Qty:1
  • List Price: $35.95
  • Save: $12.36 (34%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Only 12 left in stock.
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.
Gift-wrap available.
Add to Cart
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Qualifies for Super Saver Shipping. May not include accompanying supplemental materials, CD/DVD or access codes
Add to Cart
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 6 images

The Secrets of Baking: Simple Techniques for Sophisticated Desserts Hardcover – November 4, 2003


See all 3 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Hardcover
"Please retry"
$23.59
$14.00 $0.01


Frequently Bought Together

The Secrets of Baking: Simple Techniques for Sophisticated Desserts + Desserts by the Yard: From Brooklyn to Beverly Hills: Recipes from the Sweetest Life Ever
Price for both: $48.85

Buy the selected items together

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

New and Popular Cookbooks for Fall
Get inspired with new and popular cookbooks and other food-related titles in Fall into Cooking.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Rux Martin/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (November 4, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0618138927
  • ISBN-13: 978-0618138920
  • Product Dimensions: 10.3 x 8.2 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (59 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #156,075 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

With an air of authority and an enthusiastic tone, Yard sets out to prove that pastry making need not be a complicated affair. Yard, the executive pastry chef at Spago Beverly Hills, has an easy didactic style that comes across in her spunky text and straightforward recipes. She divides her book into 12 master recipe chapters (such as Ganache, Vanilla Sauce and Brioche) instead of sticking to the conventional sections on cookies, cakes and tarts. This refreshing approach brings to light the relationships between certain recipes-how, for example, the chocolate and cream in the Master Ganache can be transformed into Campton Place Hot Chocolate, with minor adjustments in ingredient quantities and cooking methods. Yard also is generous with variations, offering a handful of optional approaches to most recipes. Her desire is to teach the reader the fundamentals, and then apply them to more complicated (but often very doable) dishes. Headnotes are peppered with encouragements like "Remember, whisking by hand burns calories." Sometimes, the text can become cumbersome with scientific explanations, such as the pH scale discussion in the Curds chapter. But as Yard explains in her introduction, "I show you how the ingredients interact with one another, so you'll know the reasons behind the steps you're following." A wide range of recipes makes the book accessible to all levels, allowing novices to become comfortable with pastry basics and professionals to combine multiple recipes to create more complicated impressive confections.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Review

"Yard...has an easy didactic style that comes across in her spunky text and straightforward recipes. A wide range of recipes makes the book accessible to all level, allowing novices to become comfortable with pastry basics and professional to combine multiple recipes to create more complicated confections." Publishers Weekly

Publishers Weekly

"A sensational sweet treat . . . A practical paean to premier pastries." Bookpage

"Yard gives us the lowdown on how to make restaurant-glamorous desserts at home. What a treat to be let in on the secrets of one of L.A.'s best pastry chefs." Los Angeles Times

"Immensly appealing...Detailed and clearly written...Yard's book is approachable enough for the novice and even challenging enough for the experienced baker." Library Journal Starred

"likely to be as influential for the next generation of pastry chefs as that of her fellow Angelena Nancy Silverton."-New York Times Book Review

New York Times Book Review Notable Book

"The tone of Sherry Yard's book makes her feel like a new best friend who just happens to be the pastry chef at the most famous restaurant in tinsletown.....she takes the well-codified genre of desserts and sets it down in a new way, using recipes and techniques as building blocks....I'm not a pastry chef, but I find this volume almost empowering" -- Gourmet Gourmet

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

I recommend this to anyone interested in baking and desserts.
a baker
Sherry Yard, pastry chef at Spago Beverly Hills, has written the very best book for the amateur baker.
B. Marold
This book is easy to follow and has great tips and instructions.
sanbow

