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am 6. Oktober 1999
This is the best cake book in the world. There are an abundance of recipes which taste fancy but are easy to make in addition to the super-fancy cakes you could make for somebody's wedding.
This is not a book of your average, run-of-the mill cakes for somebody who actually *likes* to eat boxed mixes. I personally think boxed mixes are *disgusting* and I would rather eat mud than one of those. These cakes are *meant* to be MANY steps above that. If you want cakes like the usual box-type or supermarket quality cakes, this is not the book.
I have made the Chocolate Domingo Cake, which is amazing because when you make it, it looks a little dry and uninteresting, but when you serve it warm with a dusting of powdered sugar, it melts in your mouth like fudge and leaves you begging for more. I have received so many compliments on it! I have also received many compliments on the Cordon Rose Cheesecake with White Chocolate Cream Cheese Buttercream frosting, which, especially if left in the fridge for a few days, is the best cheesecake in the world... but again, not for somebody who thinks that Jell-o cheesecakes are the greatest. On the spur of the moment I made the Buttermilk Country Cake last weekend for some guests and they were begging me for seconds and the recipe.
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am 4. Dezember 1998
I was making a cake for a friend's wedding (only my second attempt at a wedding cake) and the bride's mother had requested that the raspberry buttercream have no seeds in it. As I was using Rose's recipe for the buttercream I tried in vain to find the suggested Cuisinart attachment for removing the seeds from the berries. After contacting the people at Cuisinart (the item is not longer made), I searched around until I was able to find a means to contact Ms. Beranbaum herself. She was gracious enough to call me at home with some other suggestions for seed removal. I ended up sieving the seeds out, which took quite a long time, but was worth the effort! The frosting was excellent and I have made the raspberry puree' again for personal use. Try it drizzled over brownies and ice cream or use it to make a wonderful vinaigrette. If you want to try an easy, yet spectacularly delicious chocolate cake, try the Chocolate Domingo cake. We love to eat it practically straight out of the oven. My husband, while not the family baker, can make this just as well as I can. As a previous reviewer noted, this book is good just as reading material. Ms. Beranbaum has included some very entertaining anecdotes, like the story of her brother's wedding cake and the big storm. I highly recommend this book.
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am 7. Mai 2000
This review is for the amateur cook. This book is a treasure! Every single recipe I have tried came out exquisite, and people remember, years later, the cakes I have served them. I am not a professional chef, nor am I a housewife with lots of time to spend in the kitchen. However, I love cooking, and books like the Cake Bible are partly responsible.
The first cake I ever baked came from this book, and it earned me a huge grin with laughing eyes from my dad. It was his 70th birthday.
I can name lots of recipes which are not difficult to follow: Chocolate Bread, Perfect Pound Cake (no, it's not like Sara Lee!), Checkerboard Cake, All-American Chocolate Butter Cake, Chocolate Oblivion Truffle Torte (I make this with creme anglaise on top, which is a little difficult to make, but the cake itself is really easy, and it has spoiled me for all other versions I have tried, even in one of the meccas of American cuisines: the San Francisco Bay area.) The neoclassic buttercream, with all its variants, is wonderful, and it allows me to make old fashioned delicious cakes for my daughter's birthday parties.
Nor do all the cakes require ingredients which are difficult to find. I spent several years living in a part of the US where the concept of culinary accomplishment was synonymous to grilling a slab of beef and (over)boiling a few ears of corn; still I was able to find the correct ingredients for many of these recipes. However, if you do skimp on the ingredients, or do not take the trouble to follow the recipes with care, then it is true: you might as well go with Betty Crocker, or Sara Lee, or whoever else is out there.
The only explanation I can find for some of the criticism I have read in these reviews is this: unless you decide to read the entire book, which I have not, you will have trouble locating the cakes which match your ability, the occasion, your mood etc... I worked hard making the Classic Buttercream, and did not notice the much easier and equally delicious Neoclassic version until later. The problem, I think, is that this book has value for a wide range of cooks, from the amateur who simply wants to see that big grin on the faces of family and friends, to the professional chef. I know that attempting to reach such a wide audience in my own professional field would be heresy. That Ms. Beranbaum succeeds at all is wonderful, and in the final analysis, I do like understanding the reason for substituting corn syrup for some of the sugar in buttercream.
My only complaint is that Ms Beranbaum has not yet written a book about muffins. She's done the cookies, the cakes and the pies. I hope that some day she will teach me about muffins.
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am 2. Mai 2015
Man merkt, dass es ein altes Buch ist, insbesondere am Mangel an Bildern. Aber immerhin gibt es gleich zu Anfang einige Fotografien, die zumindest die Endprodukte der meisten Torten darstellen. Wirklich VERALTET hingegen sind lediglich einige Angaben zu Equipment-Herstellern, ansonsten ist das Buch auch heute noch eine große Bereicherung! Denn was an dem Buch viel wichtiger ist und auch tatsächlich kaum Bebilderung braucht, sind die vielfältigen Beschreibungen für Grundteige, Cremes, usw. Die Vielzahl ist bemerkenswert: verschiedenste Buttercremes, Ganaches, zahlreiche Sahnecremes, Eiweißcremes....hier scheint einfach mal ALLES drin zu sein. Frau Beranbaum gibt dazu detaillierte Beschreibungen, wann welche Creme besonders geeignet ist (z.B. zu welchem Teig, zu welchem Geschmack, zu welcher Wetterlage, in Abhängigkeit von der Zeit, die man für die Vorbereitung hat, ...).

