The reviewers have been busy and there’s lots of buzz! Here’s a round-up of recent reviews and kudos for Nancy and her latest work.
PRAISE FOR NANCY’S KNEADLESSLY SIMPLE BREAD BOOK –
Reviews from Home Bakers Everywhere:
“Kneadlessly Simple is simply a fabulous cookbook. I have been making the most wonderfully delicious breads…. While I had tried my hand at baking bread previously, I have never made – or even tasted – breads so flavorful. They are also really easy to make but are in no sense a compromise. I have not had one failure and have worked my way through a quarter of the book.… I gave several as gifts … one to … a serious bread maker who said she will never knead again! Thank you Nancy Baggett!!”
“This book takes quality home breadmaking and puts it within everyone’s reach. The recipes themselves are very simple…. I’m having a fantastic time baking through the recipes…. I’ve been breadmaking for many years, and I have so MANY bread cookbooks, and this is the first one I’ve seen in ages that really gives dramatically new and valuable information.”
“This book is amazing…I’m working my way through it … from front to back and loving each recipe! The whole concept is so darned easy…my family has not had one slice of store bought bread since I bought the book … and truthfully, we may never again. I’ve shared some with family and friends and they are all amazed….”
“…. If I had ever been asked to make a list of 20 things I’d like to do or accomplish before I die, becoming proficient at baking bread would have made my list…. I was never willing to put in the time to develop the skill to bake bread the conventional way, so my occasional efforts were definitely sub-par. But now, thanks to this book, I have crossed bread-baking off my to-do list! I have tried 5 or 6 of the recipes so far, and all have been terrific. My favorite is the simple peasant-style boule, which rivals the artisan style boules from any upscale bakery. So delicious, and so easy….”
“I received this book as a gift, and have made five of the recipes so far – each one a spectacular success. Kinda like making a brisket in the … slow cooker – comes out great every time. I highly recommend it.”
“Thank you, thank you, thank you- for Kneadless book. I have spent 2 years trying to get kneadless bread right- original recipe, Cook’s, rose b., hertzberg, many internet sites. Yours is the best. Made pot boule and it was fabulous. No mess, no clean, no knead, great bread. Try it–will never purchase bread again.” A Brawer
“As a new cook, I’m happy this technique makes bread making easy. I always watched my mom make bread, and I thought it was too complicated. Now with Nancy Baggett’s updated technique it’s easy to make bread! I love the way that you can make the dough and adjust the rising time to fit your schedule. This way you can make the dough the night before, let it rise, complete a few more steps, and you have freshly made bread! The directions are easy simple and easy to follow. I can’t wait to gather more ingredients and make some more bread!” E Horting
“…the results have been impressively crusty loaves, even better than what I get in many bakeries (and far better than anything I can get in the supermarket). But what I think is most interesting is how the author gives so many options for rise time. If I’m busy and can’t bake the loaf until the next day, I choose the long rise (anywhere from 4 to 24 hours, depending on the recipe). She is also gives 1- to 2-hour OR 2- to 3-hour rise options. And as the title claims, there is no kneading involved. … I really like not having a kitchen counter covered with flour.” Justin S.
Here’s what some Professional Bakers had to say about Kneadlessly Simple:
“Nancy Baggett has brought all her considerable baking and teaching skills to the table in her newest book, Kneadlessly Simple. Bakers always knew that making bread was fun, but now, with Nancy’s help, it can also be surprisingly easy. She really gets the artisan principles of slow-rise bread baking and has created an easy method that will work for home bakers of all skill levels.”
—Peter Reinhart, author of Peter Reinhart’s Whole Grain Breads: New Techniques, Extraordinary Flavor
“Nothing beats the flavor and texture of good homemade bread, especially when it’s made from a no-knead, no-fuss dough and it rivals the best artisan bread you can buy anywhere. That’s just what Nancy Baggett gives you in Kneadlessly Simple—an adaptation of all the most up-to-the-minute methods for producing outstanding bread with little effort—you’ll love it!”
—Nick Malgieri, author of The Modern Baker
GREAT REVIEWS FOR THE ALL-AMERICAN DESSERT BOOK
Lauren Chapin, The Kansas City Star:
Nancy Baggett has done for desserts what she did for cookies: collect oodles of recipes into one handsome and useful cookbook. The All-American Dessert Book (Houghton Mifflin, $35) is the follow-up to her highly successful (and usable) The All-American Cookie Book.
As she did in Cookie, Baggett gives her topic a sense of history and place. She thumbed through family recipes, traveled about the country and researched origins. For example, she learned cobbler-baking tips from Jean Jennings of Mountain View, Ark., and sorghum cookie baking tips from Judy Wilson of the Cumberland Mountains in Monterey, Tenn. ….
