I was trying to faithfully provide you with weekly updates about how the cookbook was progressing, but then came summer vacation and trip to California, and I got off track.
While we were on our road trip, I did quite a bit of actual updating on the book, writing up all the recipes I’d worked on the week before, getting a chunk accomplished on the “Mains” chapter. Phew.
Then we got home, and this past week, I’ve been focusing almost exclusively on the desserts chapters. There will be a couple; one is dedicated to cookies, cakes, baked desserts. The other is focused on cold desserts, ice cream, mousses, puddings, desserts of that ilk.
This part of the book, as you can imagine, is the biggest chapter(s) I’ve written so far. Aquafaba really loans itself to desserts, and I had a lot of recipes to knock off my list. Some of them, like the chocolate chip cookie recipe, I nailed on basically the first try. Others, like the brownies and the carrot cake, have taken a few tries to really get right. Still others, like macarons, I am still working on. I’ve made macarons now about 20 times, and every single time has been a failure, some of them spectacularly so.
There was a series of days last week where I made multiple recipes every day, and 2/3 were failures. That was hard. I had to shift and take a break for a while and focus on something a little more winnable for a couple of days.
But I’m getting closer. I’ve made a bit of a breakthrough with some of my desserts that require a stiffer meringue, and that has been due to concentrating the aquafaba by reducing it by half first. This has made a huge difference to the stability and the stiffness of the whipped aquafba. I’m also experimenting with different stabilizers for different kinds of purposes, and that’s been a big breakthrough, as well.
I’m happy to report I finally nailed a Chocolate Souffle (chocolate souffle without eggs!!), and just today I finally have figured out how to make vegan marshmallows, after many, many tries, and many, many failures.
I estimate that, today, I’ve written about 80 or so out of the 100 recipes I need to create for the book.
The head of marketing also sent me a mock up of my book’s cover the other day–what a trip that was! It makes it feel so real. I can’t wait to hold it in my hands.
So, yeah. Still a lot of struggling. Still plenty of discouraging results. But every time I have a bit of a breakthrough, it propels me on.
It’s happening! I am writing this book, failure is not an option.