A Baker's Tour: Nick Malgieri's Favorite Baking Recipes from Around the World

Nick Malgieri, Author, Tom Eckerle, Photographer . HarperCollins $34.95 (390p) ISBN 978-0-06-058263-0

Malgieri (Perfect Cakes , etc.) is a savvy guide to a panoply of breads, pastries, cakes and cookies made beyond America's borders. Though the European traditions of France, Italy, Austria and Switzerland prevail, he reaches as far as Syria, Jamaica, China and Egypt for dishes as familiar as Chinese Pork Buns and as exotic as Habibi Gullas Bakari (spicy meat pie in filo crust). Malgieri is a likable teacher who begins every section with technique fundamentals and opens each of the clear, precise recipes with a slice of history or a personal anecdote. However, this remains a book for experienced bakers armed with their own standing mixers (used in many recipes) who are ready to tackle complex Gallette des Rois (Three Kings Puff Pastry Cake), St. Gallen Kostertarte (chocolate pastry raspberry jam tart) or Sephardic Baklava. Malgieri excels in the cake section, where he revels in the complexities of Cassata alla Siciliana (ricotta-filled cake) and Kardinalschnitten (Austrian Cardinal Slices); his bread section is least satisfying, with intricate instructions for Lavash and Naan that are almost certain to frustrate. But overall, he does a good job of proving that for skilled bakers, it is a small world after all. Color photos. (Oct.)

Reviewed on: 06/06/2005
Release date: 10/01/2005
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