Cook has fun baking by the book and finding new recipes galore moorpark acorn apple pie recipe with butter

I used to be an avid reader when I was younger, but as my journalism career progressed, the fiction books were almost entirely replaced by newspapers and magazines. Lately I’ve been trying to strike more of a balance, so I figured a book club could help me get back into the groove.

Although the club has nothing to do with baking, after attending my first meeting, it had me thinking about cookbooks. Usually when I want to make something specific, I turn to online recipe sites or bakers’ blogs. (the internet is just so convenient.)

But I also love collecting cookbooks, especially ones by chefs I admire. And since I’ve got book clubs on the brain, I thought I would share a few of my favorite selections here, in case anyone out there is looking for a bit of fun spring reading/baking.

“duff bakes: think and bake like a pro at home” by duff goldman and sara gonzalez, published in 2015, is a book I come back to again and again.

Goldman is probably best known for being the owner of charm city cakes, which was at the center of the food network show “ace of cakes” for 10 seasons from 2006 to 2011.Baking book

But goldman is not just a cake baker. He also does cookies, breads, pastries and pies. And this book, which he co-wrote with the head baker of his charm city cakes location in los angeles, has a little bit of all that.

It’s an especially great book for beginners because it takes time to explain the basics. Also, it contains a very easy recipe for maple-pecan squares that has earned me lots of compliments during many a potluck.

“nick malgieri’s pastry: foolproof recipes for the home cook” by nick malgieri, published in 2014, is my no. 1 recommendation for anyone looking to learn about pie, tart and laminated doughs. Malgieri is kind of a legend. He’s won way too many awards to list (you can see them for yourself on his website at nickmalgieri.Com) and he’s been teaching, baking and writing cookbooks for more than 30 years.

What I love about this book is that it takes pastry doughs to the next level with recipes like the olive oil dough for pies and tarts, or cookie-based crusts.Charm city there are also argentine empanadas and cornish-style pasties, as well as a brioche recipe that works for all kinds of creative applications.

“art of the pie: A practical guide to homemade crusts, fillings, and life” by kate mcdermott, published in 2016, is the ultimate “feel-good” pie book. I received this cookbook as a gift about six months ago and have only scratched the surface, but it has already become one of my favorites, not only because of the great recipes, but also because of the stories in between.

McDermott, who is a self-taught baker, is the quintessential pie teacher. She explains all the traditional techniques for mak- ing and handling doughs while also reminding you that baking with heart is more important than having a perfect fluted edge. The book’s greatest strength: its lessons on fruit fillings, especially the section on peach pie.

“ momofuku milk bar” by christina tosi, published in 2011, is my favorite baking book in my collection.Charm city tosi is the chef-owner and founder of milk bar, a dessert shop with 13 locations in new york; washington, D.C.; toronto; and las vegas (and a 14th on its way to los angeles in april, yippee!).

When I first saw tosi make her corn cookies and chocolate-crusted banana cream pie in the first season of “the mind of a chef” on PBS, I was convinced she was my spirit animal. She bakes with common sense but also with a level of creativity that sets her apart from so many other famous pastry chefs.

One friendly warning about tosi’s book: it is not for the fainthearted baker. Some of the best recipes require specialty ingredients and are more complex than they seem, so it’s best to have some experience under your belt before tackling this one.