Which came first, the chicken or the egg? Which came first? Me buying the BabycakesNYC bakebook because of the great photos and art direction, or me wanting to bake something yummy for my diabetic grandmother?
The world may never know the answer to either of these questions, but all that really matters is that I finally found what I’ve been looking for: something new, fun, and challenging to broaden my baking horizons. We all know I love cupcakes and will never get enough, but I can only mix together flour, sugar, and eggs so many times before it starts to lose its luster. So why not bake something WITHOUT the likes of flour, sugar, and eggs?
Enter gluten-free, sugar-free, dairy-free, and wheat-free baking! I wish I could post the recipe on here, but I really encourage you to go get Babycakes for yourself. It’s the most adorable cookbook I’ve seen in awhile, and Erin McKenna’s sassy narratives preceding each recipe make for a great and entertaining read.
Let me say one more thing about the baking in this book, especially coming from someone who works for a food magazine and has heard more than anyone’s fair share of readers complaining recipes not working out: FOLLOW THE RECIPES WORD FOR WORD! Baking is a wonderful but precise and scientific art, and when you replace regular flour with gluten- and wheat-free baking flour, sugar with agave nectar, and eggs and with coconut oil, you gotta make sure you do exactly what Erin says. She spent years developing these recipes, and there’s no need to tinker with them! I know the ingredient list is a little intimidating, but if you have a Whole Foods near you, you can get everything without a problem. I was pretty sure that Bob’s Red Mill Garbanzo and Fava Bean flour would be impossible to get my hands on, but there it was, right next to his Xantham Gum!
And if something does work out exactly right, then sorry, but chances are it’s your fault 😉 For instance, you can see in the photo that my Banana Bread collapsed a little in the middle. But I know that my oven tends to bake a little uneven, so I have to own up to that one. Just pick yourself up by the apron strings and try again!
Happy vegan baking trails to you all, and thanks to Erin McKenna for such a fun book. I hope I can make it up to NYC soon so I can stop by the bakery and experience the preciousness first-hand!
P.S. Here’s a fun video from Babycakes that gives a little bit more info on how to bake up your Banana Bread just right!