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Sugar Baby: Confections, Candies, Cakes, & Other Delicious Recipes for Cooking with Sugar [Hardcover]

Gesine Bullock-Prado , Tina Rupp
3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
List Price: CDN$ 35.95
Price: CDN$ 22.53 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Book Description

April 1 2011
Cookbooks with recipes for baking with sugar (in the oven), continue to top the bestseller lists. And yet, no one has set out to do a cookbook with recipes on cooking with sugar (on the stovetop)--until now. In Sugar Baby, Gesine Bullock-Prado offers totally unintimidating step-by-step advice; the simplest instructions; recipes for candy, confections, and treats that integrate stovetop work into finished desserts; and a hilarious voice. Organized by temperature and chemical stages, here are more than 100 recipes for lollipops, caramel, rock candy, chocolate mousse, macarons, marshmallows, pudding pops, cakes, and much more. Sugar Baby will satisfy even the most demanding sweet tooth.

Praise for Sugar Baby:

"Got a sweet tooth? Bakery owner Gesine Bullock-Prado's new cookbook, Sugar Baby, will school you in everything from rock candy to puff pastries. And Bullock-Prado --who has spent a lot of time in the kitchen with her actress sister, Sandra-- makes it look easy."
-Ladies Home Journal

“Truly, at her core, she like Dorie Greenspan or Rose Levy Beranbaum, is a dessert evangelist.” —Examiner.com


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Product Description

About the Author

Gesine Bullock-Prado, founder of the Gesine Confectionary product line and author of My Life from Scratch, has been featured in People, on the Food Network, and in many other national publications. She lives in Vermont.



Customer Reviews

3.3 out of 5 stars
3.3 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars More Bookish Thoughts... July 16 2011
By Reader Writer Runner TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
If you love candy, you'll love "Sugar Baby." If you enjoy desserts and baked goods but never eat candy, you'll still love it. And, I dare say, even if you never eat sweets but have the tiniest curiosity about how they're made, you'll still love it.

As Gesine Bullock-Prado (yes, she's Sandra Bullock's sister!) asserts in her introduction, "Cooking with sugar goes far beyond candy." Indeed, her recipes range from sea salt caramels to peanut butter fudge to cotton candy to a green tea crepe cake. And she organizes the book simply but brilliantly: each chapter corresponds to a stage in sugar cooking (dissolve, soft-ball, firm-ball, hard-ball, soft-crack, hard-crack). The final "put it all together" chapter combines elements from the first six to create cakes, scones and cookies.

Perhaps the most refreshing and surprising aspect of this book is the author's voice. She writes with an honest humour that comes across as neither pedantic nor forced, no mean feat in a world of over-the-top and personality-lacking cookbook commentary. While I may not feel ready to try my hand at making pulled maple taffy and barley malt skulls, Bullock-Prado has certainly inspired my creative dessert juices.

"Sugar Baby" contains numerous stunning photos though perhaps not enough. To augment the visual experience, readers can find more pictures and how-to video's on the book's website [...]
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing Feb. 7 2013
By Mumof2
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book is disappointing for a couple reasons:

1.Lack of pictures- I bought the book aware that it had few pictures, but it was still disappointing to see for myself just how few.

2. Swearing - When choosing a movie, or a novel, I realize that language might be a concern, but in a cook book? It seems uncalled for. I feel I could never recommend, or lend this book to a friend, even if the recipes turn out to be fantastic.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Was expecting more Dec 30 2011
Format:Hardcover
While I think this book has some great recipes and techniques, I was disappointed by the lack of pictures. I was hoping for some photos of even finished products but to my surprise there wasn't any! That would be my only complaint!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars  74 reviews
104 of 110 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Can we have 10 out of 5? March 25 2011
By Rebecca M. Riordan - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I love to cook, and I read a LOT of cookbooks. I read them like other people read novels. And I read every book on confectionery that I can get my hands on (there aren't alot, and most of them are of the Junior League variety--wonderful recipes, sometimes, but not a lot of information).

So I was delighted when sugarbaby showed up in my Amazon recommendations, and ordered it right away. I was hoping for a modern take on confectionery, and I was sure from other reviews that the book would be pretty. It's both of those things, and the two recipes I've tried so far (the matcha pastry cream and marshmallow fondant) were get-in-the-bowl-and-walk-around delicious.

