Now that you understand the difficult existence of an herbivore at the test kitchen, you can probably imagine the beats my heart skipped last year when I heard that a vegan cookbook was in the pipeline. I (overzealously) started attending every single vegan tasting. I threw back 12 samples of plain tahini and chomped through blocks of raw tofu. I was willing to do anything to support the creation of this book.
I ate every morsel I found in the take-home fridge during development, including at least six early iterations of chocolate cake that ranged from “loose basket of crumbs” to “cement-like,” but that ended up delicious by the end of development. (Hey, that’s why we spend weeks testing one recipe.) I frequently picked up quarts of in-development macaroni and cheese, which was delicious, but eventually realized I was doing whatever the polar opposite of the Atkins diet is. I felt like a proud parent when I saw the final iteration of that mac and cheese recipe printed in the book.