Zoë Bakes Cakes: Everything You Need to Know to Make Your Favorite Layers, Bundts, Loaves, and More by Zoë François

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  • Marble pound cake

    • Astrid5555 on July 06, 2021

      A quick and easy, delicious tasting marble pound cake recipe. Will go into my regular baking rotation!

  • Chocolate ganache bundt cake

    • Astrid5555 on March 21, 2021

      This cake is the perfect chocolate cake for chocolate lovers. Easy and quite quick to make. Made only a quarter of the ganache recipe since I did not have enough chocolate left, was also quite ok.

    • et12 on May 02, 2021

      Very Chocolatey and delicious! I accidentally forgot to incorporate the last third of the flour/cocoa mixture into the batter before putting it into the oven but it still came out great, although probably a bit more like a brownie then the author intended.

    • Jviney on July 16, 2021

      This was excellent, a truly deep chocolate flavour. We loved it. I don’t think I used a full cup of ganache and it was still rich with good coverage. Probably my favourite chocolate bundt recipe so far.

  • Pumpkin-mocha swirl bundt cake

    • Astrid5555 on November 22, 2021

      The only thing to complain about is that the coffee flavor is too subtle for my taste, apart from that, an excellent cake!

    • bwhip on November 16, 2021

      Excellent cake. Lovely, moist texture, and the flavor combination is a winner. We really enjoyed, and we’ll definitely come back to this one.

  • Plum cake

    • Astrid5555 on August 02, 2021

      We found this to be a really delicious plum cake. It is probably also the quickest one I have ever made since it comes toegther in no time in the food processor. Substituted vanilla sugar in the topping for the cinnamon because hubby is not a big fan. Will definitely make again.

    • Lepa on July 24, 2021

      I didn't love this. BUT my oven is acting up and it was burnt a bit so I think it's not fair to judge this recipe from today's attempt. I will probably try again but I am pretty loyal to a recipe in Food 52 that includes ricotta and lemon and I think those flavors might complement plums better than almond and cinnamon.

    • anya_sf on September 30, 2021

      Batter was easy to make in the processor. For me the hardest part was lining a round pan with rectangular parchment. The recipe calls for quartered plums, but the photo shows them cut into eighths, which is what I did. I baked it for the stated time, but maybe should have taken it out a few minutes early. Not too sweet, the cake made a nice afternoon or breakfast treat.

  • Victory (Victoria) sponge cake

    • Astrid5555 on May 31, 2021

      Spring in a cake, beautiful looking and delicious tasting. A keeper!

    • bwhip on July 16, 2021

      Made a version of this tonight, using fresh peaches. Turned out beautifully! I used self-rising flour as called for, and the texture was perfect - nice and light, but sturdy enough to hold the weight at the same time. Flavor was really lovely. I made quick jam using a variation of the recipe from the same cookbook. We’ll make this again for sure.

    • Kinhawaii on June 01, 2021

      Not wanting a big cake for a few people, I did half a recipe & cooked one layer. I cooked it too long because it was dry on the edges. I put the jam, then strawberry cream mixture- which was mostly creme fraiche & not heavy cream because I was trying to use it up- then topped it with strawberries. It did taste lovely, although now I realize I should have sliced it in half & put the filling in between. I love the way Astrid5555’s cake looks!

  • Brown butter Genoise

    • Astrid5555 on May 02, 2021

      Love the brown butter taste, comes out perfect!

  • Anna’s hazelnut-brown butter cake

    • Astrid5555 on September 23, 2021

      This one is a delicious, quick to make little cake. Made this because I had an abundance of figs from my mom’s garden, but could be topped with any fruit available, got rave reviews!

  • Angel food cake

    • Astrid5555 on April 07, 2021

      I just made this cake because I had 12 leftover egg whites from previous baking projects and I did not expect much in terms of flavor. To my big surprise adding raspberries to an angel food cake is genius. This makes an otherwise unassuming cake pop with little flavor bursts and looks really pretty when you cut into the cake. Don‘t skimp on the raspberry whipped cream either, excellent also on its own!

