1 Dec 2014

What to Bake & How to Bake it by Jane Hornby - Review


I think we either embrace baking or we feel the fear. Sometimes the thoughts of perfection are enough to make us buy a cake, slap on some bought butter cream, scatter over a few sprinkles and say it's our own.

Unfortunately, many people haven't had the opportunity of attending cookery classes whilst at school and have missed learning valuable baking skills, a bit of science thrown in (for those of us who took time to listen) and lots of fun whilst learning to bake.

This wonderful book, just look at that beautiful book cover, will make the perfect Christmas present. It is written by experienced food writer Jane Hornby for the would-be baker and those of us who appreciate dipping into the expert knowledge of a baking expert. There is a guiding hand at each and every recipe, all of the photographs are taken looking down onto the ingredients and progress of each dish, as if you are attending a cookery demonstration. The recipes and photographs are step-by-step which helps to give us the confidence to achieve the finished dish.

With Christmas not far away I made the Cranberry Stollen recipe, and with hubby declaring it the best stollen he has ever eaten, and I've made a fair few in the past, this recipe is the benchmark for all the other glorious offerings in the book.

Cranberry Stollen
The introduction to the book is invaluable and it covers everything from equipment to how to master making a cake and if you, like me, have a tendency to skip this part and move straight onto the recipes, try to make this your bedtime reading, you'll find you go back to the introduction time and again for help and advice.

Chocolate Hazelnut Log filled and coated with luscious Nutella cream
Bread making, cake making, pastry, baked cheesecakes, cookies and muffins to include a few, with sections covering Simple Family Baking, Morning Coffee & Afternoon Tea, Special Bakes, Desserts & After Dinner.  Recipes for everyone including a Golden Citrus Drizzle Cake, Pancakes, Birthday Cake, Jaffa Marble Cake, Easy Baked Doughnuts, Chocolate Hazelnut Log to Salted Caramel Shortbread Bites, all of the finished dishes look as amazing as they sound.

The author:  Jane Hornby worked as a Cookery Writer and Food Editor on BBC GoodFood Magazine, and is the monthly columnist for the magazine.
The publisher: Phaidon Press
Illustrations: 520 colour photographs
Price: £20.00 from the Phaidon Store

Disclaimer:  I was sent a review copy of the book, all thoughts are my own