Was ich mit am spannendsten finde, sind die Abschnitte und das große Kapitel zu "Understanding", in denen es um die Chemie/Physik beim Backen geht und die den Übergang schaffen vom engagierten Hobbybäcker zum Experten.

Sehr hilfreich sind ebenfalls die Angaben dazu, wie lange ein Teig oder eine Creme haltbar ist (in Abhängigkeit von Raumtemparatur/Kühlschrank/Gefrierschrank) und welche Teige man wie kühlen sollte/kann.

Aufgelockert wird das Buch an einigen Stellen durch kurzweilige Anekdoten der Autorin.

Alles in allem sehr empfehlenswert. Ob es auch Profis anspricht weiß ich nicht (kann es mir aber gut vorstellen), für den engagierten Hobbybäcker ist es eine Wucht! (Für den einfachen Hobbybäcker ist das Buch eher ungeeignet. Nicht, weil die Rezepte unbedingt zu schwer sind, aber weil es umständlich ist, da, wie gesagt, Bilder fehlen und die meisten Torten selbst zusammengestellt werden müssen aus den Kapiteln Teige und Cremes/Verzierungen.)
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am 22. Januar 2000
Great book. Covers: pound cakes, butter cakes, fruitcakes, cheesecakes, genoise+buscuit, sponge, and chiffon cakes, plus some breakfast stuff like waffles and zucchini muffins. Overview of the ingredients and how they are used, overview of scaling up the cakes to wedding or party proportions, and overview of how to decorate the cakes. I haven't actually tried any recipes out yet, but the Genoise recipe is very similar to the one used for the chocolate ruffle cake in "baking with Julia" (I've tried that recipe, it's good) and the Cheesecake recipe is similar to another one (I forget the source) that I've made before, except that Rose uses sour cream. The format of the cake section is Rose basically goes through and starts with a basic cake (say the Genoise) and modifies the recipe, telling you why. For instance, to make it chocolate, add cocoa powder, and remove butter (because of the cocoa butter) and remove some flour. I think it's an excellent book, a good resource for beginners and intermediates alike. As a beginner you learn all about terminology and whys and hows. As an intermediate, you learn some neat tricks with how to decorate a cake, and learn some of the reasons behind the actions that you probably knew. It's also good to get different ideas on cake assembly. I think once you learn the things in this book you are fully armed to go and create your own cake - after all cake is just a cake, frosting/custard, maybe fruit or nuts or something, plus some optional decoration. This book gives you the foundation to do all of these things.
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am 1. August 1997
As an avid baker, especially cake making, this book is truely the "Bible for Cakes." I have numerous baking and cake books, but this is the one I always use.
What makes this book so useful, is the way the directions are set up, the concise writing, the helpful hints, and the teaching. The author's ability to teach through her writing style is invaluable.