My All-American Cookie Book is stained and dog-eared, signs it is well-used and well-loved. I suspect Dessert is destined for the same happy fate.
Candy Sagon, The Washington Post:
Did you know that the Snickers bar was named for a horse? Did you know that Martha Washington made cheesecake, but it didn’t contain any cheese? Baking expert Nancy Baggett loves these nuggets of dessert history almost as much as she loves hunting down the perfect dessert recipe.
The author of 2001’s The All-American Cookie Book canvassed bakeries and bakers across the country and dug into historical documents to come up with 150 updated recipes. The beautifully photographed book includes forgotten favorites that deserve a new look, such as butterscotch custard pie, and traditional treats with a new twist, such as gingered pear and apple cobbler. Baggett, who has written for the Food Section, has a reputation for dependable recipes, but she doesn’t take shortcuts.
Staff Review, Publishers Weekly:
Apple pie may be America’s signature dessert, but if this fine cookbook is any measure, there are a number of contenders that could reign equally supreme. Take Yellow Sour Cream–Butter Layer Cake, for example: a staple of wedding and birthday celebrations, it can be paired with nearly any icing and, in Baggett’s version, is moist, aromatic and “very buttery.”
Baggett (The All-American Cookie Book) canvassed the country, visiting bakeries, restaurants, confectioneries and old-fashioned soda shops to come up with this collection of 150 recipes. Her book covers pies, tarts and cheesecakes; cakes and frostings; fruit desserts; puddings; cookies; ice creams; candies; and easy gifts and treats, such as Maple Sugar on Snow (a popular Vermont confection). There are, naturally, many regional favorites, such as Black Walnut Pound Cake, adapted from several versions from Missouri, where black walnuts grow in abundance. Many recipes include instructional asides (e.g., a lesson on forming the lattice top for a pie, used in both Deep-Dish Blueberry Pie and Deep-Dish Raspberry-Apricot Pie), and useful sidebars detailing the history of Concord grapes, Key limes, Martha Washington’s cheeseless cheesecake and other fare. Most recipes also have a solid introduction explaining the recipe and techniques.
Elegant and inspiring, this volume has something for every cook.
From Fine Cooking, Cookbook Review
Nancy Baggett’s The All-American Cookie Book would be a real treasure for the recipes alone (New York Black & Whites, Maple Sugar Cookies, Turtle Bars, Chocolate Whoopie Pies, Key Lime Frosties ….) But her thorough research—Baggett crisscrossed the country and delved into antique cookbooks to find and update the best American cookie recipes—makes this cookbook fascinating reading, too.
— Susie Middleton, Executive Editor, Fine Cooking
From Epicurious.com, Cookbook Review
Did you know that Baker’s chocolate was named for a Dr. Baker? That both oatmeal and peanuts used to be scorned as food for horses and pigs? …. If not, get yourself a glass of milk and a handful of cookies, … and sit down an read this fascinating book.
It’s not just a factual book that touts … cookie trivia; the recipes are fine too. Clearly written, with excellent photographs, they show you what the cookies are supposed to look like…. There’s even a section on technique that every cookie-baker should read…. But for me the best part was the lore, the bits of food history that Nancy Baggett discovered when she looked through old cookbooks for truly American cookies.
–Irene Sax, epicurious.com Jan. 2001
From Gourmet, Books for Cooks List
…anybody who picks up Nancy Baggett’s The All-American Cookie Book (Houghton Mifflin) is sure to extend their holiday baking well beyond December.
From The Washington Post
…. we love the way the … (All-American Cookie Book) is organized by ingredients, rather than by cooking technique (rolled, dropped, cut-out, etc.) as many cookbooks do. That way, if you adore oatmeal cookies, all the different variations are in one place. Baggett has also done a nice job of discovering regional favorites, like Florida’s penchant for making cookies with sweetened condensed milk. Finally, the historical research … yields some fun and fascinating facts. Did you know that chocolate appeared in desserts beginning in the 1800s, but that it never really caught on until the …(20th century)?
–Candy Sagon, Food Section Bookshelf, Dec 12, 2001
From The San Francisco Chronicle, Best Cookbooks List
The All-American Cookie Book by Nancy Baggett … is a flag-waver of a cookbook, build on the contention that American bakers have not just copied European customs but have created a distinct sweet repertoire of their own. The collection is accompanied by enough basic advice and instructions to tempt even a kitchen klutx to dip into the flour sack and the sugar jar.