Wednesday, 21 August 2013

The Great British Bake Off (Book Review)

Since The Great British Bake Off started again last night it seemed apt that my next post should be about baking. Did anyone see it? I have added angel cake and chocolate cake to my must try list! I took up baking a few years ago when I wasn't working. I borrowed my mum's copy of the "Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook" and I found that I loved doing it. Plus people seemed to like the end result.

The peanut butter cookies became my most famous and I have made them for numerous people. The Great British Bake Off book has replaced the Hummingbird. The problem I have with the first one is that it doesn't matter how long I pre-heat the oven for I have to keep the baked goodies in there a lot longer than stated in the recipes. This has been the case for every single thing I have tried from that book. Perhaps it has something to do with my oven but it's frustrating.

I haven't had that problem with this book. The first thing I tried was the banana bread and it has now become my signature bake, replacing the cookies. I'm quite grateful for that as the banana bread takes little prep and baking time compared to the cookies. The recipe in the book actually wants you to make the loaf marbled and have lots of mini ones rather than one big one. I decided to change it to a straight forward loaf. I have made it with butter icing and I have even added walnuts (on request) to another and they turned out quite well.

The sticky lemon cake was the next on the list as my sister loves lemon desserts. This was my first attempt at  baking any sort of sponge and I was pleasantly surprised by how it turned out. I can thank the book for that as the instructions are broken down into steps and they are very easy to follow. I love the images and the layout of the book. Perfect for a beginner baker. It has instructions at the front on different baking techniques with lots of images as well as a list of equipment needed. Like most cookbooks it is separated into sections and there are even some savoury bakes in there.

This image gives an idea of how the recipes are laid out. I love carrot cake and I think these muffins will be my next project.

Or maybe these easy macaroons. I have always fancied trying my hand at these. There are a few bake off books out there now and I am itching to get those too but maybe I should try more of these recipes first.

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