Food52 Genius Desserts

A cookbook by Kristen Miglore.

Kristen Miglore

Drawing from her James Beard Award-nominated Genius Recipes column and powered by the cooking wisdom and generosity of the Food52 community, creative director Kristen Miglore set out to unearth the most game-changing dessert recipes from beloved cookbook authors, chefs and bakers — and collect them all in one indispensable guide. 
This led her to iconic desserts spanning the last century: Maida Heatter's East 62nd Street Lemon Cake, François Payard's Flourless Chocolate-Walnut Cookies and Nancy Silverton's Butterscotch Budino. But it also turned up little-known gems: a comforting Peach Cobbler with Hot Sugar Crust from Renee Erickson and an imaginative Parsnip Cake with Blood Orange Buttercream from Lucky Peach, along with genius tips, riffs and mini-recipes, and the lively stories behind each one. 
The genius of this collection is that Kristen has scouted out and rigorously tested recipes from the most trusted dessert experts, finding over 100 of their standouts. Each recipe shines in a different way and teaches you something new, whether it's how to use unconventional ingredients (like Sunset's whole orange cake), how to make the most of brilliant methods (roasted sugar from Stella Parks), or how to embrace stunning simplicity (Dorie Greenspan's three-ingredient cookies). With photographer James Ransom's riveting images throughout, Genius Desserts is destined to become every baker's go-to reference for the very best desserts from the smartest teachers of our time — for all the dinner parties, potlucks, bake sales and late-night snacks in between. (From Ten Speed Press)

From the book

Genius Desserts teach us to throw our old assumptions out the window. To wit: the most important tool for making Marcella Hazan's brittle, bittersweet Italian candy Croccante (page 79) is not a candy thermometer (you won't need one) but a potato. The best chocolate sauces have no dairy in them. In fact, there are two different, equally compelling recipes in this book, and you can make them both for a (suddenly very fun) ice cream party in all of 10 minutes (page 182). You will be shocked and maybe even a little disturbed by what makes the most otherworldly banana cake (page 98). You can make a piecrust out of saltine crackers with your bare hands (page 199) and it will go even better with a sweet-tart lemony filling than the more predictable graham cracker route would. Not to mention there's a whipped cream frosting that holds up for a week in the refrigerator (how?!) with no suspicious ingredients (page 124). These shockers and more await.

From Food52 Genius Desserts by Kristen Miglore ©2018. Published by Ten Speed Press.

More about this book

Aparita Bhandari talks to Shelagh Rogers about three cookbooks that she's recently tried. 10:35


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.