Book cover: Cheers to Vegan Sweets!

I’ve been posting dessert photos and alluding to this book for quite a while, and now I have tangible internet proof and a cover image to post! Published by Fair Winds Press, Cheers to Vegan Sweets!: Drink-Inspired Vegan Desserts: From the Cafe to the Cocktail Lounge, Turn Your Sweet Sips Into Even Better Bites! will be hitting the shelves November 2013. The book contains 105 recipes and 45 full-color photos for desserts based on drinks like Apple Cider Donuts, Mexican Coffee Truffles, Margarita Ice Cream, and Shirley Temple Cupcakes. It’s divided into chapters like “The Café”, “The Lemonade Stand”, and “The Cocktail Lounge”, so there’s something for everyone’s tastes, whether you’re looking for treats for a kid’s party, or a boozy dessert. The book is clearly so awesome that it got an exclamation point in the title and two subtitles, and the designers at Fair Winds did an amazing job making the book really beautiful, so I’m really excited for you all to see the final product!

In the meantime, the book is available for pre-order on Amazon and many online retailers through the publisher’s website. Just as I did with The Vegan Cookie Connoisseur, I’ll be selling signed copies on the blog and perhaps setting up a book signing in your city, so you can buy books packaged with love directly from me! Get updates on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and Instagram, and follow Fair Winds Press on Facebook and Twitter! Feel free to email me with any inquiries! Thank you so much to everyone involved in this project! I’m looking forward to the release date and all the awesome people and opportunities that will come along with it!


MoFo #19: Research and organization

The bulletin board and sticky note system is something that works immensely well for me. Organizing with color, shapes, and symbols makes so much sense, so that’s the way I’ve been organizing the physical copy of my recipe inventory. It’s really convenient because it’s in clear view in the kitchen and if I suddenly have an idea while hanging out making coffee or something, I’ll just write it down and stick it on the board. Easy!

The thumbtacks are color-coded by type of dessert: yellow is cookie, blue is cupcake, green is cake, then red and white I’m not too sure about. Donuts, waffles, pancakes, mousse, and pie are somehow split between those two colors. My brain understands it somehow.
Each section of the bulletin board represents the stage in recipe testing: idea, ready to make, needs revision, and test kitchen, which is divided into four recipe categories that are based on the tentative chapter names. I promise they have really cutesy names.
Each sticky note has a recipe on it that travels through the different stages. I also note with a circle if the recipe contains alcohol (due to the drink theme), then make sure to come up with a substitution so the recipe can be made without it as well. There’s also a note if the recipe contains margarine or oil. This is more specific to the nature of cookies. It was a topic of discussion with the cookie book because not every country has readily available vegan margarine, it can be expensive, and oil can sometimes be substituted.

When the recipe has gone through all the stages and is “complete”, the thumbtack moves from the left to the right side of the sticky note. See, I’m totally OCD and no one would understand how to read the board without instructions, but it’s really helpful to organize your thoughts using this kind of method if you’re a visual thinker and learner. I’ve tried similar things in a notebook or sketchbook, but once you’ve written something down, there’s less room for editing, and everything is all shut away in a book. This doesn’t have to be just for recipes either. Any kind of creative (or not!) to-do lists are more fun this way.

The sticky note system is something that I repeatedly go to. This was the sticky note process for the cookie book that was short-lived because I couldn’t hang it up in the kitchen when I was living with my parents and it just sort of disappeared under my bed or something. It works best if it’s hanging in a visible spot in your kitchen without a dog on top of it.

Here’s my stockpile of ingredients again. Buying perishables with the intention of using them for recipes is a little tricky in case plans change or I can’t make everything in such a short timeframe. I’ve definitely had some fruits and vegetables go bad for this reason. Stocking up on recipe ingredients that won’t go bad gives lots of options though!

I just have a normal composition book for recipes/other projects right now. I’m trying to keep the recipe writing digital nowadays because handwriting recipes in a notebook and having to type it up later takes twice as long and twice as much effort as typing it up on a laptop in the kitchen right away. But I do like writing ideas down and planning out writing pieces and recipes by hand, so I like having a physical notebook.
This was my recipe notebook for the cookie book back in the day…of 2007. After remembering the nights of typing up dozens of recipes at a time from this book, I knew I could avoid such a data entry-esque fate by typing up ingredient lists as I go! But looking at this cover makes me smile.

I have one more MoFo post planned for tonight cause I’m a total slacker! Happy Halloween!


Is it cool if I post cupcakes (and donuts) here?

A girl needs to branch out a little! I like variety! I’ve spent the summer making so many different kinds of baked goods: cookies, cupcakes, donuts, cakes, mousses, and more, and loving every minute. It’s not so much of a secret anymore that I’m working on a new book! The theme this time is baked goods inspired by drinks, which includes not only cookies, but every kind of baked good I’ve decided to tackle. Here are a few teaser photos (and a recipe) to get this show on the road!

Chai Latte Milkshake Cupcakes
A sweet vanilla chai-spiced cake with chocolate ganache, and sweet cinnamon vanilla bean buttercream.

