Nigella Lawson's How to Be a Domestic Goddess is about not only baking, but the enjoyment of being in the kitchen, taking sensuous pleasure in the entire process, and relishing the outcome. Nigella's deliciously reassuring and mouthwatering cookbook demonstrates that it's not terribly difficult to bake a batch of muffins or a layer cake, but the appreciation and satisfaction they bring are disproportionately high. At last, a book that understands our anxieties, feeds our fantasies, and puts cakes, pies, pastries, breads, and biscuits back into our own kitchens.
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While the title How to Be a Domestic Goddess may at first make a modern woman bristle, the book itself is just as likely to inspire the woman who brings home the bacon to start baking cakes. And what's wrong with that? "This isn't a dream," writes British cookery deity Nigella Lawson in her preface. "What's more, it isn't even a nightmare." Lawson--the author of How to Eat, food editor of British Vogue, and star of her own TV cooking show, Nigella Bites--has been suspected of upholding the woman-laboring-in-the-kitchen paradigm, but there are lots of hard-working women out there who derive great satisfaction from cooking, even after a long day at the office. For those women, Lawson, who looks more Elizabeth Hurley than Martha Stewart, is the perfect guide to the wondrous world of baking.
"You know, I'm not a cook-to-impress kind of girl," Lawson says midway through the book, but she must admit there are few things more rewarding than putting a warm homemade pie or fragrant cake on the table--especially after preparing a home-cooked meal. How to Be a Domestic Goddess: Baking and the Art of Comfort Cooking makes just such a reward possible, in fact positively enticing, with its delicious selection of easy-to-make cakes, pies, cookies, breads, even jams, presented in Lawson's chatty, pleasantly glib manner. Turns out, you don't have be a Pierre Hermé to make to-die-for chocolate confections; nor do you have to spend hours "faffing around" with hot pans and jars to have jam at teatime. You just need to try baking once, then again, and next thing you know, you'll be turning out cookies and desserts every chance you get. Many of the recipes are hand-me-downs or adaptations from other sources, be it a favorite cookbook or a restaurant in some far-off region, but all are imbued with Lawson's wit and distinctive touch. Profiteroles, My Way are "monumentally impressively better" than the original, thanks to burnt-sugar custard and toffee sauce. Her Coffee and Walnut Splodge Cookies are "American-style cookies; in other words just dropped onto the baking sheet free-form," and so on.
A sophisticated female alter ego of British mop-top Jamie Oliver, and considerably more sly and comedic than most American gourmets, Nigella is sure to convince more than a few up-and-coming hostesses that baking is indeed women's work. --Rebecca WrightFrom the Back Cover:
“Working mothers must give thanks to Nigella. . . .What sets her apart from every other food writer is her empathy with working women and her realism. . . . Every page of How to be a Domestic Goddess is imbued with warmth.” -- The Times
“Lawson’s ability to transform cynical readers into flour-dusted virtuosi lies in her writing: informal, witty and self-deprecating. Gorgeous colour photographs also inspire readers.” -- Toronto Star
“Combining the voice of a good friend and the sense of a good mother, Nigella Lawson serves up domestic bliss on a cake plate!” -- Alison Fryer, The Cookbook Store, Toronto
“I love Nigella Lawson’s writing and I love her recipes.” -- Delia Smith
“Working mothers must give thanks to Nigella…. What sets her apart from every other food writer is her empathy with working women and her realism…. Every page of How to Be a Domestic Goddess is imbued with familial warmth.” -- The London Times
“Her prose is as nourishing as her recipes… A book that should please mere readers, as well as serious cooks and happy omnivores.” -- Salman Rushdie
"Most cookbooks and food shows are about control, precision, and fear of doing something incorrectly. In Nigellaworld, the kitchen is not a science lab with rigid rules and formulas to follow. It's a place to play, sometimes with your friends and kids." -- Joe Dolce, Gourmet
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