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Retro Desserts: Totally Hip, Updated Classic Desserts from the '40s, '50s, '60s, and '70s
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Retro Desserts: Totally Hip, Updated Classic Desserts from the '40s, '50s, '60s, and '70s

3.62  ·  Rating Details ·  34 Ratings  ·  10 Reviews
In Retro Dessets, Wayne Brachman, executive pastry chef at New York's Mesa Grill and Bolo, presents the desserts you loved as a kid--only better. It's time for a trip down to memory-lane bakery, where the old fashioned desserts of yesterday have been revamped for today's kitchen. Imagine homemade cream-filled chocolate cupcakes (you know, the ones with white squiggles on t ...more
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published April 26th 2000 by William Morrow Cookbooks
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Jan 14, 2014 Greta rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Twin Peak fans, gay interest
Great cookbook if you: a) appreciate retro style, b) were attracted to the diners and desserts on Twin Peaks c) have fond memories of grandmothers cooking. Retro desserts has a hip/camp type flair that reminds me of the desserts on David Lynch's Twin Peaks. Author has fun sense of humor. Book has nice visual style, and the desserts have an attractive retro look. I think that you need have a base of consumers that will appreciate things like homemade marshmallows, oreos, grasshopper pie, and cre ...more
Oct 30, 2009 Vicki rated it really liked it
Shelves: cookbook
I haven't actually made anything from this book, so maybe it's not fair to give it stars at all, but it's just a visually appealing book. I think I've had some of these desserts at my Grandmother's house. I love to actually read cookbooks, and this one is fun -- it gives the history of some of the crazy iconic desserts of the fifties and sixties, and is really stylized and cool. Thinking I might give the grasshopper pie a shot...
Tired of tiramisu? Good. Wayne Brachman to the rescue. He's the pastry chef for Bobby Flay at Mesa Grill and Bolo in New York City. For Retro Desserts ...more [close] Tired of tiramisu? Good. Wayne Brachman to the rescue. He's the pastry chef for Bobby Flay at Mesa Grill and Bolo in New York City. For Retro Desserts Brachman has culled food magazines, newspapers, cookbooks, leaflets, and the like from the 1940s to the early 1970s for the classics of American dessert kitsch, turning up one horrid ...more
Nov 01, 2010 FabulousRaye rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2010, library-book
My late mother was born in 1948, so I grew up eating a lot of the desserts contained in this book. This was a very fun, nostalgic cook book.

The recipes are quite clear. The author's instructions are really helpful. It's written for the home cook, without being condescending. Some of the recipes were tweaked and/or slightly updated for modern times.

Even if you don't want to make the recipes, check the book out for the ultra fabulous photos!
Nov 07, 2010 Laura rated it it was ok
Shelves: cookbooks
This looked ok, but not totally exciting. The "updates" - eliminating raw eggs, or simplifying processes - sometimes change the desserts considerably. I'll take my chances with salmonella to enjoy a real 1950's French Silk Pie.

Overall, it's just a cookbook. A cookbook with a decent collection of recipes, but nothing exciting, and not nearly as kitschy as I'd expected.
Jul 02, 2008 Shari rated it really liked it
Shelves: food
I picked this book up from the library and it has the most amazing looking desserts ever. I haven't had the chance to make any of the desserts listed, but I plan on it as soon as I'm inspired to do so.
I think I may have to ask for this book as a birthday present, it's that good!
Aug 04, 2012 Kim rated it really liked it
Shelves: cooking, 2012
I got this from the library and made the yellow cake right away. Much better than some of the other recipes I have in my stash. Love the retro throwback though it would have been nice to have a few more photos, especially of some items I didn't know what it was.
Jun 02, 2010 Lori rated it liked it
This will be an Amazon purchase eventually. Nice handful of dineresque delicacies from my childhood. For now, it was an entertaining browse with some yummy eye candy. Food as nostalgia.
Nov 05, 2010 Scott rated it really liked it
Shelves: food
The photos remind me of the photos from my mother's old "technicolor" Crocker cookbooks. The recipe for Strawberry Chiffon Pie was dreamy! We devoured it in one evening.
May 04, 2016 Amy rated it liked it
Shelves: cookbooks
Cute retro book. The things I've made so far have been good. Need to make some more from the book. Dying to try the noodle haystack cookies.
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