Two fun new books just popped across my desk this last month and have me eager to get in the kitchen.
The first is The Art and Soul of Baking by Sur La Table and Cindy Mushet, Andrews McMeel Publishing. What a tome it is! Destined to become dog-eared, and sepia toned from splashes of vanilla, this complete guide to baking surely will be cherished for years to come. Mushet guides bakers through the tools and the vocabulary of the trade. Recipes range from low risk quick breads like Pumpkin Walnut Bread, to challenging layered doughs. What sets Mushet’s book apart are her “Tips for Success” and “What the Pros Know” sidebars peppered through the book. These hints and tips help dissolve myths and offer practical solutions to some of the most common baking questions; like, “Why do muffin fillings fall to the bottom?” Pick up The Art and Soul of Baking to find out.
The second book to catch my eye this month is Art of The Slow Cooker: 80 Exciting New Recipes by Andrew Schloss, Chronicle Books. With a tight economy and efficiency on the mind, people are turning to crock pots in record numbers. But disappointment can result from the “dump and heat” method. Schloss outlines delicious recipes that require a quick browning of the meat first to develop complex and deep flavor. His recipes include everything from soups to stews (a pot pie even), to pulled pork and an All Day Cassoulet. What would a cookbook be without dessert? You’ll run across a tempting Chocolate Pudding Cake and just in time for the holidays a Supremely Edible Fruitcake! This is a fantastic holiday gift giving book for anyone with a busy life style.