60 of 62 people found the following review helpful
Worth It Despite the Flaws.....,
This review is from: I'm Just Here for More Food: Food x Mixing + Heat = Baking (Hardcover)
I'm a huge Alton Brown fan, so I wish I could give his book 5 stars and rave endlessly about everything he does. Alas, this book has its shortcomings, but if you understand them, it's definitely worth the purchase.
The editorial errors are endless and frustrating. The recipe fixes were available online on Alton's site, but the last time I checked his new site, they hadn't shown up. The page with the changes was still available, but was not linked to his new home page. You can find them online with a quick search--one of the easiest ways is to input the mysterious "tk" found in the brownie recipe with other good key words. There are some inconsistencies where he seems to contradict himself from section to section of the book, and some vagaries in a few of the recipes can be frustrating if you don't have a lot of experience in the kitchen.
That being said, I wouldn't go without this book. I've always been great at improvising with food, because I go off of taste and adjust and play--not so with baking, because all the leavenings and ratios can seem like a mysterious formula. I'm not making up new baking recipes, but with the great science and explanations that Alton gives, I can now take a baking recipe and adjust it to how I like it without throwing it off so it no longer works. The whys and the hows and the science still can't be beat--that's all classic Alton. I love the cracker recipes and my son calls Alton's pancakes from this book his favorite pancakes of all time. I changed the 'base' of the chicken dumpling recipe, because we prefer a thicker--more gravy-- base than broth, but the dumplings themselves were heavenly. We were so content after the meal that we were seriously contemplating if world peace could be achieved if everyone sat down together and had a dish--
Don't buy this book for the recipes, but definitely enjoy the recipes within. The techniques learned will make all of your other baking endeavors so much better.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Nov 23, 2008 2:51:18 PM PST
Baking for David says:
I totally agree. I struggled with the contradictions, but I am so much a better baker now that I read his book. My projects turn out very well (even at an altitude ot 6,200 ft!).
Posted on Feb 14, 2013 8:24:02 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 14, 2013 8:24:41 AM PST
Thank you, thank you. I don't care all that much about the recipes...I want to know why one method of mixing works better than another and I appreciated your review. I'm definitely going to order the book.
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