Pros: Delicious; delightful; beautiful photos
Rating: 5 out of 5
When The Ghirardelli Chocolate Cookbook crossed my desk, I did virtual cartwheels. I love chocolate in general, and Ghirardelli is one of the better brands out there. Thus I had little difficulty making some recipes to test out this cookbook!
The cookbook is presented beautifully. Many of the recipes come with lovely photographs, and the recipe layout is extremely clean and easy to read. The shape of the book is conducive to lying flat easily, which makes cooking simpler, and the glossy pages are easier to clean if necessary than thinner, flatter pages. It’s a very attractive book. In fact, it puts me in mind of the quality gift-worthy Chronicle cookbooks that I’ve often lauded.
The true star of this cookbook, however, is the results. The recipes perform flawlessly. Oatmeal chocolate chip cookies are simply to-die-for. The double-chocolate banana bread is perhaps the first banana quick bread I’ve had that used enough banana for a noticeable banana flavor—and it’s also one of the first double-chocolate recipes I’ve had that wasn’t overwhelmingly chocolaty.
As awesome as those recipes were, however—and believe, me they’re amazing—they’re nothing compared to the chocolate bread pudding. Pardon me; I must swoon for a moment at the memory and attempt to forget that there’s more in the fridge so I don’t have a midnight snack.
These recipes are hardly what I’d call good for you, but many of them are easy enough to transport (meaning you can make them before you visit friends and split the badness across many people!) or make in small sizes (like small cookies or mini-loaves of bread, so you can have a little at a time). And they don’t tend to gratuitously use large amounts of, for example, butter, when they can get by with less; they use enough to ensure a delicious recipe without overdoing it.
In short, if you love chocolate, buy this cookbook! It has recipes for chocolate-lovers of all kinds, including some wonderful white chocolate delicacies (cupcakes, mousse, and more!).