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Cake Ladies: Celebrating a Southern Tradition Paperback – October 4, 2011
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Top Customer Reviews
Cake Ladies starts with an explanation of the anatomy of a cake wtih the ingredients used and why they are used. There is a feature on each cake lady telling about her background and why she makes cakes, plus their expert tips. And, of course, there are delicious recipes, like Vanilla Almond Pound Cake, Caramel Cake and Hummingbird Cake, and the classic Southern Ten-Layer Chocolate Cake, all beautifully presented along with pictures of the ladies working in their own kitchens. Reading about these lovely women, I was struck with the importance of preserving these types of things, and I appreciate what a wonderful job of that the author did with this book.
The stories of the ladies are lovingly, respectfully told. These women will all inspire you and remind you of why tradition and family are so crucial to our culture (southern or not!).
The recipes are diverse (and look delicious -- I'm going to make the Dirty Gullah Cake first!), and the tips included (like how to crack a coconut) are actually useful, not just stuck in there to take up space.
And the photography is flat-out gorgeous. This book is going to live on my coffee table (when it's not busy in my kitchen, of course).
I planned to buy one, but as soon as I saw the book, I bought ten instead. I will probably have to buy more, since I keep thinking of people I need to give the book to!
You'll learn about each of the cake ladies featured in the book and find out who they are, what type of cake they are known for and learn their secret kitchen wisdom when it comes to making the best cake there is. They share their favorite recipes with you along with tips and tricks to make yours come out perfectly. Each recipe is showcased on its own page with a full color photograph of the finished creation. You are also shown photographs of their favorite cooking utensils (in some case gorgeous vintage heirlooms), their kitchens, the towns they live in, and the ingredients they use.
The recipes themselves are well written and easy to follow. They include prep time, baking time, and decorating time. Also included is a detailed ingredients list and easy to understand directions. When appropriate, the icing, frosting, or topping recipes for the cake are also included. The photographs are truly amazing.Read more ›
CONS: A few recipes depend on the yellow cake recipe in the book. Unfortunately it is missing a very important detail, what temperature to bake it at. I used 350 degrees. I then tried the lemon cheese layer cake it asked you to juice the lemons but did not state how much lemon juice you should have nor the size of the lemons. Either would have been helpful. I used 3 medium size lemons.
PROS: The lemon cheese layer cake recipe was a hit. I made the seven minute icing to go with it. The book has details about the ingredients that normally go into a cake mix that are very helpful. It also contains information such as substituting regular milk for buttermilk. I did enjoy reading about the cake ladies. It made the recipes more personal. I will try more recipes and update as I go
Even though there are just a handful of recipes in the book, it leads you into the world of baking. It is the book if you are new to baking. It gives you detailed information about the 'science' behind baking cakes.
Overall a very good cake book to start with.
I would give it 5 stars if it had few more recipes for the price.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Enjoyed the stories and lives of this ladies as they told the history of their cakes.Published 27 days ago by Glenda Thomson
My favorite recipe book of all time! Every cake I've made from this has been a hit and I love the stories behind them.Published 23 months ago by Amazon Customer
This is a fun, friendly, appealing book that is more of a collection of stories about the "cake ladies" with recipes thrown in than a cake cookbook. Read morePublished on February 25, 2014 by Garnet
Amazing recipes and entertaining and interesting stories about real people , I am buying more copies for my favorite southern women!Published on October 7, 2013 by Jennifer Glock
i was hoping this book had alot more information and recipies for Southern Cakes than it had ---- it seemed just run of mill for me nothing i would ever recommand or buy again if i... Read morePublished on August 27, 2013 by KateM
I love the personal stories in this book, the cake-lady tips, and am excited to try more recipes! However, the first and only one I've tried is the Vanilla Almond Pound Cake, the... Read morePublished on August 22, 2013 by Spokane Dan