Deb Perelman turns in the manuscript for her first cookbook, The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook, at the end of this month. I caught up with her to ask her how writing a cookbook has been different than writing her blog.
You can meet Perelman at the International Food Blogger Conference in New Orleans August 26-28. She, Kate McDermott of Art of the Pie, and I will be talking about recipe development.
Q. What percentage of recipes will come from the blog?
A. Very few recipes, maybe 10 to 15 percent. I have to put in the greatest hits or it wouldn’t feel like the Smitten Kitchen cookbook.
Q. Where did you get your inspiration for new dishes?
A. I have no shortage of ideas. I have a long list of recipe ideas I’ve been building on for a decade, and I keep them all in Google Docs. I can reach them from any computer, from the phone and from the grocery store.
Besides cookbooks that I know and love, the web is a great tool to research recipes. I gravitate towards recipe sites that have reviews, like the Food Network, Allrecipes and Epicurious. It’s not that I’m looking for new ideas. It’s more like I have my recipe for pancakes, and I wonder if the salt level is too high or how much milk other recipes use.
I get a lot of ideas from restaurants too, where there’s something about the dish I like, like the combination of ingredients.
Blueberry Yogurt Multigrain Pancakes. (Photo by permission of Deb Perelman.)
Q. How is the cookbook different from the blog?
A. There are things I’ve pulled from the cookbook because they were going to be really complicated Continue reading »