Dessert Person: Recipes and Guidance for Baking with Confidence by Claire Saffitz

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Notes about this book

  • EmilyR on October 21, 2020

    If you pre-ordered this one, make sure you get the bonus recipe .pdf, which includes : Savory zucchini bread with parmesan and herbs, Caramelized date snack cake with cream, Coconut angel food cake, Lemony poppy seed rugelach, Root vegetable galette, and Flaky all-butter pie dough. I made the savory zucchini bread with parmesan and herbs and it was excellent... perfect with a glass of wine.

Notes about Recipes in this book

  • Flourless chocolate wave cake

    • Jane on March 22, 2021

      I found this an odd cake in the making though the result was good (though not up to Alison Roman’s Crispy chocolate cake with hazelnut and sour cream). I was worried about melting chocolate with oil, water and alcohol and the solid mass oozing oil did not allay my fears. It was hard to get it well mixed with the meringue with the result the cake was splotchy in appearance, though flavor and texture was good. I will try it again as it was a quick cake to make and bake.

    • Astrid5555 on May 14, 2021

      Very quick and easy to make. While we adults loved it, the kids found it a little too grown-up tasting, which might be due to the chocolate I used, still a keeper!

    • LindaAphoto on December 31, 2020

      A great success with the family. We all loved it. Very light while still decadently chocolate. A recipe to bookmark and repeat. Easy to make, too.

    • stef on June 20, 2021

      This cake turned out great. It was a chocolate mousse texture. I served it with whipped cream and berries.

    • Lepa on May 01, 2021

      Chocolate cake isn't my favorite but this was pretty good and everyone else loved it. The technique was a bit odd but my cake turned out perfectly (just like the picture) so I'm not complaining.

    • bwhip on October 24, 2020

      Wonderful recipe, we just loved this cake. Great flavor with just the right amount of rum, light as can be, nice crispy top, with character from the wave pattern. Much less dense than most flourless chocolate cakes I’ve had.

    • sharone7 on May 25, 2021

      My chocolate seized the first time because I think I had the temperature up too high (damn this electric stove that I just can't quite figure out) but I redid it much lower and it worked beautifully. The cake was beautiful and turned out exactly as it's supposed to. (I love that in this book Claire Saffitz anticipates many of the questions home bakers might have.) I don't like chocolate so I didn't try the cake, but it was a huge hit with the birthday party guests.

    • yaleksly on November 21, 2021

      Wonderful cake! Still trying to get the waves just right, I don't quite get the same effect despite having the same crackly top. I never have dark rum or Amaretto on hand, so I've always substituted with a strong espresso in equal measurement. One day I hope to try it with either liqueur, to see the difference; the espresso does come through, especially when the cake is chilled. Freshly baked and cooled, the cake is airy and light. Chilled in the fridge, it seems to collapse slightly: it becomes closer to what I've experienced flourless cakes to usually be, somewhat dense or lightly fudgy. Not bad at all, and I think the almonds come through in flavor when the cake is chilled. As one other member noted, it is reminiscent of a chocolate mousse, in cake form!

  • Malted “forever” brownies

    • jzanger on January 18, 2021

      I’m not sure I’ll ever be bold enough to declare a brownie recipe my “forever” recipe, but these were excellent. They are superbly rich and chewy. I’ve never encountered her technique for putting them in the fridge to make them chewy but they certainly were chewy. Next time I would use a stand mixer because my batter was much too thick to whisk vigorously by hand for almost a minute. I recommend adding walnuts in place of some of the milk chocolate.

    • LindaAphoto on December 31, 2020

      The weight measurement for the water (to add to the cocoa powder) is off. It’s double what it should be. Still, this is the only recipe so far from the 3 I have made in this book, that I was not thrilled about. Felt and tasted more like a dense chocolate cake than a brownie. Definitely not my “forever” brownie recipe. But the other recipes I’ve made are delicious.

    • tarae1204 on April 25, 2021

      Quite rich, extremely fudgy in the interior. The malted milk powder and dark brown chocolate introduce a flavor of caramel. Personally, for me, these were too rich. One could bake in a tart pan and present it as a fancy chocolate tart.

    • anya_sf on July 14, 2021

      I didn't see the correction to the water weight and used the amount listed in the book, but the brownies still turned out okay. I only had 2 oz milk chocolate, so added 1/2 c walnuts too and preferred the nuts. Baked 30 minutes, the brownies seemed to be done (although the surface wasn't that shiny), but the texture was a little too fudgy in the middle for my taste and I like fudgy. Overall good, but not my favorite brownie recipe.

    • evatoad on March 07, 2021

      Sensational. The malted milk powder is a game-changer. I added walnuts and used dark chocolate chips instead of milk chocolate at the end (personal preference). Will make again for sure.

    • lofolky on February 14, 2021

      Super dense and rich. We really enjoyed these, but still in search of our “forever” brownie.

  • Buckwheat blueberry skillet pancake

    • Apollonia on August 01, 2021

      This received only so-so reviews in our house. We typically make Smitten Kitchen's Extra Billowy Dutch Baby, so maybe it was only the novelty that turned my crew off (always a possibility), but to my mind it was a bit thick and heavy for a dutch baby. I didn't really taste the brown butter either, and that step, plus the "platform" for the berries added a bit more work than I want in this kind of breakfast.

