June 9, 2014

Beach House Baking by Lei Shishak

Beach House Baking: An Endless Summer of Delicious Desserts
My rating: 4 of 5 spoons

I love to bake. I fell in love with baking long before I fell in love with cooking, so this book was definitely calling my name!! Now, I love sweets like most people, but I have to admit that I'm definitely more of a savory-type person. I really appreciated the savory side of this book as well as the sweet. The Aged Cheddar, Bacon and Scallion Biscuits were the first to call out my name (Oh, my! You have to try these!), and the blueberry scones are on my menu for tomorrow morning. I know the Surfin' P.B.J. cupcakes are going to be a huge hit with my family, and my girls loved the snicker doodles!!

On a personal preference side, while I love having a photo for every recipe, the style of the cookbook (type font, large lettering, etc.) reminds me more of a kids cookbook. Not to my taste, but the recipes help make up for that. Also, this is a baking book, so the frozen pops and the beverages--especially the alcoholic ones!--seemed completely out of place.

Over all, this is a great little baking book that about anyone could find something to enjoy!

I received a copy of this book from Skyhorse Publishing for my honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

An Edible Mosaic by Faith Gorsky

An Edible Mosaic: Middle Eastern Fare with Extraordinary Flair
My rating: 4 of 5 spoons

Though a long time fan of ethnic cuisine, my education in Middle Eastern fare has been sketchy at best, so I was delighted to get a chance to cook from and review this cookbook. The cover photo alone made my mouth water and made me want to dive in! I was somewhat surprised that the cover photo was of chicken kebabs--not something you'd necessarily expect from a book like this. I would have expected beef or lamb, but not chicken! My girls thought it looked amazing, so I thought I'd make some for supper--until it came to the spices. I don't have a Middle Eastern store handy, so I headed to the front of the book to make the Chicken Spice Mix myself. I ended up sitting there laughing as I would have to make 5 different batches of spice mix to finally get the Chicken Spice Mix!! While the spices weren't necessarily hard to find, they aren't necessarily spices I have right at hand, either. Therefore, the Chicken Kebabs still sit on my "to make" list, and we moved on.
Meat Sautéed with Leeks (Bellasia) gets a definite thumbs up as does the Zucchini Fritters, and Sesame Seed Breads. The Spiced Shawarma Chicken Wraps have gone the way of the Chicken Kebabs for now as I haven't been able to find the fenugreek yet, and I'm not willing to purchase online and probably pay more for shipping than the spice itself. However, it is definitely on my "to make" list as well.

Overall, this is a great book. I did lower the rating a bit as there are definitely some harder-to-find ingredients that make cooking some of the recipes a bit of a challenge. However, I do highly recommend this book.

I received a copy of "An Edible Mosaic" from Tuttle Publishing for my honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.