Penguin Random House Canada sent me a copy of Tanya Bakes in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own and from the heart.
It’s a grey and drizzly day here in Ottawa, much like I imagine it to be in UK lifestyle blogger and YouTube star Tanya Burr’s corner of the world, only hers probably smells like fresh-baked cinnamon buns or lemon drizzle loaf or any of the other homey puddings, pastries, cookies and cakes in her lovely book, Tanya Bakes. It’s her first cookbook and her second book (Love, Tanya was released in 2015) and she’s got a third coming this September called Tanya’s Christmas: Make, Bake and Celebrate (which I’ve already got, thanks to my magical unicorn friend Maria). Inside this one are page after page of comfort foods — mostly desserts, but also some breakfast dishes and a pizza — accompanied by a brief bit about where or when they were first enjoyed or a tip on how to serve them. Many are family favourites, some a tribute to friends, and a few borrowed from the kitchens of beloved Brits Nigella Lawson, Mary Berry and Jamie Oliver.
My 10-year-old picked the recipes we’d try, starting with the Sticky Toffee Pudding. Tanya says it took her several attempts to get the recipe right and it’s clear she finally got it, because this recipe is delicious. “It’s warm, sticky and oozy and like a hug in a bowl,” she says.
We made ours in buttered ramekins but a muffin tin would also do the trick. My only complaint is that the book uses British cooking measurements, so it took some googling and a bit of math to figure out the correct conversions.
Tanya’s Amazing Chocolate Brownies (decorated here with Sweetapolita‘s coral reef sprinkles) are aptly named — we went through these so fast I made two batches in a week! They’re free of dairy and wheat (even better!) and made extra moist with mashed avocado stirred into the batter. I can’t be trusted around them.
And it was a toss up between trying the Cinnamon Buns or the Nutella version but the chocolately buns won out. I loved watching them rise and double in size (so satisfying!) and they tasted divine. Tanya knows what she’s doing!!
Tanya Bakes is a beautiful book to look at and a fun and light read. I’m so happy with how well the recipes we tried turned out and can’t wait to make some more!
What should we make next: Australian Toasted Banana Bread, Raspberry Cupcakes or Rocky Road? Help us decide and I’ll show you how they turned out on Instagram.
Cover photo copyright © Dan Kennedy and shared here with permission from the publisher.