    • anya_sf on January 31, 2021

      I messed up (lack of sleep) but this still turned out well. I accidentally browned all 5 Tbsp butter and added it all to the batter. Forgot to add the eggs until after the butter was added. With the batter made 24 hours ahead, this was a fairly quick breakfast. I thought the edges would puff more relative to the center, but the whole pancake remained pretty thick and didn't really fall (maybe due to my mixing mistakes). Still, it was very hearty and good!

  • Strawberry cornmeal layer cake

    • Astrid5555 on June 20, 2021

      Made half a recipe in an 8-inch cake ring. Used quick-cooking polenta instead of fine cornmeal, which gives a pleasant crunch to the cake. Not too sweet, perfect summer treat!

  • Gâteau Basque

    • Astrid5555 on July 06, 2021

      Excellent! Made the compote on day 1, the pastry cream and the dough on day 2, assembled and baked on day 3. If you spread the recipe out like that it is not that involved to make. Do wait to cut for a day as recommended (I just did not want to because it smelled so delicious), otherwise the pastry cream is still a little liquid and tends to ooze out. Easier to cut neatly after chilling in the fridge for a day. A real crowd pleaser!

    • evatoad on March 07, 2021

      Sensational. Will make again. It’s a project, but the finished cake is rich enough to be sliced in small pieces and keeps for a while. and is at once unusual, unassuming, and triumphant. The crème patissière melds with the top layer of pastry and gives the impression of a (shallow) cheesecake, but I like this significantly more than I like cheesecake.

  • Coffee coffee cake

    • Astrid5555 on May 14, 2021

      Made half a recipe in an 8x8 inch cake pan. Perfect for coffee & spice lovers, will use the cake part of the recipe for other cakes as well. Delicious!

    • hirsheys on August 29, 2021

      I made half a batch of this and may have over baked it a touch, but still enjoyed it a lot. It takes a little getting used to - the flavors are lovely, but it’s a little jarring at first that it isn’t the pure cinnamon flavor of normal coffee cake. That said, it’s not too sweet, very fluffy, and the cardamom/coffee taste is nicely balanced. Sukhi thought it was heaven (cardamom and coffee are her two favorite flavors, so not surprising!) Definitely worth making again.

    • lou_weez on July 11, 2021

      YUM!! This is a real coffee lovers dream cake. Soft, billowy cake heady with coffee and spices topped with a crunchy crumble....mmmmmm.

    • bwhip on October 28, 2020

      If you really like coffee, you'll really like this cake. Coffee in the cake, coffee in the swirl, coffee in the topping. :) I think next time I might put a little cocoa in the swirl just to give it a hint of chocolate to go along with all the coffee. As I do with many new recipes I haven't tried yet, I halved the batch and made this in an 8" x 8" pan rather than the 9 x 13.

  • Tomato tart with spices and herby feta

    • Astrid5555 on August 02, 2021

      Amazing with perfectly ripe summer tomatoes. Had some flaky pie crust n the freezer to use up and decided to make this on a whim. Loved the combination of roasted and raw tomatoes together with the whipped feta!

    • anya_sf on August 06, 2021

      I forgot to drizzle the tomatoes with oil before roasting, so did so afterwards and they were still fine, maybe just not quite as good. I omitted the fennel seed (out); the seeds aren't strictly necessary but do provide nice pops of flavor. This tart was delicious and I appreciated that the various components could be made ahead. Leftovers were good the next day. If not using the crust from the book, note that it's larger than a standard single pie crust.

  • Soft and crispy focaccia

    • Astrid5555 on May 20, 2021

      Excellent, chewy crumb and crusty top, made with the garlic & rosemary topping. My new go-to focaccia recipe.

    • bwhip on October 25, 2020

      Excellent! As the name says, "Soft and Crispy." It's both of those things, just perfectly. I made the Tomato-Garlic-Thyme version, with tomatoes from our garden, and it was wonderful, and pretty easy to put together, with very clear instructions. Loved every bite.

    • anya_sf on July 07, 2021

      The dough was super slack, almost batter-like, even after extra kneading, but since it gets poured into the sheet pan, it wasn't too bad to work with (just very sticky, even after oiling hands). I used the gram weight of flour, which I think is correct (ounces are wrong). I chilled it overnight. Made 2 toppings: rosemary-garlic and potato. There was much more of the potato, so I spread it on 2/3 dough with rosemary-garlic on 1/3. The potato side took longer to bake and I worried the rosemary side would be overdone, but it was fine. Despite all the oil, the focaccia stuck to the pan a lot. It was delicious, but quite oily; your fingers will get messy.

  • Vanilla sugar palmiers

    • Astrid5555 on October 24, 2021

      Used up all the rough puff pastry scraps I had saved in the freezer to make mini vanilla sugar palmiers. Great little snack with a cup of coffee.

  • Thrice-baked rye cookies

    • Astrid5555 on April 07, 2021

      These cookies are spectacular! I could have eaten the cookie dough just as is, the pre-baked flours smelled heavenly. I am not sure the eggwash/sugar sprinkle before baking is necessary, this made the cookies rather on the sweet side for me. Next time I will use my decorative rolling pin and skip the eggwash/sugar sprinkle, and there will be many more times baking these cookies for me!

    • bching on May 06, 2021

      My husband likes these cookies a lot. They taste like stodgy peanut butter cookies to me. Lots of work and the instructions for rolling and cutting the dough weren't very specific. I lined a 12x17 rimmed baking sheet with parchment and pressed the dough into it. It worked very well. Toasting flour is a technique I am happy to have learned.

