I am a fully-motivated and crazy reader of avid proportions. A book is always at the ready no matter where I am, usually a fantasy of some kind or contemporary. (Nie zu viele Bücher!)
Something about owning a nice cookbook makes feel as fancy as the pages inside this book, and trust me: these pages are fancy, or at least aesthetically pleasing. Each picture by itself is enough stimulus to activate the salivary glands into over-drool. Together, Pat Sinclair and Joel Butkowski make me want to bake. Pat and Joel make me want to bake everything pictured -- from Julekake, blueberry rhubarb muffins, to hazelnut cake with chocolate ganache.
Together, Pat and Joel make me want to eat -- I want to reach into Scandinavian Classic Baking and pull out every food item pictured. I want to bake apples with honey and almonds... Especially with the almonds, and I hate almonds. Sadly, the book doesn't function as a Mary Poppins' handbag, so I simply wish to bake it all instead.
Most people I know grab recipes off the Internet, which is convenient (and free!) compared to purchasing cookbooks. I, however, enjoy owning the books themselves, comparing recipe variations, and being able to flip through one, point, and say, "Aha! Swedish Kringle..." This is probably because I bake horribly and can only dream of these tasty foods, but I'm still learning. Pictures and recipes aside, I quite like reading Sinclair's tidbits of side information about food, ingredients, and Scandinavia. Example:
My favorite, of course, is the Julekake page:
Julekake translates to into "yule" (Christmas) and "kake" (cake). A tradition in many Norwegian families, this festive holiday bread made from rich yeast dough is bursting with candied fruits and almonds. Danes also bake similar breads sparkling with candied fruit for holiday events. Swedes add saffron, and expensive and brilliantly colored spice in keeping with the celebrations of season.
Obviously, I don't add almonds lest I spend a ridiculous amount of time picking them out.