Last week I picked up a copy of Isa Chandra Moskowitz's new book, Vegan Brunch, and this morning I happily made the Bakery-style Berry Muffins. They were easy to make, and turned out fantastically! I cooked them for the exact time specified in the book and the browning on the bottom and sides is perfect, and the crumb and flavor very much in tune with the non-vegan bakery muffins I used to get.
I gave two to our vegan neighbors and there are only three left. I used Trader Joe's wild blueberries, which are smaller than the typical frozen blueberries, rolled in flour to prevent too much "greying" of the muffin. I refrained from altering anything in the recipe so that I know what the "target" muffin should be like. Now if I want to experiment with anything like using some whole wheat pastry flour in place of some of the white flour, or lowering the sugar content, I'll know how my changes have affected the original muffin.
I can't wait to make more recipes from this book. The font and layout are extremely easy on the eyes, with the ingredients presented in the order used in the recipes, as well as grouped by which are mixed together. This makes following the recipes very easy, and since I always check back multiple times as I cook, I can easily see what comes next and make sure I didn't miss anything. That last part is really important as I've been known to leave out key ingredients like the baking powder (hard, flat biscuits), half of the flour (very thin pancakes), or the salt (flat flavor). The text has much larger line breaks and font than typically found in cookbooks, which makes reading while cooking very easy. Finally, Isa gives very clear directions, so that I know, for example, how full to fill the muffin tins and how long to leave them in the pan after removing them from the oven. These little details, such as letting the muffins cool for 5 minutes before removing them from the pan, can really make or break the recipe's success, and I am always grateful for their inclusion.