The Vintage Baker by Jessie Sheehan {book review}


Recipe writing has changed over the years, back in the day when people scribbled down recipes for each other it was with abbreviations and the simplest of instructions. So simple that today we would have trouble understanding exactly what they wanted us to do. Jessie, through her love of vintage cookbooks and pamphlets, has deciphered the ingredient lists and instructions and brought back long forgotten treats. 


In the past when a brand came out with a new appliance or gadget they would alway include a recipe pamphlet to go with it. Which makes sense to me and some brands still do it. I know Nordic Ware and Wiltons provide recipes on the packaging of their baking tins and my Kitchen Aid had instructions on how to send away for a 'free cookbook' which I had every intention of doing, but didn't. I wonder if it's too late? 


Anyhow, it was these books and pamphlets that Jessie collected from antique stores and secondhand shops and developed the recipes to suit us modern folks. With a wide range of recipes that cover everything from Sweet & Savory Morning Treats to Confections and everything in between we are taken back to a simpler time.


The books these recipes are inspired by range from 1800's to 1950's; some of them are familiar and others I have never heard of. But there are a few I am definitely bookmarking to try out myself....

Chai Banna Fritters
Butterscotch Pecan Curls (pictured)
Vanilla Yogurt Coffee Cake
Black-Bottom Banana Dream Bars (pictured)
Fig Pincushions
Lemon Chiffon Pie with Coconut Whipped Cream
Cherry-Almond Slab Pie with Marzipan Crumble (pictured)
Blueberry Angel Food Dream
Coconut Blitz Torte (pictured)
Milk Chocolate Malted Pudding (pictured)
Ice Cream Cake
Hot Fudge Sauce
Curried Candy Cashews
Chocolate-Marshmallow-Walnut Fudge with Sea Salt (pictured)


These are just a few of the recipes in this book, but it gives you an idea of what to expect. Even if you never baked anything from this book, although I don't see how you wouldn't want too, it's an intriguing book to read. Each recipe has a little picture of the book or pamphlet that the recipe was inspired by and even though it's a little thing, it has given it a nice little touch and adds to the atmosphere of the book. 


I think this is a great book, not only for those who love baking, but those who love everything vintage. I love being transported to another place and time through food. If you want to learn more before getting a copy for yourself, check out the author's website here and she shares a link to the recipe for Silver Cake with Pink Frosting to try out! 


The book is essential vintage American bakes, but the recipes give us UK readers weights in grams, which saves us time converting! So, please don't let that put you off!!


*I was provided a copy of The Vintage Baker by Jessie Sheehan (photography by Alice Gao) to review by the publisher, Chronicle Books, retails at £18.99 and available now from your local book retailers or online! All opinions are my own, I was not given any other compensation nor was I asked to give a positive review, please see my contact/policy page for more information.

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