All Cakes Considered. I fell in love with it while humorlessly waiting for the kids at the Costco book isle. For months, I dropped subtle hints like sending him a picture of it from my phone and emailing links from amazon.com. The author Melissa Grey, a writer for the radio show All Things Considered, started a personal cake baking project that morphed into this lovely book.
Rosie and I made the first cake in the book last week. More than a mere cookbook, it is an entire cake baking curriculum. The author recommends aspiring bakers start at the first cake and work through to the end, about 52 cakes. So, signed onto that tantalizing journey, we began at the beginning.
These recipes are not your basic "cream butter and sugar" version. "Cream butter..." was followed by 5 useful, entertaining, and convincing paragraphs on how to properly cream the butter. "...and sugar" required several more paragraphs of enlightening information and directions. By the time we got the 4 paragraphs on "add the eggs" our cake looked unlike any cake I'd ever baked. I was hooked.
Our results were amazing. The first cake in the book is a lemon sour cream pound cake, called The Man Catcher. (The author promises the cake will always catch the man, but makes no promises on the baker's abilities to catch or keep one.) The one that emerged from our oven was fragrant, fluffy, moist and dense. Once we mixed and drizzled on the lemon glaze, the cake was catching every living thing in sight.
Now, how many posts have I written about the wonders of the low carb lifestyle? No, these cakes aren't anything close to low carb, but I have come up with a clever solution to the delicious-cake-hanging-around-the-kitchen-all-day-long problem. Park Day. If Rosie and I bake on Monday evening while Bill and Theo are at Boy Scouts, then there is cake at lunch on Tuesday and an hour later the rest goes to the masses of enthusiastic homeschoolers at our weekly park date.
What do I love best about this book? The writing engages and entertains me. The pictures make my mouth water and create serious desire to move forward to the next projects. The instructions are clear and very easy to follow. Still, my favorite part is being able to learn beside my child, tailoring the study of several subjects to her level and needs with something she is truly passionate about. And then serving all this "schooling" up for dessert
PS Yes, that lovely pictures is OUR cake. Isn't it amazing!