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King Arthur Flour Bakers Companion: The All Purpose Baking Cookbook Hardcover – Aug 26 2003
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From Publishers Weekly
The company that makes one of the pantry's most recognized baking ingredients-flour-presents this practical and comprehensive baking cookbook. The book begins, of course, with a no-nonsense discussion of measuring flour, a step in the baking process that thwarts many would-be pastry chefs (the authors urge homecooks to use a scale). Recipes are divided into category-based chapters-from breakfasts (with dozens of derivatives of pancakes and waffles), fried doughs, and quickbreads to yeasted breads, cookies and bars, and cakes. Carb-haters, beware: there's not much protein in these pages. Many recipes are tried-and-true formulas for favorite dishes, such as the Simple But Perfect Pancake, Simple Sugar Cookies, and Classic Blueberry Muffins; others are more daring variations on a theme, such as White Chocolate Hazelnut Cheesecake, and Potato, Dill and Onion Crackers. Detailed and logical explanations of how baking works, plus an in-depth discussion of baking ingredients make this a valuable guide for beginning bakers and an informative addition for pastry aficionados. 16 pages of color photos. 200 line drawings.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Experienced home bakers now have a new resource, and beginning bakers find constructive encouragement in The King Arthur Flour Baker's Companion. Long a supplier of professional-quality ingredients and equipment, the Vermont-based company has now produced a comprehensive guide for amateur bakers. The book's no-nonsense approach appears in the very first pages of its introduction, where practical tables of measurements and weight-volume equivalencies provide data that bakers are sure to consult repeatedly. Recipes outline breakfast traditions including pancakes, waffles, and French toast, followed by other quick breads such as crepes, coffee cakes, muffins, biscuits, and scones. A further chapter covers items rarely made at home, such as crackers. Recipes for yeast breads, cookies, cakes, pies, and pastries survey the high points of the baker's art and technique. Helpful hints scattered among the recipes include the advice to freeze biscuits just prior to baking to increase their flakiness. This encyclopedic work concludes with chapters covering utensils and ingredients. Detailed nutritional analyses for each recipe enhance the book's utility. The King Arthur Flour Baker's Companion's provenance grants this book authority, and its comprehensiveness makes it a necessary purchase for every culinary collection. Mark Knoblauch
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Top Customer Reviews
What I anticipated when I opened this book was a dry, technical work steeped in discussions of the effects of gluten and altitude and humidity on bread making, similar to some of the more detailed parts of better books on bread baking. All of these discussions are here, plus others on the finer points of measuring flour and types of flour, but with a difference.
The biggest surprise in the book was the light, personal touch of the writing. It all has the tone you may expect in a very good book on regional cooking. And, lo and behold, there is a hint of regionality and local tradition in the selection of materials in the book. In spite of the fact that King Arthur products are available throughout the country (unlike White Lily, for example), the book retains a very New England tone to it's selection of recipes. One prominent example is in the recipe for biscuits, where it advises all experienced Southern biscuit makers to simply skip that page, as since 'we don't want to shock you with the way we make biscuits up north'.
That doesn't mean the book does not touch on every subject you may expect it to cover. As I said in my opening paragraph, it easily covers much more than what I expected. The very first chapter dealing with breakfast foods covers material not commonly covered in conventional baking surveys.Read more ›
I also like the layout of this book. It's easy to find things, plus it's a cozy read. The book has a bit of a New England feel to it. I tend to like cook books that you can sit and thumb through and think of future baking projects and this book is definitely that way. There's a lot of interesting information about how to bake something better.
I don't know if this the end all book on baking, but I do find that I'm reaching for this book more than most of the others I own. The only thing I don't like about it is the use of shortening for many of the recipes. I tend to prefer baking with butter. This is only a personal preference though. Overall it's a usefull book to own.
P.S. The recipes themselves look delicious. I've only had time to try a couple and they were great!!!
This book already lives on my kitchen counter, rather in the bookcases. There's no higher praise than that.
Most recent customer reviews
Love it! I've tried two different recipes and they both turned out wonderful! I love the step by step instructions with a bit of history thrown in. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Cindy-V
I have used KAF's products for a long long time. I have the cookie book and I often visit KAF's websites for recipes.
I like the way the recipes are being arranged. Read more
This book is worth its weight in gold. Really and truly.
In addition to the numerous recipes in the book, there are also explanations and trouble shooting for baking such as... Read more
My son's friends have started to say, "Steven's Mom makes awesome peanut butter fudge bars." My husband's colleagues prefer the crackers... Read morePublished on June 4 2004 by noone
I have a huge cookbook collection and this book is so good I gave it for Christmas to 4 of my family who bake. Read morePublished on Jan. 28 2004 by Ms. Margaret J. Sinclair
If you need a fantastic baking book on how to bake virtually everything, then this is the book for you! Read morePublished on Jan. 10 2004 by Jennifer A. Wickes
Had the book for 2 weeks.
I tried the Blueberry muffins, twice. Both times the the muffins were so heavy and stuck to the pan. Read more
THE KING ARTHUR FLOUR BAKER'S COMPANION is a delight, both as a book to read and enjoy, and as a cookbook. Read morePublished on Nov. 10 2003 by Jennifer Juday