All About Cake
Welcome to the sugar-fueled, manically creative cake universe of Christina Tosi. It's a universe of ooey-gooey banana-chocolate-peanut butter cakes you make in a crockpot, of layer cakes that taste like Key lime pie, and the most baller birthday cake ever.From her home kitchen to the creations of her beloved Milk Bar, All About Cake covers everything: two-minute microwave mug cakes, buttery Bundts and pounds, her famous cake truffles and, of course, her signature naked layer cakes filled with pops of flavors and textures.But more than just a collection of Christina's greatest-hits recipes (c'mon, like that's not enough?) this book will be your guide for how to dream up and make cakes of any flavor you can think of, whether you're a kitchen rookie or a full-fledged baking hardbody.

All About Cake Details

TitleAll About Cake
Author
ReleaseOct 23rd, 2018
PublisherClarkson Potter Publishers
ISBN-139780451499523
Rating
GenreFood and Drink, Cookbooks, Food, Nonfiction, Cooking

All About Cake Review

  • Elaine
    January 1, 1970
    Anyone who knows me knows I love cake. I also love pie, cupcakes, ice cream, chocolate, muffins, cookies...well, you get the picture.All About Cake is no ordinary cookbook about cake.There's cake and then there's CAAAKKKEEEE like the ones featured here.The recipes are wildly inventive and unique like the author; she explains her process and her instructions are easy to follow but...Beware! Most of these recipes are seriously labor intensive and they should be.They are showstoppers; they are Anyone who knows me knows I love cake. I also love pie, cupcakes, ice cream, chocolate, muffins, cookies...well, you get the picture.All About Cake is no ordinary cookbook about cake.There's cake and then there's CAAAKKKEEEE like the ones featured here.The recipes are wildly inventive and unique like the author; she explains her process and her instructions are easy to follow but...Beware! Most of these recipes are seriously labor intensive and they should be.They are showstoppers; they are meant to be gazed at with awe and wonder, to make you giggle with excitement and glee that you finished making the cake as you shovel spoonful of carbs and sugar into your drooling mouth. Since I'm a lousy cook, but a great lover of eating, I will just have to be content to stare at these pictures. Or get off my lazy duff and get baking.Remember those scratch and sniff stickers from the 80s?I wished all cookbooks about sweets had that function.
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  • Amanda
    January 1, 1970
    Absolutely fantastic book and great recipes. This is basically a bigger continuation of the first Milk Bar cookbook- whereas that one focused on cookies and ice cream, in here you've got loads of cake in all forms, including the famous cake truffles. I've already tried a few recipes and can't wait to try more. The Pumpkin Pie Layer Cake was phenomenal, highly recommend if you love the idea of pumpkin pie but not actually eating pumpkin pie. Her recipes are extremely accurate and you will get Absolutely fantastic book and great recipes. This is basically a bigger continuation of the first Milk Bar cookbook- whereas that one focused on cookies and ice cream, in here you've got loads of cake in all forms, including the famous cake truffles. I've already tried a few recipes and can't wait to try more. The Pumpkin Pie Layer Cake was phenomenal, highly recommend if you love the idea of pumpkin pie but not actually eating pumpkin pie. Her recipes are extremely accurate and you will get excellent results if you follow them exactly, same thing with the first Milk Bar cookbook:*DO read the intros because they explain a lot of essential techniques and equipment in order to be successful with these bakes. *DO NOT make substitutions, cut corners or skip steps! *GET A DIGITAL FOOD SCALE. I get so tired of people complaining about weight measurements- how do you think the pros do it? They don't use measuring cups! If you want accuracy and for your baking to turn out amazing Every. Single. Time, then you need a scale. You can get one for $20 bucks. Trust me, best $20 you'll ever spend. This kind of baking is a precise science, great results take patience and exactness. With a food scale, you can foray into jams, preserves, breads, and yes, every single volume of the Great British Bake Off cookbooks. *Also, with Tosi's recipes, it helps to plan out your recipes for each cake so you don't feel tired and overwhelmed. Ex: make the crumb or other filling on day 1, then cake and frosting on day 2, assemble and freeze to serve on day 3. The results are absolutely worth it. If you love cake, you dream of cake, your one food that you would choose over all others is cake... you need this book.
