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Don’t blame me, it’s the title of a rather wonderful little book that tells you all you need to know about baking, including, of course, how to avoid a soggy bottom (to your pies)!  And if you don’t know what to do with yourself now that The Great British Bake Off has finished, this is for you.

Written, rather brilliantly, by Gerard Baker, this book gives you a mini history of how cakes, bread and biscuits all evolved over time, as well as the scientific basis for how the ingredients work.  Thus you find out the difference between puff pastry and flaky pastry, how biscuits got their name and how to avoid some common baking problems.  Each section comes with a simple, well described recipe.

I love the histories in this book, but also that it manages to teach the basics without sounding condescending.  It’s beautifully written and designed and should absolutely have a place on the shelves of every baker, new or experienced.

How to Avoid a Soggy Bottom and Other Secrets to Achieving a Good Bake by Gerard Baker

Photo: bbc.co.uk

If you’re in the UK at the moment, it can’t have escaped your notice that we are witnessing an outbreak of patriotic flag waving!  This weekend sees a four day national party as we celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.  Elizabeth II has been on the throne for 60 years and it seems that the only way to respond, apart from flag waving, is to start baking.  There are some fabulous looking concoctions out there, so get out your pinnies and start baking – do it for your country!

The BBC have several wonderful recipes for themed cakes as well as ideas for a jolly good street party.  Check out the Union Jack Battenburg (above) and the Jubilee Bunting cake (below).

Jubilee Bunting Cake. bbc.co.uk

Other great bakes:

 

Jubilee Cake from The Boy Who Bakes

Crown Cakes on Baking Mad

 

 

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