Thursday, July 24, 2008

Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World by Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero

This book is physically tiny, but packed with fun and information! All of the facts and tips about baking vegan cupcakes are interspersed with bits of whimsy--sometimes even educational whimsy. There's an A to Z list of why vegan cupcakes are awesome. Then there's a list of all the ingredients and tools you'll want for your adventures in vegan cupcake baking with explanations as to why. Even if you're fairly new to veganism or to baking, this book will be useful; everything is explained in great, but not boring, detail, and there's even a few pages of troubleshooting tips for specific problems with your cupcakes. Then there's the recipes! Plain vanilla, plain chocolate, gluten-free, and even diabetic-friendly cupcakes are included as the basic recipes. Then they get creative. There are so many different recipes it's hard to imagine having time to bake them all. And that's just the cupcakes. The book includes a multitude of different icing recipes (and tips for applying the icing to the cupcakes) as well. I imagine if you tried a different cupcake-and-icing combination every day, you wouldn't run out for a year.

And the cupcakes aren't hurt by the lack of dairy and eggs. Not at all. Assuming you follow the recipes and instructions carefully, the cupcakes are light, sweet, spongy, and just plain delicious. When I baked a batch of the plain vanilla cupcakes with vegan buttercream frosting, they were devoured within days by my suitemates. The buttercream frosting recipe probably made three times as much as was required to frost the cupcakes, but that's okay--it was devoured as well. Yum!

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