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Room For Dessert : 110 Recipes for Cakes, Custards, Souffles, Tarts, Pies, Cobblers, Sorbets, Sherbets, Ice Creams, Cookies, Candies, and Cordials Hardcover – November 1, 1999


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow Cookbooks; 1 edition (November 1, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060191856
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060191856
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 7.7 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #256,237 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Baking books abound, but none presents a more mouthwatering selection of contemporary sweets than David Lebovitz's Room for Dessert. A former pastry cook at Chez Panisse in California, Lebovitz offers more than 110 recipes for cakes, curds, soufflés, tarts, pies, cobblers, ice creams, cookies, and more, beautifully depicted by color photos. He also manages, as few other baking book authors do, to provide lucid technical guidance, so even novice bakers should have success with his recipes. Readers searching for a solid collection of doable desserts, from homey to dress-up (but never too bedecked) will find the book is just what they're looking for.

Featured are a number of Lebovitz's most acclaimed desserts, including Meyer Lemon Semifreddo, Butternut Squash Pie, and Orange Almond Bread Pudding. Readers will also want to try his modernized Marjolaine (chocolate-covered layers of vanilla and praline creams sandwiched between crisp nut meringues), Fresh Ginger Cake, Mexican Chocolate Ice Cream, and Brown Sugar-Pecan Shortbread, among others. With a chapter on liqueurs and preserves--there's a recipe for a luscious pineapple ginger marmalade, for example--and a presentation of basic formulas that includes dessert sauces (Lebovitz's soft-candied citrus peel topping is a standout), the book, wide in scope yet straightforward in detail, delivers. --Arthur Boehm

Review

"Room for Dessert is a tempting collection of recipes that are beautiful to look at and delicious to eat. But more than that, this book is a distillation of all the experience of a gifted pastry chef and teacher who guides the reader through every technical step to achieve a glorious result. Room for Dessert is a winner!"

-- Nick Malgieri, author of Chocolate and How To Bake

"Room for Dessert is my favorite kind of cookbook. It is a very personal collection of dessert recipes collected over many years by an extremely gifted cook/baker. This book is like having a teacher stand beside you as you make each recipe. It is a one-of-a-kind dessert book." -- Marion Cunningham, author of Learning to Cook with Marion Cunningham

"David Lebovitz's charming and personal book is a wonderful addition to my kitchen library. Utterly delectable desserts for all seasons, great tips, and a liberal sprinkling of David's adventures at Chez Panisse." -- Alics Medrich, author of Cocolat: Extraordinary Chocolate Desserts and Alice Medrich's Cookies and Brownies

"David Lebovitz's distinctive desserts offer the best of both worlds--heavenly flavor combinations and down-to-earth techniques. Every page is rich with information which this fine pastry chef has gleaned for home cooks everywhere. Follow me: I can't wait to bake my way through this fabulous dessert book." -- Flo Braker, author of The Simple Art of Perfect Baking and Sweet Miniatures: The Art of Making Bite-Size Desserts

"Every so often a cookbook comes out that actually breaks new ground, expands its subject matter and energizes its readers. I feel this way about...Room For Dessert. After thumbing through the book I started baking cookies, then cakes, then roasting fruit. These desserts are so ingeniously simple that beginners can cook them, yet smart that they inspire professionals. Lebovitz has created a classic."

"This book... delivers pure substance. If you follow his recipes step by step, you will succeed. Lebovitz uses no complicated or fussy techniques. He requires no arcane equipment. The home cook can do any recipe in the book. "

"But what really sets this book apart is the originality and charm of the recipes...He has impeccable taste and a unique sensibility that takes traditional desserts one step further. ...Personally, I'd buy Room For Dessert for the cookie section alone, and I'm giving it as a holiday gift to anyone I care about who even thinks about entering the kitchen. This is a book that inspires people to cook." (Excerpted from the San Francisco Examiner, November 1999) -- Patricia Unterman, San Francisco Examiner Sunday Magazine

SIMPLE AND SWEET FROM A MASTER BAKER (excerpts): Room For Dessert... is as endearing as it is brilliantly appealing, because Mr. Lebovitz writes with a personal touch. It could be catagoried as a chef's cookbook, but that would be an unfortunate label, as most of those thick compendiums are full of desserts meant to be composed by a team of cooks, not by a home cook with a conventional oven.

Mr. Lebovitz hands you over a collection of his best recipes and leaves you to assert your own know-how....His instructions are clear and simple, and the recipes are so good that it becomes clear what a master baker he is without his announcing it himself with complex recipes. -- Amanda Hesser, New York Times


More About the Author

American pastry chef living the sweet life in Paris! Author of several cookbooks, including The Perfect Scoop, the complete guide to making the best ice cream and frozen desserts at home, The Great Book of Chocolate, a guide - with recipes - for everything about everyone's favorite ingredient, and Ready for Dessert, a compilation of baking favorites, from an extra-moist Fresh Ginger Cake, to crunchy Double-Chocolate Biscotti.

