Magic flavour combinations, Takoda Cross
The Great Chocolate Cake Bake Off
16 September, 2020
This book is about a boy called Nicholas Scott who loves cooking.
The story starts when a girl (Ruby) and her Mum (Bella) move into the house next to Nicholas and his family. Ruby is about Nicholas’s age. Ruby, Nicholas, and Nicholas’s baby brother Zac all go to the same school. One day at school, their teacher Miss Winsome (known as Winsome-Losesome by the kids) brings along leaflets that she hands out to everyone in the class. The class start murmuring with interest. Nicholas silently reads the leaflet: “The Great Chocolate Bake Off.” Nicholas does not seem that interested, but with Ruby’s encouragement, and the motivation of prizes, he is in for the challenge.
I loved this book because Nicholas reminds me of my little brother: he is a kind, caring, helpful boy who loves to experience putting together different flavours in food. During Nicholas’s quest he finds a secret ingredient for his cake, which you will never guess, until you discover the magic ingredients while reading this book yourself.
Ruby, Nicholas’s friend, is a very bossy girl who reminds me of myself. From the day the teacher hands out the leaflets, Ruby declares herself as Nicholas’s manager for the competition and helps him prepare for the challenge ahead.
The underlying message in this book is that boys can cook. At the start of the book Ruby says, “boys can’t cook.” Nicholas takes on the challenge to try to convince Ruby, boys can cook. While reading this book you will find out if Nicholas can successfully show Ruby that he is the master of the kitchen.
I was disappointed that the book did not give us the chocolate cake recipe that Nicholas made for the competition. There was one recipe that I really enjoyed trying out. I will not tell you what the recipe is – you can find that out for yourself. Let me tell you though, the combination of ingredients that Nicholas uses is divine. This is now one of our permanent recipes that we use at home. It is well worth reading this book just to find out what Nicholas used in his recipe.
This book really inspired me to get back into the kitchen to bake and create different recipes. It has encouraged me to see what inspiring magic flavour combinations I can come up with myself and what secret recipe additions I can make.
When I was reading the book, I got an urge of excitement rushing through my blood halfway through wanting to know who was going to win The Great Chocolate Bake Off. The competition was fierce – six people made it into the finals.
It then goes down to two competitors, including Nicholas, who is from a very poor family. The other main competitor Oliver is a boy who always wins everything, and from a very rich family. Oliver’s parents try to encourage him by saying if he wins The Great Chocolate Cake Bake Off they will buy him a lot of new things like a new mountain bike, CD player etc.
The competition is a head to head challenge between Nicholas and Oliver. Who do you think is going to win? Read this book to find out who will be the overall champion of this fierce, no-going-back challenge.
I think this book is suitable for all ages 9 to 99 and will be particularly treasured by people who love to cook.
- Takoda Cross is 11 years old and lives in Nelson