    • tarae1204 on April 26, 2021

      Delicious! These cookies entail many steps and stages, but it’s a small batch of dough and manageable. The toastiness brings out all the caramel and chocolate flavors of the rye flour. I loved the Demerara sugar for sweetness and a little texture. Try to roll these thinner than 1/4 inch if you can.

    • leilx on August 18, 2021

      Recipe is a bit of a hassle with a lot of steps, but turns out a delicious and unusual cookie. I like the idea mentioned below of using a decorative rolling pin.

    • SpatulaClark on October 19, 2021

      Not quite what I'd expected. I thought these were too crumbly/buttery/sweet, but texture settles after a day or two. Skipped egg brush and sugar sprinkle, and didn't miss it. These have been liked by all so far, with feedback including comparison to salted caramel.

  • Meyer lemon tart

    • Astrid5555 on April 07, 2021

      We loved this tarte. The combination with the raspberry jam on the bottom makes for an interesting combination. Added some Italian meringue on top because I just enjoy using my blow torch a lot.

    • dbp19 on January 18, 2021

      Really exceptional. Refreshing. Give yourself plenty of time for this one, since it takes two sub-recipes (almond tart crust; lemon curd). Save your dough scraps too, because it will most certainly crack and shrink a little bit.

  • Sour cherry pie

    • Astrid5555 on July 20, 2021

      We really liked this one. The pie dough is very flaky and as already mentioned overnight refrigeration helps to settle the juices perfectly. Will repeat next sour cherry season.

    • stef on June 27, 2021

      A very good cherry pie. Thickener was cornstarch but I didn't get that cornstarch taste. Overnight refrigeration settled the juices nicely. Family liked it a lot.

  • Quince and almond tart with rosé

    • Astrid5555 on October 24, 2021

      Used half a recipe of the Rough Puff Pastry I still had in the freezer, still a project over 2 days to bake this. You have to prepare the quince, poach them in spice-infused rosé wine, cook the liquid down to make a quince jelly, let it set in the fridge and bake the tart. Quite good, but too-high-effort-to-taste-ratio to repeat.

  • Peach Melba tart

    • Astrid5555 on June 30, 2021

      I also cheated and used store-bought puff pastry and made half a recipe. If you make the peaches and the pastry cream a day ahead, this comes together really quickly. An impressive looking dinner party-worthy summer dessert!

    • anya_sf on June 28, 2021

      Easy to make using store-bought puff pastry. I made 1/2 recipe using 3 peaches and 2/5 (2 egg yolks) of the pastry cream, which fit nicely into the tart shell. Despite docking, the pastry puffed up a lot during baking and the top layer crumbled when pressed down; fortunately it was covered by the pastry cream. This tart was really delicious, although a little messy to eat as the peach half kept sliding off the tart when I tried to cut bites with my fork.

  • Blood orange and olive oil upside-down cake

    • Astrid5555 on January 22, 2021

      This is a beautiful looking cake with some crunch in the batter from the semolina flour. However, the olive oil taste was a little too pronounced for my taste (should have probably used a fruitier one).

    • SugarTreeBaking on May 15, 2021

      Beautiful, unusual and delicious cake. Make sure to thinly slice the oranges as the recipe states. Let it sit a day or two as the flavor just gets better.

    • EmilyR on February 01, 2021

      I prefer the olive oil cake from little flower baking co., but this is a solid choice. The semolina flour is an interesting touch and the candied blood oranges sure are beautiful.

    • gloriole on August 15, 2021

      Claire instructs to use a springform pan, but I found that the sugar syrup leaked out and I definitely wished it stayed in the pan to create a beautiful sugary crust/glaze on the surface. It was also a pain to clean the pan. I would definitely just use a normal cake pan since it slid out really easily. Be sure to thinly slice the oranges as the recipe calls for, as thickly sliced oranges skins would be tough and bitter. I used a mandolin for mine. While the oranges looked beautiful, I found it hard to eat on top of the cake. The whole slice would pull off the cake in a bite, leaving naked bites of the cake. I personally felt the cake did fine without the orange slices. The semolina was a very nice and interesting touch though, creating a textural note that I appreciated in the cake.

  • Plum galette with polenta and pistachios

    • Astrid5555 on September 23, 2021

      We really loved this one. The polenta and pistachio nuts provide some crunch while at the same time help soaking up the juices from the plums. Will definitely bake this one again next fall!

  • Pistachio Linzer tart

    • Astrid5555 on May 02, 2021

      There’s something with Claire Saffitz’s cake and cookie batters that just makes you want to eat them raw. This is the most delicious cake batter ever, and it also bakes into a delicious cake as well. Being Austrian it was kind of strange to use pistachios and raspberry jam for a Linzer tart when you traditionally only use hazelnuts or almonds and red currant jam. However, this was one of the best Linzer tarts I have ever eaten.

  • Apple tart

    • Astrid5555 on October 14, 2021

      This tart is delicious! When making this recipe over two days (rough puff pastry as well as the stewed apples on day 1) and finishing the tart on day 2, this is quite manageable even on a weekday. Apples at their best!

  • Apricot and cream brioche tart

    • Astrid5555 on July 11, 2021

      One of my favorite bakes from this book so far. Quite quick to assemble with the brioche dough in the fridge overnight. The cream topping is just a mixture of crème fraîche (in my case leftover sour cream) mixed with an egg yolk, vanilla paste and a little sugar. A must bake for apricot season!

