About a month ago I saw a book in the library called All Cakes Considered, by Melissa Gray. I grew up listening to "All Things Considered" on NPR and the title caught my attention--not to mention I was looking for a book on cake-making, obviously since I was in the cooking section looking at titles that had "cake" in them. I grabbed the book and brought it home.
It's a great idea: Gray--who works at NPR--started making cakes and taking them into work once a week to improve upon her hobby. She decided to write a cookbook that covered the topic of cakes and how-to from start to finish. Basically, she has written the book for people who start out their baking lives not knowing the difference between a bundt pan and a rubber spatula, though she does invite those of us who maybe a little more experience to feel free to jump around a bit. Anyway, each cake has a little story that goes along with it, you know, a fun little cake cookbook right?
I read the whole book before I ever even read a recipe. I loved it! I wish text books were written by Melissa Gray because maybe then I would have read one or two of them. Unfortunately, the due date for the book came before I could try many of the cakes in her chapter entitled, "Layer Cakes, Angle Food Cakes, Moderately Sinful Cakes, All on the Road to Heaven and Hell." I did get to try her "Whipped Cream Cake" though, along with her honey buttercream frosting. (Hey, it was my daughter's birthday, okay?) In fact, the only fault I can find with the book is there is no recipe for carrot cake, which Gray says she hates. She's missing out! Also, and this isn't really a complaint, I'm just letting you know, there are no cheesecake recipes. I love cheesecake, but it's not what I was looking for anyway. I already know how to make cheesecakes, and that is knowledge I shall share with you if you'd like.
Anyway, for my birthday, my in-laws sent me a gift card to Amazon.com and I knew exactly what I was going to buy with it: All Cakes Considered. And today--finally--it came! I am so excited to try more of her cakes!