Cheryl Day's Treasury of Southern Baking

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Pub Date 09 Nov 2021 | Archive Date 26 Oct 2021

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“My great-great-grandmother was both enslaved and a pastry cook who was famous for her biscuits and cakes. There is power in that.” —Cheryl Day, in the New York Times
And from this position of strength comes Day’s next cookbook: a complete book of Southern baking recipes written by this great-great-grandchild of an enslaved woman who is now one of our country’s most acclaimed bakers. In a tome filled with recipes for both savory and sweet baked goods and pastries, Day not only shows the true origins of our favorite Southern recipes—from cathead biscuits to chess pie—but also shares her time-tested techniques for making the best versions of them. These recipes have become a beloved part of American cuisine, and Day shares the secrets to making all the Southern baking mainstays, like Flaky Buttery Biscuits and Skillet Cornbread, and creative twists, like a Cold-Oven Pound Cake and Sweet Tea Custard, as well as accompaniments and drinks to serve alongside.

Organized by category, there are Southern slow breads like Sally Lunn Bread and Buttermilk Buns; coffee cakes and loaf cakes, like a Brown Butter Sock-It-to-Me Cake and a 7-Up Cake; layer cakes, including a Pig-Pickin’ Cake that’s a mainstay at Southern barbecues; cookies good for Southern teas, like Lime Cornmeal Shortbread; and recipes to illustrate an evolving South, with recipes ranging from Mexican Concha Buns to French Madeleines made with cornmeal. Pies are an important part of Southern food, and this book features both classic and unique favorites, including fruit pies, chocolate pies, savory pies, and hand pies, all with an expanded section on piecrust variations. Cakes take the form of sheet cakes, loaf cakes, and layers cakes and include lessons on cake decorating. This monumental piece of work is baking at its best with recognition of the past and a strong case for why Cheryl Day's Southern baking is our future.

“My great-great-grandmother was both enslaved and a pastry cook who was famous for her biscuits and cakes. There is power in that.” —Cheryl Day, in the New York Times
And from this position of...

Advance Praise

“Cheryl’s recipes taste like home.”

—Jennifer Garner

“Cheryl Day’s Treasury of Southern Baking includes the sweet and savory recipes I wish I’d gotten from my mother and grandmothers. Whether you are a baking novice or a seasoned professional, this will soon become your batter-spattered go-to bible. Beautifully illustrated, this heartfelt work is not only a love poem to the cooks who created the recipes, it is, quite simply, a masterpiece.”

—Jessica B. Harris, culinary historian, lecturer, and cookbook author

“There has never been and will never be a more comprehensive book on Southern baking.”

—Sean Brock, chef, restaurateur, and author of Heritage and South

“Cheryl Day’s delicious recipes and family stories reveal how she has used classic Southern desserts to hone her own voice. I live for a book like this one that is unapologetically Black and proud and honors our ancestors by keeping their stories alive through food.”

—Mashama Bailey, chef and coauthor of Black, White, and The Grey

“I trust Cheryl Day. This applies not only to her recipes but also to her stories, her character, and her style. This treasury comes from a woman who is herself a treasure.”

—Julia Turshen, author of Simply Julia, host of Keep Calm & Cook On, and founder of Equity at the Table

“Cheryl has created a tribute to all the Southern bakers who came before her by honoring their craft, recipes, and writings and then making them her own. I dare the reader to skim a recipe, indulge in the stunning photography, and not want to put their hands in flour.”

—Anne Quatrano, chef and restaurateur, Star Provisions Market + Cafe

“Baking is, at its best, about resiliency and connectivity. And bakers, at their best, are mapmakers leading us to this connection through the drama of history. Cheryl Day is one of America’s finest mapmakers. She has given us a brilliant book.”

—Lisa Donovan, pastry chef and author of Our Lady of Perpetual Hunger

“Cheryl’s recipes taste like home.”

—Jennifer Garner

“Cheryl Day’s Treasury of Southern Baking includes the sweet and savory recipes I wish I’d gotten from my mother and grandmothers. Whether you...

Available Editions

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ISBN 9781579658410
PRICE $40.00 (USD)

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Featured Reviews

What a fantastic addition to your cookbook collection. Cheryl Day's book has everything - helpful tips, beautiful photos, and (of course) delicious recipes! It makes me want to spend days in the kitchen trying them all out!

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This cookbook is amazing! Everytime I visit Savannah, I visit her bakery. Having the first book, I knew that I had to get the second one. This is just as good as the first cookbook and I love all the recipes. Highly recommend!

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This is a wonderful baking cookbook. I love that Chery Day begins by dedicating it to her mother and then gives honor to enslaved laborers who created the Southern recipes that have been passed on for generations. The book is broken into sections covering Hot Breads, Muffins, Scones, Slow Breads, Gathering Cakes, Pies, Cookies etc. There are beautiful photos too although not one for every recipe. Her directions are clear and include helpful hints on things like get eggs or butter to room temperature. Her traditional biscuits recipe has my mouth watering. (I don't even care there are three sticks of butter in them.)

This is sure to be a classic for bakers. Day's ingredients lists are things that most people should be able to shop for easily. I haven't eaten Coca-Cola Cake and Coconut Cake since I lived in Georgia many years ago and am happy to have new recipes to try. I am going to Hilton Head for Christmas this year and a side trip to Savannah and her bakery is now on my must do list. Thank you to NetGalley and Artisan Books for a temporary ARC ebook in exchange for an honest review.

