- Hardcover: 416 pages
- Publisher: Ten Speed Press; First Edition edition (September 29, 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1580089917
- ISBN-13: 978-1580089913
- Product Dimensions: 9.8 x 1.2 x 11.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 4.5 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 72 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #536,491 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Baking Hardcover – September 29, 2009
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From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. This workhorse of a guidebook (a sequel title to Cooking by the James Beard–winning author), is a worthy baking school between covers. Jam-packed with instructional photos accompanying a carefully created modular approach that aims to teach you to think like a baker, the work features over 300 recipes, mostly classics based in the French tradition. The five chapters—Cakes; Pies, Tarts and Pastries; Cookies; Breads, Quick Breads, and Bread-based Desserts; and Custards, Soufflés, Fruit Curds and Mousses—include a comprehensive overview, sidebars on techniques and recipes designed to teach techniques that can be used in more than the recipe listed. While you won't find innovative recipes, all the basics are here—classic puff pastry dough, sheet cakes, chocolate chip cookies, baguettes—along with classic, fanciful treats such as frangipane tart, madeleines, Grand Marnier soufflés and chocolate croissants. While not glamorous, this is a comprehensive title. (Nov.)
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*Starred Review* A two-time James Beard award winner provides a viable candidate for his third award. Peterson, author of Cooking (2007) and Sauces (2008), long considered the chefs’ go-to, now tackles all things baking—with 300 recipes and 2,000 photographs. He admits that the art was not a first or natural love and, at the same time, he admires its precision and end results of a product that pleases. Yet not one page even hints at this attitude; instead, every page provides a gem: a tip for success, a non-fail recipe, or a series of sequential photographs highlighting the best how-to. Divided into five sections (“Cakes,” “Pies/Tarts,” “Cookies,” “Breads,” and “Custards/Mousses”), the book includes plenty of informed narrative (for instance, there are really only six types of basic cakes) and, in shaded areas, details with the right stuff to ensure sweet endings, such as the use of stabilized whipped cream versus regular, the best way to beat a quantity of whole eggs, and how to unseize a chocolate mixture. Blending the science of ingredient combinations and temperatures with the art of baking is truly his forte, from which anyone, novice or pro, can profitably benefit. Encore! --Barbara Jacobs
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