Soulful Baker - Julie Jones - Review, Recipe & Giveaway

Julie Jones hits a grand slam with Soulful Baker: From Highly Creative Fruit Tarts and Pies to Chocolate, Desserts and Weekend Brunch. Using natural and colorful ingredients, interesting flavor combinations, and a designer's nod toward decoration, Julie's recipes are not only pleasuring to the eye but also to the palate.

The author learned to cook from her mother whose dishes were always packed with flavor but nothing that could be labeled fancy. When her mother was diagnosed with dementia, Julie began baking with her as a form of therapy to benefit them both.  Soulful Baker is a tribute to her mom as well as a testament to the power of recreating food memories that can heal the soul.

The pastry work shared in this book is extraordinary - the White peach and nectarine tart; the Strawberry firework tart with candied pistachios and chocolate flowers (from the cover), and the Apple rose tart - are all showstoppers. There are recipes for focaccia, bread, bars and muffins as well and, of course, they are perfectly unique in their presentation. The Charlotte royale would wow even the Royals.

Soulful Baker is an exquisite book that will serve as inspiration and motivation to all to return to the kitchen and bake with someone you love.

Special thanks to Jacqui Small Books for sharing the recipe for the Deep-filled apple pie with our members today and for providing three copies of this book in our contest open to members in the US, UK and Canada.

Deep-filled apple pie
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Apple pie is one of those things that most people feel nostalgic about. I have many happy memories of eating apple pies drowned in custard round at my Nana's house. She was a great baker and made pastry often, with plate cakes, fruit pies and custard tarts amongst the highlights. Oh, and the fat squares - leftover pastry cut into thick portions that were later covered in butter! Homemade custard will always be my first choice to serve alongside apple pie, a recipe for which can be found on page 137. However, I know opinion will be divided on this one, so do go ahead and use your favourite accompaniment.

Serves 8

Use a 23cm (9 inch) round, 3cm (1¼ inch) deep tart tin

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  • 345g (12oz/2. cups) plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 185g (6⅓oz/. cup/1. sticks) unsalted butter, chilled and diced
  • 75g (2.oz/. cup) icing (powdered) sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste (optional)
  • 1 1/2 egg yolks
  • 3 tbsp milk


  • 4-8 cooking apples (depending on size)
  • 100g (3.oz/. cup/1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 100g (3.oz/. cup) soft light brown sugar
  • 100ml (3.fl oz/generous ⅓ cup) water
  • 1 lemon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste (optional)

To finish: 1 egg yolk, demerara sugar

Make the pastry as instructed on page 15, adding some vanilla as a flavouring if you want to. Using one half of the pastry, line the tart tin (pan), blind bake, cool and trim, leaving the cooked pastry in the tin (pan) to be filled and finished later as instructed on pages 13-15. Keep the remaining half of pastry in the fridge to be used for covering and decorating the pie.

Peel, halve and core the apples, then roughly chop into large chunks. Place the apples, butter, sugar, water, a squeeze of lemon juice and the allspice into a pan and gently cook for 10 minutes or until the apples are just starting to break down, the butter has melted and the sugar has dissolved. Gently mix to combine, taste and add some more sugar if the apples are too sharp. Transfer to a bowl, leaving the juices in the pan and leave to cool. Add the vanilla to the reserved juices, if using, and bring to a simmer. Leave to bubble and reduce for 5-10 minutes, until thickened. Stir this back through the cooled apples and fill the blind baked pastry case (shell).

Remove the remaining pastry from the fridge and roll out between 2 sheets of non-stick baking paper to about 3mm (⅛ inch) thick. You could either cover the pie with one whole sheet of pastry, crimping the edges together and making a little hole in the middle for the steam to escape, or you could roll up your sleeves, relax and get creative!

Use pastry cutters, braids, lattices, pastry flowers, balls or cut outs to decorate your pie as you wish. There are some tips on shaping and decoration on page 19. When you are happy with the decorative pie crust, transfer the pie to the fridge for at least 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 180°C fan/200°C/400°F/gas 6. Add a few drops of boiling water to the egg yolk and gently brush over the pastry as evenly as you can - sometimes using your fingertip is easier for covering the more intricate parts. You can sprinkle over some demerara sugar if you wish (it gives a lovely crunch to the finished pie) or leave as it is.