  • Rhubarb cake

    • Astrid5555 on March 21, 2021

      What a delicious rhubarb cake. I love the clear instructions and notes in this book, otherwise I would have probably panicked when my cooked rhubarb turned into a grey mass after adding the baking soda. Please do as she says and err on the side of overbaking and tent the top early with foil. It took almost 2 hours for the tester to come out clean in the middle.

    • meggan on March 08, 2021

      We had old rhubarb which can tend to be a little stringy so I left out the chunks and just used the mash and decorative top. I think it turned out well and I am not even a rhubarb fan!

    • hirsheys on July 05, 2021

      I made the rhubarb cake yesterday and was wowed. I love rhubarb in all its incarnations (including pie), and have other cake recipes I like, but this is one of the absolute best. It’s both moist and rhubarb-y. I found the cake a little annoying to make (the rhubarb mush almost burned before it got soft, so I needed to put the lid on). I also don’t like the stringy rhubarb on top (makes it hard to cut), despite it looking pretty - will leave that off in the future. Can’t wait to make other things from the book, but I’m also just glad to have found this recipe. (My cake was perfectly cooked in the listed time)

    • anya_sf on June 10, 2021

      I needed to add a little extra water when cooking the rhubarb, but otherwise this was simple to mix. Although the tester came out clean after 80 minutes in the oven and the top felt firm, the cake started to sink upon cooling, so I baked it for another 10 minutes at 300 F (to avoid overbrowning) and there was still a tiny gummy layer at the bottom, although nothing terrible. The cake was super moist and tasty, plenty sweet but not overly so.

    • leilx on August 18, 2021

      Made this several times this summer as written and it was a hit every time. Mostly took longer to bake for me, but I am at high altitude so I don't worry too much about things not working exactly as the book says. Would definitely make this again.

    • lofolky on February 14, 2021

      This was so delicious! I used salted butter because I was out of unsalted, but other than that followed to a T and it turned out great! Will definitely be making this again.

  • Almond butter banana bread

    • Astrid5555 on June 15, 2021

      Found some almond butter in the fridge and had a brown banana on hand, so made that one without any expectations. Wow, this will be my new go-to banana bread recipe. The almond butter swirl elevates a simple banana bread to something new. Highly recommended!

    • stef on July 26, 2021

      I had to make a couple of changes because I didn't have the ingredients. Instead of coconut oil I used canola and sour cream was substituted for Greek yogurt. Bread came out nice and moist and rose well. Lovely smell of almonds while baking. Ready in 53 minutes.

    • elena1049 on February 15, 2021

      Have made this multiple times - always delicious! My new go-to banana bread as long as I also have almond butter on hand. I make in mini loaf pans and bake for approx 31 minutes.

    • Mlr5 on June 06, 2021

      I made this and it was really good. Mine seemed a little dense (didn’t rise as much as I thought) but I didn’t mind it that way. I may have used a smidge too much banana and that may have been the reason…I’d make it again, but wouldn’t necessarily call it a forever kind of recipe for me.

  • Pull-apart sour cream and chive rolls

    • Astrid5555 on June 19, 2021

      Made a quarter of a recipe for a snack for 4, wish I had made more! Fluffiest rolls I have made in a long time, the chives make it into something special.

    • puddlemere on November 27, 2020

      Made these for Thanksgiving, and they're great! Super soft and fluffy. Some of the chives on the outside of the rolls got a little caramelized in the oven and they added some great pops of flavor. Makes me wonder if there's a way to caramelize the chives before adding them to the dough to get more of that flavor inside the rolls.

  • Sweet tart dough

    • Astrid5555 on April 07, 2021

      Was curious about the method of pressing the dough into the tart tin and not rolling it out. Took me quite some time to get it done evently, but held up beautifully without using any pie weights, no slumping at all!

  • Meyer lemon curd

    • Astrid5555 on April 07, 2021

      One of the easiest and quickest lemon curd recipes I have ever made. Rubbing the zest into the sugar makes for an incredibly aromatic and fragrant curd. My new go-to recipe.

  • Brioche dough

    • Astrid5555 on July 11, 2021

      This is a super forgiving brioche dough, beautiful to handle. Used half a recipe to bake a brioche loaf for breakfast and the other half to make the Apricot Brioche Tart from the same book.

    • anya_sf on March 01, 2021

      Despite several mistakes, this still turned out well, so I'll have to try again. Initially the dough was super slack, almost soupy, to the point where I removed the bowl and weighed it; it seemed 100 g light, so I added 100g extra (?) flour - which presumably should have been added in the beginning, assuming I didn't weigh the flour correctly at first. After that the dough came together fine. After chilling 24 hours, I used half the dough for the twists, half for a loaf. I put the loaf in my cold oven to rise...then forgot about it until the next morning :( Amazingly, it hadn't deflated, so I baked it and it actually baked up OK, rising more in the oven.

  • Poppy seed almond cake

    • SugarTreeBaking on May 15, 2021

      As others have mentioned, my cake was ready and slightly over baked at 60 minutes. Nice flavor, love the crunchy poppyseed texture. I would bet this cake will be even better in a day or two.

