Nick Malgieri, a well-known American author, teacher, and expert on baking and confectionery, treats us to Chocolate: From Simple Cookies to Extravagant Showstoppers, a chocoholic's dream come true and the consummate present for devotees of the dark delicacy. Chocolate Basics, a quick survey of origins and manufacture techniques and terminology, prefaces this treasury of 380 recipes cakes and cookies to sauces and beverages, with stops along the way for magnificent mousses, frozen fantasies, tantalizing tarts, cocoa-dusted truffles, creamy ganaches, and satiny glazes. True to its subtitle, you'll find everything from Old-Fashioned Chocolate Chip Cookies to a two-tiered Chocolate Ribbon Wedding Cake, all the while never leaving the charmed land of Chocolate.

Sybil Pratt is an avid cook.

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