Guess what? I am going to be working on another oeuvre of recipes + witty banter. But this time, I have a partner: Andris Lagsdin of Baking Steel. Hang on, let me tell you the story.
First came the match-making. About two years ago, my literary agent, Alexandra Penfold, mentioned that she knew someone named Andris with whom she felt I'd make a great collaborator. Andris was the creator of this kitchen gizmo called the Baking Steel, which was garnering all sorts of buzz in the food world, with accolades from Serious Eats, America's Test Kitchen, etc, etc. I mean, in record time, Andris practically had Modernist Cuisine, Christopher Kimball, and Kenji Lopez-Alt (I know there's an accent, Kenji, but I'm too dumb to figure out how to make it happen on my blog) on speed dial.
In a nutshell, Andris had figured out that steel was a superior to stone in terms of even heating and cooking in the oven. Originally, he made the Baking Steel as a tool to attain a perfect pizza at home, but it turned out that it was capable of much more. You could bake cookies, pies, and bread on this thing and get truly professional results.
The Baking Steel, it turned out, was more useful and versatile than anyone could have imagined. Surely, this was the stuff of a great cookbook, right?
Me and Andris had our first phone conversation while I was on vacation in Puerto Rico. It played out almost like a blind date, with us getting to know each other personally and professionally. As it turned out, we clicked on both counts. Not only are we both incredibly sarcastic, funny, and clever, but we're both very into pizza and food. And we're both devoted yogis! I knew that our meeting was serendipitous, and we agreed right then and there to make a book happen.
Well, fast forward two years, which included more than a handful of long phone calls, too many emails to count, lots of pizza photos and Instagram tags, and even me visiting his test kitchen in Boston's South Shore. Oh, and a lot of writing. Together, we made a brilliant book proposal, and after a little bit of moving and shaking, I have some great news to share:
WE GOT A BOOK DEAL. A BIG-ASS BOOK DEAL WITH LITTLE, BROWN & COMPANY.
Yup -- we've got a book deal with a big, powerful publisher. Our book is slated to come out next year.
And I need to tell you that based on what we have done so far, this book is going to be freaking brilliant. It's going to include a lot of recipes, and because I am involved, it will also include limitless cleverness and witty repartee.
Yes, it's a little bit different for me because it's a collaboration and I am also working on savory subject matter, but it's kind of fun to do something different every now and again, isn't it?
OK, so I am sure that you'll be hearing more about this in the coming months, but I just wanted to share the good news!
MEANTIME, be sure to check out the BAKING STEEL website and to follow them on social media. I have conveniently placed all of the appropriate links just below.
And on social media: