Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Mini Book Review: America's Best Lost Recipes from America's Test Kitchen

One of my friends gave me a nifty cookbook to celebrate the winter holidays:



And so far, I’ve made two recipes from it.


This was the first, and it’s now a favorite. You can find the recipe for Waukau here. As that writeup mentions, it’s like a cross between a clafouti and a popover. Maybe it’s like a Dutch baby, only with berries instead of apples. The writeup mentions that clafouti are vaguely skin-like, and I thought the same thing about popovers. What makes Waukau stand out is it’s wonderful "crust"—soft and slightly chewy, with a wonderfully crisped crust. Oh my yum. I used frozen raspberries because that’s all I had on hand, and it made for a delicious syrup for the pancake.
Waukau

Waukau

I also made the Wacky Cake. The recipe is easy enough to find. The book guesses that its lack of eggs and butter stems from war-time rationing. Not surprisingly, it tastes like cake made without butter or eggs—pretty flat and bland, although it did rise well and have a decent texture. In short, it tastes like box mix, and not the kind with pudding powder, either. On the plus side, it’s vegan! (My friend Mario makes a delicious vegan chocolate cake, but that’s his private recipe. Darnit.)

Wacky Cake

Wacky Cake

Overall, it's a fun book! A lot of the recipes are accompanied by photos, and most of them have a story dilineating the recipes history, whether it's cultural, familial, or creative and charming. In true ATK style, any "tricky" maneuvers are accompanied with instructional photos and/or editor's notes.

Update, 5/03/08--It's better with fresh berries, for sure.
Waukau, take 2

Waukau, take 2

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