Reviewed by Helen Wyatt
We absolutely LOVE baking in our house, so I jumped at the opportunity to be able to review The Power of Sprinkles, A Cake Book by the Founder of the Flour Shop by Amirah Kassem. This absolutely gorgeous book immediately grabs you with its vibrant pink and orange cover, filled with a picture of the largest rainbow layer cake you’ve ever seen, bursting with sweets and covered in sprinkles. The book is a beautiful hardback book, designed by the author to help readers unlock their creativity in the kitchen.
The book starts with a story about the author and why she feels so passionately about baking and how she made her dreams come true, to inspire the reader into enjoying the process as much as the outcome. We are taken on a journey from the most basic vanilla cake recipe, with detailed step-by-step instructions, along with tips from Amirah to help you get the best out of your baking. There is a section on sprinkle science and math, the perfect frosting recipe, frosting techniques, and all the basics you’ll ever need to know.
Then we come to the showstopper in the book – 40+ pages taking you through creating the ultimate rainbow layer sprinkle explosion cake, the star of the front cover. Each page shows the next step in multiple photos, with lots of detailed explanations. This is what I love about this book. Often, you’ll find recipes are vague and assume you know certain information, but this book does not do that. The reader is taken through each step in a simple to follow but not patronising way, to help you recreate that gorgeous masterpiece on the front cover.
The rest of the book talks you through several other show-stopping layer cakes, from one for new year with dyed black layers and silver sprinkles, to spooky monster cakes for Halloween. You’re even talked through that infamous unicorn cake that is EVERYWHERE on the internet, so now you can make it yourself!
There are some other clever cakes that look like guacamole on toast, one that looks like a pie, one like a stack of pancakes, one like a pizza, and another that looks like a bowl of cereal, so your creative streak will really be drawn out through this book. One thing baker’s will either love or hate is that there is actually only one proper recipe in this book, for vanilla cake, and then the cake recipes are more like instructions rather than recipes, and differently elaborately decorated versions of that basic vanilla cake. If you’re expecting several different cake recipes then you will be disappointed however if you know that it is one foundation recipe which can be adapted into several different cakes to wow anyone, then you’re all set.
I am an absolute sucker for bright rainbows and this book has those in spades, filled with large full colour photos of the cakes which are a real treat for the eyes. What I wasn’t so keen on was the 30+ photos of the author through the book, which I thought was a little bit self-indulgent, however it’s still a gorgeous book and leaves you thinking you could easily make all the cakes even if you’re just a novice baker.
This book would be a perfect Christmas present for any baker who perhaps wants to mix things up a bit, or even just for a beginner due to all the easy to follow instructions and amazing photos.
RRP: £17.99 (hardback)
Available to buy from Amazon here.