If you are a beginning baker, this book offers an accessible introduction to essential baking ingredients, equipment, and techniques as well as detailed, step-by-step recipes that make it easy to prepare even the trickiest baked goods. If you are already an accomplished baker, it offers many sophisticated and unusual recipes that will help you refine your knowledge and skills. The book features a distinctive organization based on six key baking ingredients, from fruits and vegetables, nuts and seeds, and chocolate to dairy products, spices and herbs, and coffee, tea, and liqueurs. Select an ingredient or flavor you love, and you'll find many delicious ways to incorporate it into your baking. Bloom's recipes encompass every type of baking. You'll find spectacular versions of familiar favorites - Cherry Pie, Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting, and Double Peanut Butter Cookies - as well as intriguing variations and extravagant indulgences, including Coconut Biscotti, Lemon Verbena and Walnut Tea Cake, and Dark Chocolate Creme Brulee. Her meticulous recipes specify essential gear, offer tips on streamlining the recipe and storing the finished dish, and provide advice on varying ingredients and adding panache. With in-depth guidance on techniques and ingredients, 225 standout recipes, variations and embellishments for almost every dish, and 32 pages of striking full-color photographs, The Essential Baker is truly the only baking book you'll ever need.