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From the Publisher
The Bread Bible
From: Publishers Weekly
Longtime San Francisco resident, cooking instructor and author (Bread for All Seasons) Hensperger offers a compelling and innovative collection of bread recipes for contemporary home bakers. With a significant nod to classic yeast breads, her extensive repertoire includes basic white, whole-wheat and rye loaves, sour starters, savory main-dish breads, even dessert and quick breads--just to name a few. Staunchly adhering to her philosophy that "breadmaking is nothing more than a series of sequential steps executed in a predictable order," she presents step-by-step instructions with great finesse and clarity. Where applicable, Hensperger provides useful addendum notes, divulges invaluable "Baker's Wisdom" baking tips and offers creative recipe variations (e.g., Cornmeal Brioche and Basic Pizza Dough). Taking into account busy schedules and state-of-the-art baking equipment, Hensperger devotes two end chapters to breads made with food processors and bread machines. For those who feel daunted by the prospect of baking bread, Hensperger encourages and inspires with a "breadmaking is for everyone" ethos and easy, vibrant prose infused with obvious passion for her craft.
The mark of any good cookbook is its "clippability." How overwhelming is your desire to photocopy or bookmark several recipes? Hensberger's latest cookbook deserves a positive answer to this question. Just waiting for adept (or even amateur) baking fingers are 300 recipes, each meticulously crafted to ensure success. In fact, the entire book is intended to soothe anxious minds. A slew of "baker's wisdom" tips explain techniques: re-heating homemade tortillas, for example, requires only 30 seconds of microwave time. Lead-ins to each recipe also instruct on specifics; in one, the best Yorkshire pudding demands room temperature ingredients, a very hot pan, and instructions followed to the letter.
From: Columbus Dispatch
The Bread Bible by Beth Hensperger is this author's sixth book on the subject. She recognizes that for the "the connoisseur who doesn't want to get flour on his counter," bread machines "are revolutionizing the age-old art of yeast baking." The heart of his well-thought-out volume, however, lies in the need to knead by hand. Her chapters begin with back-to-basics white breads such as French, White Mountain, Farm-Style With Cardamom, and Buttermilk Honey. This knowledgeable author's step-by-step instructions, presented in a clear and concise manner, contribute to easier and more enjoyable bread-making, even for the longer, more complex recipes. The Bread Bible is a learned volume packed with hours of enjoyment for baker and consumer alike.
From: Sacramento Bee
In a market crowded with specialized bread books, Beth Hensperger has gone her own way. In her latest book, The Bread Bible, the subtitle, "300 Favorite Recipes," tells the real story. Hensperger, the author of five other books on bread, invites readers to take a peek into her recipe file and try the ones she likes best. A page that will get sticky and dusty over the years in my kitchen is the one with a recipe for farm-style white bread with cardamom. The recipe makes four beautiful, shiny sandwich loaves. Though there is a relatively large amount of sugar in the dough, it balances perfectly with the cardamom. As you eat it, the cardamom flavor builds in intensity and yet is never so strong that you would hesitate to pair the bread with other foods. (It was delicious spread with goat cheese.) Publishing a collection of favorite recipes is actually the old way of cookbook writing. The Bread Bible is a sound and pleasant revival of that approach.