OMGoodness!!! What am I loving lately? It’s a no-brainer… Crumb A Baking Book by Ruby Tandoh.
We all know that I am a cookbook fanatic. I can walk through any department store, past the shoe department, through the make-up and perfume, past woman’s clothing and accessories, and leave empty handed. I can visit any home goods store and ogle the decor, romanticize about placing the holiday decorations and get really tempted by the serving ware. Yet, I have reasoning enough to remind myself that I am out of storage space (ugh, that dreaded voice of reason). So, I can resist. But alas, when I see a discounted cookbook misplaced on any given random shelf… well obviously it’s a sign.
I’m not like a cutting edge, latest and greatest, New York Times best seller cookbook buyer. (Can you imagine the pressure?) Perspective: I’m just cooking for my family.
But I have so much to know!
For example, it was from Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child where I learned that you don’t just want the butter to melt to sauté, you want it to separate and froth before adding the diced onions, celery and carrots (or what have you). I had known for years that the esteemed classic French cooking techniques were actually founded on the capability of “peasants” to extract the most flavor from any food to which they might be privy (i.e. onion soup and quiche- a.k.a egg pie). Those are a couple of my favorite foods, btw. But it wasn’t until after making a few recipes out of the book, Tyler’s Ultimate by Tyler Florence, that it actually dawned on me -“light bulb,” how really good these simple ingredients taste by following a few steps.
So, I’m a few pages into Crumb and there are like 3 paragraphs dedicated to “Brown Butter”… and I’ve made brown butter before (sometimes accidentally)… and she clues me in to the idea that heating the butter this far reduces its water content by 20% of its original weight, so you should reintroduce a splash of milk… and maybe I’ve read this before, but if so I obviously didn’t remember (clearly I wasn’t ready). Then Ruby, if I may call her that, goes on to explain with her following recipe of “Honey Madeleines” (those traditional shell shaped French cookies with a honey spin), that it is indeed the brown butter that compliments the honey… and to chill the pan to give the characteristic crispy edges… and I am like, “Eureka! I have needed this book all of my life!”
Don’t even get me started on the “Caraway Carrot Cake With Poppy Seeds” which I am chomping at the bit to make. Because by page 48 she has already earned my trust and I am confident that this must be an amazing flavor combination… I ❤️ Crumb! Oh, I should mention fantastic photographs of food… which I also love.
This is me.
And here’s a little shout out to my husband who supports my quirky.