Bake for 30 minutes, remembering to keep an eye on the crust during baking as any smaller raised pieces of pastry may catch and burn easily. When golden, remove from the oven and serve either hot or cold with your favourite accompaniment.

The publisher is offering three copies of this book to EYB Members in the UK, US and CA.  One of the entry options is to answer the following question in the comments section of this blog post.

Which recipe in the index would you try first?

Please note that you must be logged into the Rafflecopter contest before posting or your entry won't be counted. For more information on this process, please see our step-by-step help post. Be sure to check your spam filters to receive our email notifications. Prizes can take up to 6 weeks to arrive from the publishers. If you are not already a Member, you can join at no cost. The contest ends at midnight on December 5th, 2017.



  • bettinab  on  10/29/2017 at 2:47 PM

    Deep filled apple pie

  • heyjude  on  10/29/2017 at 2:48 PM

    Rhubarb and Almond Galette

  • rchesser  on  10/29/2017 at 3:02 PM

    Grape & thyme focaccia!

  • ravensfan  on  10/29/2017 at 3:11 PM

    My mother's carrot cake

  • StaceyR  on  10/29/2017 at 3:20 PM

    Deep filled apple pie!

  • Titch  on  10/29/2017 at 3:34 PM

    I would choose to make the Apple rose tart because I love apple pie & this would be something a little different

  • Shelley.b  on  10/29/2017 at 3:39 PM

    Deep filled apple pie

  • stef  on  10/29/2017 at 4:24 PM

    Celebration cake

  • tmcginty  on  10/29/2017 at 5:40 PM

    Carrot cake!!

  • Lesliehauser  on  10/29/2017 at 5:55 PM

    Lemon tart and anything with frangipane!

  • lpatterson412  on  10/29/2017 at 6:48 PM

    Triple Chocolate Celebration Cake!!!!

  • kmn4  on  10/29/2017 at 7:14 PM

    Chocolate mousse

  • eileen2015  on  10/29/2017 at 7:49 PM

    Carrot cake. My favorite

  • matag  on  10/29/2017 at 7:49 PM

    Salted caramel and chocolate tart

  • smartie101  on  10/29/2017 at 8:21 PM

    Deep Filled Apple Pie

  • trudys_person  on  10/29/2017 at 8:34 PM

    Delizie al Limone - love anything lemon!

  • JJWong  on  10/29/2017 at 10:49 PM

    My Mother's Carrot Cake & the cream cheese frosting

  • lgroom  on  10/29/2017 at 11:11 PM

    Blackcurrant scones

  • jezpurr  on  10/30/2017 at 12:43 AM

    Coffee & walnut mini loaf cakes!!!^_^

  • kelliwinter  on  10/30/2017 at 12:53 AM

    apple rose tart. although i could never make anything as pretty as she does!

  • annieski  on  10/30/2017 at 5:35 AM

    Trampoline bread because I have never heard of it and the very name gave me a laugh this rainy, Monday morning.

  • catescates  on  10/30/2017 at 6:13 AM

    The strawberry firework tart with candied pistachios and chocolate flowers sounds incredible!

  • AGENT99  on  10/30/2017 at 7:24 AM


  • Siegal  on  10/30/2017 at 9:37 AM

    I want to make classic Victoria sponge with strawberries and cream

  • Kristjudy  on  10/30/2017 at 11:42 AM

    Rhubarb and almond galette

  • jifar  on  10/30/2017 at 1:56 PM

    Plum and oat bars.

  • sarahawker  on  10/30/2017 at 2:51 PM

    Salted caramel & chocolate tart

  • sipa  on  10/30/2017 at 3:22 PM

    Grape & thyme focaccia

  • ebs  on  10/30/2017 at 8:21 PM

    Triple chocolate celebration cake of course

  • Suzw  on  10/30/2017 at 8:32 PM

    Chocolate & aubergine (eggplant) brownies

  • verorenee  on  10/30/2017 at 11:09 PM

    Roasted plum and frangipane tart

  • lapsapchung  on  10/31/2017 at 6:44 AM

    Grape and Thyme focaccia

  • size_27  on  10/31/2017 at 8:57 AM

    Straight to the Classic lemon tart with limoncello strawberries, please!

