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Petite Sweets: Bite-Size Desserts to Satisfy Every Sweet Tooth Hardcover – September 21, 2009

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Frequently Bought Together

Petite Sweets: Bite-Size Desserts to Satisfy Every Sweet Tooth + Tiny Food Party!: Bite-Size Recipes for Miniature Meals + Bite By Bite: 100 Stylish Little Plates You Can Make for Any Party
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Sellers Publishing, Inc. (September 21, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1416207732
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416207733
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 8.5 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (38 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #125,786 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


Comments: As suckers for hors d'oeuvres, how are we not going to be smitten with dessert recipes that essentially produce sweet hors d'oeuuvres? This book of tiny treats can go in several directions. You can make several dishes and provide all the desserts for a pot-luck or a fancy party. You can just participate in the trend of making and serving bite-size desserts. Or, perhaps you're the kind of person who only wants a bite anyway. (Our leaning is to think up reasons to make several desserts at once and find a way to share them with lots of friends.) Beatrice Ojakangas, who has written about half the cookbooks that are currently on the market, has turned her attention to more than 50 desserts that can be produced in one-, two-, or three-bite servings. The recipes are clustered in several categories little cakes; little pies and tarts (we're going to dispense with the word little now you get it, they're all small); fruit and berry desserts; mousses and chilled desserts; creams, custards, and frozen desserts; and pastries and sweets. The recipes are mostly simple, many are very simple, and most of the ingredients are also easy to find. Some desserts are not especially fancy (to us, blueberry pancakes barely fit into the dessert category), but overall, there's a good mix of fancy and humble. Ojakangas says downsizing desserts is a simple matter, just a function of using smaller dishes, cutting down the cooking time, and often, she says, also cutting the original recipe in half. She has done all the calculations for you in this case. She says her favorite approach to planning a multi-dish dessert party is serving something chocolate, something pale or white, and something with fruit. By far the greatest challenge in using this book and pursuing this approach on your own is finding enough small baking dishes. Ojakangas says she has been collecting small cups, ramekins, muffin tins, and even shot glasses for years. Fortunately, there is a boatload of miniature muffin pans on the market these days to get you headed in the right direction. The index is fine, but the type is very small (too small). --O'

About the Author

Beatrice Ojakangas is a cookbook writer, recipe and food product developer in Duluth, Minnesota. She began her food writing career as a food editor for Sunset Magazine. In 2005, she was inducted into the James Beard Cookbook hall of fame, and in 2007, received an honorary doctorate of humane letters from the University of Minnesota. She starred in a five-part series on holiday baking for the TV Food Network called The Bakers Dozen. She was a featured guest on Julia Child's series Baking with Julia. She also appeared on Martha Stewart Living Television. She has written numerous articles for many of the nation's leading magazines including Bon Appetit, Gourmet, Womans Day, Family Circle, Cooking Light and others. Petite Sweets is her 27th cookbook.

More About the Author

Beatrice Ojakangas is the author of more than a dozen cookbooks, including The Great Scandinavian Baking Book (1999) and Scandinavian Feasts (2001), both published by the University of Minnesota Press. Her articles have been published in Bon Appétit, Gourmet, Cooking Light, Cuisine, and Redbook, and she has appeared on television's Baking with Julia Child and Martha Stewart's Living. She lives in Duluth, Minnesota.

Customer Reviews

And the recipes look very easy.
I will be making alot of these treats for my children's classroom parties and for the holiday sweet tooth my family always has.
A. Jacobs
Very nice recipes and love that each recipe has a photo of the finished product.
Patricia Scarola

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

92 of 107 people found the following review helpful By RiceV on February 8, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A chef who begins an introduction to a pastry book with an exhortation to "waste not, want not", a reference to sin, and an evocation of the hardships of her childhood has, perhaps, missed the point about the ways in which we relate to desserts.

The desserts are tiny and adorable, and the recipes are simple, but the book conveys a wintry sparsity at odds with its subject matter. Furthermore, the author has sacrificed quality and flavor to simplicity: anyone who has ever had real dulce de leche can tell you that it cannot be imitated by melting Brach's milk caramels with heavy cream.

If what you are looking for is a resource to help you create the perfect bite, this is not the book for you.
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52 of 60 people found the following review helpful By Susan Tunis TOP 500 REVIEWER on November 11, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Who knew baking could be so cute? But every time one of my co-workers sees this cookbook on my desk, they say, "A[...]" Then, they flip through the pictures and say, "Yum!" And then they fling it away and say that it's making them hungry, LOL.

So, basically, this is book full of recipes of adorable, miniature desserts. The idea behind mini-desserts is that you can eat a smaller portion because it's healthier, because you don't want any more than just a little somethin', or because you want to sample lots of mini-desserts. These are all good thoughts in my book! And on top of that, the presentations of these charming sweets, thanks to lots of wonderful photos, is inspiring enough to make me want to whip up a few of everything in the book.

