In the Sweet Kitchen by Regan Daley: Review

I have a confession. I have a huge sweet tooth, especially for baked goods. I like to bake too, much more than I cook. My husband is the cook here. I like the precision of baking, the measuring out exact amounts and specific oven temperatures. My husband, on the other hand, likes to experiment and improvise. The one time I like being told what to do is when I bake.

I really wanted to review In the Sweet Kitchen by Regan Daley when I saw it. First of all, I was attracted by the cover. I love the design but it's what's inside that's impressive. It's nearly 700 pages with more than half of it reference and instructional.

In the tools and techniques section, Daley discusses the tools and ingredients in detail needed for the modern baker. She provides charts, like ingredient substitutions and flavour partings. I found like entire section quite educational. She walks the baker through some common and not so common techniques in baking. I learned a lot and can see myself using this whenever I have a question about a technique or ingredient.

So, I had to try a recipe. I had to test one out for myself. Some of the recipes seemed a bit fancy-pants to me but there are some Average Joe ones tucked in there. That's not to say that I don't want a fancy dessert, just not at the moment. I did see a recipe for Wild Blueberry Pie that is pretty much the exact one my Mom makes and it is the best tasting pie you will ever have. But blueberries are not in season. I decided on All-in-the-Pan Chewy Chocolate Cake and Chocolate Butter Icing. So easy and so delicious.

I do wish there had been more photos of the recipes. I like to see what I'm making.

There are some basic recipes for frostings, sauces and the like in the back. I'd like to try the homemade Creme Fraiche, something I see on so many cooking shows and is so easy to make apparently.

In the Sweet Kitchen is like a baking class in one volume. I appreciated Daley's conversational style. You can tell she is passionate about baking and wants to share what she knows with the reader. It's a lovely cookbook as well.

Highly recommended for the home baker.

Thanks to Random House Canada for the review copy.


  1. That sounds like a great resource -- a fabulous book to have on hand. And the cake looks sooooooo good

  2. Yum. I don't suppose you'd consider making that at my house? ;)

  3. how dare you wave chocolate cake in front on my nose! ;-)

  4. Yes, I'll have some of that cake please...send it over! I just posted on another blog that I am a scaredy-cat when it comes to bakign and then here's your post. Maybe I should consider this book?

  5. I'd buy the book just for the title. I'm with you on the preciseness of baking. Maybe it's a carryover from childhood when my mom let me help measure out the cups of flour or sugar and crack the eggs. I also like the creative side of cooking, but baking is a nice balance.

  6. Wow, it sounds like a great cookbook.

    One of my favorite parts of cookbooks is the substitution part. I am glad to hear that this has the substitution area. It is bound to happen that I begin a recipe and get half way done when I realize I am missing an ingredient. Substitutions have saved my bacon more than one time before.

  7. It's one of my favourite baking books and that chocolate cake has become my go-to recipe for a quick, easy and delicious everyday cake. Glad you discovered it too!

  8. yum. I enjoyed my slice of cake and look, no calories (for me). Thanks for your review, i enjoyed it..

  9. I love to bake too! The cake looks great, but I'm like you - I love photos in cookbooks - the more, the better!

  10. Eva (a striped armchair)June 11, 2010 at 10:14 PM

    I used to love baking, but it's been harder now that I have to eat gluten free! lol Some recipes sub much better than others, I've learned. :)


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