    • anya_sf on October 24, 2021

      Excellent instructions which still worked with regular granulated sugar. The raspberries were a great counterpoint to the sweet cake and amazingly did not sink. Next time I'll add a few more. We initially enjoyed the cake plain, but then tried it with the raspberry whipped cream, which took it to the next level. With tart berries, I would sweeten the cream a little more next time - I hesitated this time since angel food is so sweet.

  • Pavlova

    • Astrid5555 on July 06, 2021

      Stunning to look at summer dessert! Made this as a birthday cake for my older son, it was gone within the hour and got rave reviews.

    • EmilyR on March 28, 2021

      recipe here : https://www.tastecooking.com/recipes/pavlova-2/

  • Pavlova roulade

    • Astrid5555 on May 03, 2021

      This is a showstopper of a dessert, but actually quite quick to make and can even be done ahead and assembled when needed. Made an oven-roasted strawberry-rhubarb compote as a filling and topping for the perfect spring experience. If you haven‘t made a Pavlova roulade before check out Zoe’s instagram account for a video on how to bake it.

  • Raspberry charlotte royale

    • Astrid5555 on April 02, 2021

      This is an impressive looking showstopper, but quite quick and easy to make. Made this cake for a small pre-Easter lockdown outdoor gathering and it got rave reviews.

  • Banana bread with swirls of Nutella

    • trudys_person on November 02, 2021

      (page 70) A pretty good banana bread ... I found it slightly less sweet than some recipes, and the Nutella was a nice touch, but it could use more swirled through the middle of the batter. I might just add lots of Nutella to my favourite banana bread recipe next time. It did rise nice and high in the 8" x 4" loaf pans specified in the recipe.

    • stef on August 26, 2021

      This recipe was a disappointment. Baked in 9x5 does not give high loaves and nutella didn't add much taste

    • et12 on July 04, 2021

      This one looked good but I was hoping it would taste better. Was really excited by the idea of swirls of Nutella within the banana bread but the nutella just got incorporated into the sponge to create streaks of chocolate sponge as opposed to gooey streaks of Nutella. The banana bread itself was decent but not my favourite. I think next time I’ll try adding more Nutella and swirl it into my regular banana bread recipe, or maybe just spread it on top!

  • Beehive cake

    • darcie_b on July 21, 2021

      This is a wonderful banana cake, at least on par with Rose Levy Beranbaum's excellent recipe. The layer baked in the bowl ended up a little gummy in the center, so be sure not to under bake it. The honey buttercream benefits from an assertive honey, but if you use the optional espresso powder a mild honey works well too.

  • Best-ever chocolate-zucchini bundt cake

    • okmosa on October 10, 2021

      There is nothing especially special about this cake that it is zucchini. The chocolate flavor is very deep and rich but I think as good or better cake can be made without the strings of zucchini.

  • Olive oil-chiffon cake

    • EmilyR on March 28, 2021

      recipe here : https://www.tastecooking.com/recipes/olive-oil-chiffon-cake/

  • Rhubarb upside-down cake

    • EmilyR on March 28, 2021

      recipe here : https://www.tastecooking.com/recipes/rhubarb-upside-down-cake/

    • tarae1204 on May 26, 2021

      Loved the unexpected inclusion of creme de cassis in both the fruit and cake layers. The cake turned out well with a velvety crumb and tart rhubarb layer, all fragrant with the cassis liqueur.

  • Chocolate-peanut butter cake

    • EmilyR on March 28, 2021

      recipe here : https://www.tastecooking.com/recipes/chocolate-peanut-butter-cup-cake/

  • Black Forest cake

    • Charlotte_vandenberg on July 01, 2021

      Fantastic. I used chocolate devil’s food cake, which is very moist and delicious. This was a perfect birthday cake.

  • Pineapple upside-down cake

    • Lepa on April 01, 2021

      This is really delicious cake. Definitely use the baking sheet under the cake pan, as there was a mess. The pineapple stuck to the pan when I turned it out but I just stuck it onto the cake and it was fine.

    • et12 on August 05, 2021

      This didn’t work for me. The cake itself was delicious but took forever to bake through. The bottom was beginning to burn but the centre of the cake was still liquid. Will try again with a lower oven temperature and longer cooking time.

