Honey & Co: The Baking Book

We loved Sarit Packer and Itamar Srulovich’s first book: Honey & Co: Food from the Middle East and weren’t surprised when it was named Food Book of the Year by both The Sunday Times and Fortnum & Mason. We also try and eat at their tiny but perfectly formed restaurant on Warren Street as often as possible. So we seized on their follow up, Honey & Co: The Baking Book, with glee and it doesn’t disappoint. As the Srulovich writes in the introduction: ‘Even though it is only a part of what we do, the pastry section is the backbone of the operation, the driving force and the powerhouse. What baking requires represents everything we want our staff to have and our customers to feel – consideration, concentration, experience and patience, of course, but also a lot of passion, greed, an eagerness to please on an industrial scale and a great big heart.’

So no, this is not just a book about how to bake cakes. God knows, we’ve got enough of those. There are plenty of deliciously sweet bakes to make of course – we’ve already made the blueberry, hazelnut & ricotta cake (fabulous) and the peach, vanilla & fennel seed mini loaves (a firm favourite) – but as well as these, there are chapters on baking for lunch (with recipes such as smoky aubergine phylas, Su böreği or Turkish lasagne, and pigeon pastilla); for your store cupboard (we’re obsessed with the black fig, cardamom & orange jam); for breakfast, elevenses (the spiced cauliflower muffins are amazingly pretty and equally delicious), and tea, as well as a glorious final chapter on traditional Middle Easter deserts. All the recipes are made distinctive by Honey & Co’s subtle but fragrant spicing and balance of flavours. These are bakes that will wake you up rather than send you into a sugar stupor. And like the first book, this one is written by a writer—Srulovich—with a wonderfully singular voice. It’s a pleasure to both use and read. If you’re feeling inspired by the new series of Great British Bake Off, do treat yourself to this book. Then download an application form for next year’s series.

A Little Bird Loves

Fortnum's Easter