    • nadiam1000 on December 10, 2020

      I love poppy seed and this is a great version of a poppy seed pound cake and, being an oil based cake, simple to put together. The almond and orange are delicious with the poppy seed, the glaze gives a sugary finish and the cake is moist. I may have over baked mine by 5 mins or so but it was not dry. It would have been a bit better texture, to me, if I baked it a little less.

    • LindaAphoto on December 31, 2020

      I agree with the previous note, I overbaked it by a few minutes but was relieved to find it was still moist. But yes, next time I’d love to bake it just right. I’m adding this recipe to my arsenal of easy, go-to comfort bakes for daily snacking. Deceptively plain, but it is not - everyone in the house loved it and it went fast! My only comment is that it does have a lot of sugar! And although she advises against it, I’d be curious to see if next time I can get away with a little less.

    • stef on March 01, 2021

      A very nice tender cake with almond flavour coming thru. I baked my cake at 350f and after 65 minutes it registered at 210f. Could have taken it out at 60 minutes. My stove is pretty accurate and this left me surprised. I will definitely bake it again.

    • Lepa on April 25, 2021

      This is a good almond-flavored cake but not a stand-out for me. Mine needed 80 minutes in the oven. I used grapeseed oil as I sometimes don't like the flavor of canola oil in baked goods. I used Baker's Joy on my bundt pan and didn't have any issues with sticking. I didn't adjust the oil or sugar but agree it was a bit sweet. The texture was dense and moist.

    • anya_sf on February 10, 2021

      Since my bundt pan is dark-colored, I baked the cake at 325 F; it was still done in around 80 minutes. I sprayed the pan with Baker's Joy and the cake did not stick at all. The cake was perfectly moist and tender, even better the next day when the syrup was evenly distributed throughout the cake. We loved the flavors. Next time I might try adding orange zest to the cake.

    • robinswood on November 19, 2021

      I cut the sugar on this due to reviews that it was a bit sweet. Baked 75 minutes and that worked. I did not have orange juice so used lemon juice and Cointreau in the glaze instead, which was really good and I'll probably stick with that in future.

  • Pistachio pinwheels

    • SugarTreeBaking on November 09, 2020

      My pistachios weren’t as green as those pictured, so the color contrast wasn’t as pronounced. Straightforward recipe, nice result. I could see these rolled in red sanding sugar instead of the course sugar for the holidays.

    • evatoad on March 07, 2021

      Did not particularly care for these. I found the dough quite hard to roll (unlike other pinwheel cookies I’ve made in the past) and the flavor was not as strong or interesting as I was hoping.

  • Chewy molasses spice cookies

    • jbuchman on September 27, 2021

      Fabulous and easy to make. Refrigerating the dough overnight makes it easier to handle.

    • stef on September 25, 2021

      A delicious cookie. I added a bit more of each spice. No apple cider vinegar so I used sherry vinegar. This is going on my Christmas baking list.

    • hbakke on December 26, 2020

      Chewy and delicious. The dough was still very soft after an hour in the refrigerator, so were a little difficult to roll in the sugar. I would probably leave these in the fridge longer next time. I also might increase the spices a little next time as they seemed a little muted (possibly old spices). I would make these again.

    • ehallison on November 30, 2021

      I had the dough in the fridge almost 2 hours and it was still very soft. Next time I'll leave it for at least 3 hours.

  • Marcona almond cookies

    • jbuchman on September 21, 2021

      Very easy and quick.

  • Kabocha turmeric tea cake

    • hirsheys on September 25, 2021

      Delicious and unique recipe, though the turmeric flavor is more dominant than the squash (which is both good and bad?) The flavor is complex and interesting and definitely different than the usual pumpkin bread. That said, I'm not sure I need to make this again often (the coconut oil was annoying to work with), but I'm glad to have this recipe in my repertoire, especially if I ever get a kabocha in my CSA again.

    • EmilyR on October 21, 2020

      This is a very quick Autumn cake that feels healthy with so much kabocha. I used the garam masala and some habenero maple syrup for warmth. I'll definitely make it again.

  • Ricotta cake with kumquat marmalade

    • EmilyR on October 21, 2020

      I love kumquats so I had to make this. Obviously you can make each recipe individually, but together it feels like a cannoli meets a cake. The texture was very interesting with a softer middle, but everyone enjoyed it.

    • j.va on April 19, 2021

      Delicious dessert. The cake assembles exactly as written in the recipe, though mine needed a smidge longer to cook. It has the flavor of a ricotta cheesecake but is incredibly light. Served with the kumquat marmalade, which I made as directed except using vanilla bean paste instead of vanilla extract. Held up for several days afterwards in the fridge. Can't wait to make again and try another type of fruit on top.

    • spatterson88 on April 05, 2021

      I topped this with berries that had been marinating in a hibiscus syrup. It was everyone's favorite part of the meal.

  • Miso buttermilk biscuits

    • EmilyR on December 21, 2020

      These biscuits are incredible. I'm not much of a biscuit maker - until now - so I got nervous looking into the oven and seeing a pool of butter at the bottom of the pan, however upon cooling they soaked it all up and are super delicious! Also, wonderfully paired with Ottolenghi's butter miso onions.

    • evatoad on March 07, 2021

      These were good, though not transcendent. I would make them again and maybe make some slight adjustments (such as backing off the miso a bit). I enjoyed them through the next few days, split and toasted, with jam and also with scallion cream cheese.

  • Crispy mushroom galette

    • bching on February 16, 2021

      I made the vegetarian version (an olive oil crust). The filling was good and the crust was excellent. I used hedgehog and maitake mushrooms but button mushrooms would be fine.