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  • Shipshapeeatworthy
    January 1, 1970
    How many times have I thought: I'm a good cook but I can't bake to save my life? Like, so, so many times. Part of the reason for this being I practice cooking way more often and it's easy to get discouraged when baking. Curdle-y Italian buttercream, dry cake, or a host of baking flops and complete "Nailed It!" moments make me hesitant when it comes to baking. I probably shouldn't complain too much because people will start to point to my successes on Instagram. And, yes, I've had some great How many times have I thought: I'm a good cook but I can't bake to save my life? Like, so, so many times. Part of the reason for this being I practice cooking way more often and it's easy to get discouraged when baking. Curdle-y Italian buttercream, dry cake, or a host of baking flops and complete "Nailed It!" moments make me hesitant when it comes to baking. I probably shouldn't complain too much because people will start to point to my successes on Instagram. And, yes, I've had some great baking moments in the past several years but it's a skill I lack confidence in. This is where Christina Tosi and her book All About Cake fit in.When I first got her book last November there weren't any major family celebrations, so I wasn't looking to bake layer cakes, which was alright because she has recipes for mug cakes. These are exactly what they sound like -- individual-sized cakes in mugs which are cooked in the microwave. Who could say "no" to such a small cake indulgence? My husband who is the "if it's not chocolate, it's not dessert" type loved the Molten Chocolate Microwave Mug Cake, and, I totally dug the Oatmeal-Apple-Brown Sugar Microwave Mug Cake (which is topped with green apple matchsticks and brown sugar glaze). Minimal effort with a high-impact treat factor! And, while I'm almost positive Tosi would tell me that I don't need a special occasion to bake cake as it's an occasion in and of itself, these mug cakes strike the perfect balance between enjoying the sweet life without totally regretting it. A little somethin' somethin'.All About Cake is really all about cake -- bundts, pound, cupcake, mug cake, cake truffles, sheet cake, ice cream cake, crockpot cake, and layer cakes. Tosi is focusing on all your cake-related needs! Her flavours are classic and inspired -- there's even a recipe for celery root pound cake! You might think "yuck", but you know if Tosi has put this recipe into a book about cake you know it's a winner. Her methods and flavour-combos are completely bonafide. One thing I've noticed about Tosi's recipes is that there can be a few different elements happening that are meant to work in perfect concert with each other so that when you take your first bite you're hit with incredible flavour AND texture. Take the Oatmeal-Apple-Brown Sugar Microwave Mug Cake -- you get the warming comfort of oatmeal with the sweet/tart crunchy green apples and the sticky-sweet brown sugar glaze. It's like what happens to Cinderella when her Fairy Godmother waves her wand -- it's like oatmeal gets the Fairy-Godmother makeover! If oatmeal could live its best life, I think this mug cake might be it. When you get into some of the bigger, more involved layer cakes there are still these flavour and textural elements that work together to elevate the cake experience.Ask my husband right this moment if he's regretting sharing a birthday cake with me and he'd probably say yeah (our birthdays are less than a week apart, so we've been sharing a cake instead of having two in the past few years). If he knew how much he was going to love the German Chocolate Jimbo Cake I think he would have told me to make two cakes! (My daughter would have also asked for two cakes because as I was unmolding the cake, she was standing behind me and offered this observation: "Hey mom -- I don't think that cake is going to be big enough for the three of us.") All I can say is that everyone is going to be wanting their own cakes from now on!The German Chocolate Jimbo Cake is one of the most delicious cakes I've ever had! You start with three basic chocolate cake layers that become the backdrop for liberal splashes of malted milk cake soak, coconut-crack filling, pecan