Taste: Baking With Flavour is the third book from the partnership of professional baker Dean Brettschneider and contributing food editor at Cuisine magazine, Lauraine Jacobs. Their first two books – The New Zealand Baker...
Now this cookbook is right up my alley. The combination of the words comfort, food, eating and pleasure – especially in winter – talk far more to me that those hated phrases low fat, slimline and reduced calories. Which isn’t to say that comfort food is going to have a drastic effect on your waistline, although it might! It’s just that the whole idea of comfort food which, by nature, involves things hated by the health police such as full fat milk, real butter and clotted cream, is especially evocative in the winter. With cold and rain outside (here in New Zealand), now is the perfect time to stay indoors, browse through cookery books and decide what tasty treat to cook for dinner tonight. You Northern Hemispherians will have some time to wait but there’s no harm in getting ready in advance for dismal, dreary weather.
New Zealand baker Dean Brettschneider was one of the people that I encountered at the recent Savour New Zealand in Christchurch. Together with Lorraine Jacobs, a Cuisine food editor, he has recently published Taste, the third in a series of quality books on baking. At Savour New Zealand, when not signing stacks of Taste and his other books, he gave an eagerly anticipated class called Kneading the Dough in which he made a loaf of my favourite sourdough bread.
In a world full of cookbooks, Sybil Kapoor’s Taste: A New Way to Cook is truly innovative. Kapoor writes from a far more scientific perspective than most food writers, explaining in great detail about the elementary tastes of sour, salt, umani (savoury), bitter and sweet. She helps the reader to understand basic taste combinations and how these work to enhance and compliment each other.
This distinctive book – its size and multi-coloured stripes will ensure that you won’t mislay it in your kitchen – is a veritable tome but it is surprisingly readable. It sat on my coffee table for a month, chapters to be digested along with meals, and it has so many post-its hanging out of it to mark the ideas that interest me or recipes that I would like to try that it runs the risk of every second of the 1075 pages (not including the index) being marked.