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How to Be a Domestic Goddess: Baking and the Art of Comfort Cooking
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How to Be a Domestic Goddess: Baking and the Art of Comfort Cooking

3.91  ·  Rating details ·  38,381 ratings  ·  324 reviews
Nigella Lawson's How to Be a Domestic Goddess is about not only baking, but the enjoyment of being in the kitchen, taking sensuous pleasure in the entire process, and relishing the outcome. Nigella's deliciously reassuring and mouthwatering cookbook demonstrates that it's not terribly difficult to bake a batch of muffins or a layer cake, but the appreciation and satisfacti ...more
Paperback, 384 pages
Published September 1st 2005 by Hachette Books (first published August 17th 1998)
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Average rating 3.91  · 
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 ·  38,381 ratings  ·  324 reviews

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Jul 22, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Oh. My. Gosh. This is the definitive book for me. Nigella is not a "chef"--she is a home cook, just like me, like most of us out there. But she is brilliant--funny, mildly goofy (though not over-the-top the way gals like Rachael Ray can be), and extremely intelligent. Her writing is breathtakingly beautiful--these cookbooks read as deliciously as the recipes they serve up.

And as for the title... I've had all sorts of reactions, mostly from women, which astound me. I find that some kinds of wome
Jan 09, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: food-and-cookery
I have cooked out of almost all of Nigella's books (not Nigella Express though) but this is always my favourite and the first one I give as a gift! I bought the book years ago in Scotland because I just loved the title. I made the banana bread and have never looked back since. The recipes are consistently good and sometimes fantastic, her writing is delightful and she makes cooking feel like something you share with her. It's the sort of cookbook you cook from, read in bed and refer to constantl ...more
Jul 04, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cookbooks
Lawson is a real woman. She eats...bad things and good things. She makes cakes for her children that look like a real cake. She invents things, avoids prepackaged foods and best of all she has hips.

Her recipes are British which is very obvious, but they are not too weird to try once. Her cakes are delicious. The Dense Chocolate Loaf Cake is our favorite...its been made for gifts..for cravings and for the hell of it. Pair this with some really good raspberry jam and its is divine.

I especially enj
Jan 26, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've actually read this book twice, with a five year gap between. Five years ago, I thought, "Wow, this stuff looks incredible--and there's absolutely no way I'll ever be able to cook like this." This time around, I threw together three recipes before the book was due back at the library. All three turned out fantastic, and they were pretty easy.

As you might surmise, I don't recommend this book for those just starting out in the world of cooking. It's not that the recipes are particularly hard.
Oct 24, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Five stars for the burnt butter cupcakes.
Burning butter is a flammable escapade.
The pyro in me is pleased.

*gorges gleefully*
Jul 31, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Within the first fifteen minutes of reading this cookbook, my stomach was growling like a bear out of hibernation, and I was salivating like I'd lost control of my jaw. Halfway through the book and I was ready to get arm-deep in pastry.

Nigella has a way with words that truly puts her book in the gastroporn genre. She describes food with such eroticism that it evokes an almost carnal hunger within you. Add to that the dreamy, bright photos of the food - the picture of Lily's Scone is my favourit
Mar 07, 2009 rated it did not like it
First of all, I have to say this - this woman is nuts! She may be a great cook and a very nice person, I don't know, but honestly, she is nuts.

This book, in case you couldn't tell right away, is about baking. She sets it up in several categories: cakes, cookies, bread, pies, Christmas, etc. The pictures are wonderful. But the writing? Wow. It's hard to tell you just how bad it is. So here's an example.

"Coconut Macaroons. These are a very English kind of macaroon, the sort you always used to see
May 25, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: foodie
Mmmmm NIgella you are almost as scrumptious as your recipes! A delicious, sensual celebration of food without worrying about skimping on the fat or sugar or other such delicious naughtiness. Comfort cooking is one of my mamma specialities and nothing makes me feel more like a goddess than seeing the smiling chocolate crumb covered faces of my family around my dining room table.
Isadora Torres
Oct 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing
this is not a cookbook, it's more like an invitation to your own kitchen.
as a food lover, it became sort of a bible when I need inspiration.
nigella loves food and she wants you to love too.
May 28, 2010 rated it it was amazing
If any of you know me well, you know that I worship Nigella Lawson. I adore her way of writing and how her cookbooks are also a good book you can fall into as she describes why and how she does all she does. I love her style of writing and her love of food without any apologies. If I could meet one person, it would be her. Her cookbooks are awesome, though I really feel like I would only attempt to make maybe half (or less) of the stuff in it. While I say that, every time I look through them (wh ...more
May 28, 2008 rated it it was ok
It's not that practical. The recipes call for too many hard to find, can't get in west Texas, expensive ingredients. I would have liked a photo of every recipe. The photos in the book are full page and glossy, which is nice if you plan to leave it on your coffee table, but how about a half page photo and get all of them. The food in this book would be nice for a birthday or other special occasion, but do you want to spend $20+ for that? I was lucky I borrowed it from a friend. ...more
Feb 28, 2009 rated it really liked it
I checked this book out from the library, and I may be checking it out again and again. The recipes look fabulous (I must try more of them...), but I had a good time just looking at the mouthwatering pictures and reading Nigella's directions. I like how this is not a snobbish, fussy baking book. It leaves room for error and experimentation. ...more
Apr 09, 2009 rated it really liked it
A good baking book with a wide range of recipes, including chapters for children and christmas. The only problem is that the baking times are almost always off - for people other than me too, it's not just my cooker! - so keep an eye on the oven the first time you try out things... ...more
May 21, 2012 rated it really liked it
As someone who loathes cooking with a passion, this book makes me feel warm and cozy and with a longing to fill the nostrils of my children with beautiful baking aromas that will forever remind them of home...
Mar 28, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Love her !!!
Jul 27, 2009 added it
Shelves: cooking
"Lovely to look at/A pleasure to hold..."

