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Having watched Paul Hollywood on the Great Britsh Bake Off I couldn't wait to get my hands on this book as I've baked bread, for many years, and wanted to learn something from the man himself. I was really looking forward to some advice and tips from the Master Baker, along with some really adventurous bread recipes. I feel cheated. Firstly the title is not strictly true....100 Great Breads....I don't think so. As well as a recipe for "bread letters", which are varnished and used as decorative pieces, the book includes recipes for scones (3 types), 5 types of focaccia, various danish pastries, cheese biscuits and cheese straws, Oh - I almost forgot, the chapter of "Sweet Treats" which has 10 recipes for a variety of sweet delights ranging from apple pies to pancakes.

Most of the recipes for bread, i.e loaves of bread, use white flour; one or two have that dash of adventure with wholemeal or rye, but where's the spelt, the granary? Okay, so we have a short chapter on The History of Bread, but I can find no mention of different types of grain, or the milling of flour for bread baking. The chapter on Tools, Techniques and Tips is so brief as to wonder why he bothered; once again he doesn't even mention the types of flour available, which is astonishing given that this is a Bread Recipe book

No, I'm sorry, but when I want 100 great bread recipes, that is what I hope to get.
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on 11 January 2012
I hoped to start out on a journey with Paul Hollywood, Master Baker? A journey that would Guide me through 100 great bread recipes. However, given how picky Mr Hollywood is about how people should follow his recipes accurately on 'Great British Bake Off', I have found the number of typos in this book (I purchased the kindle version) a bit slapdash and frankly disappointing.

I followed the advice in the book to try making the wheat sheaf first. This was a great activity with the children and kept us occupied for many hours. In fact I hadn't really banked on how long it would take to make all those pesky ears of corn? And the size of it! It just about fit in my oven but took a heck of a lot longer to cook and brown than the instructions in the book advised. I am an experienced home baker, but put this down to beginners errors.

Next up cheese scones, easy peasy you might think? Well, I was sceptical about using strong white flour but when the scones came out of the oven I thought I was onto a winning batch! They were the most perfect looking scones I have ever seen or baked before. Sadly though only one downside, the 30g of sugar in the recipe provided an unsavoury sweetness. I double checked the recipe but yes no salt was prescribed, only sugar. I scanned reviews to see if anyone had noticed this thinking it might be a typo but no, I could find nothing to indicate that the recipe was wrong.

Perhaps it was me being heavy handed I thought, again not wishing to believe that my Master Baker's recipes were less than perfect. And he didn't let me down on the basic white bread recipe. Chuck it all in a bowl, mix by hand, leave to rise and yes I managed at last to produce a successful loaf with a great rise and taste.

What next I thought after a long day at the office? The ciabatta recipe caught my eye, partly because my children love it and partly because at £1.75 for a small loaf from our local bakery it's not cheap. And this is where I found myself frustrated. The ingredients list calls for 30 mls of olive oil but the recipe neglects to mention when the oil should be added.

Yes, I can use my initiative but frankly I expected more from this book. In future I shall be looking for a book whose author has taken time to consider his reader, someone who has double checked his recipes are printed accurately and that they work. Sorry Mr Hollywood, I am no longer a fan.
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on 4 February 2006
This book has so many great recipes in it the only problem you may have is "where do I start?".
If you are a complete novice though this question is answered for you as Paul recommends you try the wheatsheaf bread first.
I have a breadmaker and although I love the simplicity of it, my loaves were always dense and heavy. Now that I have tried a few of the recipes from this book I am embarrased that I ever served these poor efforts to my family! Since buying this book none of my bread creations have failed, everything comes out light looking 'shop bought'.
My biggest compliment was when my husband refused to believe that the bread we were eating was made and not shop bought, and my daughter ask me to make loaves everyday for lunch.
Everything in this book is easy to undertand with step by step instuctions to guarantee success, there are a lot of tasy sounding variations for your money too. Sweet and savoury breads from different cultures too including croissants, nan, pitta breads, danish pastries, scones, beer bread!
If you buy this book, my biggest tip would be - try the baguette recipe first, a great recipe for bread that practically makes itself and the best bit is NO KNEADING.
Get rid of your breadmaker, all these can be made with less than 20 minutes effort - you won't regret it! (p.S go and get some fresh yeast from the bakery dept in Tesco's)
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on 19 April 2012
I consider myself a great cook but have never been brilliant with bread, but like many searched out this book after GBBO. It is NOT a new book - it is a re-print of a book he wrote 10 or so years ago when he was on another cooking show with Jenny someone - a good food daytime show.

