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rodyan

Books with absolutely delicious cake recipes?

25 posts in this topic

Dear all,

Have already checked some topics about cake books from the index, but would like to start another one.

I am looking for the recipe cake books which has the recipes of absolutely delicious layered cakes. You know, not just a cake + buttercream, but perhaps something more interesting, when flavor combination just leaves you with WOW! And of course the compliments from others..

Preferably not too complicated, the one which is possible to make for the intermediate baker at home.

Any suggestions?


Edited by rodyan (log)

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Well, this discussion mentions quite a few books that probably fall into that category, with Berenbaum's The Cake Bible getting lots of mentions. If it's simply a question of finding more interesting flavour/texture combinations (e.g. one of my favourite ganache flavour profles was inspired by the scents of the library in an old club: burning firewood, unsmoked tobacco, and whisky), in addition to thinking outside the box, you might want to look at Migoya's Elements of Dessert.


Michaela, aka "Mjx"
Manager, eG Forums
mscioscia@egstaff.org

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In terms of interesting flavour combinations, you could consider the Zumbo book. The first section is on macarons, and the cakes aren't necessarily layered, but they're definitely not conventional.

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Southern Cakes is excellent for your criteria. I discovered I have two so am selling one on ebay. The one I use is spotted and stained throughout.

You can look at the index at the Amazon site.

One of my favorites is the Miss Nannies Fresh Coconut Cake, which even people who don't care for coconut say they like. Every time I take one to a potluck, it is always completely consumed, not even crumbs left on the plate.

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"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

My blog:Books,Cooks,Gadgets&Gardening

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I'd not heard of that book before, andie. Thanks for recommending it as I can never have too many books about cake!

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I've read this discussion and seen a lot of mentioning of the cake bible, but is it just technical and easy to follow recipe book or does it offer great taste too? I'm tired of heavy buttery cakes, I'm looking for something light yet delicious: meringue, yogurt, fruits, etc. Mix of tender and crunchy, etc etc.. Something which is more than two cakes and frosting... Does the cake bible offers it, do you know?

Well, this discussion mentions quite a few books that probably fall into that category, with Berenbaum's The Cake Bible getting lots of mentions. If it's simply a question of finding more interesting flavour/texture combinations (e.g. one of my favourite ganache flavour profles was inspired by the scents of the library in an old club: burning firewood, unsmoked tobacco, and whisky), in addition to thinking outside the box, you might want to look at Migoya's Elements of Dessert.

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Thanks for suggestion! And please don't get me wrong, but this cake at the picture is what I'm not looking for, sorry.

I just mentioned in my comment above I would like to switch from heavy buttery cakes to more light ones.. My audience requested so :/ meringues, fruits, mousses, yogurt, crunchy layers etc.. And this should come together as a great combo! Not just butter and sugar mixed.. You know what I mean?

Sorry I made it unclear at the first step.. :/

Is it still the book you would recommend?

Southern Cakes is excellent for your criteria. I discovered I have two so am selling one on ebay. The one I use is spotted and stained throughout.

You can look at the index at the Amazon site.

One of my favorites is the Miss Nannies Fresh Coconut Cake, which even people who don't care for coconut say they like. Every time I take one to a potluck, it is always completely consumed, not even crumbs left on the plate.


Edited by rodyan (log)

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Thank you! But I need layered cakes, sorry. Making cakes for family and occasions.. And looking for light (not so buttery as classics) delicious tastes, pęrhaps meringues, fruits, yogurts etc, probably something else! As those are on high demand and I don't have any good recipes to get myself familiar with.. . :(

Sorry if I made this not as clear as I thought..

Do you have anything to recommend?

I would say it would be great to have recipes for "entremet-style"

In terms of interesting flavour combinations, you could consider the Zumbo book. The first section is on macarons, and the cakes aren't necessarily layered, but they're definitely not conventional.


Edited by rodyan (log)
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I'm not sure you'd find just one book that fits the bill. There are so many good books out there, and they all have different things to offer that can fit what you're looking for. Mixing and matching recipes might be the way to go. One of my all-time favorites (which I've mentioned many times) is Alice Medrich's "Pure Desserts." She has many good books, but I think that one is her gem. She experiments with a lot of different flavor combinations. Flo Braker is another favorite, and her "Simple Art of Perfect Baking" works on many levels. Sherry Yard is another favorite. (Those three are my "holy trinity," so to speak.) But then there are so many others, how can they be omitted? So mostly it's a matter of breadth. Then you make your choices. (But if you find one book that does it, please let us know which one!)

