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Cakes to Inspire and Desire Paperback – August 16, 2007

4.3 out of 5 stars 61 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Lindy Smith is the author of three other D&C titles, including Celebrate with a Cake. She runs a successful business making celebration cakes. Lindy is a British Sugarcraft Guild accredited demonstrator and holds workshops to share her techniques and experience.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: David & Charles (August 16, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0715324977
  • ISBN-13: 978-0715324974
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.5 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #107,732 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Janet Lee Wolfson on September 13, 2007
Format: Paperback
I purchased this book with very high hopes, because Lindy's cakes are so spectacular. However, I was a little disappointed. Her specialty is the wonky cakes like the one on the cover, but I found her instructions were pretty sparse. I have learned more about how to put together wonky cakes from free online tutorials than from the info in this book. I also think the photography was insufficient. All of the photos of the wonky cake construction are shown from the top, looking down on the top of the cake. This isn't helpful in seeing how the wonky cake is supposed to look from the side.

There are only 2 recipes included, one for chocolate cake and one for madeira. Both recipes are presented in chart form (use this amount of ingredients for this size cake) with another chart for fruit additions.

There are lots of instructions for using "cake jewelry" (wire and beading to decorate the cakes) and specialty cookie cutters that look great but are also an unbelievable amount of work.

There are complete decorating instructions for 15 different cakes in 3 categories: round, square and creative (odd shapes).

All of the cakes are gorgeous, but most look extremely intimidating to try to make. But the title of this book is "Cakes to Inspire and Desire", not "Cakes to Whip Up in a Few Minutes". And they certainly do inspire!
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I bought this book primarily because I also wanted to learn about how to make the "wonky cake or topsy turvy cake". I was also disappointed in the instructions for this particular cake. However, she can give great instructions as evidenced by the section on how to make cake jewelry & how to decorate the cakes, as was also noted by another reviewer. Additionally, her stands that she shows in this book are available on her website which is fine as I couldn't find them anywhere else.
I was disappointed especially since it was such a long wait for the book but the pictures are pretty and there are some great instructions on how to do some of the decorations, just not the instructions I was looking for.
Here's hoping Toba Garrett will come out with a book discussing how to do these cakes.
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Format: Paperback
I think the instructions in this book are fabulous and very helpful. I am an experienced decorator (30 years) and do cakes professionaly. I learned some important techniques. The designs are great and up-to-date with current requests from customers.
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Format: Paperback
This book really exceeded my expectations, I bought 4 other "more popular" books on the same category, and selected this as the "additional, cheap option" and for my surprise this book turned out to be the second best of all, I found the ingredients and tools list very helpful, not to mention the easy to follow step by step instructions as well as the constant use of photographs during the process very helfpul.

If you are into cooking but not necessarily are an expert, I greatly recommend this book
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Format: Paperback
I love the cakes in the books they're gorgeous and creative, but the instructions are difficult to follow. They seen to leave parts out and the illustrations aren't always helpful. Overall it's a good book and the cakes are definitely worth trying.
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While Lindy Smith is one of the most talented, innovative cake decorators, this book was a disappointment, particularly because I already had her Cake Decorating Bible, which I love. This one offers uneven or incomplete instructions, a number of cakes without broad appeal (but also some excellent ones), and too much on cake jewelry. I'll likely return the book.
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This is my go-to book for cake recipes. The cakes come out kind of firm; not like the cake mixes in a box, but great for stacking and decorating. There are fantastic charts in the front of the book with measurement conversions and equipment and basic instructions. Then there are great project ideas for cakes throughout the book. Everything is really well spelled out. Basically, it's a great book for beginners to a little more advanced cake decorators.
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I am so glad I purchased this book! I can already bake a delicious cake, but now I am trying to learn how to make them beautiful too and this book fits this need perfectly. While the beginning of the book does give a few recipes and give advice on how many portions you get with different sized cakes, the bulk of it focuses on the decorating. And what fantastic designs! There is a very detailed section on making cake jewelry- think beaded toppers, cake fountains, tiaras and the like. Great ideas to make a cake very one-of a kind. The different cake designs run the gamut from art nouveau to pop art, ethnic designs inspired by India and Greece, nature based themes like falling leaves, flowers, and water, and cakes with a musical theme- even one for a wine connoisseur. Each of the designs has very detailed instructions, as well as suggestions for doing smaller cakes or making the design your own. There are plenty of different color schemes too- from all white cakes with pale beaded jewelry, to colorful topsy turvy cakes, to the serene feeling of the mosaic inspired sparkling fish cake.
While these cakes are very detailed, the explicit instructions make a "newbie" such as myself feel confident enough to try them. There is also so much in this book that even an experienced decorator should find much to inspire them.
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