crunch filling, and chocolate frosting. It's borderline genius how well Tosi can deconstruct a recipe and make it her own. Once you've layered up your cake, it goes into the freezer to set for 12 hrs. Anyone can bake a cake the Tosi way and be successful. All you must do is make the components and you're set. She's really kept the home baker in mind because you can totally make the different elements ahead of time so that you aren't spending a day in the kitchen.The last time (well, the only time) I made a 6"-layer cake, I used several 6" round cake pans. This is not the case with a Tosi cake -- she relies on a jelly roll sized pan to bake the cake on. Once baked and cooled you use your cake ring to cut out the layers -- two perfect rounds and one "round" that is cobbled together with pieces. As you can see in my picture, I got 2 whole rounds and two 1/2 rounds. The benefit to baking the cake like this is that you get really even layers, unlike the domed rounds you get when you bake a cake layer in a round cake pan. Not having to level anything out is a huge plus! (If you're wondering what you do with the extra cake you cake eat it or make cake truffles with it -- the recipe for which are in the book).When building a Tosi/Milk Bar cake you need some essential tools/equipment and some key ingredients. Before baking any of her layer cakes I ordered a couple of cake rings -- I had to go to a restaurant supply store because I needed the heavy-duty ones (I bought a 6" and an 8") that were wide enough on the sides (3") to support the cake layers (you'll also use the ring to cut out the layers). I also picked up a roll of acetate -- this is what you use to line the ring with. When you unmold your cake, the acetate will stop the layers from sticking to the sides of the ring but, it will also create a smooth and tidy edge once you peel it off the cake. Finally, I ordered freeze-dried corn so that I could grind it up into powder. This seemingly small flavour element becomes one of the essential components in the Milk Bar (formerly known as crack pie) filling. I made the mistake of thinking I could buy feuillitine (tiny paper-thin wafer shards used by pastry chefs) anywhere (I couldn't) so I used Rice Krispies (Tosi had mentioned how feuillitine was like Rice Krispies in a YouTube vid).With my success baking up the German Chocolate Jimbo Cake I feel like I want to bake more of these cakes! Not only can you make 6" cakes but with the use of different sized rings you can pretty much make whatever size cake you want (Tosi even gives information on how to make darn delicious vegan cakes!). It's all about eating something that is worth the effort to make in the first place. Nothing beige or boring. Layer cakes like this are perfect for me because it's not about piping on flowers or swooping that frosting. And, if you're like me, in love with Milk Bar but might never have a chance to actually taste their creations, then this book allows you to easily bake up all kinds of lovely Milk Bar cakes right in your own home.Please note that this review is an excerpt of a review that was posted to www.shipshapeeatworthy.wordpress.comI would like to take this opportunity to thank Penguin Random House Canada / Clarkson Potter Publishers for providing me with a free, review copy of this book. I did not receive monetary compensation for my post, and all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.
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  • ReGina
    January 1, 1970
    If you enjoy making really good cakes and being very creative in the process, go get this book. Right. Now. In her first book, Tosi has amazing cakes, but they are pretty complicated and require a lot of time. With this book, however, she spans the cake world from mug cakes up loaf cakes to sheet cakes. There are a few repeat recipes from Momofuku Milk Bar, but not enough to not get this book. Your friends and family will love you.
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  • H
    January 1, 1970
    Beautiful and yummy-looking cakes. Not going to make of them but... very nice.
  • Ryan
    January 1, 1970
    Another great book by Tosi. I really liked the corn and blueberry sheet cake. Other recipes from previous books are improved or made easier.
