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Warm Bread and Honey Cake
Warm Bread and Honey Cake
by Gaitri Pagrach-Chandra
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £22.95

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Masterpiece!, 19 Nov. 2012
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It is almost impossible to believe that books on yet another cupcake, chocolate chip cookie and Victoria Sponge gets reviews in the tens and hundreds and yet this masterpiece of research, execution, of flavour and finish has escaped through the net. That might be a good thing, as it's a book that is made to be treasured and I jealously guard who I gift it to.

This is the kind of cookbook I gift to a discerning foodie friend, someone who I know will appreciate it's worth. From it's finely designed pages and clean, inviting photography, you are whisked into an eclectic world of filo pastries dripping in syrup, moon cakes with intricate embossing, flaky flatbreads, spiced breads, spiced cakes, rolls and coconut cakes to tempt even the most reluctant. The book highlights 'ethnic' baking, or rather baking that so indigenous to their place of origin that it's rarely seen outside it's borders. Till now.

The writing is evocative but never drippingly sentimental, heartfelt and she paints the landscapes of the recipes she has collected from the world over. Gaitri has a talent as a food historian and if you like to know more about what you are eating from a historical point of view, then this book will charm your mind as well as your palate.

I have delved into this book with gusto. Chocolate Hazelnut Rolls, Krentenwegge, Spiced Cardamom bread, Pan de Queso, Parathas, Coconut Cakes and Breads and much, much more besides have been given a thorough work out and none, NONE have failed. I have also enjoyed a good read through without the intention of baking, but inevitably find myself hurtling towards the kitchen to turn her words into reality. The instructions are clear, precise and true to experience. This isn't a slap dash, all-in-one, bung in the oven sort of job. There is time here to immerse yourself in a bake and it gives majestic results. See the photos.

This is one hefty piece of work, printed on thick paper, with a matte finish and is the kind of work that you will find yourself discovering more of time over time. In short, if the house was burning round my ears and the kids were out, I would grab this book and none else. I might try to hurl her next book Sugar and Spice to my husband through the window as well!

WBHC is a masterpiece. A true collection of the best cookbooks would be woefully incomplete without it's presence.
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Sugar and Spice: Sweets & Treats from Around the World
Sugar and Spice: Sweets & Treats from Around the World
by Gaitri Pagrach-Chandra
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £22.95

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another cracker from an author who knows what she's talking about, 19 Nov. 2012
As a massive fan of Warm Bread and Honey Cake, I had a lot of hopes and fears in equal measure, about Gaitri Pagrach-Chandra 's second book. I needn't have, it delivers on all accounts. It baffles me that the previous reviewer could not find a single thing to recommend. Sure, if all you want is another book on another version of a Victoria Sponge (gorgeous though that is), this is not the book for you. However, if you want to get a little more intrepid and tackle sugar based work, bringing those celebration morsels from the world over into your own kitchen, don't look past this stellar work.

She starts the book by saying, " Sugar is in my blood..." And that's it, I'm hooked. The beautifully photographed and stylish yet restrained pages are filled to the brim with treats of every kind imaginable. Here, Gaitri covers, or rather uncovers the sweets from several corners of the world, bringing them out of relative obscurity, just as she had done for the wonderful bakes in Warm Bread and Honey Cake. The writing as ever, is warm, evocative, honest and truthful. She does not delve as deeply into the history of each item as she did in her first book, but more than enough information is given to add another dimension to that lovely little treat you have created. Her recipe instructions and timings are clear and true to experience, which is so important with sugar work.

Chapters include caramels, toffees, cream/milk based sweets, nougats, nut based treats, marzipans, indian sweets, truffles, brownies, shortbreads and tarts, amongst other things. Ingredients are easy to come by and she has simplified some of the traditional lengthy processes, without any sacrifice of texture or flavour. Storage instructions as well as the shelf life are given, which I think is hugely important.

I have made the Indian sweets, Mohanthlal, the Ladoos and the Coconut Treacle Toffees and explored the brittles too. Incredible stuff! There is such a variety of FLAVOUR to explore here. And that, is the merit of this book! Wonderful, well done!
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1=50!: 1 Dough 50 Cookies - Love Food
1=50!: 1 Dough 50 Cookies - Love Food
by Linda Doeser
Edition: Hardcover

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lovely Surprise of a book, 23 May 2011
I am a sucker for a cookie. And I have a fair few cookbooks and am not short of cookie recipes. However, this rather random book has proved its worth repeatedly. It does not have a big name behind it which actually is refreshing in that the book is strictly recipes and not family lifestyle shots! As mentioned above, the method and results are accurate. There are no unpleasant surprises and there is enough variety to keep it interesting. I love the Chocolate Spread Hazelnut Drops and Coconut and Cranberry Cookies. Excellent buy!


Papercrafting In No Time (In No Time (Cico Books))
Papercrafting In No Time (In No Time (Cico Books))
by Clare Youngs
Edition: Paperback
Price: £14.99

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous Book!!!!, 26 Jan. 2011
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I am in love with this book. I cannot put it down. I have bought the other book as well, Stylish papercraft, by the same author but this one is my favourite! Like the other book, it covers the spectrum of papercraft and suits any occassion. As I have young children, her chapter dedicated to kids rooms is fabulous though I would not shy displaying some of it elsewhere. Sectioned into the appropriate occasion such as gifts, party time. cards and living spaces, it offers great varierty. As a newcomer to papercraft, this book is inspiring, easy to follow, well laid out with great pictures and not heavy on equipment. Also the results are contemporary and stylish. I have made loads of the projects, my favourite being the papercuts. The paper slippers are a thing of beauty. I recommend this to anyone, particularly newbies who want to experience the range of paper-arts. This one fits the bill entirely!


Stylish Papercraft: 25 Contemporary Projects for Your Home
Stylish Papercraft: 25 Contemporary Projects for Your Home
by Clare Youngs
Edition: Hardcover

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent taster into the world of papercraft, 26 Jan. 2011
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I LOVE this book. As a newcomer to the world of papercrafting, I purchased this book along with papercrafting in no time, both by Clare Youngs and they are excellent tasters to the spectrum of papercraft. What I particularly love is that it covers quite a wide gamut of papercrafts, folding, cutting, decoupage, mache work, and the results are contemporary, attractive and easy to get to grips with. Plus you dont need tons of equipment. I have already made several of the projects but my favourite has to be the chinese gift boxes which I use to wrap edible gifts to astounded friends! I would recommend this to anyone who has an interest in this medium, wants a little direction and is not too challenging. But I would suspect that even more accomplished crafters would find joy out of this book.


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