For a long while, I had been resisting the temptation to buy baking recipe book... the reason is simple, because there are simply just too many wonderful baking related blogs and websites with countless recipes for me to surf online. Plus... I am slightly running out of bookshelf space at home :)
2 weeks ago, I finally succumbed to the temptation and ordered a few recipe books on amazon.com.cn when I found out that one of my colleagues stationed in Beijing will be making a trip back Singapore soon. For those who are not aware, amazon.com.cn offers great selection of Chinese books at a good discount & really a lot of other stuff online, but too bad their free delivery is limited to within China. I went on a book shopping spree and bought 10 books online, 3 of them are baking books, while the rest are baby related titles and some leisurely reads for myself.
Last week, I got my books, thanks to Agnes who helped to collect and pay for the books and Meishih who carried them all the way back to Singapore.
The 3 books on baking that I bought are 西式糕点制作大全by川上文代(Fumiyo Kawakami), 从零开始学烘培by文怡and轻松学烘培by贝太厨房.
西式糕点制作大全is the most detailed of all 3, there are standard steps for each category of dessert (cakes, biscuits, tarts etc), including some Japanese and South East Asian desserts. For each category, Kawakami illustrated in detail the step-by-step process involved and at the end of it she added elaboration on how to avoid failure. I find that it is useful she also put in variations that can be achieved using the standard steps.
从零开始学烘培is the most fun to read, with the author adding some tips accompanying each recipe. Some of the tips are related to steps in the recipe, some are just additional knowledge about a particular ingredient used. I find it less comprehensive compared to Kawakami's but it suits my personality more. I like easy read and Kawakami's is too textbook like. I earmarked quite a number of recipes on this book that I would like to try out in near future.
轻松学烘培is the most simple and straightforward of all 3. Though there are tips at the end of most recipes as well, they are written in point form and are of no nonsense style. One minor flaw that I found out while trying out one of the recipe inside is that the publisher didn't include in how much the recipe will yield.
While online info comes really easy these days, I always think that having a physical book to hold, to flip and to read, remains one of life's simple pleasure. Recipe book may not make a typical read but I will not be surprised if I find myself keep returning to these recipe books, looking for inspiration.