  • bibliophile02  on  10/31/2017 at 9:01 AM


  • ktwalla  on  10/31/2017 at 3:43 PM

    classic lemon tart with limoncello strawberries

  • Cathyvelleca  on  10/31/2017 at 10:15 PM


  • sgump  on  11/1/2017 at 3:37 PM

    The white peach & nectarine tart would be lovely for next summer!

  • terrestris  on  11/1/2017 at 3:56 PM

    Chocolate twist loaf

  • RoseMGenuine  on  11/1/2017 at 10:13 PM

    Grape and thyme focaccia

  • Shelley.b  on  11/2/2017 at 4:43 AM

    Carrot cake

  • vinochic  on  11/2/2017 at 11:33 AM

    Rhubarb Almond Galette

  • jemans  on  11/3/2017 at 4:21 PM

    autumn crumble, for sure! how fitting

  • ennsee  on  11/3/2017 at 6:24 PM

    Dipped lemon madeleines

  • t.t  on  11/4/2017 at 2:02 AM

    Dipped lemon madeleines

  • Livia  on  11/4/2017 at 4:14 AM

    It has got to be the Chocolate twist loaf

  • hillsboroks  on  11/4/2017 at 11:30 PM

    I would love to do the deep filled apple pie.

  • Vspriestersbach  on  11/5/2017 at 5:30 PM

    Apple rose tart! Or the dipped lemon madeleines!

  • lynneskip  on  11/6/2017 at 1:13 PM

    Chocolate Twist loaf

  • nicolthepickle  on  11/6/2017 at 1:58 PM

    The Coffee and Walnut Mini loaf cakes sound amazing.

  • skipeterson  on  11/6/2017 at 1:59 PM

    Strawberry firework tart with candied pistachios & chocolate flowers

  • motherofpearl81  on  11/6/2017 at 8:54 PM

    Hot cross 'hearts & kisses' buns

  • madelainelc  on  11/6/2017 at 10:23 PM

    Rhubarb and almond galette. One of my favourite flavour pairings

  • lindaeatsherbooks  on  11/7/2017 at 12:46 AM

    I would like to try making the Swedish cinnamon buns (Swedish kanelbullar) first.

  • RSW  on  11/7/2017 at 6:14 AM

    Bookmark Classic lemon tart with limoncello strawberries

  • FireRunner2379  on  11/7/2017 at 9:52 AM

    I'd like to try the recipe for My Mother's Carrot Cake and the Braided Challah.

  • FrenchCreekBaker  on  11/8/2017 at 3:12 PM

    I would gladly try the roasted-plum--frangipane-tart. Thanks for the good review. This cookbook sounds wonderful!

  • ncollyer  on  11/11/2017 at 7:48 AM

    The deep filled apple pie- the decoration looks amazing!

  • lucychhu  on  11/11/2017 at 7:59 AM

    I will try the Classic lemon tart with limoncello strawberries first

  • juldum  on  11/11/2017 at 8:20 AM

    The dipped lemon madeleines sound wonderful.

  • cecrofts  on  11/11/2017 at 8:37 AM

    Her mother’s carrot cake. :)

  • astcolorado  on  11/11/2017 at 8:48 AM

    Strawberry firework tart with candied pistachios & chocolate flowers

  • jterry  on  11/11/2017 at 12:00 PM

    Deep Fried Apple Pie sounds wonderful

  • chimpbob  on  11/11/2017 at 1:09 PM

    Triple Chocolate Celebrate Cake

  • readers  on  11/11/2017 at 3:12 PM

    Deep filled apple pie

  • Julia  on  11/11/2017 at 3:17 PM

    Black currant scones.