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I didn't mention this book before because it tries to be health-conscious. Perhaps this is more of what you are looking for:
Vintage Cakes, by Julie Richardson.
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1607741024/ref=s9_simh_gw_p14_d0_i3?pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=center-2&pf_rd_r=1M8B8M2NWQ8DZVKGEFQN&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_p=1630083462&pf_rd_i=507846

I haven't tried any recipes, only spent some time reading through the book, which I borrowed from my public library. If I remember correctly (it's been awhile since I looked at this), the author subs canola oil for some butter, tries to keep the sugar amts low, uses brown sugar. That's why I chose not to buy the book. I don't eat cake for vitamins.

The cookbook includes all kinds of classic cakes, not only layer cakes.

Just to put all this in perspective, you're asking for a difficult combination: layer cakes + light + alternative (meringues, fruits, yogurts) + moderate baking skill = absolutely delicious. The people here have made some excellent suggestions. Instead of a single cookbook, you may find you'll have to research conventional recipes and experiment with them to fit your needs.

You can also experiment with a basic genoise or sponge cake recipe, cut the cake into layers, and fill the layers with fruit, yogurt cheese, or whatever else might suit you. Instead of frosting, try a simple glaze, like a lemon glaze or melted apricot jam.

Andiesenji, I'm so glad you mentioned the Southern Cakes cookbook. I came across that cookbook after reading Sarah Addison Allen's novel, The Girl Who Chased The Moon, about a woman who makes magic by baking great Southern cakes. Really, those two books should be sold as a set.


Edited by djyee100 (log)
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Dear all,

Have already checked some topics about cake books from the index, but would like to start another one.

I am looking for the recipe cake books which has the recipes of absolutely delicious layered cakes. You know, not just a cake + buttercream, but perhaps something more interesting, when flavor combination just leaves you with WOW! And of course the compliments from others..

Preferably not too complicated, the one which is possible to make for the intermediate baker at home.

Any suggestions?

Actually, you're asking two questions: 'what books suggest interesting ideas?', and 'what books offer reliable recipes?'

The second question is fundamentally more important to address, since a sub-par cake with interesting flavours is not exactly 'wow', and the Berenbaum books and others that have been suggested as being in the 'go-to' category have this status for a reason, that reason being, when you follow one of the recipes in them, you know you will end up with a good cake. For a lot of people, that's a 'wow' right there, since there is a lot of crap cake to be found.

I'm going to also recommend the books by the Cook's Illustrated/ATK people; their overmarketing is aggravating, but that's beside the point; their recipes are solid.

Without reliable recipes, you're starting off on the wrong foot, especially if you want to experiment.

The first question is very probably going to be best addressed by books such as the Migoya book, or the Zumbo one ChrisZ mentioned, or plenty of others in this vein, which explicitly focus on interesting and pleasing flavour/texture/temperature/visual combinations and contrasts, despite not [necessarily] focusing on 'entremet-style' layer cakes.

To begin creating the sort of thing you describe in your OP, you definitely need to be able to see that interesting dessert ideas may be easily extrapolated across dessert types.

Pastry chefs who are known for making delicious and intriguing desserts don't consult a book called something like 'Innovative, Scrumptious Desserts in Three Easy Steps' (although they may keep a notebook that amounts to this), they think, constantly. They find themselves considering what makes a combination – say, stilton, port, and walnuts – amazing or intriguing, and consider how this might be translated to a dessert, ANY dessert. They have some spectacular disasters, too, but they keep exploring.

Bottom line: If you don't already have a book that reliably delivers good, standard cakes, get one.

Then, consult your imagination/a work by a pastry chef whose work you admire, and find ways to adapt the ideas you generate to the cakes you want to make.

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Michaela, aka "Mjx"
Manager, eG Forums
mscioscia@egstaff.org

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Dear all,

Have already checked some topics about cake books from the index, but would like to start another one.

I am looking for the recipe cake books which has the recipes of absolutely delicious layered cakes. You know, not just a cake + buttercream, but perhaps something more interesting, when flavor combination just leaves you with WOW! And of course the compliments from others..

Preferably not too complicated, the one which is possible to make for the intermediate baker at home.

Any suggestions?

Actually, you're asking two questions: 'what books suggest interesting ideas?', and 'what books offer reliable recipes?'

The second question is fundamentally more important to address, since a sub-par cake with interesting flavours is not exactly 'wow', and the Berenbaum books and others that have been suggested as being in the 'go-to' category have this status for a reason, that reason being, when you follow one of the recipes in them, you know you will end up with a good cake. For a lot of people, that's a 'wow' right there, since there is a lot of crap cake to be found.