What I didn't expect was the author's voice. She's funny. Actually laugh-out-loud funny. And very, very real. Just wonderful. I'm ordering her other book right now, just because I want to spend some more time with this amazing woman.

If you like to read cookbooks, buy this book!
38 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Exactly what I hoped!! March 31 2011
By rowanrose - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I've been toying with expanding my baking skills into the slightly scary realm of sugar work. I looked over A LOT of books before deciding on this one...and I am thrilled! Easy to read (and funny too!) Gesine makes the world of sugar easy to understand and far less daunting to attempt.

The first recipe I attempted was the dreaded and difficult to master Parisian Macaron. With this book in my hand (and the wonderful online video tutorial available the companion site [...] I knocked this recipe out of the park! Thanks Gesine!!

I would recommend this book to anyone really- it's great for the absolute beginner, and even seasoned cooks will get some fabulous new techniques and recipes out of it.
32 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Truly amazing! March 25 2011
By Angela Neal - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
I love Gesine's books, they are well written, put together in a wonderfully funny manner. The companion videos are thoughtful and extremely down to earth. Shows that Gesine has a passion to truly share her knowledge and enjoys her craft. How could that not be infectious! I have now tried 7 of the recipes in the book, every one turned out just as it was meant too. There were no surprises. What you see is truly what you get. I am now looking forward to her next book "Pie it Forward".

I would whole heartedly recommend this book to any foodie. Your friends and family will think you are a culinary genious! This book should in all sincerity win many awards, it is that good!!!!
21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Where are the photos? Oct. 14 2011
By K. Janzen - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
The recipes in this book seem to be doable for the most part, but there are hardly any pictures! How are you supposed to know what you are making, and if it turned out right? Some of these things i had never heard of and I have no intention of taking all that time and effort to make something i have no idea what it will look like. I was very disappointed, will try a few more recipes and then pass it on to the next person. Very sad, because the cover is so beautiful i expected the rest of the book to be just as visually pleasing. :(
16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Eye candy but not good candy instruction March 9 2012
By Maresa - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
The book's narrative seems honest and thoughtful and the photography is very appealing. It gives you the impression that the author is "leveling" with you.I find that the Sources she recommends are very good although known by professionals and serious aficionados (Pastry Chef Central, Baristaproshop, nutsonline, flavorbank), unfortunately they are scattered throughout the book, so every time you want to recall a certain website address you have to skim the whole thing.

The approach is original but overly ambitious. The author attempts to go over all the stages of cooked sugar; and since that is no small task,some recipes had to suffer. There are some recipes in which she is very thorough (macarons is one of them, you can also check out her demo on Vimeo)and others in which you wish she had elaborate a good deal more, like the praline recipe. Her one paragraph instructions simply doesn't cut it. If you are interested in confections (candy, chocolate et.al.) you can check out the volume on confections by the Culinary Institute of America (from the "at Home" Series), there you'll learn the technique, and it doesn't take that much space, but it definitely takes longer than a couple of paragraphs. The gummies are another example of a recipe that lacks detail(she also mentions gelatine gummies in the text but only gives a recipe for pectin gummies), again you can find better instruction in the CIA's volume.

At some point the author mentions that listing a "number" of eggs as opposed to a weight in the ingredients list is very inaccurate (I believe there is no debate on that)but then she uses "number" on her recipes. One other thing is that the author mentions the Sugarbaby website for pictures of the candies not illustrated in the book (and more demos) but the illustrations there are not very different from what you can find in the book and I find that the website is very neglected, very few posts throughout the year.

In short, I have found inspiration for preparing many confections from this book, but the actual baking procedures I have found elsewhere. If you want good instruction in the art of "cooking with sugar" and do not care for the stories and photography this is not a book for you. And anyway, if you like stories and eye candy you can have plenty from her blog Confections of a Closet Master Baker, the recipes I have tried from the there are good and creative and many of the stories there are recycled stories from her books.

Some people recommend this book because you laugh out loud and get interesting stories (and you might laugh out loud by the coffee table) but if you want to laugh out loud you can buy a novel, not a cookbook. You want a cookbook to work, you will not be laughing out loud when the recipes fail to deliver (in the kitchen, where it matters).
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