Petite Sweets contains chapters on Basics; Little Cakes; Petite Pies and Tarts; Fruit and Berry Desserts; Mousses and Chilled Desserts; Creams, Custards, and Frozen Desserts; and Pastries and Sweets. I think you'll agree that that pretty much covers the sugary territory. Most of the recipes are fairly simple--in some cases a little more basic than I might have chosen, but the author, Beatrice Ojakangas, offers useful advice on how to adapt other favorite recipes for miniature versions. And some of her shortcuts are just plain clever, such as using a whole vanilla wafer as the base of a miniature cheesecake.

A lot of the recipes call for specialized mini baking dishes, but there are helpful substitutions like to use mini muffin tins with foil cupcake liners for those of us who don't yet own 24 miniature baking ramekins. And who are you kidding? You know you'll be prowling Williams-Sonoma waiting for a variety of mini pans and dishes to go on sale. How can you resist, when the results are so darn cute and scrumptious?
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42 of 48 people found the following review helpful By Ms. E. Marie on June 27, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The front page photo lures you into the book with promises of spectacular or at the very least a raise eyebrow of curiousity.

That is where it stops. Most of this book can be had from the check out isle of the grocery store in a betty crocker holiday special recipe book. The presentation suggestions are boring, the end product is simple and lack luster; not everything has a photo. Most things are presented to the view in the exact same way using the same or similar plating.

really not good.....worth a dime store or yard sale purchase at best. Not full price or even sale price. Seriously thinking of going thru the trouble of sending it back. It is already clear this will just sit on the shelf til if finds it way back on the site as a used sale item from me.

Yep, it's going back.
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57 of 72 people found the following review helpful By Mister Karl on August 22, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book pretty much on the cover picture. I thought these were some sort of chocolate-wrapped confection. When I cracked open the book, however, I immediately felt ripped off. The majority of the recipes are simply regular recipes but made in a small container, like using a mini-cupcake pan to make tiny cheesecakes. Another is layering vanilla wafers, banana slices, and chocolate cream filling (can you say pudding?) in a 2-ounce glass and topping this with a baked meringue kiss. Really? I needed a book for these? As for the cover recipe, the spoon under one of the confections is a complete misrepresentation. These are brown-colored shot glasses filled with a white-chocolate-flavored whipped cream. Big deal! You might be impressed with this book if your idea of making a pie is buying a frozen crust and a can of pie filling. Any cook with any amount of real skill does not need this book!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Books and Chocolate TOP 500 REVIEWER on December 29, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I like the idea of "petite sweets" for a party and this book does contain several easy ideas. However, in my opinion, many of them are more suited for a casual gathering or even a child's birthday party than an elegant presentation at a dinner party or tea. That really isn't a negative, just an observation in case someone expects something more formal or creative. There are a few recipes that might qualify for that but most are simple puddings and custards, muffins, tarts, ice creams, and cakes done on a smaller scale.

The appeal is in the cute size of the desserts, utilizing things like shot glasses and special mini ramikens or cups that hold 1-2 ounces of the dessert. The recipes themselves are simple with colorful and inspiring photos.

I did enjoy looking through this book and came away with some good ideas.
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14 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Monie Garcia VINE VOICE on October 25, 2009
Format: Hardcover
In Petite Sweets Ojakangas shows us how to make miniature versions of some of the most decadent and sinful desserts and sweets around. From planning the dessert menu and equipment basics to tips on ingredients it's all covered with large full color photos.

Cooking and baking have always been hit or miss with me. I love to do it but even if I follow the recipe exactly I don't always get the best results. Some of my more memorable dishes have been my Lemon Meringue Soup when trying to make my favorite pie and most recently when following my grandma's light and fluffy gordita recipe I ended up with what my husband called "biscuits with meat". LOL My son even nicknamed me "burner girl" because he was always scraping the burnt parts off his favorite grilled cheese sandwiches.

Petite Sweets has plenty of easy to follow recipes and for my review I tried the Mini Cream Puffs. There were just a few basic ingredients and I filled mine with vanilla pudding so in no time flat I had a tiny version of one of my favorite treats with almost no mess to clean up afterwards. My cream puffs were light, fluffy, golden brown and perfectly flaky and I actually surprised myself at how good they tasted.

One major plus is that since I've been dieting I've cut all sweets and goodies out of my diet. With Petite Sweets I was able to satisfy my sweet tooth without all the guilt that I would have had with the full size version.

In each of the categories below there are many more great recipes that have caught my eye and next up for me will be the Fresh Lime Pies made in mini muffin tins which will be just big enough to satisfy my craving while still being good.
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