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Sweet Hardcover – October 8, 2013


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Editorial Reviews

Review

“Full-color photographs highlight the simple beauty of Gordon’s creations. . . . This thoroughly delightful collection is a must-have for baking and confectionary enthusiasts everywhere.”

Publishers Weekly, starred review

 

“Gorgeous.”

O, The Oprah Magazine

 

“Valerie Gordon’s Sweet is full of sumptuous recipes — quince and pear pie, tiramisu trifle, Champagne cake — that are sure to entice the sweet tooth in everyone.”

Los Angeles Magazine

 

“As a cookbook, Sweet sits at the intersection of art and education, with enough know-how to be a solid baking reference, but far too beautiful to be called a textbook.”

Serious Eats

 

“A gorgeous book full of decadent desserts I will most definitely be eating.”

Design*Sponge

 

About the Author

From a childhood love of sweets, Valerie Gordon developed a lifelong passion for baking. After spending her formative culinary years working in restaurants in San Francisco and Los Angeles, she opened Valerie Confections with her partner, Stan Weightman Jr., in 2003. Valerie has been featured in Vogue, House & Garden, Newsweek, InStyle, USA Today, Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, and The Splendid Table, and on Unique Eats on Cooking Channel. Valerie and Stan live in Los Angeles with their two children, August and Lee.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 344 pages
  • Publisher: Artisan (October 8, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1579654681
  • ISBN-13: 978-1579654689
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 1 x 10.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #37,555 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

I'm really looking forward to trying more from this book.
Amazon Customer
Measurements are given in both weight and volume so your preferences will be accommodated.
Carmen Adorno
The pictures are gorgeous and the recipes are just as amazing.
Agent Orange Peel

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

32 of 33 people found the following review helpful By Ketty Lane on February 10, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have tried 5 recipes out of this book, and even though the end product was good, there are some issues with the recipes themselves. I would have given this a higher rating if I didn't need to modify almost every recipe I tried. Make sure you read the recipes all the way through before starting out and verify the pan sizes and ingredients!

1. The Almond Fleur de Sel Toffee was wonderful.
2. I think the pan size is wrong for the Single Malt Scotch Truffles, the ones I made were only .25 thick and did not look like the photo.
3. Instructions are missing for the Champagne Cake. The 1st two ingredients in the Champagne Ganache are never mentioned again after the instructing you to "sprinkle the gelatin over the cold water in a small bowl".
4. The Lavendar Earl Grey Mini-Cakes are delicious, but i have no idea how you managed to cut 27 3 inch rounds out of a cake poured into a 13 x 18 inch pan. 2 1/2 rounds work better.
5. The Upside-Down Apple and Almond Cakes are delicious, but it would have been helpful to mention that the muffins cups need to be large muffin cups, not regular.
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on October 13, 2013
Format: Hardcover
I pre-ordered this one months before it came out, based entirely on the Amazon preview (a rare move on my part). I was afraid it would disappoint, and am relieved to be proven wrong. The variety presented seems interesting, and I appreciate that in each chapter she offers an overview on how to mix and match different bases and toppings (e.g. pie crusts with fillings, cakes and icings/frostings), and the candy selection is pretty innovative (truffles with black pepper or scotch fillings, or dustings of Turkish peppers).

The only recipe I've tried so far leaves me reasonably confident that I will enjoy dipping into this book over time. I made the Winter Luxury Pumpkin Pie, which is made with creme fraiche; it gives it a slight tang and is quite rich without being heavy. It is ridiculously good, and will likely become my go-to pumpkin pie recipe. I'm really looking forward to trying more from this book.
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32 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Frank on January 6, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I decided to buy this book in order to make the lovely cake on the cover of the book for my husband's birthday. He mentioned how great it looked and I thought I would splurge and purchase the book. As I was making the "Champagne Cake" I realized that some instructions were missing. What kind of book is that that the CAKE ON THE COVER had a messed up recipe? For those of you trying to make this recipe you need to mix the gelatin mixture into the warmed chocolate / cream mixture. The recipe also doesn't say to warm the cream. I know these instructions because I had to call the Valerie Confections shop and speak to someone who could guide me. I didn't get a 'oh, sorry this has happened' or a 'feel free to come by for a free muffin or something...' I got a "Oh, yeah that was left off the recipe." and a "Good luck!" What other recipes haven't been tested and copy edited?? I can't even return or exchange the book to Amazon because I was a month too late in figuring out this book wasn't worth the money. Valerie Confections-- if you would like to do the right thing and allow me to return this copy to you please email me back. I'm local and willing to drive it over to you.
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38 of 43 people found the following review helpful By kaitlynic on October 8, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The most unusual thing about this cookbook is the way it is laid out. Instead of the usual divisions, it is divided into Pedestal(Celebration Cakes), Plate(Everyday Cakes), Tin(Pies & Tarts), Box(Chocolates & Confections), Bowl(Desserts to Eat with a Spoon), Jar(Cookies & Bars), Larder(Jams & Marshmallows), and Hand(Breakfast and Snacks to Eat on the Go). These divisions seem to work well. There are nice pictures of the food throughout. There are sections that help you create your own cakes and pies using combinations of the recipes in the book. One of my favorites is the section on Petits Fours. It can be hard to come by many recipes for these. There is also a page on perfecting petits fours. Some recipes, like Chocolate Marshmallows, are not unusual, but Mint Toffee sounds intriguing. Golden Butter Cake with Berries and Mascarpone Frosting looks delicious. The recipes are given in both weight and cups, so you can choose which works for you. The front of the book has information on ingredients and techniques and there are also informational sections throughout the book. If you're someone who enjoys that, as I do, you will like the longer introduction, as well as the sections before each recipe, telling a bit about where it came from or how it tastes.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful By bakerbronte on October 24, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
L.A. baker, Valerie Gordon, makes desserts worthy of Tinseltown, and that is the feeling you get when you pick up her lovely cookbook, Sweet. The cover features a cake garnished with edible gold leaf and the binding is even gold. You know you're about to meet some excellent recipes in a book like this.

Aside from being an attractive book, it is a well-made hardback with thick, glossy paper and stays open where I put it, no cookbook stand needed. Measurements are given in both weight and volume so those of you with strong preferences will be accommodated.

It is divided as follows: introduction; pedestal (celebration desserts); plate (everyday cakes); tin (pies and tarts); box (chocolates and confections); bowl (desserts to eat with a spoon); jar (cookies and bars); larder (jams and marmalades); hand (breakfast and snacks to eat on the go); and resources.

Gordon gives the reader a basic rundown on how she came to have her current bakery and then proceeds to the helpful stuff: an explanation of key uncommon ingredients in her recipes (commonplace to some of you: crème fraiche, nuts flours, atomized chocolate, etc) as well as a two page list of equipment that she uses in her baking kitchen.

The photography is full color and mostly full page, and I have to add, it is marvelous. The photo of Chasen's Banana Shortcake (or even Scandia's apple cake) is enough to get you to stop thumbing through the pages and get into the kitchen and start cooking. There isn't a photo for every recipe but there are for most recipes. A few arty shots of stacked tart tins and kitchen implements are scattered through with the recipes in place of food pictures, but the photography is all around excellent.

These recipes are well-written and precise.
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