Confections of a Closet Master Baker is the day in the life of a popular bakery owner. Gesine Bullock-Prado never imagined herself as a professional baker. When her sister, Sandra, hit the big time and started her own production company, Gesine headed to Hollywood to help out. She was successful, making big deals and meeting celebrities, and also unhappy. She felt incomplete.
So Gesine started doing what she loved. She baked. And baked and baked. This didn't make her popular in the land of liposuction. So after a trip to Vermont, she decided to move there and open her own bakery. There were bumps along the way but she found happiness doing what she is most passionate about.
My confession: I requested this book from Shelf Awareness because of the cover (chocooooolate!). I had no idea what it was about. I think I was into the second chapter before I realized that the author is Sandra Bullock's sister (duh) even though she talks about her in the first chapter. I was hooked though by Gesine's breezy writing style. It was like talking to a broad at a bar who just happens to have a killer cheesecake recipe.
Gesine recounts her childhood obsession with sweet confections. Her mother was a fabulous baker of German goodies but believed they should be enjoyed only on special occasions. Gesine couldn't understand why her mother was so against the chemical filled treats from the supermarket until she opened the bakery. It's not just a snack, it's an experience. There ain't nothing like the real thing, baby. Running a bakery has been bittersweet. Many of the goods she makes were made by her mom who died of cancer a few years ago.
Confections is an interesting mix of memoir and cookbook. While Gesine tells us how she got where she is, she offers us her recipes to try ourselves. She's unapologetic about her ingredients. It's butter and eggs or nothing. Although I sometimes found the narrative meandered a bit, it's forgivable when the writer has such a passion for the topic. And she's funny. For me, that's the best kind of non-fiction.
I'm going to put this one on the cookbook shelf. I really want to try that Espresso Cheesecake recipe. Be warned. If you are on a diet, you will be tempted.
PS- I liked this Book Trailer. I got to see the bakery I had been reading about.
Confections of a Closet Master Baker Trailer from Raymond Prado on Vimeo.