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The Beekman 1802 Heirloom Dessert Cookbook: 100 Delicious Heritage Recipes from the Farm and Garden Hardcover – September 10, 2013
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From their upstate New York farm, celebrity couple Ridge and Josh Kilmer-Purcell have collected heirloom dessert recipes. They aim to offer desserts that are delicious, easy to make, and built from ingredients generally available. Organized by seasons, these desserts offer plenty of sweet satisfaction. Simpler temptations, such as lemon meringue pie, give way to chocolate-éclair pie and figgy pudding. Favorite childhood flavors appear in Dreamsicle angel-food cake. Not content with the richness of ordinary brownies, they enhance their version with chopped candy bars. Fruit in season comes into its own with such classics as peach cobbler and roasted rhubarb crisp. By and large, the guys achieve their goal of recipe simplicity, but the several dozen ingredients composing their fruitcake can prove daunting. Aficionados of rich, sugary American desserts will find these reimagined classics intriguing. The authors’ television exposure will increase demand. --Mark Knoblauch
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Top Customer Reviews
In fact, I've got a relative's bridal shower to attend in a few months and I plan to present her with a copy of this book in addition to something from her list. Why include this book? For one thing, the recipes are that good and they are not difficult for an inexperienced cook. They are recipes that every baker should have in her/his repertoire. For another thing, it is a beautiful book with stunning photography of the finished dishes, vintage kitchenware, and pastoral farm settings. And, last but not least, the authors have included something precious: At the end of each season, (that's how the recipes are divided), they have included ruled, blank, full pages designated for your own family heirloom recipes. I plan to write in some of our family recipes before wrapping up the book for giving.
I found it interesting that I recently reviewed another cookbook actually called "Keepers". In it, I was expecting to find great, old-time, tried-and-true recipes--but I didn't find them. The authors of that book used the term to describe recently developed recipes that are tasty and easy to make, therefore easy to turn to in a pinch on a weeknight. In my review I said that I need more in "keeper" recipes: Not only do they have to be straightforward and not complicated, I need to be able to turn to them on the morning of a large, holiday, family/friend gathering. They need to stand the test of time, too. They may be recipes friends and family request time and time again. Little did I know, what I was searching for was in the process of being printed and bound: Because the recipes in this Beekman Farm book are exactly what I was describing.
I first saw this cookbook before it was published. It was a temporary download that I received from the publisher for review. Scrutinizing the preliminary pages, it didn't take me long to realize that I had to have my own copy! As you can see by the "Verified Purchase" tag above my review, I now have it in hand. But since I did have the download, I can honestly say I've been working with this book since way before its September 10 public debut.
I must admit that I may be biased concerning this cookbook: I collect vintage kitchen items. I attend estate sales as a fun hobby, and when I walk in the front door I ask the way to the kitchen, If I see a recipe file box, I scarf it up and every once in a while I find a valuable jewel in the form of an old, readable, workable, wonderful recipe. I guess, with this type of experience under my belt, I'm not only biased towards vintage and heirloom, but I know a bit about what I'm writing here.
YOU CAN STOP READING HERE, but if you are still undecided, I've included a long list of my favorites below to tempt you. It seems that the Table of Contents and the Index that you can see with the "Look Inside" feature doesn't tell you much about the recipes, so here goes:
--There is a fruitcake based on Black Fruitcake, which is a Christmas favorite down in the Virgin Islands.
--How about a buche de Noel made with a raspberry filling? I might finally make one this year!
--A coconut layer cake that gives Alton Brown's recipe a challenge;
--I love this recipe: Creamsicle Angel Food Cake.
--The Cardamom Cake with Coffee Glaze is made in a bundt pan.
--A banana cake that is nothing like a quick bread; it's made in a 9 x 13 pan.
--Truly a winner: Diablo Food Cake with Custard Sauce; this twist on Devil's Food Cake includes cayenne pepper, cinnamon, allspice and brown sugar.
--Plum Upside-Down Cake; the authors call this a "back pocket" recipe and it is because you can use any stone fruit, but I tried it with an assortment of plums and it was beautiful and luscious.
--A One-Bowl Chocolate Almond Cake; it was so very easy!
--Red Currant Jelly Cake; pieces of jelly are tucked into the batter.
--Toasted Coconut Rice Pudding with Mango Sauce;
--Double Chocolate Pudding, Banana Pudding with home-made Vanilla Wafers, Butterscotch Pudding with scotch;
--Orange-Chocolate Pots de Crème and Vanilla Panna Cotta with a center of lemon curd;
Riffs on Favorites:
--Chocolate Rocky Road Potstickers: Rocky Road ice cream add-ins (minus the ice cream) are stuffed into wonton wrappers and gently fried in a skillet.
--Chocolate-Espresso Soup: Take hot chocolate, thicken it up, ladle it into soup bowls and top with marshmallows.
--Remember the "Crown Jewel Cake" from the Jello Cookbook? Here it is updated and gorgeous, and it doesn't rely on Jello...
--Pumpkin Pie is accomplished with Kabocha Squash.
--Remember Hello Dollies? These are made with cream of coconut, but you can sub with sweetened condensed milk to make the 60's version.
There are also some wonderful pies and ice creams and crisps (and more). The ice creams are simple because they do not include eggs, so no custard to make--just some cornstarch, (Honey Ice Cream, Peanut Butter Ice Cream, Pistachio-Chip. Buttermilk Pie with a pecan crust was elegant in its simplicity. Another wonderful pie is the Cranberry-Apple Custard Pie. The Roasted Rhubarb Crisp is delectable.
Obviously, I highly recommend this book. Check out the other Beekman 1802 book: The Beekman 1802 Heirloom Cookbook: Heirloom fruits and vegetables, and more than 100 heritage recipes to inspire every generation. It was published a few years back and has gotten great reviews (an amazing, solid, five-star average).
I purchased this book believing that it was a family collection of very old recipes. It is most definitely NOT that, though I suppose that because a few recipes mention that children can be involved perhaps by stretching the word family nearly to the snapping point it could be considered a family cookbook. Most of the recipes are fairly modern and those that have been around a while have modern twists. For those seeking truly old recipes, a search for antiquarian cookbooks will turn up some interesting things.
Frankly, I wanted to give this book fewer stars, but folks obviously went to a great deal of effort to design this book. The photography is absolutely amazing and the best part of the book by far. I was somewhat interested in photos of what appears at first glance to be handwritten recipes, but I think that they are actually accounts of how much the Beekman enterprise goes through in the kitchen. I would like to be impressed by the recipes, not by the amount of food moving through a businesses kitchen. The recipes themselves don't appear to be terrible, they simply aren't interesting enough to inspire me to actually make them.
I truly understand how much heart and soul goes into producing a book, but I feel cheated by this book. With lots of 5 star reviews and an interesting title I fully expected to get a book that was heavy on real cooking and history. This is just a piece of food porn made for folks who like to look at pictures more than they like to cook.
In summary: photography and design: a full 5 stars; actually being a useful tool for cooks: 3 stars; living up to its title and description: 0 stars.
I doubled the recipe, used high quality granola with huge amount of nuts and seeds ( La Brea Bakery -Original )
Also added more vanilla than recipe called for.
A twist to my success.... Baked using convection oven....... longer than recipe called for..... until really crispy/brown.
In order to get crispy to perfection- I reduce heat to some 200 for slow longer baking.
Can't wait to try the lemon bars-----this next week.
I have over 500 cookbooks- This is a keeper and so lovely to give as a gift to someone special.
I'm leaving on vacation and will stay with a friend. I am providing copy of this book as a hostess gift.