Baking For Two is the first cookbook by Tracy Yabiku, creator of all the deliciousness on her blog Baking Mischief! This cookbook is available to buy on Amazon now. Follow this link to grab your copy!
I first connected with food blogger Tracy Yabiku over some shared “nerdy” interests that she merged with culinary creations. On her blog, Baking Mischief she has many recipes inspired by pop culture favorites such as Bob’s Burgers, Pokémon, The IT Crowd and Game of Thrones. In addition to the references in these recipes that make me chuckle (like in the No-Recipe Homemade Mashed Potatoes with its reference to the Sea Parks mystery in The IT Crowd) the recipes themselves are impressive and delicious.
I am so excited for Tracy because she has just published her first cookbook! The title is Baking For Two and in it she shares indulgent, small-batch baking recipes. They are perfectly portioned for two… or for a few more than two! The recipes I tested and then shared with my household (three people, sometimes four) made just enough tasty baked treats to satisfy, and with no risk of overindulging in or wasting leftovers.
Baking For Two has recipes that will win over seasoned bakers, and this book is also a great choice for those just beginning their baking adventures. It opens with guidelines for stocking a baker’s pantry and basic baking techniques. There is also a very helpful list of small-batch equipment, listing out the various bread pans, ramekins, muffin tins and dishes used in the recipes.
The first recipe I tried from Baking For Two was the Orange-Chocolate Chip Scones with Orange Glaze.
I was drawn to this recipe by the orange and chocolate flavor combination (always so good,) but I was very pleasantly surprised by how moist the scones are! The scones I tend to find out in bakeries and store often are oversized, dense and dry.
Tracy’s scones are rich, flavorful and just the right size for a weekend breakfast treat or to have with afternoon coffee. (I did both: I shared three of the four scones with my husband and son at breakfast, then stole the fourth for my afternoon coffee. Sorry guys.)
The flecks of orange zest are vibrant against the melty chocolate chips. The dough is very easy to work with and the scones bake up without a hitch.
The next recipe I tried gave us our Sunday lunch: Stout and Beef Cobbler.
It is a thick and savory beef stew, as you would expect from the name. This dish was a bit of a revelation to me because in my mind, long-simmering meat stews have always meant a giant stock pot on the stove with gallons of the stew.
Sometimes that’s a good thing, but other times leaves your family eating stew for days upon days. Or stew just goes to waste. This Stout and Beef Cobbler packs all that crafted, long-simmered flavor into a small batch that perfectly feeds two.
It filled the kitchen with aroma and warmth during its time on the stove, and the lightly crunchy, homey cobbler came together quickly to top off the stew.
Finally, I share the recipe that first caught my eye when I picked up this cookbook: Chocolate Red Wine Cake with Red Wine Ganache and Cream Cheese Whipped Cream. OK, just take a minute to really drool over that description!
And the finished product lives up to its sumptuous name. The cake batter comes together quickly. The sweetly miniature cake brought to mind memories of making Easy Bake Oven cakes as a kid, but the comparison ended there…this is no kiddie cake cooked under a dim light bulb. This Chocolate Red Wine Cake is serious, dark and rich.
It’s then made sinfully decadent with the Red Wine Ganache poured on top. The wine in the cake and ganache is not a dominant flavor but adds depth and complexity to the chocolate.
The cool, sweet whipped cream is a lovely touch on top. It was quite satisfying to serve out this cake and it find the recipe had made just enough.
No leftovers to overindulge on, just a succinct portion of an excellent dessert.
Baking For Two is abundant with more than 80 desserts and baked treats like the ones I tried. That Chocolate Red Wine cake is so good, and these recipes are too: Kahlúa Crème Brûlée, Bite-Sized Smoked Salmon Quiches and Cream Cheese Pumpkin Bread. This cookbook makes a great gift for college students, couples, beginning bakers and small households. It is also fantastic for anyone looking to bake delicious treats in portions that are small but will still impress and satisfy.