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Sweet and Vicious: Baking with Attitude
An irreverent cookbook filled with inventive recipes for baking that deliver a punch. Libbie Summers is not your run-of-the-mill cook. Growing up, she was the kind of child who dunked her potato chips into chocolate syrup to see if it might taste good (it does). That insatiable curiosity-and sweet tooth-is what fuels this book. Sweet and Vicious is all about exploring new taste sensations in the realm of baking. It is a no-holds-barred approach to baking outside the box with crazy-brilliant combinations. Savory and spicy flavors come into play often, such as in Habanero Carrot Cake, Fig and Pig Pie, and Mojito Cookies. Other times, the innovation comes in the form of a cooking method or serving presentation borrowed from another side of the kitchen, as with Meatball Muffins or Grilled Apricot Polenta Cake. There is also a healthy dose of humor sprinkled around, with recipes such as Gingerbread Working Girls, Preggers Pink Pickle Pie, and Salvation Cinnamon Rolls.
Essential to her philosophy is that sweets are supposed to be over-the-top, and that there is no point in firing up the oven if you are not making something so good it hurts. Sweet and Vicious brings a sense of adventure into the kitchen and some fun into desserts. Isn't that the whole point of dessert, after all?
About the Author
Libbie Summers, fearless, funny, and frank, is the author of The Whole Hog Cookbook. She began her culinary career as a chef on private yachts and went on to become a culinary producer. Her blog, Salted & Styled, won the IACP award for Best Food Blog 2012.
Praise for Sweet and Vicious: Baking with Attitude…
"Learn to expect the unexpected from Sweet and Vicious. There is a fantastical element to the book that adds another dimension. What birthday reveler wouldn't be charmed by the mile-high cotton candy that garnishes the Fairground Attraction Cake? The fact that the recipes are extremely user-friendly and well-written adds to Summers' credibility...Clearly, she knows how to have fun, but she's also not afraid to get a little bawdy, with recipes like Looking for Mr. Goodbar Cake, Stoned Tart, and Retired Gingerbread Working Girls." -Philadelphia Inquirer
“Summers calls it baking with attitude–fearless and fun. Make your guests giggle and sigh as they slice into chocolate Post-Coital Pie or reach for another of Bob’s Fried Firecrackers. This is the only baking book I’ve ever seen that encourages you to change the recipes–”and make them more personal, more provocative.” And a provocative creativity is Summers’ main ingredient in chapters on cakes, sweet and savory breads and pastries, pies, cookies, even dog treats. Rather than starting the book with the usual information you probably already know–the difference between dutch and regular cocoa, use the best ingredients–she saves her tips for a final chapter called Secret Weapons.
Flavors fly and swoop. Heat is just the beginning; jalapeno shortbread and Chocolate Maniac Fire Bread seem almost obvious. But to break the rules, you need to learn them and Summers includes good basic skills and recipes. By the way, this stuff works. I took those Side Slap and Tickle Cookies to a party and made a new friend who fell for the malt and chocolate flavors. And the Pull-Apart Boy Bread flavored with garlic, olive oil, and grated Parmesan? It was pulled apart–fast–and devoured. When you need to make a statement or get some attention–make it Sweet & Vicious.” -Appetite for Books
"Rich in butter, sugar and spice, these recipes are not for the dieter or the faint of heart. With 100 recipes to choose from, it'll be hard for readers to decide where to start, but try the "Wahini Pie," a macadamia nut version of the traditional pecan pie, and there'll be no going back to your old recipes. Discover: Interesting new flavors blended together turn conventional desserts upside down." -Shelf Awareness
“On the heels of her first best-seller The Whole Hog Cookbook, this latest edition by food wizard Libbie Summers is certain to thrill readers with her interpretations of fabulous desserts.” –CS Magazine
“Bake with attitude using blogger and style-maven Libbie Summer’s outrageously fun cookbook, Sweet & Vicious.” –Southern Living
"Even if you never raise a wooden spoon, Sweet & Vicious is worth having around for its sheer gorgeousness." -Connect Savannah
"I've never met a cookbook I didn't like. That said, I've never met a cookbook I'd like to have an affair with... until now! Sweet & Vicious (Oh how I do so love the title) is just that kind of a cookbook - I absolutely loved it! Infused with Libbie Summers' humor and peppered with wonderful personal anecdotes, Sweet & Vicious offers recipes that take you a little out of your comfort zone - that make you a little less timid, a little more adventurous. They beg you to test your limits just ever so slightly - or sweetly... These recipes dare you to have fun, to enjoy, to be a little risky -or risque... It's a book you not only want to look at, but you will want to read - the back stories to many of these recipes are wonderful." -The Entertaining House
“…challenges and charms our taste buds with daring delectables...Sweet & Vicious, the follow-up to her Whole Hog cookbook, dares us to take chances with fearless flavor combos in whimsical recipes with names that would make your grandmother blush…The cookbook is artfully rendered and tactile, just like the recipes inside, filled with stories that are, by turns, funny…” –Savannah Magazine
“Taking a no-holds-barred approach to baking outside the box, Libbie Summers puts a savory spin on dessert with 100 recipes that pack a punch…The clever concoctions—a flavor fest of smoky, salty, sweet, spicy, fruity and fiery—bring a sense of adventure into the kitchen. She’s got dogs wagging their tails, as well, with a handful of canine treats thrown in for good measure.’ –Southern Seasons
