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Cherry Cake and Ginger Beer: A Golden Treasury of Classic Treats [Hardcover]

Jane Brocket
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)

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Book Description

10 July 2008
If as a child you devoured Enid Blyton's classics like the Famous Five or Malory Towers, or loved to lose yourself in the adventures of Pippi Longstocking or What Katy Did, then CHERRY CAKE AND GINGER BEER is the book for you.

A wonderfully nostalgic cookery book, it will take you straight back to your favourite children's books and show you how to cook the feel-good foods that feature so strongly in them. So, you'll find recipes for Swallows and Amazons Squashed-Fly Biscuits, the Famous Five's Gorgeous Ginger Beer, and Gloriously Sticky Marmalade Roll from The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe amongst others.

Divided into appropriate sections like Proper Elevenses, Picnic Treats and Lessons in the Kitchen each recipe is introduced with an evocative description of the book that inspired it.

Guaranteed to take you straight back to your childhood, the book is an escapist treat for grown-ups and will encourage you to re-visit much-loved classics and share them with the next generation.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton; First Edition edition (10 July 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0340960892
  • ISBN-13: 978-0340960899
  • Product Dimensions: 16.2 x 20 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 67,127 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Author

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Product Description


This treasure of a book is packed with lovely recipes to transport you back to childhood. (Prima)

'An amazing book, heartening and delightful ... everybody should read this book ... what parenting is supposed to be about' (Vanessa Feltz, BBC Radio London)

About the Author

Jane Brocket is the creator of the hugely popular website , which has a huge international following. She is the author of the Gentle Art of Domesticity and Cherry Cake and Ginger Beer, both published by Hodder & Stoughton. A Master of Wine and a lapsed PhD student, she lives in Berkshire with her husband and three children. To find out more visit

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars So much more than a cookery book 14 July 2008
What a delicious way to share with our children the literary characters we enjoyed when we were their age -- and to discover which ones we missed. This is a thoroughly researched and potently evocative account of the food and the feasters featured in children's classics.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A nostalgic treat! 16 July 2008
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This is a very different book from Jane Brocket's first book, 'The Gentle Art of Domesticity'.

A well researched examination of various different books and stories from childhood with their associated favourite foods and tasty treats. Accompanied by black and white original drawings this 'treasury' has an old fashioned, nostalgic feel to it.

It isn't a 'recipe book' in the usual sense BUT there are many worthwhile recipes for cakes and savouries that really work - it is obvious they have been tried and tested, something that even the 'serious' recipe books seem to forget to do.

I really like this book. It feels like a 'treat' to sit down and enjoy a chapter or two with an afternoon cup of tea - not forgetting a slice of cherry cake of course!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Star Nostalgia 8 May 2009
I absolutely loved this book. It evokes another era and whisks you back to your childhood (if you are my age!). The book is based on descriptions of food in children's stories - these are included - then she offers a recipe for that food.
I have read some reviewers' disappointment that there are no photos. I think the idea is that imagination is invoked by description. Jane explains in the book that she chose stories that had good descriptions of food rather than just illustrations; descriptions that would would evoke a mind picture, so a photo of her finished item would actually be irrelevant and even unhelpful. It doesn't matter what what yours looks like; it is homemade and it will taste good - that is the point, I feel.
The book reminded me of stories enjoyed long ago, encouraged me to read them again and even to look in other books for food descriptions as I am reading.
I have really enjoyed this book, have made a couple of the cakes already (superb - thanks for finding/sharing these excellent recipes, Jane)and I think it is a triumph!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Anyone for raspberry cordial? 14 Dec 2008
By tresco
I described this book to my 22 year old daughter, a keen baker and lover of books. Her first question was "Has it got Anne of Green Gables' Raspberry Cordial?" I was very glad to say it did. Give this book to new mums, new grandparents or to anyone who loves cooking and reading. Yes, as one reviewer said, most of the recipes are nothing new - bu that's the point: to have a collection of childhood classics easily to hand. A wonderful book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A lovely book! 2 April 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
The perfect book for anyone who loves a jolly good children's read, a jolly good spread and a dash of adventure. I shall certainly be trying some of the lovely recipes included - as well as revisiting some favourite children's books.

