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The Italian Baker, Revised: The Classic Tastes of the Italian Countryside--Its Breads, Pizza, Focaccia, Cakes, Pastries, and Cookies Hardcover – 15 Dec 2011

4.7 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press; Revised edition (15 Dec. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1607741067
  • ISBN-13: 978-1607741060
  • Product Dimensions: 19.4 x 3.5 x 24.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 239,971 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
this books is full of amazing recipes and very inspiring. i don't eat a lot of bread, but when i do, i always bake my own. my next project will be the panettone! shame that there aren't more photos in the book. a lot of the things in here sound unfamiliar to me and it would be nice to get an idea of what the finished result is supposed to look like. on the bright side, it really is PACKED full of recipes. i love it and highly recommend it.
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Format: Hardcover
I love Italian breads such as focaccia and ciabatta but always felt that the shop-bought variety probably hardly resembles the authentic stuff. So I bought a copy of Carol Field's Italian Baker and made my own. All I can say is, it was definitely worth it. I always thought ciabatta was a very difficult bread to make because it is so wet, but since I made it using this book I have not bought a ciabatta from a shop for about 3 years and never will!

Carol Field divides her book into the following chapters:

BAKING BASICS (discussion of ingredients, equipment and method)

REGIONAL AND RUSTIC BREADS (includes olive oil bread, saltless tuscan bread, dark tuscan bread, Genzano bread, Merano rye, Sicilian bread, and lots more. My favourites in this chapter are the Como bread with a lovely crispy crust, olive rolls, Terni bread, and the ciabatta.)

MODERN BREADS (includes vegetable and herbs breads, as well as various-grain breads. The tomato bread is awesome as is the cheese bread. Marvellous chapter!)

USING LEFTOVER BREADS (savoury dishes and desserts)

CELEBRATION BREADS (a lovely selection of sweet breads with various additions such as nuts, fruit peel, dried fruit, spices)

ROLLS AND BREADSTICKS

PIZZA AND FOCACCIA

ELEGANT BREADS (sweet and savoury croissants, turnovers, tarts, strudels, appetizers)

TARTS AND PIES

CAKES

COOKIES

I definitely recommend Carol Field's book as it is a massive collection of every recipe you might ever need, for every occasion, whether it is a nice baguette to go with pasta, a rye bread for sandwiches, a pizza for the family, a cake for Christmas, or just quick cookies after work when you don't have much time.
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Format: Hardcover
I bought a copy of the first edition a few years ago and find it is the book I turn to when looking for a definitive recipe. Carol Field has done her homework well and as a result the recipes are reliable. The same can be said for another of her books, "In Nonna's Kitchen". Neither book is of the glamorous, coffee table genre, but if you are serious about Italian cooking, these books should be in your kitchen.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
excellent book, beautifully researched. It is a little dated now perhaps in the bread section, because techniques have improved. the cakes, cookies, pastries, some of simpler bread are excellent. very good tiramisu' that does not contain eggs (not as good as the traditional version with eggs but still an excellent version).
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The singular book for Italian baking written in English, it covers a gamut of doughs: modern and traditional, plain and flavoured (tomatoes, peppers, olives, herb, etc), big and small, multi-grain (rye, corn and wholemeal predominantly, no spelt, sorghum, khorasan and other artisan, mysterious, niche, 'new' flours), flatbreads (pizza and focaccia), festive breads, cakes, pastries and biscuits. So far, so good. Intimidating and inspirational is the immediate feeling. That is, once you've perused the preliminary chapter on ingredients and worked out equivalents (it's aimed at the US market). Due praise for its ambitious scope, one is uncertain how traditional or modern her techniques and recipes are without an English language precedent set. Everyone I asked said for direction in Italian baking said, 'Oh, have you seen The Italian Baker?'. Well, I have and that was over a year ago.

A weighted tome with insufficient pictures, the excessive, pedantic precision given to measurements and repetitive nature to the recipes disqualifies this as something only to impress your neighbours. The detail gives me a headache. Call me dumb, call me slow, call me a simpleton, but I seek clarity. Ironically, but by exhausting the maths, she only discombobulates in U.S. lingo. I'm no professional baker, but I see the wisdom of baker's percentages to empower the novice at home. There are none, fine: I've got a little brain, a little calculator, a little maths in my head: one could work it out basically. (A bit like Marmite one concedes, you either take to percentages or you don't, but the more you bake, the more you'll desire them: don't fight it, 'tis a baker's truth). So if you plan to spend a whole lot of money on this book, get yourself digital weights to use this book: it's redundant without.
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