It’s been a year since I purchased the Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook. I’m a big devotee of the actual bakery, but it was a long time before I made the step to emulating the cakes I’d bought there. I can genuinely say that it was through this book that baking really took off for me as a real hobby.
This is a cookbook that really divides opinions, as can be clearly seen in the Amazon.co.uk customer reviews. After all this baking and making, I can safely say that now I have my own firmly set opinion when it comes to the Hummingbird Bakery recipes.
Firstly, the good. The cookbook is gorgeously set out, with mouth-watering photography. The recipes are clearly laid out, and there is a good range and quantity of different recipes. It makes you want to dive in and start baking straight away.
As many of the Amazon reviewers have said, the method for many of the recipes is definitely a bit strange, and it does take a while to get your head around that. I find that personally, it’s very much a game of luck whether the cupcakes turn out fluffy or not. I still can’t work out what I’m doing differently in the method each time. When they work, they are wonderful, but there are a lot of other non-Hummingbird cake recipes that I would say are equally as delicious, and give much more consistently successful results.
Also, these recipes are definitely not for anybody calorie-conscious! They are full of hefty amounts of sugar, butter and cream cheese. And by hefty, I really mean that. The rocky road recipe calls for 1.4 KILOS of chocolate (not including all the chocolate bars and marshmallows, and other bits that go into it).
So what can I say? Some Hummingbird recipes are amazing. I love their frosting recipes, and their peanut butter cookies are divine. On the other hand, the black bottom cupcakes, brooklyn blackout cake, and their chocolate-chip cookies are terribly disappointing! Because so many of the recipes that I’ve made out of it have been so good, I think it was definitely worth buying, and I’m glad that I have such a lovely baking book to introduce me into the world of cakes. Now it just remains for me to bake through the rest of my vast collection and see what wonders lie in store!