"This highly anticipated followup focuses on baking, using the same fun and creative outlook as its predecessor. Libbie's hilarious stories are still prevalent throughout the book, as are the outstanding photos...As expected, I can wholeheartedly recommend this lovely and edgy cookbook. Both recipes I've tried so far (and I guarantee there will be more soon) have hit the mark on all levels. If you love to bake and you're looking for some new and inventive ways to heat up your kitchen, Sweet and Vicious is the book for you." -MissionFood
"Libbie Summers expertly breaks down the inhibitions that we bring to baking (that notoriously finicky frontier for home cooks) and leads us to a freer, more creative place, where playfulness is paramount--and where the buttercream, flour and sugar boogie/breakdance together! "Sweet & Vicious" is an insanely colorful, energizing read, as well as a practical guide to creating more showstopping sweets." –Matt Lee and Ted Lee, authors of The Lee Bros. Charleston Kitchen
“Wow! Be prepared to be inspired, enlightened, and delighted with these wonderfully diverse desserts, from Libbie Summers. Smoky, savory, salty, fruity, and fiery flavors come together in this collection of anything-but-ordinary cakes, breads, cookies…and more!” –David Lebovitz, author of My Paris Kitchen and Ready for Dessert
“What a gorgeous, divine, beautiful, sweet and saucy cook book. Not only do I want to make and eat everything in the book, I want to EAT the BOOK!” –Carson Kressley, Emmy Award winning television personality
"Miss Libbie never misses: she's a vicious talent who just happens to be a sweetheart, too...I can't wait to make every single one of these fantastic and fun-filled fabulous recipes!" –Alex Hitz, creator of The Beverly Hills Kitchen, author of My Beverly Hills Kitchen: Classic Southern Cooking with a French Twist, Food Editor at House Beautiful
“Libbie is a woman who knows how to have a fabulous time, both in and out of the kitchen. As an antidote to sourpuss bakers who take themselves and their "kwee-zeen" a little too seriously, dig into this hunger-inducing book. Open to any page, and I dare you not to blurt out (as I did), "OMG. I need to make that NOW." –Rick Rodgers, The James Beard Foundation and IACP Award-winning author of over 40 cookbooks including The Chelsea Market Cookbook
“Sweet & Vicious is a feast for the eyes as well as the palate! Consider this book an invitation to the fabulous, fun and colorful world of Libbie Summers and draw creative inspiration from the tantalizing recipes, inventive presentations and the cast of characters. My next soiree will be Libbie Summers style for sure!” –The Entertainologist Lulu Powers, caterer to the hollywood elite, author Lulu Powers Food to Flowers
“Sweet and Vicious is brilliant! Libbie is unstoppable, she has created a book full of surprises. Fun, inspired, full of flavor and most importantly delicious! Thank you Libbie my dogs and I applaud you'' –Grant Harold, royal etiquette consultant and former royal butler to HRH The Prince of Wales
“Libbie Summers uses pearls to crimp her pie crust, swirls cotton candy onto the top of a layer cake, decorates cookies to look like past-their-prime "working girls," slips backhanded compliments into fortune cookies, and weaves charming tales of sailors and carnies, husbands and boyfriends, Midwestern "shows" and southern churches. I devoured this book cover to cover, laughing at her sometimes-bawdy wit and salivating at one enticing concoction after another. Test: If you can read the recipe for Salty Pumpkin Spice Cake and resist the urge to preheat your oven, you might not be from this planet.” –Joe Yonan, food and travel editor of The Washington Post, author of Eat Your Vegetables
“Libbie's renegade, whimsical desserts and breads are untraditional, fun and irresistible!” –Gale Gand, The James Beard Foundation and Bon Appetite Magazine Outstanding Pastry Chef of the Year, restaurateur, author, television personality and mother.
"Sweet and Vicious...has recipes so enticing you'll be pre-heating the oven before you've finished chapter one. The photos are so sexylicious--yes, it's a word. (Because I'm a writer and I said so)--you'll want to lick the pages. Libbie Summers literally puts the icing on the cookbook cake. More, please." –Mary Kay Andrews, New York Times bestselling author and bona-fide good cook
"There’s a lot that’s sweet and little that’s vicious in Summers’ new book...when it comes to attitude, Summers delivers. She offers recipes for a cake with blue cotton candy “frosting,” biscotti the size of baguettes, cinnamon rolls with cayenne. Working your way through this book is a bit like an extended trip through a fun-house: exciting, colorful and a little scary." -MyPlainView
"Good Southern storytellers don't just tell stories. They tell stories that are wrapped up in stories. Sweet & Vicious is like a Matryoshka doll of stories told in every kind of format--the recipes, the photography (brilliantly executed by Chia Chong) and the actual words come together to make a cookbook that is truly an experience." -CamilleMaurice
"How can you not love a cookbook with a cover that mimics a dime-store crime novel?" -Entertainment Weekly
The book is more than just gorgeously frosted cakes — there are plenty of quirky cookies, quick breads, and dog treats (yes, dog treats) that even apprentice-level bakers can tackle with confidence. It's also worth paging through this book just for the ideas alone. I love the flavor combinations and surprise ingredients..." -TheKitchn
"I am officially obsessed" -Bakepedia.com
“Seriously, really, seriously, this [Side-slap & Tickle Cookies] is the best, pure chocolate cookie I’ve made before. I know, you think you’ve heard it all before, but I’m not crying wolf this time or over-hyping the truth…you can not do better than the recipe. Attitude is putting it mildly. Layers of flavor is more like it. With a bit of sass tossed in for good measure. And the photography that can fill you up without even going near the kitchen.” –The Delicious Dozen