Australian Women’s Weekly have a reputation for quality cookbooks (see more here). Each recipe is triple-tested so you know they work. OK, so the cover doesn’t sport a celeb chef but if you honestly want to cook then you want good solid writing with something edible after your hard work… although the work won’t be that hard.
Mix is a book that presents recipes for a whole spectrum of sweet baked goodies. The chapter headings are enough to make you reach for the mixer and throw another log into the range. Scones, Muffins, Friands, Cakes, Biscuits (cookies for my US readers), Slices, and Puddings are all here in abundance. But hang on…what was number 3 on the list? A printing error? No, friands are small, individual cakes made in tins a bit like Yorkshire Pudding tins.
The authors start by giving some handy baking tips: Scones need a light touch, Muffins become stodgy when the mixture is overheated, Cakes should be mixed with electric beaters, not a blender. All that said, I should add that baking does demand a bit of care but if you have good recipes then you are assured of success. All you need to do is measure and weigh and take note of oven temperature. Each recipe in Mix has all the information you’ll need including preparation time, cooking time and how many people the recipe will serve. You will have to adjust that estimate if you have children with hollow legs or a Mother-in-law with a sweet tooth.
There are quite a few traditional cakes here but also lots that are new to me and I love those surprises in any cookbook. Upside-down Toffee, Date and Banana Cake is a change from the usual Pineapple version with a cherry in the middle. Almond Honey Spice Cake hints at Greece or Turkey. It has a Honey Orange Cream to serve and a small coffee would be perfect alongside.
Slices are popular in “Costbucks” cafes all over the world. Make some yourself. Nanaimo Bars are a favourite slice from Canada. It’s a three-layer affair but not difficult to make and worth the labour. Tangy Lemon Squares are… well, tangy and the ideal treat for those of us who don’t like our cakes over-sweet. Lemon Delicious Puddings are my pick-of-the-book and you’ll understand why when you make them. A sponge-like top with a pool of lemon waiting to erupt over your probing spoon. Now isn’t that poetic?
Mix is another winner from the Australian Women’s Weekly stable.
Published by: Australian Women’s Weekly
Cookbook review by Chrissie Walker © 2018