For beginners and professionals, this book has it all. I especially like and use the chapter on baking the extra large layers. For wedding cakes this is IT !! I have had the pleasure of hearing someone eating a wedding cake I made, say "...My God, this is a real cake." What a complement !!!

Perhaps the most surprising aspect of this book is the author's sense of humor. I enjoy reading this book for the shear fun of it; no other cookbook that I've ever read, have I had the pleasure of laughing aloud.

What a GREAT book this is !!! Anyone who enjoy's baking will reach again and again for the "Cake Bible."

Christine A. Storey
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am 2. Dezember 1999
i made hundreds of wedding cakes for a living. i slaved on thousands of cheesecakes, millions of layer cakes, and boatloads of brownies. If only i had been able to escape to the island of sanity and reason that is Rose Levy Berenbaum! I have had this book since the very day it was first published, and voraciously read every word, as if it were a novel, before baking a single cupcake. The extensive use of scientific knowledge and experimentation is a stroke of genius, since anyone who has done any baking to speak of knows quite well that it is science, not an art. Thank you to Rose for making the building of a wedding cake so darn simple. Thank you also for using weights AND measures in your recipes. Weight is so much more exact (don't forget, it's a SCIENCE!)Her innovative straw technique has saved my posterior many, many times. Her buttercream recipes are flawless. this is a real baker's book. This book may confuse the run of the mill idiot, but I just ordered my second copy. I need to have it everywhere I go!
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am 23. April 2000
While it is true that the information in this book is quite dense, and can be a little overwhelming, it truly contains everything you could possibly need to know about making the absolute best cakes. I have found that by following her recipes carefully, and paying attention to the details, every single one of the recipes comes out exactly as expected. I have not been dissapointed by a single recipe.
The Cordon Rose Cheesecake is outstanding, and the White Chocolate variation on that cake is about the best cake I've ever tasted. I am no longer allowed to attend a family function without a white chocolate cheesecake in my hand! Everyone loves this cake!
Try the Fruit Cloud Cream icings. The Raspberry Fruit Cloud Cream is especially great, particularly on the All-Occassion Downy Yellow Butter Cake.
The very fancy specialty cakes are beautiful as well as delicious, and quite simple to do when following the instructions given.
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am 29. November 1999
Out of nowhere a month ago I got a huge need to start baking cakes (go figure!) and encountered The Cake Bible. What a great book! All the whys and wherefores are thoroughly described and I've been baking one or two cakes a week with stupendous results -- my boys get a kick out of reading the recipies to me and assisting in whatever way possible. The All-Occasion Downy Yellow Butter Cake and the Perfect All-American Chocolate Butter Cake are our current favorites. I have taken the cakes to gatherings and made two for Thanksgiving and the raves were long and loud. People kept saying "your mother must have made this!" The author's Neoclassic Buttercream frosting is great -- not too sweet and very rich and creamy. I recommend this to anyone who wants to learn how to Bake A Cake ! The butter manufacturers should love this book too :)
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am 20. Mai 2000
The cake recipes are OKAY, nothing to brag about. I think a couple of the white cakes are decent, a little dry though. I've been cooking for several years, and have been using a scale to reduce mistakes in measurement. It was nice to finally have a cookbook with weight measurements, however, she needs to come up with some new ideas and recipes. Her plain buttercream turned out to what I and friends called the famous "Egg Jelly", the smell still haunts me to this day. I think it called for 6 egg yolks, 1 cup Corn Syrup, 2 lbs butter- something to that effect, IT WAS HORRIBLE. Needless to say, I made my own frosting which was much more pleasant to taste not to mention look at or SMELL! Buy the book if you are in need of some paper for your fireplace, or your trashcan, cause it's pure garbage.
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