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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See all 20 customer reviews
Mr. Lebovitz is an excellent teacher through his books.
Wild Thing Foodie
This book is strongly recommended, especially for folks who are looking for new desserts for entertaining.
B. Marold
This is one of the best cookbooks I have ever purchased.
Zoubouli

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

29 of 30 people found the following review helpful By H. F. Corbin TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on September 8, 2002
Format: Hardcover
This cookbook certainly gets 5 stars. My requirement for a cookbook is that the recipes should be doable by mortals and that there should be at least one recipe in the book worth keeping. This cookbook meets both requirements. I have tried only the passion fruit poundcake and the ginger cake. They get rave reviews because they are perfect recipes and easy to do. I came to the ginger cake with reluctance simply because I don't care much for either ginger or molasses in anything and am not into pepper as an ingredient in cakes. Since the author says that this recipe is the favorite of many people, I took the chance and, boy, am I glad I did. In this recipe what you get is a beautifull deep brown, moist cake with great texture and subtle flavors. Mr. Lebovitz suggests fresh peaches to accompany this cake. A glass of cold milk goes well with it too.
In addition to 110 dessert recipes, many of them beautifully photographed, Mr. Levobitz has a chapter called "Essentials" in which he discusses equipment, ingredients and fruits. In his introduction he gives his philosophy of dessert-making, that they be simple and that less is often more. In this instance I would say less is just right.
If you like to cook unusual desserts, you will love this cookbook.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Todd T. Romoff on March 8, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Beware when reading this book, it will cause anyone who is even slightly interested in cooking, to think that they could quit their day job and become a pastry chef. I have become completely inspired to bake. I have tried about six recipies from the book, and a few from a class I took at Draeger's in San Mateo given by Mr. Lebovitz. Everything has turned out perfect. My friends at work can't wait to see what I am going to bring in next for them to taste. If you want to taste some great desserts, not to mention impress your friends, then this book is for you. The chapter on Essentials, I found particularly helpful. Most of the items that he mentions in the book can be found at Draeger's. (Three stores in the Bay Area).
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By B. Marold HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWER on January 28, 2004
Format: Hardcover
This is David Lebovitz' first of two books on desserts. The second is devoted entirely to desserts made with fruits. This volume is more general, including recipes for just about every different type of dessert you may think of. The collection is weighted in favor of recipes which would work well in a restaurant, so the number of recipes typical to the home are less common than you may find in a more general book on dessert baking. That is not to say this is a poor book. In fact, I am happy I reviewed Lebovitz' more recent book first, so I was able to appreciate the virtues of this book which were missing from the second volume.
Lebovitz' introductory chapter on `Essentials' is divided into three sections, each an extremely useful tool to the home baker. First, is a discussion of equipment, which seems to me to be one of the best around for baking tools. The ingredients section is similarly useful, although I wish the author, who is so careful to be precise about other items would avoid the descriptions of `bittersweet' or `semisweet' for chocolate and use, instead the percent cocoa grades as used by Vahlrona, a brand which Lebovitz endorses. The third section of essentials on Fruits is the star of this part of the book. The author not only gives the best season and the best properties and uses for a large number of fruits, he also supplies an extremely useful picture of each and every fruit, although the picture for coconuts is a bit puzzling. There must be varieties of coconut I have never seen in the very untropical northeast.
Lebovitz must be especially fond of fruits, as this general book has a very large portion of its pages devoted to fruit, with a wealth of interesting information on various varieties.
Read more ›
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Ronald L. James on March 4, 2000
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Heaven can wait, until I make every dessert in David Lebovitz's "Room for Dessert" - a visual feast with great content. This is a small cookbook compared to some, but a perfect and practical size with 110 incredible desserts.
I have tried approx. 14 of the desserts so far ALL with excellent results. This book has inspired me to make desserts when before I would stop with the entrée and buy the dessert (IF I could find a 'decent' dessert to buy).....now it's in my own kitchen! If I can do this you can too.
David's comments and hints are very helpful. He sounds like a nice guy too with 'human' commentary that the average to advanced cook can relate to. The source guide in the back is useful for quality chocolate, spices etc. and don't skip the front where David explains a bit of his `philosophy' relating to baking. I am very pleased!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 2, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Room For Dessert has become my favorite dessert book. All the recipes I've tried were wonderful, including an exceptional fresh Ginger Cake that was delicious, moist & simple to make. The author's sense of humor really comes through and he makes dessert-making fun. I've tried his desserts at Chez Panisse and with this book, I've made a few favorites with great success. Yum! HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Zoubouli on September 17, 2003
Format: Hardcover
I would also give this 10 stars if I could! This is one of the best cookbooks I have ever purchased. I have a big sweet tooth and have accummulated quite a collection of cookbooks on cakes, cookies, chocolate, etc. This book covers a large variety of sweets, from cookies (the best chocolate-chip cookie recipe I have ever tried) to sorbet (chocolate coconut sorbet, sangria sorbet) to ice cream (butterscotch ice cream with hickory nuts) marmalades and jams (plum strawberry), sauces (caramel, blackberry), crysalised ginger (which I can't find here, so I have to make it), to cakes (coconut, fresh ginger). I have tried a variety of things in this cookbook (cookies, ice cream, caramel) and they have all turned out DELICIOUS. I made coconut macaroons dipped in chocolate for my husband since he loves them so much and I ended up eating most of them - they were fantastic! A large fraction of the recipes are accompanied by mouth-watering pictures. Lebovitz includes some guidelines at the end for caramelisation as well. You don't have to be an expert to use this book, but you probably do have to have some experience and some tools (candy thermometre, hand-held mixer) for a few of the recipes. The ice creams and sorbets require an ice cream maker. I am extremely pleased with this cookbook and intend to eat my way through all of it. Excellent gift too, but make sure to get one for yourself!
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