If there is a more beautiful cookbook that could grace my shelf, I would be hard pressed to find one to compete with the two Butter Baked Goods cookbooks. I bought the first book last year based simply on the perfection that is the recipe for shortbread cookies found in the book. I don’t bake often so I’ve only made the shortbreads from the first book so far. This didn’t stop me from becoming excited when the opportunity was presented to me to get a copy of Butter Celebrates: A Year of Sweet Recipes to Share with Family and Friends, by my friend, Jenny, who has organized quite a group of us to review Rose Daykin’s second book.
It was quite a treat to have a book arrive in the mail before it was officially released to the wider world. I waited until the evening after baby had been put to bed before I had a good read through of the book so that I could sit with a nice glass of wine. I wanted to savour reading it instead of being constantly interrupted by having to stop Kit from ripping the pages, or getting up ever other minute to take one of our shoes away from him so that he doesn’t use it as a teether – again.
So far I have made two recipes from the book. My first choice was the recipe for “Cupcakes with the Most-ess”. At first, everything went quite well. The cupcake recipe was easy to make as was the white icing filling. What I ran into trouble with was the recipe for the ganache. I new something wasn’t quite right but I decided to go ahead and follow what was on the page. I have made ganache many, many times because I have an annual tradition of making homemade truffles. The amount of chocolate chips in relation to the amount of cream seemed very high so I was concerned that the chocolate would seize as soon as I put the cream with it. Well, I was right. It seized on me four times. I tried it over and over using different techniques to gently add the warm cream to the chocolate, or one time I tempered the cream with some melted chocolate and then added that to the larger volume of chocolate. It seized every time. I eventually just did my own thing to make the ganache topping and didn’t submerge the whole cupcake in the chocolate as instructed in the recipe.
The filling recipe made quite a bit and I messed up piping it into the cupcakes. I didn’t pipe it into the bottom of the cupcake, nor did I put enough filling in. If I were to make these cupcakes again, I wouldn’t make a ganache for the chocolate coating. I would just melt chocolate with a smidge of butter for shine because I found the cupcake were a hot mess when my son and I ate them. We were covered in melted chocolate since ganache goes really runny as soon as you touch it.
The second recipe I made was the Chocolate Whoopie Hearts. The chocolate cake component of the whoopie pies is fantastic. The flavour and texture is perfect. I did have a problem piping the batter onto the cookie sheet using a large tip. The batter is quite thick and it was quite difficult with the tip I was using in my piping bag. The simple solution was to take the tip off and just use the plastic tip holder to pipe the rest of the cakes.
I did run into trouble with the fluff filling of the whoopie pies. When I poured the hot sugar syrup into the stiff egg whites, the whites collapsed so I was left with a sticky, runny filling that would not fluff up at all. I did not have the time, nor the inclination to try the icing again to see if it was me that messed up or if it was the recipe. If anyone has made the fluff filling, then please let me know how it went and if you have any tips to make it perfect like in the photo in the book.
While it is true that I had difficulties with both recipes I tried, I’m not done with the book yet. There are several recipes that I still want to try in the book, namely: Chocolate Hazelnut Rugelach, Triple Chocolate Mousse, Pumpkin Cinnamon Sugar Doughnuts, and Sufganiyot (jelly doughnuts).
I personally recommend this book only for experienced bakers or those who love beautiful cookbooks. If you do want a to win a copy of the book you can enter the contest below by commenting on this post and then clicking the ‘I commented’ on the Rafflecopter giveaway widget and providing your contact information. The contact information is just so we can get a hold of you should you win the prize. If you want lots of chances to win, please have a hop around to all the other bloggers’ sites who have done a review of the book and are hosting this giveaway on their site as well.
I am grateful that I was given a copy of Butter Celebrates by the publisher – Appetite by Random House for this review.
Be sure to check out all my fellow bloggers from our #ButterBakedBloggers blog hop who made some gorgeous treats:
- Mardi from eat. live. travel. write. made Champagne Cupcakes
- Jenny from The Brunette Baker made Guinness Cake with Pretzels
- Meg from Sweet Twist of Blogging made a Lemon Loaf
- Heather from The Tasty Gardener made Cinnamon Heart Cookies, Empire Cookies, Coconut Nest Cookies and Cookie Jar Cookies
- Libby of Libby Roach made Gingerbread Guys
- Robyn from What’s Cooking on Planet Byn made Orange Gingerbread Cake
- Jan from Family Bites made Animal Cookies
- Tessa from Style Sweet CA made Chocolate Gingerbread Genoise
- Jacquee from I Sugar Coat It made Eggnog-less Bars
- Christina from Strawberries for Supper made ‘Hostess’ Cupcakes
- Gwen from Devour and Conquer made Pannetone
- Amanda from Once Upon a Recipe made Banana Pecan Caramel Cake
- Kelly from KellyNeil.com made Peppermint Nanaimo Bars