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Vegan Done Light

Like a proud papa, I am very excited to announce the “arrival” of my first cookbook! To torture the metaphor, this has indeed been a labor of love.

It has been a dream of mine for some time to publish a physical book. However, as I started in and began researching the options, the up-front investment, the number of recipes required, the editing, etc., it began to look like a multi-year project. The desire to put my crazy vegan creations to paper was just too great for such delayed gratification. I particularly considered many self-publishing and/or print-on-demand options. Some only let you go through their site (and whose ever heard of most of these guys?) Others, by setting outrageous base prices, make it cost-prohibitive for the buyer, even if the up-front cost is thus practically eliminated for the author.

Eventually, I turned my attention to the holy grail of self-publishing, the vaunted e-book. Let me tell you, this too comes with many hurdles! Whereas the more traditional routes run up against startup costs, restrictive contracts, etc., the e-book arena is fraught with technical hurdles (nor is it completely absent these other issues). And there are many charlatans out there ready to cash in on our ignorance by hawking software, hosting packages, and how-to books of their own. As a software engineer (aka, computer programmer) by trade, I was determined to create my own using available open source and cobbled-together freeware tools. Though to some extent I succeeded in this regard, I ultimately found it safer to leave the full automation/security aspects of the checkout to reputable vendors. To this end, I chose PayPal for collection, in conjunction with one of their recommendations for the actual product delivery and tracking. Both of these, of course, cost money, but they are worth it. With a full-time job, I cannot personally handle every transaction and, honestly, I didn’t really trust myself to automate all the moving parts.

Alas, there was still the actual book to write — recipe selection, testing, formatting, nutrition analysis, etc. — which added several more months to an already equal amount preceding that for the above. I am extremely pleased with the finished work. The recipes run the gamut from breakfasts to desserts and consist of reader favorites and requests and from the much appreciated feedback of family and friends. (I always encourage them to be brutally honest, as I’d much rather make something differently for a future gathering or bring something entirely new than unknowingly repeat a disaster. LOL.)

So there you have it, the nitty-gritty, behind the scenes. I hope you enjoy the results. It’s a tremendous weight off my shoulders, but more importantly, a crowning achievement, akin to reaching the peak of a beautiful mountaintop. Like my Mom exclaimed, when I told her last month that things were coming to fruition, “FINALLY!” :)

31 Responses to “Vegan Done Light”

  1. Mizzi says:


    I just realized your anti-spam words are vegetables. Is that just coincidence or is it a special produce anti-spam generator :)

  2. Marjorie says:

    Cool, Erin! Hope you do well with it.

    Now, when does the UNcook book come out?

    :) , Marjorie

  3. Arturo Veve says:

    Congratulations, Erin!
    Mizzi, I believe Erin chooses his own anti-spam words. I’ve typed “beer” at least once, so it hasn’ always been vegetables.

  4. Courtney says:

    Congrats! How exciting!

    How much is your e-book going to cost?


  5. Erin says:

    Courtney, Ah yes, you can see what a professional operation I run here. Ha! :) The price is visible once you press one of the Buy Now buttons, from which you can still back out. But, I can see how, not knowing this, one might be hesitant. So, it now appears nestled in between the two buttons. Good call.

  6. Erin says:

    Mizzi, Arturo is correct, I chose all the anti-spam words. So much more fun than those hard-to-read random characters.

    Marjorie, my raw repertoire is not yet large enough. Maybe some day. Thank you for the encouragement!

  7. Ruth says:

    Congratulations, Erin! A lot of love and hard work went into the cookbook. It will bring enjoyment to many people–hum…garlic….good ingredient!

  8. Mike J. says:

    Very cool on el libro.

    I really like reading your blog.

    Post more often, please. :-)

    Mike J.

  9. Maureen says:

    Congratulations, Erin–That’s very cool!

  10. Joni says:

    Congrats! It’s a daunting task, I know. I am about 2/3 of the way done with mine. As soon as I wake up and have a cup of coffee…I will look more deeply into this, and you just might see a sale up on your site today! Congrats again! It’s truly an accomplishment!

  11. Brian Wideman says:

    The recipes look like fun. I like squash and brewer’s yeast. I am a semi-faithful vegan, though I make milk-based yoghurt and use butter.

    I might add that I’m not sure there is such a thing as “high heat-tolerant vegetable oil.” My oil authority, Udo Erasmus, writes that high heat damages all oil and makes it harmful to your health. He recommends using only oil that is unrefined, which means not heated. If we must fry, he recommends using butter. The more saturated the fat, the less reactive it is to heat. From a google search, I see entries for peanut, sunflower, and canola oil as “high heat-resistant oils.” All these oils are refined and have been treated with high heat. I wouldn’t consume any of them, even before treating them with additional high heat.

  12. Erin says:

    Good points, Brian! Fortunately, any oil in the book is only used for pan and baking preparation and is intended to be minimized (or even excluded, if you have the cookware for it, etc.). The specific choice is, of course, always yours. You raise important considerations for making such decisions.

