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In this post, I am sharing two parts, one is a book review and the other is a recipe from the book! The book I am reviewing is the cookbook "Sugar Redefined" by Alyx Kjorven, who is the owner of the blog Sugar by Alyx.
Note that I got the book to review and permission to publish the recipe on my blog by Alyx. This is not a paid review and I am sharing my own honest opinion and thoughts.
Let’s start with the book review, after all, that is how this recipe came to be!
The book begins by presenting Alyx and her brilliant connection to cakes and baking. As a food blogger who loves to bake, I can easily connect to any cookbook, especially the baking ones, so I was really happy to get the book to review. Alyx has a sweet tooth (like so many of us!) and she watches the Food Network all the time (I mean, who doesn’t?), that’s why I could immediately connect to the cookbook since I am guilty of doing this as well! :)
The book continues with some general information about the ingredients most of the recipes in the book use and also the kitchen tools you will need when making the cakes from the book.
One of the things you will need for all the recipes from the book is three 6-inch cake pans. To me, this sounds rather small for a cake but if you make the cakes in a bigger pan they will end up lower than the 6 inch cake so you need to decide if you are after height or width when making the cakes in the book. I bought three 6-inch pans especially for this recipe because I wanted to make it as Alyx described and because I can't help but buy more and more tools for the kitchen (LOL).
You will also need piping bags and nozzles to decorate the cake and a serrated knife to trim the top of the cakes and make them flat for a fine look.
The book has 25 cake recipes with many unique flavors that combine fruits, vegetables, spices and herbs. The flavors are very refreshing with new combinations that you just wouldn’t think to add to a cake. I know I was definitely surprised with some of the recipes and their ingredients!
Alyx explains how to assemble a cake and gives a general recipe for swiss buttercream that can be used in any cake. I prefer not to consume raw eggs so in the recipe that I am sharing, the buttercream doesn’t contain raw eggs like the swiss buttercream.
After you buy the book, you can mix and match flavors and buttercreams from different cakes in the book, I know that’s what I plan to do! (If you decide to whip up your own combination, be sure to tell me, either in the comment section or a private message, what you did and if it turned out to be a success!)
The cake recipe I am sharing uses oats, cinnamon and nutmeg, along with brown sugar. The Spiced Oat Cake came out darker, like chocolate cake, but it does not contain any chocolate at all. The spices in this cake fit well to this time of the year, fall. And I know that I would never think of adding nutmeg to cakes but it actually works and tastes delicious!
If you are looking for a gift to give to a baker in your life, especially now that the holidays are coming, this book can be a great gift! I also shared a post just about cookbooks if you are looking for other types of books. Moreover, I have a post that includes a gift guide with a list of gifts for foodies, cooks and bakers. Personally, the one thing I like most is buying gifts for myself and hey, ‘tis the season to buy some gifts, am I right? :)
Ready for it? Here is the recipe for the delicious Spiced Oat Cake by Alyx Kjorven: