Since I was little, my parents always teach me how you can enrich yourself by reading books. We created a little "library" at home and it was always fun to receive books from our parents. I read countless of fictions, from murder mystery like Agatha Christie's to classics like F. Scott Fitzgerald; from the Mallory Towers series to "Pride and Prejudice." Though I don't have the luxury of time to read these days, but I still have a small library, filled with Harry Potter books, Stieg Larsson's trilogy, and of course, my growing collections of cooking and baking books.
My first baking book, d from my darling friend in Dubai, called "Cupcakes!" (by Elinor Klivans). My first real cupcakes that I made was through this book. Sorry, Betty Crocker, not buying your products anymore... Thanks to her, that book unlocked my passion for baking!
I am a self-taught baker and every knowledge that I got was through trials and errors. There are a few books that I considered as my reference book like Michel Roux's "Eggs," Martha Stewart's "Baking Handbook" and the list go on. Martha Stewart was like a real teacher to me, showing how important in taking the time in creaming the butter, diligently put the eggs separately before putting them in the batter, and showed me the difference between a soft peak and a stiff peak in beating egg whites. Oh, how I love her! Michel Roux is also one of my hero, as he showed me lots of fool proofs recipes of all wonderful things made of eggs! I even learned how to make a perfect hard-boiled eggs... ah, merci Monsieur Roux! I recently acquired (the word I like to use) a few more in baking books, such as this one, a wonderful little volume from a beautiful bakery in San Fransisco called "Miette." I was so charmed by this book, from the layout, how the pages have scalloped (!) edges, and the double-chocolate cakes are super yummy!
I always on a lookout to find new baking and cake decorating books. While there are so many out there, not all books are created equal. I like Maisie Parrish's books for little character modelling, Debbie Brown for her amazing and creative cakes, and Alan Dunn for his brilliant sugar flowers. Gosh, all of them made it look so easy, but there are a lot of labor and love that you have to put into it. All of these books are a great step-by-step, very detailed instruction of how to sculpt and model.
Alright, off I go now to spend some gift certificate I received as a present from an online survey company. Totally made my day... now, the question is which ones to buy?