Sunday, December 19, 2010

Cookbook review: Baking by James Peterson

Baking by James Peterson is an enormous, step-by-step, multi-picture guide to baking just about anything. Sponge cake, challah, apple tartin, blueberry pie, you name it. I've never had an big sweet tooth, but this book makes me want to go make some chocolate fondant.


Some of the information in the book is incorrect.

The reviews point to serious typos, in both ingredients and baking times. The recipes aren't listed by weight (a serious no-no for serious bakers, as the only way to get a truly accurate flour measurement is by weight), and some of the information is just plain weird. For example--he asks you to press the graham cracker crust onto a cheesecake AFTER it's already been baked. Huh? I don't even know how that would work. Plus, he calls for a blueberry pie to be top-crust-less. Everyone knows a good blueberry pie has a top crust.

So I'm not sure I can actually recommend this cookbook. It's very inspirational, I'll give it that. I love James Peterson's other tomes (especially Sauces); I think I'll peruse some of his others, and keep looking for a good all-purpose baking book.

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