From Publishers Weekly
This cookbook offers recipes for dozens of classic treats like oatmeal cookies, carrot cake and pecan piebut often with novel twists: pineapple and coconut swirl through the carrot cake, the pecan pie takes the form of a brownie and the oatmeal cookies are fashioned into "crisps." Still, most of the recipes are pleasingly old-fashioned and sweet enough to send an unsuspecting baker into diabetic shock. The Grasshopper Pie calls for an entire cup of sugar, plus marshmallow crème and hot fudge sauce, and the Bananas Foster Shortcakes deliver sugary banana flavor amped up to maximum volume. The author is the proprietress of The Rather Sweet Bakery and Café in Texas, and she offers several signature Lone Star state desserts: a rich Fredericksburg Peach Cream Cheese Tart, crunchy Texas Pralines and Texas Big Hairs Lemon-Lime Meringue Tarts, with meringue piled as high as a Houston debutantes coif. The cookbook also offers a few non-dessert selections, mostly soups, salads, quesadillas and the like. Though these dishes are tastyits hard to object to Prosciutto Tostadas with Shrimp and Parsley or a warm, pleasing Wild Mushroom Soupits the sugary-sweet and fun-to-bake Texas-style desserts that make this rather sweet, and rather expensive, cookbook worth the splurge.
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"Every baker, from country folk to city slicker, will find something deliriously delightful to bake in this book. Hail to the Pastry Queen—Rebecca Rather!"
—David Lebovitz, author of The Great Book of Chocolate
"Rebecca Rather personifies the great American bootstrap, built on grit and tenacity upon which communities are enriched and enlivened (and happily well fed). Anyone who bakes from this book will want to meet the Pastry Queen in person."
—Peter Reinhart, author of The Bread Baker's Apprentice
"Texans at their best are honest, friendly, helpful, and engagingly unpretentious. Oh, and pretty darned good cooks. Rebecca Rather, Hill Country reine de patisserie
, is all of these things, as will be immediately apparent to anyone who dives into this delicious book—a rich, good-looking, sweet and savory masterpiece, full of baking lore, kitchen tips, charming stories, and (above all) irresistibly indulgent recipes."
—Colman Andrews, Editor-in-Chief, Saveur