cover image Mind Over Batter: 75 Recipes for Baking as Therapy

Mind Over Batter: 75 Recipes for Baking as Therapy

Jack Hazan. Chronicle, $35 (272p) ISBN 978-1-79721-230-2

Therapist and baking enthusiast Hazan (JackBakes) offers a guide to embracing baking as therapy in this confidence-inspiring outing. According to Hazan, “you can start baking your way through tough feelings,” and to that end, he organizes recipes around therapeutic goals: self-care, mindfulness, finding comfort, dealing with stress and anxiety, defusing frustration, connecting with others, and finding joy. Self-Care in a Cup Cake, a microwave mug confection, satisfies body and soul, while pumpkin donuts go a long way toward treating seasonal blues. As well, one can find comfort kneading and braiding rich dough for Jack’s Famous Challah, or destress with cardamom-laced Feeling Peachy Galette. Pesto Pull-Apart Bread, meanwhile, brings people together. (Recurring sidebars offer overviews of therapeutic techniques and dispense empowering affirmations.) Perfection is not the goal, the author notes, as pleasure comes as much from the baking and sharing as the eating. Hazan’s sunny disposition shines as he gives permission to bake, enjoy, and heal. Experienced and beginner bakers alike will agree with Hazan that “true joy can’t be bought. It can, however, be baked.” (Mar.)