  • Flaky olive oil dough

    • bching on April 25, 2021

      Easy and delicious for savory mushroom galette.

  • Oat and pecan brittle cookies

    • stef on April 21, 2021

      These cookies came out as promised. Crispy on the outside chewy in the middle. I made them smaller using #40 scoop and they spread and were big enough. Baking time 12 minutes.

    • dbp19 on January 18, 2021

      Best the day they’re made, so they retain a bit of crunch. They soften up over a few days and give an ultra-chewy cookie. Not that I’m complaining.

    • Xyz123 on October 19, 2021

      The brittle is worth making and eating on its own! So good. I make a double batch of these and freeze them. When I have a craving, I pull out what I need and have fresh cookies in no time.

  • Aunt Rose’s mondel bread

    • stef on June 06, 2021

      A different way of making mondel. You flip the loaves three times during baking and then cut. I found that difficult, one of them cracked. Might try baking it like a biscotti

  • Carrot and pecan cake

    • stef on April 05, 2021

      This is a wonderful carrot cake. Nice and moist with strong ginger flavour. Loved the brown butter cream cheese frosting. Grated carrots with food processor.

    • tarae1204 on May 21, 2021

      This is a wonderful cake that can handle swapping all purpose flour for a gluten free blend. The only difficulty I had was measuring the mass of the carrots vs the stated gram weight. I think I was low in carrots so the cake came out salty. 2 teaspoons kosher salt is just a LOT for a cake - if I make it again, I will halve the amount of salt. The brown butter cream cheese frosting is insanely good.

    • dbp19 on January 18, 2021

      You know a cake is gonna be excellent when you can just eat the batter on its own. You can also toast your nuts in the toaster oven. I didn’t have enough pecans and used a pecan-walnut combo and all turned out perfectly. I also made this with a hand beater instead of a stand mixer and it worked well.

    • sharone7 on May 25, 2021

      This cake was wildly popular. The brown butter cream cheese frosting is not to be believed, and the flavor of the cake itself is lovely and subtle.

  • Babkallah

    • stef on November 14, 2021

      This was delicious. A nice crunchy top but a babka consistency inside. I filled it with nutella. Only problem was my braiding wasn't tight enough. Demerra sugar is a nice touch. Will repeat.

  • Minty lime bars

    • tarae1204 on April 25, 2021

      The recipe suggests these will be easier to cut after an hour in the fridge but they were still quite soft and messy. These were good and well-appreciated, but for me the recipe didn’t feel reliable enough, the curd underset. You just don’t taste the mint in the shortbread crust unless eaten alone, although perhaps there’s a perception of it to balance the lime. They were very tangy. Recipe calls for 7 limes and I was juuuust able to produce 3/4 c juice from those. Safer to have 8-9.

    • gloriole on August 15, 2021

      Super tangy and tart, prob a little too much for me. It's a bit shocking on the first bite, but it does grow on you. That said, the flavor of lime was so strong that you can't taste the shortbread and the mint at all. It didn't feel like a balanced recipe and didn't leave me wanting more. Also, unsure whether it's the recipe or me, but the curd simply did not fully set, even after several hours in the fridge. Cutting into it was a soft gooey mess in the middle, which didn't make for a pretty pic or serving plate. The bars were simply too fragile and messy for handheld treats. Also, the recipe calls for corn starch that would thicken the lime/lemon/sugar solution, but mine didn't thicken very much with that step. The recipe also asks for the juice of 1 lemon and 7 limes, and that made juuuusssttt enough on the dot, so, have an extra one just in case.

  • Brown butter cream cheese frosting

    • tarae1204 on May 21, 2021

      This is an indulgent and unforgettable frosting. It’s rich, fragrant and a lovely pale brown. It’s so good, it does alright with vanilla extract but it deserves your vanilla bean, it’s that good.

  • Double apple crumble cake

    • dbp19 on January 18, 2021

      Really tasty. Can also substitute full-fat Greek yogurt for crème fraîche. The apples sort of melt together to create a pudding like texture in some places. Nice contrast to the crumble on top. Just wish the crumble adhered a bit better, but tasted amazing just the same.

    • lou_weez on June 20, 2021

      I didn't have apple butter so substituted apple sauce and used Greek yoghurt instead of crème fraiche. I also pressed the crumble ever so slightly into the cake as I didn't want it to fall off after baking. Everyone enjoyed this cake. I might add some rum soaked sultanas next time.

  • Chocolate chip cookies

    • dbp19 on March 06, 2021

      The bake time quoted in the book yields a crunchier cookie. Bake for 16-17 min for crunchy edges and a soft middle. I couldn't find chocolate disks, so I made do with what I had: a bittersweet chocolate baking bar chopped up + milk chocolate chips. Still the best chocolate chip cookies I've ever made.

    • anya_sf on August 11, 2021

      I made 1/2 batch, yielding 10 cookies, using half 74% bittersweet chocolate disks and half chopped 60% bittersweet chocolate (not a fan of milk chocolate). This dough is unusually soft, so chilling is a must. I baked one batch after 5 hours of refrigeration and the 2nd after 48 hours; we couldn't discern any difference. The first batch baked 16 min and the second one 15 min and I slightly preferred the shorter baking time. The cookies were large and thin with chewy centers and crispy edges. Truly excellent! The only change I'd make would be to chop all the disks at least in half as the whole disks seemed too big. Great thing about these is I could finish a whole cookie without it feeling like too much, yet I didn't need a second.

