Top critical review
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Lovely Looking ....but an 'Armchair' Cookbook
on 30 August 2010
This book certainly gets you in the mood for tarts, as a great tart lover myself I'm half revved up already. The prose is perhaps rather gushing and posh in its description of the tarts and various vignettes on each of them but it looks and reads very nicely, getting the juices flowing every time! There are some nice sounding little numbers in it. It's a bit like tart pornography.
i cook a large tart at least once a week and having used the book and others for a number of years though, I do conclude that too many of the recipes are flawed. The recipe for lemon tart contains enough filling for at least 2 tarts and states a cooking time and oven temperature that will barely warm the filling through (in fact even at a decent oven temperature the filling will not set, there are no egg whites in the mixture) The recipe for frangipane tart contains way too much flour and although the result looks amazing it is too dry and floury. The recipe for fig tarts fails to mention that the tart will be flooded with fig juices and go soggy.
Overall, it seems that a lot of effort went in to producing a great sounding book, but rather too little on recipes that work. I really wonder whether anyone ever tested them....not good enough for a book costing such a lot.