I love to look at this book, but that's about all I've done with it. I might have tried a recipe or two after I first bought it. In fact, I'm sure I did. It's been so long, though, I don't really remember what I thought. All I know is I was seduced by its rich bronze pages and lovely photo styling and when I saw it in the store I had to take it home with me. But now it's the kind of cookbook that mostly sits on my shelf and collects dust. The problem with
Feb 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: food-and-drink
I have to admit I bought this book for the title, I thought it was clever and I wanted it on my cook book shelf. I have been wonderfully surprised about the content, it is great.

The most important things for me in a cook book are: tempting photographs, well laid out ingredient list, and thorough instructions. This book has all those and a bit of personal information to go with each recipe, like who gave Nigella the recipe, or on what occasion she might make that recipe; just a little personal ti
Tom Stallard
Jan 09, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cook-book
This is a lovely book. Lawson has such a clear and unpretentious tone to her writing, bringing you into her world within the short space of the recipe descriptions. This book covers a wealth of hearty and heart warming recipes that are fantastic to have at hand if you have family or friends coming over. The recipes are well laid out into common sense sections (something that other Lawson books have not achieved as well). One thing I particularly like about Lawson's writing is that she openly dec ...more
May 04, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I made a couple of recipes out of this book:
the ricotta cheesecake, and the two types of brownies. The cheesecake was good, though the recipe was drawn out. regular brownies were way too fudge like. Good, but not what I think of brownies. Her attempt of wanting this to appeal to American readers is charming, because she explains things to American readers that we don't often think about, as well as includes some traditional English dishes like steak and kidney pie. Wish I had tried some more rec
Sep 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is the book that started my girl-crush on Nigella Lawson. Nigella may have made her name as a telegenic / sexy TV chef, but her background as a writer shines through in her erudite writing. Her intros and asides add an extra level of interest to a collection of very delicious-looking (and delicious-eating) recipes.
Jul 17, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cookbook
My favorite and most-used cookbook. Her chocolate loaf is amazing. And I like that it focuses on all kinds of baking - sweet and savory. Plus she uses words like "squidgy". ...more
Aug 13, 2008 rated it it was amazing
A Wonderful cookbook. Not too fussy, not too complicated. I have not found a bad recipe in the lot.
I usually make something from this when I need tasty food that will impress
Dec 18, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cooking
Maybe I am being bias.. but her recipe for snickerdoodles in here is terrible. I have to pass on the rest of the recipes since she couldn't come up with a good recipe for my favorite simple cookie. ...more
May 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I just love Nigella Lawson. I love her descriptions of food and the little stories she gives to introduce the recipes. This is one of those cookbooks that I MUST own.
Pablo Vazquez Camargo
Oct 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Today is cupcake and her bake the oven and her eating and was good and her go to bed 🛏
Dec 19, 2019 rated it liked it
I love Nigella—her approach to food and her writing style. The concept behind this book is awesome but somehow her pancake recipe is hands down the worst pancakes I’ve ever made, per me and my husband. The kids however loved them (??!). The pancakes were dense and bland and under salted.

I’m going to keep trying things but I’m much less excited now. Her measurements are in cups (not weight) and her macarons don’t have feet which is the one thing I know they’re supposed to have.

I hope I’m being
Apr 20, 2021 rated it it was amazing
My kitchen staple when I need comfort food. Nigella is the queen of my kitchen
Oct 27, 2010 rated it liked it
I love watching Nigella Lawson's cooking show(s). I like her personality and the way she talks about what she's making. I like her word choices and the cadence of her speech. And her passion for good food (whether it's actually good for you or not) is contagious. I always end up smiling as I watch her. That said, I don't think her personality and speech translate well in print. While reading How to Be a Domestic Goddess I took the time to thumb through (quite thoroughly) a few of Lawson's other ...more
Amy Shoesmith
Dec 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: food, must-read
This is my absolute favourite sweet baking book,(though there are a few savoury dishes and breads in there too.) Her style of writing is funny and engaging.
I was given this book around 15 years ago, and used it a lot as a student, then through moving house it got lost and I felt so bereft for a few years without it that I had to buy it again for myself. This is the only book I have ever owned twice.
The recipes have become so well used I almost know them, and I chop and change bits of recipes whe
Feb 19, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-club
I've had this cookbook for a long time, but recently reccommended it for my bookclub, and it was really fun to discuss. I love the writing: that sometimes in the kitchen "we don't want to feel like a postmodern, postfeminist, overstretched woman but, rather, a domestic goddess, trailing nutmeggy fumes of baking pie in our langorous wake." Or that our first pie is like a first kiss and suffuses us "with heady satisfaction." Or that a woman who bakes her own bread "can see herself in an almost bib ...more
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Nigella Lawson is the daughter of former Conservative cabinet minister Nigel Lawson (now Lord Lawson) and the late Vanessa Salmon, socialite and heir to the Lyons Corner House empire, who died of liver cancer in 1985. Lawson attended Godolphin and Latymer School and Westminster School before graduating from Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford, with a degree in Medieval and Modern Languages.
Lawson wrote a r

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