Bingo Review 18 How To
Cookbook review ahead, but really more of a how to decorate book. Full disclosure: I have not actually attempted anything in Let’s Bake! A Pusheen Cookbook. There is a big reason for that which I will get to shortly.
First, for those unfamiliar, Pusheen is a cartoon character popular on the internet, but now perhaps best known for cutesey merchandise, like socks, mystery boxes, and calendars, widely available all over. Pusheen herself is a grey tabby cat, and by now she has a few colleagues in cute, including siblings and friends, only one of whom makes an appearance in this cookbook.
The title says ‘cookbook’, and while there are recipes, this is actually more rightly a design book. The recipes themselves are mostly standard pastry book things, like cookies, meringue, panna cotta, cakes and cupcakes, tarts, and a few other odds and ends. The thing this book focuses on is how to make such standards look like a Pusheen or Pusheen variation (of which there are several, including Dragon-sheen, Uni-sheen, and a few others. There are also several pages of templates towards the back of the book, meant to be copied and then used.
So, I mentioned that I haven’t used this book, and to be honest, there’s only about 2-3 recipes that I intend to actually try. Firstly, I’m not terribly artistic, and the craftsmanship required to achieve most of the designs is way above my level of ability or interest. Second, a lot of the designs require specialty tools, and in a few cases ingredients, not limited to but including coating chocolate of various colors (mostly grey and pastel; these are easy to find), gold gelatin sheets (why is this special or necessary when you can easily find boxed plain gelatin powder?), molds of various sizes and shapes (probably uni-taskers, not great for those of us with limited kitchen storage space), and various paint brushes and piping bags. Too fussy and fiddly for me.
The recipes that did catch my interest are dango and milk jellies. Neither of these are things you’d find in a standard sweets book, at least not of American tradition. I would certainly not bother with the decorative bits since they add time, and did I mention I don’t care too much for decorative fiddly-ness?