The Art of Baking Blind by Sarah Vaughan

baking blindYou can be forgiven for thinking that I am food obsessed as I even read fiction based around food. You wouldn’t be far wrong. Eating and drinking is one of life’s great pleasures.
The Art of Baking Blind is set in England, and is about a cooking competition where an upmarket supermarket chain is looking for the “New Mrs Eaden” who was the wife of the founder of the supermarket chain. Kathleen Eaden was a superb baker, and saw baking as a way of nurturing family and friends. It isn’t for a reality TV show, but the winner of each ‘bake’ does a Youtube clip of their winning cake or bread. The five people who enter the competition are an extremely varied lot. Claire is a young mother, doing it tough, and working hard in a lowly role in the Eaden supermarket chain to make a good life for her young daughter. Karen, is a perfectionist and a tough nut to crack. Vicki has left her career to care for her young son, but is just a little bored with that. Jenny is an empty nester, getting bigger and bigger as she bakes frantically at home, with her husband starting to make comments about it. And the only man, Mike, a single dad looking after two children since his wife died. They all have different reasons for wanting the win the competition and it is a surprising learning curve for all of them.
Against the modern background, the story of the original Mrs Eaden is revealed in flashback. Her apparently happy and glamourous life wasn’t all that it seemed, with her own personal sadness colouring her life.
Sarah Vaughan has written an enjoyable story, and it’s especially so if you enjoy baking yourself. It’s an easy read, a perfect holiday or curl up on the sofa one afternoon sort of book. $30

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