How wizard!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Tastes of childhood 6 Jan 2009
What a charming idea, to recreate treats from the golden era of children's literature. There are lots of favourites here: Milly-Molly-Mandy's baked potatoes, which always made my mum nostalgic for her 1920s childhood; Mr Tumnus's wonderful tea; kaffee und kuchen at the Chalet School; Anne of Green Gables' liniment cake and that wonderful box, full of Debby's jumbles and sugarplums, that reached Katy and Clover just in time to console them for Christmas at school. My only criticism is that Jane Brocket relies a bit too heavily on Enid Blyton's ripping teas, wonderful as they are ... and the book, which gives the impression of being written in rather a hurry, does get rather repetitive. Still, what a jolly wheeze it would be to pull molasses candy or make Swallows and Amazons bunloaf. And taste all those mysterious treats that used to puzzle me when I read these books as a child.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gorgeous. 16 Jan 2009
I adored this book. I was an obsessive reader as a child and always loved the descriptions of food - and even when I get the chance now, I'll reread a childhood classic! This book has made me really look forward to having a child of my own, both so I can introduce them to all the wonderful children's literature (and rediscover it myself), and so I can enrich their experiences even more by making some of the food in this book.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great fun and the recipes work 13 Aug 2008
By D. M. Purkiss VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Okay, obviously the recipes aren't the point, but they are fun and they do work; my family were delighted to find treats from favourite books and to share the author's thoughts on the books themselves. Serious fans of this kind of reading might quibble over the choices, however. I wanted new-made cream cheese from Blyton, and something from Antonia Forest - she doesn't do nothing with food, as Brocket claims, because there's all the home food - and more than saffron cake from Marmaduke Scarlet, misnamed Marmaduke Saffron, gadzooks, here, in one of many small careless errors. And what about the Abbey Girls and some flower decorations? But this was good fun and it was especially nice to see so much of the now-neglected Ransome children.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A little gem!
A brilliant read for anyone who loved stories as a child . Evocative and entertaining with a particular focus on food eaten ! Great to dip into or read in one go. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Mrs Florence F Smith
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful
A wonderful, nostalgic trip of a book.
I enjoyed reading it so much and reacquainting myself with many old favourites and friends from books from my childhood. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Letty
5.0 out of 5 stars BRILLIANT!
Makes me smile EVERY time I open it!

Can't wait to get cooking some of my favourite read treats!

So many childhood books are in here it is quite unbelievable!
Published 10 months ago by Miss Laura M Richards
5.0 out of 5 stars love it!
Picture the scene - it's raining outside, you've got a bad cold, and you want to snuggle up in bed and indulge in a spot of nostalgia. Read more
Published 14 months ago by L.B. Yorkshire
5.0 out of 5 stars Raspberry cordial...
I love this book! It is perfect for adults nostalgic for their bookish childhoods... I haven't cooked much out of it, but it is delightful to look at. Read more
Published on 31 Dec 2011 by Larklight
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read, great recipes
I'm a US customer so although I enjoyed reading this immensely, I'll have to do a bit of conversion to the recipes to make them. Read more
Published on 16 Aug 2010 by Alison
4.0 out of 5 stars Cherry Cake and Ginger Beer
Really pleased to have this book at last. I ordered it (in paperback) over a year ago!

Then was told the paperback version wasn't happening, so finally ,I can get to... Read more
Published on 21 July 2010 by Mrs. Sheila Etchells
2.0 out of 5 stars I'm sure Anne never used Metric!
A nice book, hovere the thing that really spoilt it for me was that all the mesaurements were in metric (nothing in imperial at all). Read more
Published on 15 Jun 2009 by Malvern Rambler
2.0 out of 5 stars No photos!!!
After buying Janes previuos book and reading her blog I pre ordered this book with excitement. However I was bitterly disappointed when it arrived. Read more
Published on 9 Feb 2009 by Housewife
5.0 out of 5 stars Will get you reading and eating
I found this book to be absolutely charming. More a book about children's literature than a cookbook it still has some delicious recipes - both the parkin and macaroons are... Read more
Published on 4 Feb 2009 by J. C. Hiskins
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