THE TRUTH ACCORDING TO...THURSDAYS- ISA CHANDRA MOSKOWITZ

Hey folks!

Welcome to this edition of The Truth According To..Thursdays! Today I have the pleasure of sharing the Truth According to the ultra successful vegan cookbook author Isa Chandra Moskowitz! Her cookbooks Veganomicon and Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World were my very first cookbooks. So, needless to say I was thrilled when she agreed to answer some questions! So, check her out!

Cwrites: You and your writing partner Terry Romero are the authors of four very successful Vegan cookbooks; Vegan Cupcakes Take Over The World, Vegan With A Vengeance, Veganomicon and the latest addition, Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar. Incidentally, the very first vegan cupcake I made was from VCTOTW! How did you get into cookbook writing?

Isa: I was going to publish Vegan With A Vengeance as a zine, but I got really lucky because a literary agent approached me after reading an interview in Punk Planet. The rest is history!

Cwrites: How did you and Terry meet?

Isa: We met in the punk scene in NYC, the same way everyone meets. In front of a bar, sitting on a stoop, we commented on each other socks. We had a lot of mutual friends, so it was only a matter of time.

Cwrites: What were some of the major challenges you faced in putting together your first cookbook and has it gotten considerably easier now that you've done it a few times?

Isa: Well, technology did not want the book created at all, because I lost pretty much the entire book when my hard drive died and I had no backup. Luckily I was able to get a lot of it from my testing website, but I had to go through my scribbled notes and cobble the rest of it together, and with some stuff, just start from scratch. It was actually easier to write the first book in a way because I didn’t know what to expect. Now I feel a bit more pressure because a lot is expected of us! But I definitely feel I’ve become a better cookbook author, and I learn something new everyday, which is good. If you don’t learn something everyday something is wrong.

Cwrites: Out of all the cookbooks you've published, do you have a favorite? If so, why?

Isa: Sorta kinda, but it changes once in awhile. Right now I love Vegan Brunch because it’s so colorful and pretty and I love the simplicity of many of the recipes. I’m also particularly proud of the omelet! Brunch really is my favorite meal. That said, I know that Appetite For Reduction will be my favorite once it’s out because those recipes are perfect for every day eating. That’s come out in December and it’s low-fat recipes. But every book holds a special place in my heart. VwaV is my baby, Vegan Cupcakes was what put Terry and I on the map (and so much fun!), Veganomicon is like my baby graduating from college, and Cookies is...well it’s got cookies in it!

Cwrites: I assume it's safe to say that you introduce people to veganism through great food, what other ways do you share the vegan lifestyle with others?

Isa: Food encompasses so much and it’s something I’m comfortable doing, so really I try to work food activism in in every way possible, whether it be a bake sale, getting vegan food into stores and restaurants, or sneaking vegan recipes into mainstream publications. I am really crappy at things like protesting, leafletting and talking to people, I need a whisk in my hand in order to feel comfortable doing it. But I have so much respect for those that do do things like leafletting.

Cwrites: You have a website called theppk (post punk kitchen), what's behind the name?

Isa: We explain it in episode 1, it was basically because both Terry and I came of age in the punk scene, but we had just hit 30, had cubicle jobs and didn’t feel so punk anymore. We weren’t in a squat cooking over a hot plate anymore. But everything I do is somewhat informed by a DIY punk ethic, because that’s really where I learned most of everything I know.

Cwrites: On your website you also have a cooking show (which is fabulous since there are zero on tv that I know of), which is currently on hiatus. How did that come about and when can we look forward to some new videos?

Isa: Yeah, we will never make videos in the same format again, but I do want to do shorter internet based cooking videos. The original show came about because I was constantly doing a cooking show in my head and decided just to do it for real.

Cwrites: What advice can you give to anyone who is contemplating becoming a vegan?

Isa: I would say, keep yourself informed about nutrition and keep yourself healthy, first and foremost. Make the transition however YOU feel most comfortable, don’t ever let yourself feel bullied or guilt ridden because that isn’t sustainable. And definitely visit a farm sanctuary, always remember who we are vegan for. When you see animals living out their lives so happily, it’s tough to reconcile eating them. And last but not least, try to stay positive, happy and active!

Thanks to Isa for sharing her experience! I love brunch too, so I'll definitely be picking the next cookbook up when it hits stores. I definitely urge everyone else to do the same! Also, be sure to check out the ones already on the shelves and visit her website at theppk.com!

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