  • Foolproof tarte Tatin

    • raybun on January 17, 2021

      This is probably the most laborious tatin I’ve ever made, but also the most delicious! I did have to make a significant change when I discovered only 2 apples left, so I poached 3 quince using a recipe on EYB by Ottolenghi (pomegranate poached quince). Absolutely spectacular, and I’m looking forward to trying with apples.

  • Pear chestnut cake

    • raybun on January 17, 2021

      This was my first time using chestnuts in a cake, I absolutely loved them with the pear. Definitely making this again!

  • Cranberry-pomegranate mousse pie

    • puddlemere on November 27, 2020

      Made for Thanksgiving. I love the speculoos crust with this, although I slightly overbaked it. The filling was perfectly set and really flavorful. The only negative was it seemed just a touch too sweet for me.

    • Shewi128 on March 12, 2021

      Absolutely delicious recipe. I made the speculoos cookie crust as well. To me, it had a perfect balance of tart and sweet. It was worth getting the specialty ingredient (pomegranate molasses).

  • Spelt croissants

    • puddlemere on December 31, 2020

      This was my first time making croissants and this was a great recipe. The instructions were very clear and the photos were super helpful. They came out perfectly! They are quite involved so I'd probably only make them for a special occasion or something, but if I did make them again the only thing I'd change is making them a bit smaller.

    • anya_sf on April 15, 2021

      This was my most successful attempt at croissants yet, although still not perfect. The detailed instructions were easy to follow and I appreciated that I didn't have to roll the dough to precise dimensions on each turn. My kitchen is cool, great for lamination, but not great for proofing; the croissants took 5 hours to rise and never doubled - increased about 1.5x - but were puffy and wobbly. Unfortunately, they leaked a lot of butter. As an experiment, I reserved 3 shaped, unbaked croissants in the fridge, which then rose for 6 hours the next morning, and they turned out the same. These were super flaky and good, although a little too salty (this is the only recipe I've seen that calls for salted butter), and the centers of the large croissants were a little doughy, despite being fully browned on the outside. The 2 smaller bonus croissants were baked through.

  • Honey tahini challah

    • anya_sf on November 19, 2021

      I used a mixer for the dough. It was quite soft, so I added some extra flour, figuring this was OK since the hand-kneading instructions said to flour the surface generously. The dough seemed great, but even at 70 F, hardly rose at all after 3 hours. I gave up for the day, refrigerated the dough overnight, and tried again the next day, letting the dough rise wrapped in a plate warmer for several hours. It finally rose, so I continued with the recipe. The shaped loaf also took a few hours to rise. There was quite a bit of oven spring. The challah had good texture and flavor, not really sweet, but with noticeable honey and sesame flavors. Definitely recommended for sesame lovers.

  • Garlic and rosemary focaccia topping

    • anya_sf on July 07, 2021

      Very tasty topping, but a bit sparse to cover the whole tray; next time would increase the rosemary at least.

  • Purple potato focaccia topping

    • anya_sf on July 07, 2021

      A bit of work to prepare, but not difficult and quite good. A generous amount - covers the entire surface so the top of the dough doesn't really brown. Could reduce to leave gaps between potato slices, allowing for some browning.

  • A little bit of everything bagels

    • anya_sf on February 09, 2021

      These turned out really ugly, but tasted great with the proper chewy texture. I didn't have granulated garlic, so just used more onion. Otherwise made as directed. The dough was quite stiff, but that seemed correct; just added a little water to mix in the seeds. The dough rose nicely. Problems started when shaping. I tried to make 9 equal pieces, which meant cutting some bits off to combine with others, but I guess they never fully combined when rolled into balls. The dough did not stretch evenly and tore in places. I tried to smooth out the bagels so they looked mostly okay at that point. Chilling and boiling all seemed fine (did float test). But when they baked, all the uneven bits popped out so the exteriors were not very smooth at all. So for next time: maybe add more water to dough, knead longer, try to cut into 8 even pieces (easier than 9; don't combine bits), let dough relax before stretching. Also may be able to push the 12 hour chilling time a little longer.

    • anya_sf on June 28, 2021

      Tried making these again and finally produced a photo-worthy version. Kneaded the dough longer (still adding a little water with the seeds), eyeballed 9 portions to avoid combining bits of dough, and followed Stella Parks' shaping instructions - which, to be fair, are essentially the same as those in this book, just more detailed and with a helpful video. I also chilled the shaped dough 18 hours with no issues.

  • Speculoos babka

    • anya_sf on October 22, 2021

      Delicious! The babka had an excellent texture. However, the crumb topping baked up dry, which made it seem like the bread itself was dry when it wasn't. I liked the cinnamon crunch and appearance of the topping, but would make maybe half of it next time; there was quite a lot.

  • Brown butter corn muffins

    • anya_sf on April 23, 2021

      These were lighter than expected, moist, tender, mildly sweet, with lots of corn - more corn kernels than flour or cornmeal. Made with frozen, thawed corn kernels, bites of corn were occasionally a bit chewy; freshly cut corn kernels would probably be inconsistent in size, which would actually be nice here. Next time I might chop some of the corn into smaller pieces.