  • Mary
    January 1, 1970
    Tosi, past pastry chef at Momofuko and current owner of Milk Bar, came late to cake, deciding in 2005 she was going to come up with cake recipes that were flavor forward, amazing and not reliant on frosting for taste. Here she shares the recipes she developed that met her criteria. She starts with a pantry and equipment chapter that goes beyond talking about ingredients to providing recommendations of specific brands. This is also an informative chapter that explains that the unusual flavor in Tosi, past pastry chef at Momofuko and current owner of Milk Bar, came late to cake, deciding in 2005 she was going to come up with cake recipes that were flavor forward, amazing and not reliant on frosting for taste. Here she shares the recipes she developed that met her criteria. She starts with a pantry and equipment chapter that goes beyond talking about ingredients to providing recommendations of specific brands. This is also an informative chapter that explains that the unusual flavor in cereal ice cream comes from homemade corn powder and clear vanilla extract can not be substituted with regular! You really need to read this section because unlike most cookbook cake recipes, you are going to need more than the usual cake pan, namely a quarter sheet pan and 6 inch cake rings (but other things too depending on what you decide to bake).So what makes a cake flavor forward? Well, slices of lemon in the lemon cake, fresh cherry purée in a cherry cake, potato chips and pretzels in the compost cake, and flavors you may never have imagined like cherry cola, mint julep, or banana green curry pound cake. The layer cakes follow a formula of cake, cake soak, frosting or filling, texture and frosting topped by another layer. These are not quick, easy or let’s just bake a cake recipes.There is also a section on warm cakes including those cooked in a mug or in a slow cooker. Several interesting cupcake recipes like key lime or chocolate hazelnut banana. Layer cakes and cake truffles (chocolate chip passion fruit is one example) are included. The get fancy layer cake section includes cakes with 6-7 different separate recipes.Recipes include both weights and measures and are written clearly (and even more clear if you read the equipment and pantry sections). However, the layer cake and cake truffle recipes are difficult to follow. Their are foundation recipes like birthday sheet cake and then they are combined in different ways to make different cakes. But in order to follow the cake recipe, you will have recipes on many different pages. So, printing out copies of the different recipes required (between 4-5 recipes for regular layer, 6-7 for fancy) will be helpful. One example includes vanilla cake, lemon juice, pickled strawberry jam, milk crumbs, lemon cheesecake, liquid cheesecake, pickled strawberry frosting. There are many color pictures but not for all recipes.If you want really elaborate and unique cakes this may be the cookbook for you
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  • Reed
    January 1, 1970
    Cakes are my weak point when it comes to baking and I feel like I got some good tips. I'm also very excited to make an Arnold Palmer cake.
  • Katie Young
    January 1, 1970
    This will be the year of cake, and I couldn't be more excited. I've already tried two of the three mug cakes and couldn't be happier with them.
  • Kristina Goff
    January 1, 1970
    I was super excited for this book... I have the first momofuku cookbook and it was nothing less than revelatory. I am a hardcore Tosi acolyte. If we talk long enough to say hello to one another, odds are very good you will hear something about my most recent Tosi-inspired baking success (or failure).But this cookbook kind of let me down. Its beautiful for sure, and I'm certain that the fabulous photos have helped me understand more about some of the textures called for in certain recipes (cake I was super excited for this book... I have the first momofuku cookbook and it was nothing less than revelatory. I am a hardcore Tosi acolyte. If we talk long enough to say hello to one another, odds are very good you will hear something about my most recent Tosi-inspired baking success (or failure).But this cookbook kind of let me down. Its beautiful for sure, and I'm certain that the fabulous photos have helped me understand more about some of the textures called for in certain recipes (cake truffles especially). The recipes themselves, however... well, i haven't tried them all but the one I did try -- a crock pot creamsicle cake -- turned out burned on the bottom, wet in the middle, too sweet and utterly inedible. I was shocked.If you are looking for your first Tosi adventure cookbook, go buy the momofuku milk bar book. Its better. If youre looking to complete your set, then obviously you need this and I understand. I'm hoping the next recipe I try will be better. I guess we'll see.
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  • Kathie
    January 1, 1970
    For me, it was a bit of a comical comparison to be baking from this book and Odette William's Simple Cake simultaneously. They're the same subject, yet couldn't be on more opposite sides of the spectrum. Aside from the "Hot Cakes" (i.e., cakes made in crock-pots and microwaved in mugs) Tosi's recipes are quite labor intensive ordeals: baking or whipping up four separate recipes (cake, crumb, soak, frosting) to then combine or layer them into a finished tiered masterpiece. No pressure popping it For me, it was a bit of a comical comparison to be baking from this book and Odette William's Simple Cake simultaneously. They're the same subject, yet couldn't be on more opposite sides of the spectrum. Aside from the "Hot Cakes" (i.e., cakes made in crock-pots and microwaved in mugs) Tosi's recipes are quite labor intensive ordeals: baking or whipping up four separate recipes (cake, crumb, soak, frosting) to then combine or layer them into a finished tiered masterpiece. No pressure popping it out of the pan to platter when you've invested HOURS on it, right? Haha! The flavor of the recipes is often intense, like think Pop Rocks intense, nothing subtle here. The Arnold Palmer sheet cake and the Strawberry-Lemon Cake Truffles had people puckering. But I love the cake truffles and the uniqueness of each finished product, definitely not anything you could stroll in and buy in your typical bakery, so it's perfect for marking special occasions and impressing friends and family members with occasionally.
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  • Martha
    January 1, 1970
    I'm not a baker..................... But I liked the new and refreshing recipes that this book offered. Besides suggestions on ingredients for the baker's kitchen, the best tools and equipment were also listed and described. I will occasionaly perpare a bundt and I liked her suggestions. My favorite were the recipes for molten cakes prepared in minutes in an 11oz. cup. Great for a household of only two people. Liked looking at the recently popular naked cakes with many layers of goodness. She I'm not a baker..................... But I liked the new and refreshing recipes that this book offered. Besides suggestions on ingredients for the baker's kitchen, the best tools and equipment were also listed and described. I will occasionaly perpare a bundt and I liked her suggestions. My favorite were the recipes for molten cakes prepared in minutes in an 11oz. cup. Great for a household of only two people. Liked looking at the recently popular naked cakes with many layers of goodness. She also developed cake balls from leftover cakes and batter. Just a yummy little pop of goodness and sweetness. Though i was not familiar with this chef, I believe she is quite popular on the celebrity circuit and with her shops in New York. Highly recommend!
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  • Valentina
    January 1, 1970
    there are full page photos of pans n crockpots n mixers n tosi but not every cake i hate that i've actually only made parts of recipes n the banana green curry cake (not as intense as i was expecting loved the black pepper butter please remember if measuring by volume n using mortons cut the salt in half tosi uses diamond crystal which isn't as salty she mentions this in the beginning of the book but not the recipe itself n it makes a huge difference from delicious to inedible n try to keep this there are full page photos of pans n crockpots n mixers n tosi but not every cake i hate that i've actually only made parts of recipes n the banana green curry cake (not as intense as i was expecting loved the black pepper butter please remember if measuring by volume n using mortons cut the salt in half tosi uses diamond crystal which isn't as salty she mentions this in the beginning of the book but not the recipe itself n it makes a huge difference from delicious to inedible n try to keep this in mind with other recipes even if the author doesn't specify most chefs seem to prefer diamond crystal or artisan salts) but regardless of how "successful" the recipes are the book n the surprising flavor combinations n ideas within got me very excited to bake n experiment
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  • Jason Brehm
    January 1, 1970
    This is a beautiful book but I don’t have confidence in the actual recipes. I made the Corn and Blueberry Sheet Cake and found myself with a cake batter coated oven. I followed the recipe and even ordered new baking sheets to make sure I was using the correct size. To make the corn powder for this recipe it will run about $12 if you order the freeze dried corn from Amazon. The book is fun to look at but save your time and money and don’t make this recipe. Baker beware!
