Fantasy Mystery Romance Comics Non-Fiction

Cookies and Brownies

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Cookies and Brownies (1999) Alice Medrich

Cookies and Brownies

This is, hands down, my favorite cookbook.

I bought it on whim from a cookbook club, and when I pulled it out of the box, was slightly disappointed at how slender the book was. This was the only disappointment this book was ever to give.

I have a lot of cookbooks–and the majority of those are on baking. But this is the cookbook I grab first when I’m looking to bake something sweet. There are lots of pictures, which serve to make you crave sweets even more as you flip through the book. But that is all secondary to the recipes. I’m kind of picky about sweets–I have definitely likes and dislikes–so I’m used to seeing recipes that just don’t appeal to me.

Not in Cookies and Brownies however. Everything in this book looks good, and everything I have tried has been excellent. In fact, some of my favories are in here. The recipe for “Bittersweet Brownies” is my absolute favorite, and has been a favorite of my co-workers. They may be the best brownies I have ever had. As long as you have bittersweet and unsweeted chocolate, the rest of the ingredients should be on hand, and even better–they’re easy. After I made them for the first time, I wondered why anyone would ever bother with brownies from a box.

But that’s not the only excellent receipe in here. Double Chocolate Chip Cookies are excellent–best straight out of the oven while they’re still gooey, but good ever after they’ve cooled. I make them with peanut butter chips and I think they’re even better. The Chocolate Shortbread is delicious–and also easy. Beacon Hill Cookies were a surprise–again, best out of the oven, but still yummy cooled.

I recently made the Espresso Swirl Brownies and took them to work, and they went over very well–people going out of their way to let me know how good they were.

On the off chance you aren interested in chocolate (heaven forbid), the Lemon Bars are fantastic. They’re my mom’s favorite recipe from this book. I make the Rugelach for Christmas because this recipe is much easier than the one in Baking with Julia.

I could go on–I haven’t tried a single recipe that wasn’t fantastic.

There are only two negatives about this book. Mine is starting to fall about. Despite the hardback binding, pages are coming apart, which is very annoying. The second bad thing is that Cookies and Brownies is out of print, and good luck finding a used copy (last time I checked Amazon, the low listing was exhorbitant, which is why I’m keeping my falling apart copy.)

But we can hope that someone will realize what a fantastic book this is, and get it back into print, so everyone can make and enjoy “Bittersweet Brownies” and the other wonders of this book.
Rating: 10/10

Categories: 10/10, Cookbook, Food, Paper

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