Raspberry White Wine Glazed Donuts
Raised, deep-fried donuts are so fun to make. I’m obsessed and working on lots of donut recipes! These donuts are dipped in a white wine, raspberry glaze. I posted the recipe on Rose Pedals last month.
Note: Gnocchi didn’t really eat the donuts.

Espresso Lemon Shortbread
Elizabeth, who is testing for me, said at Italian restaurants on the East Coast it is common for espresso to be served with a bit of lemon zest on the rim of the glass so you can breath in the flavor of the citrus while drinking the espresso. I’ve never heard of that before, but I really liked the idea and it inspired an espresso lemon zest shortbread.

Coconut Shirley Temple Cupcakes
Very similar to the Shirley Temple Cookies, but in cupcake form with a coconut milk base! Yum!


A short film about vegan cookies! [video]

I don’t have any new cookies this week, but I swear I will get my ass in gear and get some brand new cookie recipes put together soon!
For this post, I’d like to showcase the amazing work of my good friend, Andi Woodward. She did an interview with me about cookies and veganism and made a short film for her sound and image class, and here it is, featuring cupcakes, VwaV, and profane alphabet refrigerator magnets!

You can view Andi’s other work here.

Kelly Peloza: Vegan Cookie Connoisseur from Andi Woodward on Vimeo.

Kelly Peloza: Vegan Cookie Connoisseur from Andi Woodward on Vimeo.


Recap: MelisserKelly Brooklyn book signing. Also, I didn’t eat any cookies in NYC.

Mmmmm…above we have the bakery case at the new Champ’s Family Bakery in Brooklyn, NY. Everything is 100% vegan and they are lucky enough to have the cinnamonrollconnoisseur, Evan of bjorkedoff as a baker there. I’m still lusting after those cake rolls that I was thinking about the whole trip, but somehow never ended up trying!

Here is a strawberry cream cheese brownie I ate the morning of the signing:

Before the signing, Jen, Isa, John, Amy, and I indulged in a meal at Foodswings, then headed over to Champs. I don’t know how the room didn’t explode with so much awesome! I’d go on forever listing all the super nice lovely people we got to spend the evening with, like Isa’s mom, Terry, and Moby (yes, Moby!). Luckily we took lots and lots of pictures.

One of the tables of delicious baked goods

We made lots of vegan sammiches, such as:

The LouzillaKellyIsa Sammich

The IsaKellyTerry Sammich

The AmandaIsaLouzilla Sammich
So many people have said all of them look like one another, which is what prompted this photo. Terry too!

The night ended with lots of attack hugs, a trip to Lula’s for more ice cream, and lots of silliness.
Always lots of silliness.

But in all seriousness, thank you so much to everyone who attended this event, and made it such a wonderful time! Thanks to everyone for coming out to all these book events, buying vegan cookbooks from the authors, and showing the world how fantastic veganism can be! To be a part of the movement is so fulfilling (and +1 yummy!) and I’m at my happiest getting lost in brand new cities looking for vegan eats and hanging out with like-minded people.

That said, I am nearly positive San Francisco is next, in January! Info will be released once things are squared away, so keep updated via Twitter and Facebook!
And Horchata Cookies are going to happen in my kitchen in the near future! ❤


Buying cookbooks, MoFo, Bake Sales, and Giveaways!

Hey everyone!
You may have noticed the blog got a little makeover, with a shiny new logo that matches the pattern and colors of the book cover, and links to more pages on the blog, above! Contact info, a list of events (I’m hitting the road! Check if I’m coming near you!), links to all the sample recipes I’ve posted, and most importantly, a link to buy books!
Buying through the blog is purchasing your copy directly from me, so it can be signed and all that jazz. Order your very own copy!
Thanks for supporting vegan cookbook authors! ❤

I’m sure you all know about Vegan Month of Food, or Vegan MoFo, which just kicked off the beginning of this week!
I won’t be MoFo’ing from here, but I’m participating on my other blog, Seitan Beats Your Meat! Click the image below (designed by the talented Amanda Chronister of Will Draw for Cookies) to see the blog lineup and to sign up if you haven’t already!

If you’re in the Milwaukee area, we’re having a bake sale on November 13th from 10am-5pm! Here is the official Milwaukee Vegan Bake Sale website. See what other people are bringing, and sign up to donate baked goods. There is a Facebook group set up as well. Pass the message along to your friends, on Facebook, and Twitter!

Rooooot beer float cookies.

And I’m sure you guys want to see some new cookie pictures, so here are some Cranberry Almond Cashew Chocolate Chip Cookies, a variation on the Cranberry Almond Cookies on page 72.

Last but not least, giveaways! For MoFo, there are many blogs that will be doing cookbook (and other fun stuff!) giveaways. Check out this PPK thread for the official list.
A few bloggers will be giving out copies of the Vegan Cookie Connoisseur, including Miso For Breakfast who will also be giving out a whole bunch of other goodies, and Vegan Appetite!

**I will be doing a giveaway with a signed copy of The Vegan Cookie Connoisseur within the next couple weeks! Keep checking back for the official info on entering. I can tell you this much: it will involve writing haiku about cookies!**