I've now found out about the errors in salt, I think a fuller APOLOGETIC pdf should be available to those of us who bought the book so we can see exactly what errors have been fixed in the new versions WITHOUT BUYING IT AGAIN.

Errors aside, it is inconsistent, confusion and really only any use to someone who is a bread expert - if you're expecting tips on how to do the basics then forget it - he sums it up in one VERY short and NOT AT ALL explanatory paragraph of less than 50 words.........

In short, don't waste your money - there are MUCH better baking books on the market.
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on 22 January 2013
as with everyone else i also had to return the book to amazon.
the book was either rushed and never proof read or the person who wrote it is seriously dyslexic....
avoid at all costs until amazon either update their stock of until all the current copies are burnt at the stake.
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on 26 November 2011
Too few photos and rather short description of methods used make this a rather disappointing book. I was looking forward to receiving this but it did not fulfil my expectations.

Paul Hollywood is an established baker and his book did not do him justice. It looked hastily written. Since when did mince pies, cheese straws and pancakes & cream count as bread?

There are many good books on this subject and you would do well to review these first.
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on 6 January 2012
Have just tried a recipe for first time (Crusty Cob) Instinct told me that a tablespoon of salt was too much but followed recipe to the letter. Whilst the loaf looks ok, it tastes far too salty. Have now checked Paul Hollywood website and immediately it told me that there is a typo error and that the quantity of salt should be 7.5g - 10g of salt. Have now had to go through the book and amend the quantity throughout. Rather annoyed as it has been a waste of my time and effort and ingredients. In my opinion this is a major error and is inexcusable. I dont like having to deface my books either.
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on 17 December 2011
Sorry, but this book is dreadful. As a novice baker but inspired to try after watching the Great British Bake Off, where better, so I thought, to start than by buying a book "written" by the man himself. Forget the fact that there is no real technical instruction in the book, I'll put that down to it not being written for beginners, but when one of his basic recipies includes 1 tablespoon of salt, making the resultant bread virtually unedible, it doesn't give you a lot of confidence trying anything more advanced.

Reading through the various receipes, you will see that when making the basic dough, they vitually all give a different, sometimes subtle, description of what to do. It is as if all the receipies have been culled from different books with the result that there is no consistency.

I can't say I tried it, I had already lost all confidence in the book, but when looking at the croissant receipe I became totally confused. For the basic croissant, I could understand how you cut the rolled out dough into 8" squares and then on the diagonal etc., but on the next page, for the ham and cheese croissant, how can it work when you are instructed to cut the same rolled out dough into 4" strips ?!!

I looks to me like this book was hastily put together so that he and the publishers could cash in on it on the back of his TV fame. It is a great shame they did not check the receipes first or give more thought to the overall content.

I am pleased to say that my interest in baking bread has be restored by Dough, a magnificent book by Richard Bertinet which I would recommend to all novice bakers.
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on 29 January 2012
Paul Hollywood should be ashamed of himself allowing this book to go to print without having all of the recipes tried and tested. There are 29 recipes with the incorrect amount of salt - 1 tablespoon which should read 10g - I know this because I went to his website to write a complaint and found an instruction to say that some of the recipes in the book had the incorrect amount of salt - I now have lost faith in all the recipes - the pitta bread recipe which I made today suggested 50g of sugar was needed - they tasted sweet and all of them are now in the bin! The book will be following shortly! Apart from the errors in the ingredients there are no interesting tips - almost as though he doesn't want to share his knowledge. The sweet paste recipes on pp138 differs hugely from the sweet paste recipes on pp140 - I presume pp138 is correct, but who knows - not Paul Hollywood apparently. EXTREMELY DISAPPOINTED of Burgau, Portugal!

100 Great Breads
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on 24 August 2012
This book doesn't even deserve one star. I definitely would not recommend this book especially for beginners. The book uses fresh yeast which, despite the author's assurance, is not easy to buy and is not easier to work with than fast action yeast. Bread books should be written with instructions for fast action yeast and have a note about conversion to fresh not the other way around. The instructions for each recipe are not detailed enough to produce bread that will encourage people to continue making their own bread. This book is written by someone who is portrayed as being an expert bread maker yet there is next to nothing on the kneading process, a very important part of bread making. What little photography there is in the book is mostly unattractive (chocolate croissants has to be the worse photograph I have ever seen). As someone else has pointed out this book claims to contains 100 great breads so should not include recipes for muffins, mince pies, apple tart, pancakes with bananas and cream (this one had to be put in as a joke) and brown bread ice cream. This is a book that irrates me every time I see it on my bookshelf and wish I had returned it. If you want to be encourged to make a decent loaf and have good results on a regular basis then do not choose this book. There are far superior bread books out there.
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