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

242 of 247 people found the following review helpful By B. Marold HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWER on April 27, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Sherry Yard, pastry chef at Spago Beverly Hills, has written the very best book for the amateur baker. If you bake, I advise you to stop reading this review and order this book from Amazon. Do it now ....
If you are still here, I'll tell you why I believe this book is so good.
First, there is the simple, illuminating organization which breaks major baking products down into twelve master recipes and explains all the things which distinguish each category from others and explains the factors which make these preparations work and which actions can lead to unsatisfactory results. There are so many good books on baking that promise this kind of systematic treatment but don't deliver. I was disappointed, for example, in reading Nick Malgieri's book, `How to Bake' when I saw that it was not much more than an organized collection of good recipes. Another recently reviewed book did an excellent job of presenting `modular' recipes where various preparations could be mixed and matched, yet they failed to advance our understanding of baking technique by proper grouping of, for example, cheesecake with custards rather than with cakes.
The twelve topics in this book are Ganache, Caramel, Curd, Vanilla Sauce, Pate a Choux, Pound Cake and Genoise, Financier, Cookies, Pie and Tart Dough, Brioche, Laminated Dough, and Fruit.
Second, the grouping of recipes makes learning several recipes within a group much easier than if each were tackled independently. The discussion of each preparation begins with a `family tree' which shows the relation between different recipes which fall within that method and the variation to the method which produces the branches to the tree. The first general method, ganache, has three variations.
Read more ›
10 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
53 of 54 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 19, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Sherry Yard, 2002 James Beard winner for Best Pastry Chef and Executive Pastry Chef for Wolfgang Puck Worldwide has absolutely scored an A+ with this book. Forget everything you know about cookbooks - chapter after chapter organized by type of dessert or flavor with little instruction or explanation of the science involved and the inspiration behind the dish - this book is a revolution. She has organized the book in chapters based on the basics that every pastry chef needs in their repetoire. She teaches you those basics (master recipes as she calls them) and then lets you vary and combine them to make signature desserts of your own. She throws in a few signature desserts of her own just to get you started. Beautifully photographed by Ron Manville (James Beard and IACP Winning photographer) and expertly explained in terms that normal folk will not only understand but absorb. Her generous personality and infectious charm are evident throughout. The recipies are simply explained and all totally do-able. She is cheeky, irreverant, fun and entirely dedicated to her craft. I can't wait for another book from this author!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
70 of 81 people found the following review helpful By AJ on January 7, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I used this book before I attended culinary school in New York, studying pastry arts. This book pulls a trick common to celebrity chefs- intentionally not revealing the complete/accurate recipe (insecurity? job preservation?). During school, after learning techniques that are not explained adequately (or at all), I was able to achieve better results on those recipes lacking technical instructions. Others (lemon pudding cakes) I remade over 6 times to ensure it was not my fault, since I really wanted to make that recipe. The end result was always a flop.

I understand that most home cooks don't use mass metrics (grams) to measure ingredients like Europeans do (which is much more reliable and convenient), but since these are "pro" style dessert platings, she could have included the mass metrics. I do think the flavor combinations are appealing and the designs are attractive, so, since I couldn't sell this book on Amazon after waiting 3 months or so, I kept it. I can look at other trustworthy recipe books (e.g. Rose Levy's The Pastry Bible) to prepare the components to be used in one of Chef Yard's completed desserts. Hopefully the second book will be more helpful in technique, utility, and accuracy.

Truth be told, I have a massive cookbook collection and this is the only one I have ever tried to get rid of.
3 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
24 of 27 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 3, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I love this book. And I've read it cover to cover. I'm an amateur baker, this book had given me a lot of tips that no other books had detailed. If you're a baker and would like to get serious with your baking skill, this is the book for you! The only negative comment I have for this book is; the book is organized in such a way that if you'd like to bake a fruit tart, you have to look up sweet dough, and pastry cream in different chapters. You have to really have to figure out what exactly you'd like to bake and find the pieces of puzzle in the book and put them together. That's why I've given it a 4 stars instead of 5!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
31 of 36 people found the following review helpful By K. Russo on August 30, 2004
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I own a fairly extensive baking library and believe that this book one of the best I have. The book is fascinating and fun to read. More importantly I believe that the layout of the book helps to provide a firm foundation for a better understanding of how complex desserts are created. The explanations for how and why steps are done in a certain way and in a certain order are clear and concise and make sense. And the recipes just plain work. But the biggest benefit I personally derived from this book is that I'm feeling much more confidant about creating my own desserts, which is something I always wanted to do but was too intimidated to try before.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Customer Images

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Search