glaze). Wow! I also made the Heavenly Brownies on Shortbread Bars. Another delicious and original treat. None of the recipes were difficult or even very time-consuming but the results were just wonderful. I also appreciated that there was a choice of measuring cup quantities and weighed measures. I find weighing things like cake flour much more accurate than just sifting and measuring in a cup. I intend to bake my way through most of the book. All of the recipes are worth a try. You won't regret buying this book, I assure you.
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53 of 54 people found the following review helpful By A. L. W. on October 22, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Years ago I stumbled upon Braker's first book and immediately contacted her about where to get almond paste. This was the first time I had encountered such a heavy usage of almond paste, and it made an almond paste lover out of me. Since then I keep a food service size tin of the stuff on hand as does she. In Baking for All Occasions, Braker, stays true to her love of almonds and almond paste and contributes a good amont of recipes with them included in the book. But if your are not an almond lover, don't be turned off, there are many delicious recipes in this book that don't include it. I had been waiting for this book for over a year and so when I got it I immediately starting baking from it was and was pleased as usual. First off, I love that she included cups, ounces and grams, which is true to her style.

I also loved some of the really different recipes. The Zebra Cookies, which are called "chocolate-Vanilla Swirl are so cute along with the Chocolate-Dipped Cheesecake-sicles. Many of these could be served at an A-list event but they are easy. There is the Red Velvet Cake Roll, that is visually stunning and the Dark Chocolate Baby Cakes with Coffee White chocolate Ganache. There is a really nice variety of recipes and if you are not familiar with her work after baking from this book, you will likely go and try and find her older books. A nice set of 23 photos is included in the book as well as two indexes. One index is by recipe categories. Therefore looking for tarts and crostatas or yeast cakes, you'll find them more easily in this index. She also includes the standard index, just in case you are looking for all the almond paste recipes.
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Jay on August 31, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I've been baking for 45 years (scares me to think about it!), and I have found the recipes Flo Braker publishes to be consistently of high quality. If a recipe intrigues me, I can pretty much bet I am going to love the results. As in all of her recipes, she provides plenty of instructions for those who might require a bit of guidance in the kitchen, and I can't imagine anyone going wrong following her recipes due to getting confused about the directions.

One of the sections that I really enjoyed (simply due to the quality of those recipes) was a section on some tried-and-true basic cake and pastry recipes that then become the basis of some of the more detailed recipes that precede it.

While the organization of the recipes -- by "occasion" -- may not be to everyone's taste, there is an index at the back that organizes the recipes in a more conventional way by category (which I appreciate, although I also enjoyed at least perusing her categorization as well). I also appreciate the fact that quantities are provided not only by what have been conventional measures (i.e., by cups), but also by weight, including metric measures.

I would have given the cookbook 5 stars instead of 4 had it not been for one frustrating element: the typeface. While it works for alphabetic characters and integers, I have found it very difficult to read when it comes to fractions in the list of ingredients. My eyes aren't as great as they used to be, but no cookbook should require ANY reader to pull out a magnifying glass or open the cookbook under a bright light and hold it just so to make out the amounts. I blame the publisher for not having more sense -- there are easier typefaces to read, and even boldface would have worked better.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Grandma TOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on February 8, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I really wanted to love Baking for All Occasions when I purchased the Kindle a few days ago. Sadly, the book is almost impossible to read, never mind cook from.

First, all of the ingredients are in bold face type - and all caps! Worse, several measurements are given for each item, so the ingredients list appears as an almost solid block of type - hard to read and impossible to keep your place in. Here's just one example, from Apple Cider Baby Chiffon Cakes - you'll have to imagine the bold as Amazon Reviews don't allow bold type.

CAKES

1 CUP PLUS 1 TABLESPOON (4 1/ 4 OUNCES/ 120 GRAMS) CAKE FLOUR
3/ 4 CUP (5 1/ 4 OUNCES/ 150 GRAMS) GRANULATED SUGAR, DIVIDED
1 TEASPOON BAKING POWDER
1/ 2 TEASPOON FINE SEA SALT
1/ 2 TEASPOON GROUND CINNAMON
1/ 4 TEASPOON GROUND GINGER
1/ 4 TEASPOON GROUND CLOVES
2 OUNCES (1/ 2 STICK/ 55 GRAMS) UNSALTED BUTTER, MELTED AND COOLED
1/ 3 CUP (2 1/ 2 FL OUNCES/ 75 ML) APPLE CIDER
3 LARGE EGGS, SEPARATED
1/ 2 TEASPOON PURE VANILLA EXTRACT

Peterson, Scott; Williams, Chuck; Braker, Flo (2012-09-14). Baking for All Occasions (Kindle Locations 7766-7782). Chronicle Books. Kindle Edition.

In the Mac version of Kindle this list is in a pale blue. On the iPad version of Kindle, fully capable of displaying exactly the same thing as the Mac version, every page is in solid, unrelieved black. Worse, on the smaller format of the iPad/Kindle the longer lines wrap, making it impossible to keep track of where you are in the list!

There are NO pictures. Now, I don't particularly mind cookbooks that have no pictures if they are well done and easy to follow.
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