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Customer Review

51 of 55 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 100 creative & easy foods for many occasions (+ a chapter on baking tips), March 1, 2012
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This review is from: Joy the Baker Cookbook: 100 Simple and Comforting Recipes (Paperback)
This book is filled with both anecdotal and culinary gems.
It begins with a brief chapter entitled "joy the baker kitchen tips" which discusses common, but crucial, myths and missteps frequently encountered in baking. For example, why you should care whether you are using jumbo vs large eggs and how the difference can translate to perfect vs dense cake batter.
The subsequent chapters center on breakfast foods (smoothies, biscuits, coffee bacon...), comfort foods (milkshakes, chili cheese fries, cookies...), celebration foods (pies, cakes, a variety of frostings...), chocolate foods (mint chip marshmallows, fudgepops, biscotti...), & dessert foods that travel well (crostadas and other impressive but easy-to-make goods).

My first tested recipe was actually the first recipe in the book- scones. I always knew tiny bits of cold butter was important... but from this recipe I learned a crucial trick: to freeze butter and shred it into tiny pieces with a box grater. This is the secret to a perfect scone and I was almost terrified by the difference in height achieved by this trick alone. Its such a good trick, that I almost feel like this is the kind of secret you share with very few people.

PRO: Pictures to accompany EVERY recipe. I think pictures are crucial and am surprised whenever I see cookbooks without ANY pictures. I generally flip through cookbooks to find something by eye, and I think a lot of people do this too.
I like the single serving cake. I dont have to waste 4 cups of flour and go through a huge production to have a small portion of cake.
CON: Joy tends to have a set of photos that demonstrate the making-of, which I always find helpful. Although they are not in this book, you can find them when you look for recipes (which are organized by booze, bread, breakfast, chocolate, cookies, cupcakes, drinks, fruit, gluten-free, holiday, pie, savory, snacks, vegan) on joythebaker.com
This book boasts 100 new recipes (~90% not seen on joythebaker.com) and is priced very very low for what you gain.
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