I am new to cake decorating just under a year however I have been baking for about 3 years. I love books and when I was younger I slept with a book instead of a stuffed animal. (My mom thought that was weird.) So I now am collecting baking and cake decorating books. So far my faves are The Secrets of Baking, Death by Chocolate Cakes, The Dessert Book, Baking From My Home to Yours and I have one Toba Garrett book Professional Cake Decorating which was not cheap but I think its worth the money. Anyway I thought I would ask everyone about decorating and baking books that I might want to add to my collection.
1. What books/authors do you recommend?
2. Which do you not recommend?
I really like Lindy's books and I'm dying to get Martha Stewart's Wedding Cake book! I can't wait to hear what other people recommend!
Before you ask, it's Lindy Smith. I forgot her last name for a minute!
Mary Ford. She has many books out and I thought many interesting designs. I am basically a b;cream decorator and being from England many of her techniques used fondant or royal but they were easily dup'ed in b'cream
Nic Lodge; JenniferMI; SugarShack (SharonZ) all have wonderful, informative DVDs out that in my opinion are better than books
I love the Whimsical Bakehouse.
SugarShack (SharonZ)....her Perfecting the Art of Buttercream dvd is loaded with information, it's worth every penny! I can't wait to get more of her dvd's.
Without a doubt-The Cake Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum-especially if you are a scratch baker. I never tasted cake until I used her recipes. She also teaches techniques and basic understanding about making cakes.
I did just buy CakeLove by Warren Brown and am unimpressed. All of his recipes contain several different types of alcohol and special ingredients. Which isn't really that big of a deal but his method of baking is completely different. He only uses unbleached flour with potato starch. So unless you want to completely change the way you bake then it is worth it. Some of the recipes do sound very good though.
In addition to all of the ones already listed, I can also recommend Nick Malgieri's "Perfect Cakes" and I do love Carol Deacon's decorating books too.
Also, I second all the praise for Rose's "Cake Bible". I especially like the way she lists metric, imperial and volume measurements for all her recipes. I have a lot of US books and as much as I love the recipes, the volume measuring generally drives me batty, especially when trying to increase/decrease recipe quantities. Here in Australia, all books worth their salt will list weights, then volume alongside perhaps.
Thank you everyone for your suggestions. It's just in time for my christmas list. Thanks to candee2300 I was close to purchasing cake love, I recently checked it out at my local library and decided to hold off on it for awhile. Keep them coming.
Toba Garrett's books ( I have two) have been a treasure to work with. She has some great how to and I've loved them since I got them. The Cake Bible is a great place for other dessert cakes and techniques. And I LOVE LOVE LOVE Colette Peters books. Colette's Cakes. A great place to get you into some fun and unusual cakes.
Hope that helps
Regan Daley's In The Sweet Kitchen: The Definitive Baker's Companion
It's got some amazing recipes but it also explains about all the different ingredients that are used in baking. It's also got some great charts that tell you what flavours go well together. For example Pears - it will give you a ton of other flavours that go with it...ginger, cinnamon, raspberry all sorts of great info.
It is a baking book as opposed to a decorating book.
love sharon's dvds
debbie brown books
confetti cake books (saw the new one looks good)
DEBBIE BROWN and MAISIE PARRISH if you want to learn how to model figures and animals, ALAN DUNN for flowers and you should subscribe to cake decorating magazine and cakes and sugarcraft magazines to keep abreast of current trends in cake decorating and baking.
I also like the Toba Garrett book - The Well Decorated Cake. The Martha Stewart Wedding Cakes book is nice (buy it at Amazon for a better price and free shipping!) because it has great photos and I've tried three of the recipes from the book and so far they're all very good. I also like anything by Peggy Porschen.
The two books I've been very disappointed in are Confetti Cakes by Elisa Strauss - the recipes I've tried are AWFUL. The other book is the new one by Eric Lanlard called Glamour Cakes. The cakes are VERY old fashioned looking and I ended up giving the book to a friend.
I like the Cake Mix and Cupcake Doctor books.
Can't stand RLB or her Cake Bible....unless you like recipes so precise that you have to bake on the third Tuesday of the newest moon month in the eliptical ocean year of the dragon fly at the hour of the precise sunrise before eight waves have broken the shore of the fuschia sea......while standing on your left big toe spinning 2.5 circles in 7.3 minutes and never blinking more than twice (metric volume miliblinks, by the way)
I guess I am lazy...I dunno.
How do I order SugarShacks DVDS?