I'm going to also recommend the books by the Cook's Illustrated/ATK people; their overmarketing is aggravating, but that's beside the point; their recipes are solid.

Without reliable recipes, you're starting off on the wrong foot, especially if you want to experiment.

The first question is very probably going to be best addressed by books such as the Migoya book, or the Zumbo one ChrisZ mentioned, or plenty of others in this vein, which explicitly focus on interesting and pleasing flavour/texture/temperature/visual combinations and contrasts, despite not [necessarily] focusing on 'entremet-style' layer cakes.

To begin creating the sort of thing you describe in your OP, you definitely need to be able to see that interesting dessert ideas may be easily extrapolated across dessert types.

Pastry chefs who are known for making delicious and intriguing desserts don't consult a book called something like 'Innovative, Scrumptious Desserts in Three Easy Steps' (although they may keep a notebook that amounts to this), they think, constantly. They find themselves considering what makes a combination – say, stilton, port, and walnuts – amazing or intriguing, and consider how this might be translated to a dessert, ANY dessert. They have some spectacular disasters, too, but they keep exploring.

Bottom line: If you don't already have a book that reliably delivers good, standard cakes, get one.

Then, consult your imagination/a work by a pastry chef whose work you admire, and find ways to adapt the ideas you generate to the cakes you want to make.

Thank you for your help and advice. Perhaps I just wanted to ask several questions in one topic :) Will def. look at all suggestions.

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P.s. did you mean this book: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Cake-Bible-Rose-Levy-Beranbaum/dp/0688044026/ref=la_B000APEDSA_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1386596355&sr=1-3 ?

30 pages?

Dear all,

Have already checked some topics about cake books from the index, but would like to start another one.

I am looking for the recipe cake books which has the recipes of absolutely delicious layered cakes. You know, not just a cake + buttercream, but perhaps something more interesting, when flavor combination just leaves you with WOW! And of course the compliments from others..

Preferably not too complicated, the one which is possible to make for the intermediate baker at home.

Any suggestions?

Actually, you're asking two questions: 'what books suggest interesting ideas?', and 'what books offer reliable recipes?'

The second question is fundamentally more important to address, since a sub-par cake with interesting flavours is not exactly 'wow', and the Berenbaum books and others that have been suggested as being in the 'go-to' category have this status for a reason, that reason being, when you follow one of the recipes in them, you know you will end up with a good cake. For a lot of people, that's a 'wow' right there, since there is a lot of crap cake to be found.

I'm going to also recommend the books by the Cook's Illustrated/ATK people; their overmarketing is aggravating, but that's beside the point; their recipes are solid.

Without reliable recipes, you're starting off on the wrong foot, especially if you want to experiment.

The first question is very probably going to be best addressed by books such as the Migoya book, or the Zumbo one ChrisZ mentioned, or plenty of others in this vein, which explicitly focus on interesting and pleasing flavour/texture/temperature/visual combinations and contrasts, despite not [necessarily] focusing on 'entremet-style' layer cakes.

To begin creating the sort of thing you describe in your OP, you definitely need to be able to see that interesting dessert ideas may be easily extrapolated across dessert types.

Pastry chefs who are known for making delicious and intriguing desserts don't consult a book called something like 'Innovative, Scrumptious Desserts in Three Easy Steps' (although they may keep a notebook that amounts to this), they think, constantly. They find themselves considering what makes a combination – say, stilton, port, and walnuts – amazing or intriguing, and consider how this might be translated to a dessert, ANY dessert. They have some spectacular disasters, too, but they keep exploring.

Bottom line: If you don't already have a book that reliably delivers good, standard cakes, get one.

Then, consult your imagination/a work by a pastry chef whose work you admire, and find ways to adapt the ideas you generate to the cakes you want to make.

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Thanks for suggestion! And please don't get me wrong, but this cake at the picture is what I'm not looking for, sorry.

I just mentioned in my comment above I would like to switch from heavy buttery cakes to more light ones.. My audience requested so :/ meringues, fruits, mousses, yogurt, crunchy layers etc.. And this should come together as a great combo! Not just butter and sugar mixed.. You know what I mean?

Sorry I made it unclear at the first step.. :/

Is it still the book you would recommend?

Southern Cakes is excellent for your criteria. I discovered I have two so am selling one on ebay. The one I use is spotted and stained throughout.

