Sarabeth is as generous in this book as she is in real life – she holds no secrets. Every sweet that we love in the bakery is here in her book, just the way she makes them in her airy, open-for-all-to-see kitchen in The Chelsea Market. And, just as you’d hope, the recipes are clearly and carefully written (Sarabeth worked with veteran author Rick Rodgers), detailed and personal. Sarabeth is a good teacher, but she’s also a good coach and cheerleader: she wants you to succeed.
Among my bakery favorites that are included in the book are: Pumpkin Muffins (the picture of the batter scooped into the tins is worth the price of the book), Chocolate Souffle Cake, Rustic Apple Streusel Pie, Linzer Hearts, Triple-Chocolate Chocolate Pudding and jams and more jams, including Billy’s Blueberry Jam. And each chapter starts with a ‘tutorial’, a lesson that sets the stage for success.
Many of us have been waiting a long time for this book. With its publication, everyone is rewarded.
And just to whet your appetite, here’s the recipe for the pretty Chocolate Clouds, a cookie born of a mistake when Sarabeth put the wrong amount of sugar in her chocolate chip cookies. If only all errors were this delicious …
Makes about 3 dozen cookies
Baker’s Note: Place the dough about 3 inches apart on the half-sheet pans— they spread.
1 1/3 cup superfine sugar
1 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
16 tablespoons (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into ½-inch cubes
¾ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 large eggs, at room temperature, beaten
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
¾ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
2 cups (8 ounces) toasted sliced almonds
2 cups (12 ounces) chocolate chips
1. Position racks in the center and top third of the oven and preheat to 350°F. Line 3 half-sheet pans with parchment paper. Rub the superfine sugar and brown sugar together through a coarse-mesh wire sieve into a medium bowl; set aside. Beat the butter in the bowl of a heavy-duty stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment on high speed until smooth, about 1 minute. Gradually add the sugar mixture, then the vanilla. Beat, occasionally scraping the bottom and sides of the bowl, until the mixture is pale yellow and light-textured, about 5 minutes. Gradually beat in the eggs.
2. Sift the flour, baking soda, and salt together into a medium bowl. With the mixer speed on low, add the dry ingredients in three additions, mixing just until each addition is incorporated. Add the almonds and chocolate chips and mix just until combined. Remove the bowl from the mixer. Empty the dough onto the work counter, and use your hands to thoroughly distribute the almonds and chocolate chips in the dough.
3. Using a 2-inch-diameter ice-cream scoop, portion the batter onto the prepared pans. Using the heel of your palm, slightly flatten each ball of dough. Bake two of the pans with the cookies, switching the position of the pans from top to bottom and front to back about halfway through, the baking, until the cookies are evenly golden brown, 15 to 18 minutes. During the last 3 minutes, rap each pan on the rack. The cookies will deflate and their signature cracks will appear on the tops. Repeat with the third pan. Cool on the pans. (Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.)