  • Classic English muffins

    • anya_sf on January 24, 2021

      The trickiest part with these was figuring out when to make them since I prefer to bake midday, but the timing here doesn't permit that. In the end, it wasn't too much work to make the dough after dinner and griddle them in the morning. Claire says that way you can enjoy them fresh, but honestly they were better toasted, so feel free to make them ahead. I patted my dough a bit thin in places and got 9 pretty muffins, 1 not-too-badly-cobbled-together muffin, and 1 badly-cobbled-together muffin which sort of fell apart (I hated wasting the scraps). These muffins had good flavor with the classic nooks and crannies inside.

  • Brioche twists with coriander sugar

    • anya_sf on March 01, 2021

      Lovely! I wasn't sure if I made the dough correctly (see my notes there), but these turned out well. They untwisted somewhat as they rose and baked. The pastries were soft and tender with a nice crunch from the sugar. I substituted organic turbinado sugar which had a fairly strong flavor, so the coriander wasn't really detectable. Next time I'll try cinnamon and/or cardamom and perhaps a different sugar.

  • Strawberry-almond bostock

    • anya_sf on March 05, 2021

      I prepped the slices the night before, so morning assembly was very quick. I love most any bostock and these were no exception. The strawberries added freshness, but also moisture, so the frangipane did not fully set in the centers. The other fruit variations mentioned (fig, blueberry, cherry, blackberry) sound really good as well.

  • Pineapple and pecan upside-down cake

    • anya_sf on April 08, 2021

      A lot more work than a typical pineapple upside-down cake. I wish I could say it was worth it, but I'm not convinced. The cake was certainly pretty and used nearly a whole pineapple, but the pineapple layer actually ended up kind of thin relative to cake. The cake had good flavor but was slightly dry (though may have overbaked a little).

  • Sweet yeast dough

    • anya_sf on October 22, 2021

      Half a recipe was easy to make in a stand mixer (unlike half a recipe of, say, brioche dough), although I did need to add a few extra tablespoons of flour. After 8 hours of chilling, the dough was very easy to work with. I used it for babka.

  • Pastry cream

    • anya_sf on June 30, 2021

      Good, straightforward pastry cream recipe.

  • Flaky all-butter pie dough

    • anya_sf on August 06, 2021

      Great method resulting in a super flaky crust. It's larger than a standard 9" crust - would likely fit a 10" deep-dish pan. I used it for the tomato tart rolled into approximately 8" x 13" rectangle.

  • Rice pudding cake with mango caramel

    • gloriole on August 15, 2021

      The mango caramel was the absolute star of the show in this recipe. It added such an amazing depth and layer of flavor. The rice pudding cake on the other hand, felt too dense. I did make the recipe in a smaller 7.5 in cake pan vs a 9 in pan, so the cake was taller in height than intended. The cake does need to be enjoyed at room temp or warmer for several reasons. 1) The caramel needs to be warm to be poured over the cake. 2) The rice pudding cake was really only enjoyable at room temperature or warmer. Any colder and the rice pudding felt too stiff and an odd contrast to the warm caramel and softness of the mango. Mango can be served either warmed up or cold. Either works. While Claire writes to serve the cake with thinly sliced mango, I found that the slices were too thin to balance out the cake and caramel. Chunks would be better. Claire rated the recipe as easy, but I'd rank it higher in difficulty due to the time and labor required in babysitting the rice pudding + caramel.

  • St. Louis gooey butter cake

    • chickchickyboom on February 07, 2021

      I followed the instructions exactly and this turned really incredible. I love the topping, especially where it caramelized over the butter cake. I gave some to a friend for the holidays and her family devoured it in 20 minutes!

  • All coconut cake

    • Suphada on March 31, 2021

      This recipe is on p 200-201

  • Apple and Concord grape crumble pie

    • rachelleg88 on October 12, 2021

      Do not be turned away on how labourious the grape peeling is - it's not that bad and it's definitely worth it! :)

  • Classic birthday cake

    • sharone7 on May 25, 2021

      Everything I've made so far from Dessert Person has been a winner. This cake flavor is delicious and the chocolate cream cheese frosting turns out so pretty. I made about 2/3 recipe of the frosting and still had some left over after a crumb coat, regular coat, and some piping.

  • Mascarpone cake with red wine prunes

    • GHolland on December 31, 2020

      Very good, easy recipe. Don’t over cook the syrup or you won’t have any to drizzle on the ice cream

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  • ISBN 10 1984826964
  • ISBN 13 9781984826961
  • Linked ISBNs
  • Published Oct 20 2020
  • Format Hardcover
  • Page Count 336
  • Language English
  • Countries United States
  • Publisher Clarkson Potter

Publishers Text

In her first cookbook, Bon Appétit and YouTube star of the show Gourmet Makes offers wisdom, problem-solving strategies, and more than 100 meticulously tested, creative, and inspiring recipes.

Claire Saffitz is a baking hero for a new generation. In Dessert Person, fans will find Claire's signature spin on sweet and savory recipes like Babkallah (a babka-Challah mashup), Apple and Concord Grape Crumble Pie, Strawberry-Cornmeal Layer Cake, Crispy Mushroom Galette, and Malted Forever Brownies. She outlines the problems and solutions for each recipe--like what to do if your pie dough for Sour Cherry Pie cracks (patch it with dough or a quiche flour paste!)--as well as practical do's and don'ts, skill level, prep and bake time, and foundational know-how. With Claire at your side, everyone can be a dessert person.


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