  • Blueberry muffin cake

    • lou_weez on March 28, 2021

      This was delicious!!! I put in more fruit than the recipe stated (I think about 400g) so my fruit to cake ratio was a bit out, but we still loved it. The crumble topping was amazing and added crunch and sweetness.

  • Boston cream pie

    • bwhip on April 19, 2021

      This was pretty perfect in every way. Cake was delicious, and nicely firm to support weight of layers. Pastry cream (lightened a bit with some whipped cream) was delicious and also just the right thickness. Ganache was also just right. Cake recipe makes three layers, so I froze one for later use. I scaled ganache recipe, since it makes three cups and I only needed one to top the cake.

    • Jviney on May 22, 2021

      I made this using her yellow cake recipe and loved that those layers naturally settled flat as they cooled. Next time I think I would try assembling the cake without adding the whipped cream to the pastry cream, as my pastry cream had been pretty firm without it, but oozed out from between the layers pretty significantly.

  • White cake

    • leilx on August 18, 2021

      excellent cake and quite simple to make.

  • Rustic grape and almond paste cake

    • Kinhawaii on September 14, 2021

      Nice, moist cake. Unfortunately my grape topping was swallowed up by the rising cake & only some almonds remained on top. Most of the grapes folded in- & I think almond paste- sunk to the bottom. I wonder if it would be beneficial, like Ottolenghi’s blueberry lemon loaf, to add the topping halfway on? The tender cake tastes mostly of almonds with a hint of orange. Mine was done at 65 minutes.

  • Yellow cake

    • et12 on July 18, 2021

      Really enjoyed this cake. Made the sponge two days before assembling and serving (keeping them in airtight containers). I used the same raspberry buttercream suggested in the recipe and it tasted amazingly.

  • Berry buttercream

    • et12 on July 18, 2021

      This is an excellent buttercream recipe with the proportion of ingredients being just right. Makes a lot of buttercream, enough to cover a three-layer 9” round cake. The colour of the frosting is subtle and nice with the raspberry seeds in there.

  • Cranberry-Grand Marnier upside-down cake

    • j.va on May 01, 2021

      Really spectacular cake, with a remarkable fluffy texture. Don't think about skipping or shortening the 5 minute creaming of the butter and the sugar...I am convinced it makes a difference. I used a mix of frozen and fresh cranberries for mine. I made mine with Diamond Crystal Kosher salt, and might add a touch more to my next bake. Gorgeous ruby red fruit top...served with orange whipped cream.

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Reviews about this book

  • Eat Your Books

    A true masterpiece of epic cake proportions.

    Full review
  • ISBN 10 1984857363
  • ISBN 13 9781984857361
  • Linked ISBNs
  • Published Mar 16 2021
  • Format Hardcover
  • Page Count 272
  • Language English
  • Countries United States
  • Publisher Ten Speed Press

Publishers Text

The expert baker and bestselling author behind Zoë Bakes explores her favorite dessert--cakes!--with more than 100 recipes to create flavorful and beautiful layers, loafs, bundts, and more.

Cake is the ultimate symbol of celebration, used to mark birthdays, weddings, or even just a Tuesday night. Yet too many people use chemical-laden mixes even though a cake is so easy to make from scratch and infinitely more fun to share. In Zoë Bakes Cakes, bestselling author Zoë François demystifies the craft of cakes with more than 100 easy-to-use recipes, showing how to get gorgeous confections on the table to mark any occasion, big or small.

In the opening chapter, Zoë explores the techniques and tricks of cake baking, using step-by-step photos to break down baking fundamentals like creaming butter and sugar and whipping egg whites, making it easy to follow along. In the following chapters she gives simple, straightforward recipes for loaf cakes, layers, fillings, frostings, and more--including treats like Apple Cake with Honey-Bourbon Glaze, Lemon Curd Pound Cake, Coconut Candy Bar Cake, and Chocolate Devil's Food Cake. There's even a tutorial on how to make a wedding cake from scratch, complete with constructing the layers.

With Zoë's encouragement, as well as her lighthearted approach, delicious homemade cake is within reach for any celebration imaginable.



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