  • BMeyer  on  11/11/2017 at 6:19 PM

    peach and nectarine tart and apple and rose tart

  • Alexandria2  on  11/11/2017 at 10:44 PM

    hi would love your book would try the carrot cake yum ! sound great have a happy thanksgiving thanks for the chance bye

  • sequoia55  on  11/12/2017 at 12:35 AM

    Plum and oat bars

  • kennethjohngilmour  on  11/12/2017 at 9:59 AM

    the Strawberry firework tart with candied pistachios & chocolate flowers found on page 28 sounds pretty good

  • TanyaD  on  11/12/2017 at 1:25 PM

    Chocolate flowers! Mmm...

  • skichick  on  11/12/2017 at 4:43 PM

    White peach and nectarine tart

  • Curlyfatkins  on  11/13/2017 at 1:25 AM

    Swedish cinnamon buns (Swedish kanelbullar)

  • RickPearson54  on  11/13/2017 at 6:33 AM


  • JenJoLa  on  11/13/2017 at 1:39 PM

    Coffee & walnut mini loaf cakes

  • chasteph  on  11/13/2017 at 2:36 PM

    Deep filled apple pie for me!

  • joyosity  on  11/13/2017 at 3:00 PM

    The apple rose tart sounds intriguing!

  • tararr  on  11/13/2017 at 3:53 PM

    Blackcurrant scones

  • VeryVigario  on  11/13/2017 at 6:40 PM

    My mother's carrot cake

  • InAHealthyKitchen  on  11/14/2017 at 3:43 PM

    apple rose tart

  • sdg8trgrl  on  11/14/2017 at 6:16 PM


  • AnnaZed  on  11/16/2017 at 12:23 AM

    Deep-filled apple pie

  • silversand  on  11/16/2017 at 6:36 AM

    Swedish cinnamon buns

  • Katiefayhutson  on  11/17/2017 at 11:40 PM

    Strawberry firework tart

  • Scotsman61  on  11/20/2017 at 11:27 PM

    Rhubarb and Almond Galette

  • klrclark  on  11/22/2017 at 6:56 AM

    Charlotte Royale

  • lhudson  on  11/22/2017 at 7:25 AM

    Caramel bread

  • LaurenE  on  11/23/2017 at 12:28 AM

    Grape & thyme focaccia

  • Soosie  on  11/23/2017 at 6:42 PM

    I would make the deep-filled apple pie because nothing evokes autumnal days better than the smell of freshly baked apples and sweet, crumbly pastry, perfuming the house with a homely aroma.

  • DesiKim  on  11/25/2017 at 10:07 PM

    Coffee & walnut mini loaf cakes

  • dbielick  on  11/28/2017 at 9:07 AM

    Swedish cinnamon buns (Swedish kanelbullar)

  • orchidlady01  on  11/29/2017 at 5:40 AM

    Deep-filled apple pie and Swedish cinnamon buns (Swedish kanelbullar)

  •  on  11/30/2017 at 12:33 AM

    Swedish cinnamon buns

  • Sfgordon  on  11/30/2017 at 11:28 AM

    I would try the white peach and nectarine tart or caramel bread. Also intrigued by the chocolate and eggplant brownies...

  • auntietina  on  12/1/2017 at 12:56 AM

    Strawberry firework tart with candied pistachios

  • matwell  on  12/1/2017 at 3:51 PM

    Crumpets! I've never made them before but would love to try.

  • Maefleur  on  12/1/2017 at 6:10 PM

    This deep filled apple pie will be the first!

  • Laura1  on  12/1/2017 at 7:51 PM

    carrot cake

  • milgwimper  on  12/2/2017 at 12:33 AM

    Strawberry firework tart with candied pistachios & chocolate flowers

  • jc214a  on  12/2/2017 at 7:57 AM

    Blackcurrent Scones.

  • rosalee  on  12/2/2017 at 8:31 PM

    Roasted plum & frangipane tart sounds divine!

  • Sladea86  on  12/3/2017 at 1:38 AM

    Black current scones has to be with clotted cream

  • laffersk  on  12/3/2017 at 10:08 PM

    Carrot cake

  • lauriesk  on  12/5/2017 at 9:03 PM

    I would try My Mother's Carrot Cake recipe first.

  • jmay42066  on  12/6/2017 at 8:51 PM

    Carrot cake

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