Isabelle’s review…

Many many years ago, Isabelle and I met here, in blog world, and we have remained in touch ever since…this is what she wrote about my book…

‘Pragmatic no knead, no mess, one bowl sourdough recipes with a 100% success rate. Cannot recommend highly enough.

How much do I love thee? Let me count the ways. I cannot recommend this book highly enough.

I have been baking and cooking for many years. I had a food blog. I collect cookbooks, I read recipes to relax, in bed, at breakfast, for inspiration, for fun.

I have followed Elaine’s meteoric rise from blog writer, to Instagram sourdough goddess, to now published author. Over this period we have had discussions on following recipes. She would say, you have to follow the recipe and I would say, I always wing it. After this exchange I started paying more attention to the recipes in my books. Often crucial information is missing, the writers assume the reader doesn’t need additional information, or else they didn’t think of everything. The difference here is Elaine thought of everything. She is in the kitchen with you the whole time. Her clear instructions, her calm presence and her love of all things sourdough shine through on the page. There is nothing she has not thought of. She is a perfectionist, a pragmatist and a brilliant teacher and her desire for you to succeed is clear as you read. Her creativity is astonishing. Her enthusiasm infectious.

The relevance of this book for the home baker can be summed up by the fact that it includes this FAQ:.

I have mixed my dough, but I suddenly need to go out, what do I do?

This tells you the author is a home baker, she understands that there is sourdough and there is your life. She integrates the two. So you can bake sourdough every day for your family, with little effort and no fuss.

What you need to know:

The recipes – you will find

  • How to make your own sourdough starter, how to maintain it, and why it is easy to do
  • One bowl, no knead, no mess master recipe
  • Breads and biscuits, rolls, crackers, sweet and savoury, some examples:  
    • Crusted pumpkin seed sourdough
    • Einkorn, cinnamon and cranberry biscuits
    • Focaccia
    • Almond and raisin spelt bread

There are breads with chilies and breads with cheese…and crackers, with buttermilk, with beer. A generous book that could easily have been split into two works.

What makes this book extra special is the level of detail provided to ensure your results are perfect

  • An introduction to the different types of flour and how they will influence the way your dough behaves
  • When to expect your dough to be wet, how to use a scraper, what to do if your kitchen is cold, hot, humid, dry. Ingredient substitutes and alternatives.
  • Stopping your recipe in the middle, flexing it to your schedule.
  • Making your loaf crusty, making doughs more sour, less sour, softening the crust, scoring the bread, issues with scoring, using a lame, stickiness and gumminess, overproofed doughs
  • What I especially love is the level of detail, in the focaccia recipe the author specifies a pan size, she then writes “if you want a thinner,  crunchy focaccia use a bigger baking sheet”

Beyond the book check out Elaine’s website, where I first came across her, or her instagram pages and her youtube videos for a taste of what the book will contain.’

2 thoughts on “Isabelle’s review…

  1. Mary

    I second all of the above!
    Excellent book with as much information as you should need and more.

    Of course, I own it as well and am always referring to it. :))

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

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