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Thank you NetGalley for an e-ARC of Cheryl Day's Treasury of Southern Baking. Beautifully illustrated, filled with recipes for breads, pies, cookies and more! Cheryl not only shares recipes, but tips for successful baking. This is a cookbook I would own leave out year round. A great gift for a friend that enjoys baking.

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“ Cheryl Day’s Treasury of Southern Baking” will be available for purchase on October 26, 2021. I just had the privilege of reviewing an Advanced Reader’s Copy of this cookbook. It did not disappoint, and I highly recommend it!

Cheryl Day along with her husband Griffith Day are the owners of the Back in the Day Bakery in Savannah, GA. They are co-authors of two other stellar cookbooks, and Cheryl is a James Beard Award semifinalist for Outstanding Pastry Chef, a self-taught scratch baker, and an entrepreneur.

This cookbook is a departure from their previous two cookbooks in that she is the sole author. It is a tribute to her lineage and to Southern baking and is filled with delectable recipes.

Here is the publisher’s blurb:

“There is nothing more satisfying or comforting than tying on a favorite apron and baking something delicious. And nowhere has this been so woven into life than in the American South, where the attitude is that every day is worthy of a special treat from the kitchen.

Cheryl Day, one of the South’s most respected bakers, a New York Times bestselling author, and co-owner—with her husband, Griff—of Savannah’s acclaimed Back in the Day Bakery, is a direct descendent of this storied Southern baking tradition. Literally: her great-great-grandmother was an enslaved pastry cook famous for her biscuits and cakes. Now Cheryl brings together her deep experience, the conversations she’s had with grandmothers and great-aunts and sister-bakers, and her passion for collecting local cookbooks and handwritten recipes in a definitive collection of over two hundred tried-and-true recipes that celebrate the craft of from-scratch Southern baking.

Flaky, buttery biscuits. Light and crisp fritters. Muffins and scones with a Southern twist, using ingredients like cornmeal, pecans, sorghum, and cane syrup. Cookies that satisfy every craving. The big spectacular cakes, of course, layer upon layer bound by creamy frosting, the focal point of every celebration. And then the pies. Oh, the pies!

The book steeps the baker in not only the recipes, ingredients, and special flavor profiles of Southern baking but also the very nuances of how to be a better baker. With Cheryl as your guide, it’s like having generations of Southern bakers standing over your shoulder, showing you just how to cream butter and sugar, fold whipped egg whites into batter, adjust for the temperature and humidity in your kitchen, and master those glorious piecrusts by overcoming the thing that experienced bakers know—a pie dough can sense fear!

Time to get out that apron.”

Chapters include: Hot Breads and Crackers; Coffee Cakes, Loaf Cakes, and Bundt Cakes; Muffins and Scones; Slow Breads ( Breads that need time to rise); Gathering Cakes; Layer Cakes and Cupcakes; Pies; Cookies; Brownies and Bars; Grits and Grains; Custards, Puddings, and Cobblers; Ja,s and Preserves; Basics.

Thank you to the publisher Artisan and to NetGalley for allowing me to review an ARC of this title which is available for prepurchase at booksellers.

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Cheryl Day is well known to baking in general, but even more so in the south. I have used her previous cookbooks and made some of her signature bakes (the biscone, for instance) and I've even visited her bakery!

This cookbook feels even more like her heritage shining through, like you can feel where she roots herself. I'm so excited to bake from it. I want to make everything, but particularly:

Blueberry Buckle
Cinnamon Swirl Buns
Fresh Fruit Dump Cake
Ginger Cake Squares with Chantilly Cream
Chocolate Church Cake (my southern co-worker says the standard food for funerals is fried chicken and chocolate cake, so I assume that's this one)
Little Layer Chocolate Cake
Doberge Cake
Scuppernong Grape Pie (I'm making this ASAP because they are in season right now)
Peach Lattice Pie
Strawberry Rhubarb Slab Pie
Coconut Cream Pie
Black Bottom Chocolate Cream Pie
Chocolate Honey Pie
Old Fashioned Tea Cakes
Sweet Potato Spice Cookies
Ginger Molasses Cookies
Chocolate Chip Cookies (I've made her recipe from a previous cookbook, maybe these are the same)
Lemon Lavender Crinkles
Georgia Peach Cornmeal Cake

I've already made:
Bill Smith's Famous Atlantic Beach Pie (when it was making the rounds of the culinary circles)

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Break out the buttermilk! This is a wide-ranging and wonderful collection of recipes combined with history, personal insight, and tips. It's a comprehensive tour of baking in the South. Some of the recipes may have more ingredients or seem complicated but Day has written clear instructions. I gotta admit- I know most people will love this for the cakes (big thumbs up for the loaf cakes), which I do as well, but honestly- the section on bars! I'd forgotten how much I loved Carmelitas. And grits bars- what a treat these are. And custard! I made this taste from my childhood straight off. And cookies! I liked also that she gives good space to savories, which are often forgotten in baking books. Thanks to the publisher for the ARC. Perfect for both the new and the experienced baker as this is a book for the ages.

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A fantastic collection of delicious recipes that are completely achievable by a home baker. I’m super irritated that I didn’t make it to Back in the Day Bakery when I was in Savannah this summer. Definitely going to put it at the top of my must-do list the next time I’m there, so I can try the originals!

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This was a great cookbook and I really enjoyed reading through the recipes. I definitely found some that I will be making.

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