  13. James F. says:

    I’ve downloaded my copy. You’ve done a terrific job. Most
    cookbooks are like music albums … just one or two good
    singles. But yours is full of hits.

    Anybody who can come up with a dish with both lima beans and eggplant
    (and tahini, too!) has earned his toque.

  14. nicole says:

    It’s great to have another source of ETL recipes out there! Thanks and congratulations!

  15. 'River' says:

    Congratulations, Erin! I haven’t looked at it yet, but will do so later this morning!!!! More after that ;)
    Loads of love, River/Pat

  16. What an awesome accomplishment! E-Books are truly gaining some steam over print because they offer a convenient method for receiving information. So do your thing!

  17. Arturo Veve says:

    Hi again Erin
    I went ahead and purchased it. I have to agree that it’s beautifully put together. I was kind of hoping the pumkin cookies recipe would be there. Where those from a book and not your own recipe?

  18. Erin says:

    Arturo, I remembered your desire for the pumpkin cookie recipe, but opted against its inclusion for a few reasons: 1) It was based on modifications to the chocolate chip cookies in The Healthiest Diet in the World, 2) It was not gluten-free, and 3) My version included a hard-to-find, and apparently now discontinued, ingredient known as Oatrim. Sorry.

  19. Courtney says:

    Hey Erin

    This may sound silly, but could you tell us the recipes in the book? There is no way to “look” at it before you buy…not give us the actual recipes, but let us know what their titles are? I want to buy it, but money is tight right now–knowing what I will be getting would be helpful!


  20. Congrats on finishing your book!
    Can you please tell me if your recipes contain soy? We cannot eat it as my hubby is allergic.
    Thank you!

  21. Erin says:

    Sorry to be so long in responding to these last two questions. Courtney, that’s not a silly question at all, and others have asked as well. I updated the store page with a link to the recipe list. Laura, seven of the eighteen contain soy products.

  22. Patricia says:

    Hi… First time to your blog… I love the “Dogma-Free Raw”… It is so freeing not to feel the need to convert others to my beliefs.

    Congrats on your new book!!! What an accomplishment!

    I just restarted the raw vegan journey and decided I might have more success if I was authentic with myself and others… hence my first foray into blogging.

    Take care,

  23. Erin says:

    Thanks, Patricia. Enjoy blogging and your return to veganism. Looks like you’re doing great.

  24. Joni says:

    I just downloaded mine. I am really going to enjoy making these. There are a lot of ingredient combinations I would have never thought of on my own. Well done!

  25. 'River' says:

    Hi again, Erin! I’m a little late sending this in, but I want to say that I do have your book now (what a little gem!), all printed out, and am SO impressed. We are on our
    way out in a few minutes to buy ingredients for a couple of the recipes ;) and others I
    am sure will follow.

    Meanwhile, I should mention that I am telling anyone who will listen/read about this
    wonderful little (and probably unique) cookbook (including on my blog, see
    http://beanvegan.blogspot.com/.....t-out.html and on a
    couple of veg lists I ‘own’).

    Huge hugs! ‘River’/Pat

  26. Sierra says:

    Erin – the pictures and recipe names sound wonderful! I know you’ve been eating primarily gluten free for a while. Are the recipes gluten free too? That would be amazing for me. :-) I love the sound of the breakfast banana taco thing. That sounds great.
    Congratulations on your labor of love!

  27. Erin says:

    Indeed, they are gluten-free, Sierra. :)

  28. Erin:

    I got your book and just love it. I hadn’t written to tell you yet, but I purchased when you first announced it on the E2L list. Everything looks delicious and the pictures really tell a story of food. Good food. Thank you.

    Also, I think you sent us out an email that said we could link to your book for sale as an affiliate, but I can ‘t seem to find that email. Would you mind resending that to me? I would like the people visiting my site to be able to go and get your book. If you didn’t, I must have dreamed it! :)

    I have linked my blog to your site, as it is one of the sites I visit often.

    Thank you.

    Jackie Vetter

  29. Erin says:

    Wow, Jackie, thanks for letting me know. I’m so glad you’re enjoying it!

    You were not imagining things. I do have an affiliate program. You can learn more about it here or via the links just below the cover images in the footer and sidebar.

    By the way, I really dig your blog. Consider yourself blogrolled. :)

  30. Robin says:

    Hi Erin, I saw your info on the Get Healthy Club and immediately joined your newsletter. I’m fast to delete things these days after I’ve read them and mistakenly deleted the newsletter – at least I think this is where I saw it! – where you had a link published to the program you use to calculate the nutrition info for your recipes. Am I correct that it was you? If yes, please give me that info again!

    Mucho thanks!

    Robin McHale Ehn

  31. Erin says:

    Thanks, Robin. I really appreciate you subscribing to my nutrition newsletter. Your memory serves you right. It was in the first issue that I wrote about the software I use. It’s also briefly mentioned on the blog here, including how you can get $5 off.

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