David Atherton’s Christmas Cookbook for Kids

Candlewick. (Bake, Make and Learn to Cook). Sept. 2024. 72p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781536234398.
Gr 2-5–Atherton’s (The Great British Baking Show) latest leans heavily toward desserts. There are chapters for sweets and edible gifts, party food, Christmas cakes and cookies, and festive showstoppers, with a few savory recipes in the mix. Cottle’s illustrations are warm and whimsical, depicting children with a variety of skin tones and physical abilities engaging in holiday fun. The choice to forgo photography in favor of illustrations feels fittingly quaint and cozy, and each recipe includes step-by-step drawings of the cooking process. Of the 30 recipes included, most require at least a passing familiarity with simple baking techniques like measuring ingredients and rolling out dough. Attention is paid to safety in the kitchen and readers are encouraged to ask for adult help when necessary. Ingredients called for are widely available and generally inexpensive. There is a certain elegant simplicity to this book that beautifully conveys the tastes and smells of a British Christmas.
VERDICT A charming, approachable cookbook that evokes the spirit of the holiday season.

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