It’s time to gather your freshly picked pumpkins and apples and put them to good use for National Bake and Decorate Month! With the holidays quickly approaching, October is the perfect time to take a step back and enjoy the seasonal ingredients and flavors that only come around once a year. Baking provides the perfect opportunity to experiment with recipes that could become family traditions or even start national trends; you could create this season’s cake pops!
The LPL is the place to go for baking books of all styles. Whether you’re just learning how to cream butter and sugar or your killer soufflé is the talk of every family party, there are always new recipes and techniques to perfect. You should also keep up with the library newsletter and website (and Checking the Shelf, of course!), as the library offers baking classes on occasion. Some of these classes will take place in our new Innovation Station, affording you a great opportunity to familiarize yourself with its many facets.
Speaking from personal experience, baking (especially from scratch) will give you a tremendous sense of pride. Anytime we can create something with our hands, especially something that can be enjoyed by our loved ones, we are reminded of how capable we are as individuals. The best part: nobody needs to know about the egg shells you had to fish out of the mixing bowl or the batch of cookies that had to get thrown away because you forgot to add the baking soda (been there, done that!). As long as your finished product is tasty enough, no one will care about the bumpy road you took to get there.
The beginner baker may want to check out these general information and basic recipe books:
Of course, not everyone can (or chooses to) bake with all the fixin’s (sugar, dairy, wheat, and so on). If you need to place certain dietary restrictions on what you bake, take a look at these:
Anyone interested in doing some season-specific baking can look at the recipes found in the following:
If you want to introduce children to the joys of baking, stop by the Children’s Room for these books and more:
For those of you with adventurous spirits, who are looking to take risks and experiment with the visual aspects of baking, consider these titles:
Lastly, always remember that mistakes happen. Sometimes, cakes are too dry and bread is too doughy. Just dust off the flour from your face and pick up the whisk you’ve thrown at the wall in frustration, and keep trying. When you need some reassurance—and a good laugh—read Cake Wrecks: When Professional Cakes Go Hilariously Wrong. Remind yourself that even the people who get paid to bake and decorate get it wrong sometimes. Keep kneading, stirring, and whisking your way to baking glory!
Happy Reading (and Baking),