A word from Maggie May:
I love cake. Probably because I did a lot of baking with my grandmother as a child, I was named after her so we've always had this lovely connection. So for me, when I bake, it's that wonderful combination of feeling comforted and connected to my family.
I always feel sad when I hear that baking is stressful for people. I totally understand why it's stressful. You're doing something you've never done before and you want it to be perfect. It's usually attached to something like a special occasion where you feel all this intense pressure to get it right. It's almost impossible to do anything perfectly when you've never done it before and you're putting a whole heap of pressure on yourself.
Take a deep breath. Baking should have a delicious result, and if it doesn't the worst thing that can happen is that you stuff up a cake and you try again. Every time I bake I do this self-deprecating thing were I go 'hmmm not my best' and Josh looks at me like 'omg woman there is caramel and banana in my mouth right now and it's delicious, you've done a great job'.
We all do it. Cut yourself some (cake) slack.
Beatrix is a really special place. Often a visit there is attached to Josh and I actually having enough time to drive to North Melbourne and sit down for a piece of cake, and that in itself is a joy. When you're there, it feels like home. The cake is exactly how you want cake to be.
We've also been in the amazingly privileged position in Think Thornbury of being frequented by some of the excellent humans who have worked/work at Beatrix. They're always lovely and I turn into this 'cake fan girl' as I tell them how much I love it there. (Hi Maeve, we miss you!)
Imagine my excitement when I met Nat whilst hanging out at Cottage Industry picking out gloves...
Nat has signed a box of books for us, for you. In exactly the way that it feels like home to visit Beatrix, Nat's generosity is something that is at the heart of her baking and business. Thank you so much for taking the time to sign these and let us share them with our community.
I hope you love reading this copy of Beatrix with a cup of tea, picking out your fav recipes and giving them a go.
Can't wait to see what you bake.
Love Maggie May
For Natalie Paull, baking is a gift. It’s also a powerful elixir of pleasure, connection, generosity and joy. In Beatrix Bakes, Natalie indulges in baking’s sweetest moments with more than seventy recipes inspiring bakers of all kinds to mix and match to make recipes their own – whether it’s a Lemon curd cream crepe cake or Pecan maple cinnamon scrolls.
Sparkling with Natalie's distinct voice, and packaged with full-colour photography, illustrations and rock-solid tips for a perfect bake, Beatrix Bakes also includes 'Adaptrix' suggestions (offering ways readers might do things differently, including short cuts) and is peppered with infographics to help them follow their baking heart. Try The Cheesecake (That You Will Love The Most) with a crumb base, or a bought biscuit base, or no base, or a sponge base, or even a failed cookie base! And from there, pick a topping from sour cream, to crumb, to fruity bits. The recipes are divided across eight chapters: Doughs, pastries & crusts; Tarts, pies, a crostata & a galette; The cake list; One in the hand; Yeasted bakes; Fruit-full; Creams, custards, fillings, glazes and buttercreams; and Finishing touches.
While Natalie's creations are inspired by classics the world over, they are irreverent too, and in Beatrix Bakes she delights in showing readers that – once they get the foundations right – the truest magic will come from a willingness to play (with the insurance of her many clever ideas and back-up plans in their apron pocket!).
Beatrix Bakes will guide anyone who loves the adventure of baking to perfect their skills and break the baking mould.