A while back we posted a review of Jackie Cameron Cooks at Home… and months later many of those recipes have become part of our family food culture. The thing about Jackie Cameron’s recipes is they are classics, packed with nostalgia – your childhood could literally flash before your eyes and then she adds a subtle South African twist and you literally want to sigh for joy. When I saw that she had launched a new cook book, Baking with Jackie Cameron, Published by Penguin Random House South Africa, I was really keen to try it. What can I say, another collection of recipes that did not disappoint, this book is simply packed with stunning recipes, from breads to pies, to cakes and treats.
There are tons of recipes in here that you want to try right now, and you will most likely have the ingredients in your kitchen already. The recipes are totally doable and easy to follow… and many of recipes you will be able to include into your family recipe repertoire very quickly. Also, I love the South African twist to her recipes, there is nothing better than a local tweak that makes a recipe more like home. This has become the cookbook that my kids turn to when they are looking for something to bake and I know I can leave it to them and they will produce something great. One thing they have learnt, and it is a good thing, is to read the recipe right through to the end before you start and otherwise lay out and measure all your ingredients before you begin. I have been trying to teach that for years… well this is the book that achieved that!!!
Se7en + 1 Recipes We Tried and Tested
- Granny Dot’s Jam-Drop Biscuits: I love that she includes so many family favourite recipes in her cookbook, and these biscuits reminded me very much of my own childhood. We had to try them. They were so quick and easy to make, and a little flare with the jam takes them up a level from ordinary biscuits… to a tea-party, with almost no extra effort.
- Maids of Honour Biscuits: I remember these as a tray of treats as a small child, talk about a walk down memory lane… a layer of biscuit, a layer of jam and then a sweet topping of coconut meringue. I can see we are going to be making a lot more of these… trays and trays of them in fact.
- Lady Finger Biscuits: I have always wanted to make finger biscuits, yes, I am that person that wants to make tiramisu from scratch. But here’s a recipe that I don’t think we could get right. We tried a few times because the flavour is perfect, they taste exactly like finger biscuits… but somehow when we folded the egg whites into our cookie mixture… these biscuits cooked flat… and then my son pointed out that another name for them is “cat’s tongues” and we thought… hmmm they do look like those, so we weren’t too far off.
- Chocolate and Cinnamon Malva Pudding: This pudding is a game changer for our family. We only have dessert about once a week, when granny comes for dinner… well this has become that dessert. Half way through this recipe you have to pour more liquid over it and the first time we did that… I thought, “This is never going to work!” But it did… this is a lovely rich and delicious dessert… click on the link and try it… you can thank me later!!!
- Beer Bread: We have our standard daily bread recipe, that we use almost constantly. What I have been looking for, for a long time is a quick alternative, especially one that you can add a few little surprises as well, this one has rosemary and roast garlic hidden inside it. Actually this recipe is so easy to make that you wonder why this little gem isn’t ingrained in all of our minds for whenever we need it. How useful to have this little loaf ready in a jiffy, for any number of events.
- Bar One Chocolate Cake: I am just going to whisper this… if you buy this recipe book for only one recipe, then this is the one. We loved it so much that we made it for Yuppie Chef for their birthday. This recipe comes with a warning, it takes time and you can start two days before… well no kidding!!! There are a lot of components and there is a lot to learn with this recipe, and so very worth it… how to make caramel sauce, a bar-one sauce, a rich chocolate cake with yogurt and bar one chunks, and then finally a bar-one icing. There are many steps and while we made it in a day, it literally took all day. One thing is, it just can’t be eaten in a second, it is so good that you can only have small morsels of enjoyment. This cake went straight onto everyone here’s wish list, as the cake they would like to have baked on their birthday.
- Cameron’s Chocolate Sponge Cake: After the crazy cake, you do actually need to have a standard chocolate cake that you can make, or your kids can easily make without too much effort and in a short space of time. This cake recipe is one that my kids embraced as their own and they especially loved the icing.
- Cameron’s Crystallised Sugar Cupcakes: When I asked my kids what they would like to make from the recipe book… they could choose anything they liked… this is the recipe they chose. Really easy to make and really effective recipe. I can see this is going to be one of their goto recipes for when friends come round.
So that is se7en + 1 recipes that we tried and tested, and there are still so many that we didn’t get to try. This is one of those cookbooks that we are going to return to again and again… and then again. If you would like to get to know Jackie Cameron’s work better then take a look at her website… and if you are looking for recipes that she has published, specifically from this book, then take a look at this link here.
We would like to thank the publishers Penguin Random House South Africa who supplied us with a copy of the book for review purposes. We were not paid for the review and the opinions expressed are as usual, entirely our own.