In the past five years, I have completed two cookbooks. They are completely different in character, so I will divide them into separate sections. My first foray into cookbook writing was entitled Astrid’s Modern Hobbit Recipes. A publisher snapped it up and online traffic began! Then the Tolkien Estate got wind of it…
Yada, yada, yada…I rewrote the whole thing to avoid any unpleasantries.
Unfortunately for me, a completely unknown author who doesn’t happen to own a restaurant or know any celebrities, the book was no longer a sure thing. However, the whole experience taught me many things about the industry. I still believe in the cookbook, so I decided to become more proactive about the whole process. This led me to start this blog and eventually look into self-publishing on the Kindle. So far, blogging has been rather time-consuming!
Any cook/chef/baker will be informed by the hundreds/thousands of recipes he or she has seen before. This must account for the many “adapted from” recipes I have seen on so many blogs. I strive not to ever do this, and I have only included original recipes in both of my books. Inevitably, a recipe might be similar to someone else’s—after all, aren’t there only seven stories in the whole field of literature and they are constantly reworked? At least, that is what one of my Latin professors said long ago. If I do adapt someone’s recipe for the blog, I’ll definitely let you know this!
I’ll get an idea for something yummy, then I’ll come up with a first draft. Occasionally, I get lucky; sometimes, I’m lucky on the second draft. Then I’ll test it two or three more times, depending on what it is. If a recipe is too troublesome, well, you’ll never see it. I torture my family and any guests we might have by asking them if I should change anything or is it good just the way it is? They’re probably pretty tired of reviewing my foods all the time, but they also eat pretty well around here.
You should also be aware that I am testing recipes at a high altitude. You might have to make some adjustments in baked products; maybe not.
By the way, you might be wondering what experience I have in this field. I started basic cooking in elementary school. In high school, I received chef training in various regional cuisines, ranging from Chinese to Moroccan to Italian. I graduated with honors from the professional baking course at our community college. I have catered numerous parties with excellent results. I even catered my own wedding and made the cake, though in hindsight, I would never consider doing that again. I was a dressmaker for 20 years, specializing in bridal. That’s not related to cooking, of course, it’s just FYI.