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Modern Art Desserts: Recipes for Cakes,…

Modern Art Desserts: Recipes for Cakes, Cookies, Confections, and Frozen…

by Caitlin Freeman

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I love this book, it is a beautiful, delicious piece of art. Either you keep it on your coffee table as a great conversation piece, or you dare to follow the recipes, it is a great book to own. The story is a great inspiration for all of us who should follow our heart in all that we do. As for the recipes themselves- they are a proof for patience, creativity and genius! Well done! ( )
  simora | Aug 6, 2013 |
Well, it’s been a couple decades since I’ve bothered to read any but 100% vegan cookbooks (given that there are many hundreds and probably over 1,000 of them) but the cover of this book just called to me.

I figured that almost all desserts are now easily veganized, and I love art. This book is on my San Francisco bookshelf because it’s very San Francisco, particularly as regards our modern art museum, local bakeries/eateries, etc. etc.

Well, as the recipes are presented, much to my surprise they’re not easily made vegan, though it would be very, very easy to make vegan recipes that look exactly like these. Even with those (for me necessary) changes, these take too much work, and many hours/even days. Re the recipes: some require TONS of heavy cream and just egg yolks or just egg whites. Experienced vegan bakers would know what to do, but I wouldn’t.

I enjoyed the book as an art book. There is some good information and photos about the artists, their lives and work.

The highlight of the book for me turned out to be the cake on the cover, and it is fun.

The rest are hit & miss, though all were creative. These desserts mimicking art remind me of the Fine Art Museums of San Francisco annual Bouquet to Arts festival, where floral artists create floral arrangements that mimic/reflect art pieces in the museum(s). As with that exhibit, the desserts I enjoyed most here were those that most closely showed the art, with the possible exception of Thiebaud's cakes, which simply copied them, and so didn't strike me as that creative, but paired up with the art are rather striking. Some good ones of Diebenkorn's work.

There are many fun extras such as San Francisco photos, and instructions for making your own sea salt, etc. etc.

Anyway, as a cookbook, I can’t recommend it. As a book to give bakers/cooks/artists ideas of how to make artistic foods and to use art to make other creative things, it’s an enjoyable resource. As a fun novelty, well, it was fun.

For artists and particularly bakers/cooks, it might give them some ideas, and vegan bakers and cooks, including some who’ve written many of my favorite cookbooks, I’d love to see some of what they might glean from this. I’d love to see (and eat) what they might create from ideas they’d get from this book.

5 stars for the cover and the premise. 3 ½ stars for some of the included information about the original art & artists, 2 ½ stars for the background information about this book, 1 star for the actual recipes, and not just because I’m vegan and wouldn’t eat any of them, though if I wasn’t vegan, honestly, I might give them 2 stars or even 3. ( )
1 vote Lisa2013 | Jul 15, 2013 |
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"Taking its cues from works by Andy Warhol, Frida Kahlo, and Matisse, this collection of uniquely delicious dessert recipes (and step-by-step assembly guides) gives readers all they need to make their own edible masterpieces"--

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