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  • Kris Springer
    January 1, 1970
    All bakers should take a gander at this one. So fun to read, so interesting in terms of flavor matching and the science of cooking and the fun, insouciant tone of the author. I am going to have to make a pilgrimage to Momofuku Milk Bar when I am in NYC again. Some day I will make some of these amazing cakes and reach the pinnacle of cakedom. This would be a great gift for the baker in your life. That may be yourself, that may be me. I can assure you he/she will love it.
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  • Danielle Burgsma
    January 1, 1970
    I enjoy Christina Tosi’s amicable and easy style of writing. However, I find her recipes less accessible. If you want to recreate Milk Bar desserts, she tells you how. But if you’re looking for general tips and suggestions for getting your own creative juices flowing, I would recommend looking elsewhere.
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  • Diane C.
    January 1, 1970
    I love everything Milk Bar in Manhattan makes, and now I CAN MAKE IT MYSELF! Rather dangerous. Christina Tosi breaks is down for you, and even presents her signature "sprinkles birthday cake" as an easy to make sheet cake. I will buy this book, and make cakes for birthdays with it for years to come.
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  • Karynne
    January 1, 1970
    I LOVE Christina Tosi's baking style. She's creative and ingenious but totally relatable and inspirational. I read and baked my way through her Momofuku Milk Bar cookbook and was exited to try this book out. It hasn't disappointed. The recipes take time but they are all worth it. Christina gives you the skills you need to create your own combinations.
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  • Pamela Sue
    January 1, 1970
    Unlike the author I've always liked cake, actually better than icing. I also really like pumpkin pie which the author also doesn't like. To me layering cake, soak, frosting, crumbs, filling, cake, soak, frosting, crumbs, filling, cake, frosting, decor would hide the thing I really like- the cake! The only recipe I might try is the chocolate microwave mug cake
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  • Robin
    January 1, 1970
    Interesting cake theories and intriguing recipes. I made a monstrous chocolate birthday cake based on this book and learned several techniques that will definitely up my cake game. Maybe about a third of the book is practical for the home baker who does not have unlimited time and energy, but all of it is a fun read. Recommended.
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  • Holly
    January 1, 1970
    I love baking and I love gorgeous pictures of cake. Of course, I don't think I will be able to make the recipes in this book but it didn't make it any less enjoyable to look at or read.My only complaint was the large section dedicated to cale truffles.
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  • Naomi Smart
    January 1, 1970
    A recipe book about....drum roll....BAKING Cakes Whew. This book is full of photos and wonderful recipes. I checked this out from the local library and already ordered my own edition to continue baking. I made the cherry cola bundt cake. Amazing. A recipe book about....drum roll....BAKING Cakes 🎂 Whew. This book is full of photos and wonderful recipes. I checked this out from the local library and already ordered my own edition to continue baking. I made the cherry cola bundt cake. Amazing.
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  • Sandy
    January 1, 1970
    All recipes given in grams.
  • Brenna Sydel
    January 1, 1970
    10/10 Would Bake
  • Julia
    January 1, 1970
    Cannot say enough good things. Not all recipes are simple and quick, but they are all enjoyable to make and delicious to eat. This book is a staple in my collection.
  • Holly
    January 1, 1970
    Interesting, but generally not my type of baking. I might try one sometime this year as part of my baking challenge though.
  • Meredith
    January 1, 1970
    Pistachio bundt. Mint Julep bundt. Chocolate cupcakes.
  • Karen Gilmore
    January 1, 1970
    Amazing ideas, but the recipes have lots of ingredients that are hard to get your hands on as a home baker.
  • Mary Beth
    January 1, 1970
    This is everything a cookbook about cake should be- whimsical, fun, great photography, and recipes I cannot WAIT to try!
  • Cody
    January 1, 1970
    Interesting to read, great pictures, and the one recipe I've made from it so far was a big hit.
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