Baking: From My Home to Yours
By Dorie Greenspan
(Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2006)
The author of nine cookbooks, including Baking with Julia (the book that accompanied Julia Child's PBS series), Dorie Greenspan has been called a "culinary guru." Baking: From My Home to Yours is Greenspan's first book in which she isn't sharing the spotlight with another baking expert. In it, she offers 230 of her homey recipes presented in a style that is expert yet warm. Detailed instructions are part of what makes this one of the world's greatest baking books. Its other great feature is the variations she offers on many of the recipes, allowing the home cook to conquer one recipe and then build a repertoire from mastering one technique. The book includes recipes from breakfast sweets like allspice crumb muffins to savory cheddar scones, thumbprint cookies, coconut cake and exotic treats such as gingered lime and mango meringue pie.
Americans have passed recipes down for generations. A love for preserving flavors both familiar and exotic is a part of our culture. And while it is true that in our fast-paced times, we are cooking less and less, when we do pick up a cookbook, we want it to be filled with recipes and information on which we can rely. It is difficult to narrow our recommendation of must-have cookbooks of all time down to just ten. After all, name a well-known chef and we will show you his or her book (or books!)
But as we reflected on this daunting task, ten cookbooks definitely rose to the top. They represent every category of cooking we could seek to find in a cookbook, from the preservation of tradition, to the technique of professional chefs, to an entire manual dedicated to celebrating a single ingredient.
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