Monday, July 27, 2015

Review: Crumb by Ruby Tandoh

Title: Crumb: The Simple Pleasures of Baking

Author: Ruby Tandoh

Format: egalley

Pub. Date: April 28th 2015

Source: Ten Speed Press

Book Description via Goodreads:

A baking cookbook from the young and talented Ruby Tandoh, with a focus on charming, flavorful, and practical dishes that celebrate the pleasure of casual baking.

Crumb's explanatory and evocative prose promotes everyday baking without sacrificing the joy of the craft, defying the style of both showy, highly decorated baking as well as the dry, informative tone of "serious" baking books. A delight to read as well as to bake from, recipes like Sweet Potato Doughnuts, Pecan and Rosemary Tartlets, Raspberry Whisky Pavlova, and Blood Orange Polenta Cake are interspersed with the virtues of different types of apples, a reminiscence about Belgian buns, and a passage on the need to knead. Covering a range of baking projects from sweet to savory, chapters include cakes, cookies, bread, pastries, pies, tarts, and more.



I love baking. I am constantly on a search for new treats to try and add to my repertoire. Crumb is everything I wanted it to be and more, and I'll definitely be getting a copy to keep on stand-by in my home kitchen.

It starts out with a nice introduction, that includes helpful information about the ingredients used and the equipment needed for some of the recipes in the collection. The book is divided into chapters according to type of baked good, including sections like Bread, Pies and Tarts, and Cookies and Crackers. The chapter then gets broken into smaller sections for more specificity.

The steps are numbered and very well detailed, so you're not left wondering what the heck a step means. There's also good tips peppered in, like how to knead and how to fix common mistakes, like when something is too dry. There are also some "photo steps" included, like how to braid breads. The ingredients are listed in grams (I'm an American, so that's not a thing I can do easily, admittedly), but I really appreciated that the conversions are behind it in parenthesis, so I didn't have to constantly flip to a chart in the back or anything.

This collection of recipe includes both sweet and savory dishes, which I also appreciated. There's lots of variety in both ingredients and techniques- some difficult, some more basic. It's approachable to new bakers.

There are some pictures, but not for everything. However, the ones that ARE included look phenomenal. This is going to sound like a weird compliment, but they looked normal. Often times when I look at a picture, be it in a cookbook or on Pinterest, I think "My frosting will never be that perfect" or "my cookies will never be so flawless". These desserts look BEAUTIFUL, but they look like just a normal baker made them, and I really like that.

I would be hard pressed to try and find recipes in this book that I don't want to try, but I'll only share a few in this review. I'd most like to make Rose & Burnt Honey Florentines, Gooseberry Elderflower Cake, Passion Fruit Curd Jelly Roll, and Chocolate Lime Mud Cake.

If you love to bake, whether it's sweet or savory, this is an excellent book to add to your collection. It's approachable, delicious, and well written.

I received a copy of this in exchange for my honest review.

1 comment:

  1. I love the title of this cookbook, and the cover looks fantastic. I like the fact that there's "photo steps" to show techniques that aren't comon knowledge to new or novice bakers. As you know, I learn best by seeing and repeating, so the addition of the photos along with the written instructions is a major plus for me. Is it fair trade if I bring you custard from work for some of these treats?