Reviewed by Nandita Keshavan for Readers' Favorite
County Fair Blue Ribbon Winning Cookbook: Distinctive Cake Recipes by Amber Richards is an excellent collection of delicious cake recipes. Featuring several popular classics, the book begins with a short introduction which describes some equipment and measurements mentioned frequently. I found that the coverage of different types of cakes is excellent, the instructions are detailed, and the recipes cater for a variety of tastes. There are several cakes for chocolate, white chocolate and coffee cake lovers, some of which incorporate nuts and berries, such as raspberry and cranberry. There are several lemon based cakes, and cakes with coconut.
There were also mini cakes and cupcake recipes, such as apple caramel mini cakes and vegan red velvet cupcakes. Unique and creative cakes included the spiced zucchini cake, sour cream coffee cake and pumpkin chocolate chip cake. Nut lovers would be interested to try recipes including walnuts, macadamia nuts, pecans, pistachios, peanuts and praline. Also, some recipes include a colour photograph and instructions on how to make an icing, frosting, mousse, cream, filling, ganache, garnish, sauce, topping or glaze which goes with the cake.
Classic home comforts such as carrot, oatmeal, orange and apple cakes are included. The recipes certainly seem to be winning ones as stated in the title and all the tips and tricks are included on how to bake well. The recipes don't state preparation times, so be prepared to estimate them yourself since some recipes are quite elaborate and specify several simple techniques to put delicious details on the final cake. Overall, this book is a creative selection of popular cake recipes which is written by an experienced cook.