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Blair Anna (Paris, France)

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The Popina Book of Baking
The Popina Book of Baking
by Isidora Popovic
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £16.99

79 of 81 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars amazing baking!, 21 April 2010
I was given this book just a few days ago, and I have been absolutely captivated by it.
The photography is really outstanding, and mouth-watering, but most importantly, the recipes are amazing.

The recipes are mostly British-inspired, but there are also quite a few interesting Eastern European recipes, including strudels, and bureks.
There's a really wide range of recipes, packed in under 150pages - but really, not a single page is wasted, and the recipes were very well chosen.
A lot of useful tips, and a lot of suggestions for pairings with wine or other foods turn this book into a fantastic cookbook.

I have tried quite a few recipes already: the goats' cheese, basil and tomato tart was brilliant - the base is interestingly enough a pizza base, and the filling has baking powder in it, which makes it so much lighter than your average quiche recipe.
I also made the apple and plum tart, and here again, there's something interesting about the filling: it's a sponge dough, which you spread on a shortcrust base, the sponge dough is a very light sponge, and the fruits cook in it, which makes the tart very spongy and juicy at the same time. A real success!
As for the fig, apricot and nut biscotti, they were absolutely fabulous, not too rich because they don't use butter, and just as crunchy as should be.
The savoury muffins were a real treat, and the parmesan and seed crackers were just perfect.
All in all, an excellent cookbook, which I will be using for a long time. I've even been asked for the recipe for the crackers and the biscotti!

Here's the contents:
~biscuits, biscotti and bites
-ginger, oat and sultana cookies
-pecan and cranberry cookies
-chocolate chip cookies
-oat and raisin cookies
-polenta, cherry and nut biscotti
-fig, apricot and nut biscotti
-white chocolate and fig biscuits
-ginger and chilli caramel biscuits
-pineapple, coconut and lemon biscuits
-splet, chocolate and hazelnut biscuits
-walnut shortbreads
-hazelnut macaroons
-gingerbread men and women
-easter egg biscuits
-granola bars

~sweet tarts
-pastry bases (sweet shortcrust, chocolate shortcrust, sponge dough)
-apple and plum tart
-rhubarb custard and crumble tartlets
-fig, grape and frangipane tartlets
-nectarine and summer berry tart (cover photo)
-rustic plum tart
-chocolate and pistachio tartlets
-chocolate and chestnut tart
-chocolate pear and hazelnut tart
-pecan and bourbon tartlets

~cakes & muffins
-very chocolate cake
-popina carrot cake
-lemon loaf with white chocolate icing
-cranberry, sherry and vine fruit cake
-chocolate and hazelnut strudel
-poppyseed strudel
-pumpkin and cinnamon filo strudel
-summer fruit and white chocolate muffins
-wholemeal spelt, carrot, apple and pumpkin seed muffins
-cranberry, orange and pistachio muffins
-chocolate truffle brownies
-cherry chocolate truffle brownies
-double orange truffle brownies
-white chocolate and coffee truffle brownies

~savoury straws & bites
-gouda and hazelnut bites
-stilton and celery bites
-cheshire and apple straws
-spinach and chilli straws
-parmesan and seed crackers
-cheddar and chive crackers
-simple spelt and oat crackers + beetroot, fennel and apple chutney
-spinach, garlic and nutmeg muffins
-feta and tomato muffins

~savoury tarts
-pastry bases (shortcrust, pizza dough, spelt pizza dough)
-butternut squash and parmesan tart
-goats' cheese, tomato and basil tart
-aubergine, red pepper and tomato tart
-pepper, pecorino and thyme tartlets
-honey-roast parsnip, carrot and shallot tart
-port-poached pear, celeriac, stilton and walnut tartlets
-mushroom tart
-roast potato and spring onion tartlets
-spinach, feta and tomato quiche
-leek and mature cheddar mini quiches
-courgette and fennel tart
-cheese burek
-spinach and cheese burek
-smokey vegetable, butter bean and paprika filo strudels
-little margherita pizzas with olives
-rustic focaccia with red pepper and onion
-mini cornbreads with vegetables
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