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Baking By Hand Cookbook Review

Baking By Hand: Make the Best Artisanal Breads and Pastries Better Without a MixerBaking By Hand: Make the Best Artisanal Breads and Pastries Better Without a Mixer
Gifted By: Page Street Publishing Co
Reviewed by Danielle Zimmerman, editor of


Not everyone has the luxury of using a nice mixer or bread maker to whip up baked goods. They can be expensive and difficult to use, not to mention time-consuming. Yet, it always seems like the most delicious recipes require these tools. That is, until now.


Baking By Hand: Make the Best Artisanal Breads and Pastries Better Without a Mixer is a great new cookbook for those of us who don't have fancy appliances and mixers. As the title mentions, the recipes in this cookbook are of artisan quality but only require you to use your hands. From flatbreads to sticky buns, sourdoughs to sandwiches, Baking By Hand has recipes for all of the foods that you would ever hope to find in an artisan bakery.


While a lot of cookbooks are written by people who really don't have a lot of authority or experience in the book's topic, I really like that this cookbook was written by the two founders of the A&J King Artisan Bakers bakery in Salem, Massachussetts. The book opens with their personal baking experiences and their passion for their work, making the authors seem relatable and reliable. As soon as I read the introduction and first few chapters of the book, I was confident that the book would fulfill its promise to teach me how to bake at an artisan level just by using my hands.


Baking By Hand is broken up into eight chapters, the first three being the introduction and baking tips. The other five chapters each have a certain theme, such as "The AM Bread Baker" which has morning breads and flatbreads. The sixth chapter, "The Baker's Lunch," is probably one of the most interesting sections in the book because each of the recipes references a bread recipe somewhere else in the book while also providing ideas for what to use the bread for. It's a really practical section that I'm glad was included.


One of the best parts about this cookbook has to be the large, high resolution photos that are scattered throughout the book. They really give a great idea as to what the recipes are supposed to look like when they're done. I always find photos to be helpful and even motivational, so I'm always excited when they're included in cookbooks.


Baking By Hand is a wonderful addition to any kitchen. If you love eating food from artisanal bakeries, this is definitely the cookbook for you.


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