With the latest season of ‘The Great British Bake Off’ kicking off this week, it’s time for us to get back into delicious homemade treats ourselves. We’ve wracked our brains (and our tastebuds) to bring you our top 5 cookbooks full of great baking goodies. Whether you’re dipping your spoon into the world of baking for the first time, or you’re a baking veteran looking to try something new. We’ve got a pick for everyone.
If you’re just starting out, this book has a little bit of everything. With over 100 recipes you’re sure to find something that really ignites your baking passion. Savoury or sweet, Marcella DiLonardo puts some unique twists on classic homely dishes. So there’s no pressure to do it just like grandma’s, because yours has smoked gorgonzola. It’s different.
For the experienced baker, DiLonardo’s fresh takes on classic dishes might give you the spark needed to revisit and revise old recipes. There’s really no going wrong with this one.
Looking to make something as cute as it is delicious? Ashley and Jenna of Jenna Rae Cakes have revealed all their sweet secrets in this compilation of their fan favourite treats. With over 100 recipes ranging from cupcakes to cookie sandwiches, you may have a hard time putting this book down to start baking! If you think you might be a fan of Cotton Candy Cupcakes, Lemon Meringue Party Squares, or Salted Dark Chocolate Expresso Cake, then this one is definitely for you.
Macarons are arguably one of the most versatile baking products to hit the market. But have you ever wondered how they’re made? Wonder no more! This book will tell you everything you need to know to start making your own crowd-pleasing cookies. From a step-by-step for the perfect shell to smooth fillings, as well as delectable flavour and decorating tips, there’s nothing this handy little book doesn’t cover. Start your journey into the world of macarons today.
Do you want to get into baking, but don’t want to use eggs or dairy? With veganism rising in popularity, access to great vegan recipes is getting easier by the day. In fact, we have 100 whole vegan baking recipes here for you right now! Chris Holechek has dedicated himself to animal-free baking that keeps up with all the flavours of classic eggs-and-dairy cupcakes. And of course, this cookbook would be great for anyone who wants to give vegan baking a go. No matter how experienced you are.
Cute pink frosting not for you? This one’s for people who like their sweet treats looking a little more rock ‘n’ roll. Featuring 58 recipes, each with completely unique presentation – Bake In Black is all about edible tributes to the world of rock and metal. And also puns. With titles such as Sex Pistols ‘God Save the Cream’, Led Zeppelin ‘Glazed and Infused’ and Meatloaf ‘Battenburg out of Hell’, Bake In Black will take you on a journey through baking and music, inspiring fans of bands and bakers alike.
Now that you’ve got the supplies, you’re ready to start your own little Bake Off at home. Soon you’ll be baking alongside the contestants on TV, judging them and the judges alike with your updated baking knowledge. Better yet, you’ll have a lovely tray of sweet treats to comfort yourself with after the show – and you’ll be your family’s new favourite person to invite over for tea!
If you’re stuck for gift ideas this year, vinyl records may be just what you need to step up the festivities. With such a wide range of music available, there’s something for everyone and the timelessness of the record player means you’ll be getting endless use out of them for years to come. All you have to do is find your loved one’s favourite album in our extensive collection of vinyl records.
Not sure where to start? Here are our top 5 recommendations for getting your family into vinyl records:
1. For Dad – Guns n’ Roses: Appetite For Destruction
The perfect road-trip soundtrack, but what happens if you forget your CD after listening at home? The simple solution is vinyl! Gift some extra flair to a Guns n’ Roses fan’s collection with a cool new copy of all their favourite songs. With over 30 million copies sold worldwide, Appetite for Destruction is one of the best-selling records of all time for a reason. With hits such as “Welcome to the Jungle,” “Paradise City,” and “Sweet Child O’ Mine” even the least versed in Guns n’ Roses would have a hard time not singing along.
2. For Mum – ABBA: Gold Vinyl
Know an ABBA fan? Look no longer; this compilation album features two whole discs of ABBA classics, that’s 19 songs! Relive the entire musical every time your heart desires with this great vinyl on hand. With sales of 30 million, Gold is the best-selling ABBA album, as well as one of the best-selling albums worldwide. You can’t go wrong gifting this one. Favourite tracks for this album include, of course, “Dancing Queen,” “Mamma Mia” and our bloggers’ personal favourite – “Chiquita.”
3. For Son – AC/DC: Back In Black
From the band that brought us Highway to Hell, their sixth album and most well-known song of all time, AC/DC’s seventh album Back in Black lives up to all our expectations. Fans of this album will tell you that there isn’t a single skippable song on the tracklist. It has sold an estimated 50 million copies worldwide and is the second best-selling album in music history, right behind Michael Jackson’s Thriller. “Shoot to Thrill,” “Hells Bells,” and “You Shook Me All Night Long,” as well as the album’s namesake “Back In Black” are all considered some of AC/DC’s top songs of all time.
4. For Daughter – Lana Del Rey: Chemtrails Over The Country Club
Lana Del Rey fans everywhere are celebrating this year’s new album, Chemtrails Over the Country Club, after an agonising three-year wait. Make your loved one the envy of all Lana fans. Gift them a vinyl of all her newest hits, with a sleeve artwork worthy of appearing in their Instagram photos. As well as 10 of her own songs, a cover of Joni Mitchell’s 1970 song “For Free” is also included in the album. Other top picks include “White Dress” and “Wild At Heart.”
5. For The In-Laws, Or Anyone Else! – The Eagles: Hotel California
You’d have a very hard time finding someone who’s never heard of The Eagles, specifically Hotel California. It’s the perfect safe gift for anyone you know who’s already into vinyl records. Or has even expressed interest in getting into them! This album makes the perfect background music for any chores, work or reading and relaxation going on at home. It has been certified 26× Platinum. Selling over 42 million copies worldwide, it is in the top 10 best selling albums of all time. As well as top track Hotel California, this album features similarly beloved songs “The Last Resort” and “Wasted Time.”