You can look at the index at the Amazon site.

One of my favorites is the Miss Nannies Fresh Coconut Cake, which even people who don't care for coconut say they like. Every time I take one to a potluck, it is always completely consumed, not even crumbs left on the plate.

The recipes are easy to follow and the instructions are meticulous but most important, Rose's cakes are delicious. Whenever I bring a cake to a gathering, my cakes are the first finished. Everyone else has left-overs to take home. I highly recommend Rose's Heavenly Cakes.


Edited by flourgirl (log)
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My best tasting cakes are made from Rose Levy Beranbaum's books, Rose's Heavenly Cakes and The Cake Bible. Flo Braker's Book, Baking For All Occasions has equally delicious cakes although her mixing instructions are not as easy as Rose's.

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That's one of the books, and, as others have mentioned, the Heavenly Cakes book is high on that list, too.

The book is 592 pages, if that is what you are asking..?

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Michaela, aka "Mjx"
Manager, eG Forums
mscioscia@egstaff.org

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Cake Bible

Southern Cakes

Great Cakes (Carol Walter)

Good Housekeeping Illustrated Desserts

And a fave. Jim Fobel Old Fashioned Desserts

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Thank you, everyone!

I have bought Patisserie Christophe Felder's book to get myself familiar with entremets (and the major parts of it such as mousses, chantilly cream, joconde, genoise etc) despide some negative comments on it. And I will give Heavenly Cakes a try as it has so many good responses.

Thank you, again!

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I can recommend Rose's heavenly cakes as well. It's just brilliant.

If you want to head down the haute patisserie route (e.g. entremets etc) you can try Kirsten Tibballs' Chocolate to Savour

http://www.savourschool.com.au/books/chocolate-to-savour-kirsten-tibballs/product-detail.aspx

It covers more than entremet's though - more like an overview of the different products she teachs at her school. The book has clear, step by step instructions.

You can also try Sweet Studio - by Darren Purchese or Tartes, Gouters et Entremets by Stephan Glacier, again this has step by step instructions. It is in french and english. http://www.jbprince.com/cook-books-desserts/tartes-gourtes-entremets.asp

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I have made 19 of the cakes from "Vintage Cakes" by Julie Richardson. Each one was really good. I like the flavors and textures. Even people who say they don't like cakes have asked for seconds of cakes I've made from this book.

Host Note: eGullet Society friendly link to the book

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Thank you, everyone!

I have bought Patisserie Christophe Felder's book to get myself familiar with entremets (and the major parts of it such as mousses, chantilly cream, joconde, genoise etc) despide some negative comments on it. And I will give Heavenly Cakes a try as it has so many good responses.

Thank you, again!

Did you have a chance to use the book? How do you like it?

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I can recommend Rose's heavenly cakes as well. It's just brilliant.

If you want to head down the haute patisserie route (e.g. entremets etc) you can try Kirsten Tibballs' Chocolate to Savour

http://www.savourschool.com.au/books/chocolate-to-savour-kirsten-tibballs/product-detail.aspx

It covers more than entremet's though - more like an overview of the different products she teachs at her school. The book has clear, step by step instructions.

You can also try Sweet Studio - by Darren Purchese or Tartes, Gouters et Entremets by Stephan Glacier, again this has step by step instructions. It is in french and english. http://www.jbprince.com/cook-books-desserts/tartes-gourtes-entremets.asp

Did you know Rose's new book, The Baking Bible will be out approximately November 4, 2014?

I am positive it will be stuffed with delicious cakes and other baked goods.

It is now available for pre-order. When you pre-order on Amazon, they will give you the lowest price at the time of shipment.

Here is the link:

Amazon Link

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Thank you, everyone!

I have bought Patisserie Christophe Felder's book to get myself familiar with entremets (and the major parts of it such as mousses, chantilly cream, joconde, genoise etc) despide some negative comments on it. And I will give Heavenly Cakes a try as it has so many good responses.

Thank you, again!

Good choice, this is an excellent book. Also, I can't praise Philippe Conticini's Sensations highly enough. It's worth learning French for, there are so many great things in there, both classic and innovative.

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As a professional, I use as bible the books from Jean Michel perruchon. The entremets one has a lot to offer. Very pricey though. I do think that many recipes are findable on line as well

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Michele Urvater's Chocolate Cake is another great book on cakes. It won't win competitions, but the cakes will impress a crowd.

I have also had fun with the cakes in Momofoku Milk's book.


"Salt is born of the purest of parents: the sun and the sea." --Pythagoras.

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