it’s yours now.

the mailer for the cookbook

We finished the cookbook this week.

The idea for the cookbook first popped into my head as I was finishing up the first draft of my first book. When I wrote the proposal for that book, I didn’t know Danny at all. Originally, I intended my book to end with a triumphant dinner scene at Chez Panisse, which has always been a dream.

Turned out a little different than I thought.

As we were finishing up the final draft of the proposal, I told my agent about Danny. “He’s a chef, a really talented one, so he’s going to help with the recipes. Should I put that in the proposal?”
“Shauna,” she said, laughing. “He has to be the last chapter of the book.“
Oh. Okay. (I always trust Stacey.)
I had only known him four months when I got the deal for the first book and started writing. We were engaged by then, knowing we were solid. At the time, it seemed entirely natural to write an entire chapter of a book about him.

That chapter was written urgently, and the urgency makes me love it, still. However, it’s a little sappy to me now, from this distance. Or maybe just young. We have lived so much more together now. I like the real stuff more. The cookbook is much more us, deeply in love and living the mundane details of days together.

And so, the idea for this book in January 2007 became a book proposal by March of 2008. I was four months pregnant with Lu — the perfect time to imagine writing a new book! We were offered the deal in May of 2008, just a few months before she was born.

With the exception of the time we were in the ICU with Lu, or in the hospital for her surgery, we have been actively working on this book every single day since then. (And frankly, discussing recipes during those stressful times was a relief, so we probably worked on the book then too.) Talking about it, cooking for it, writing ideas for it, refining recipes, changing our minds and cooking again — the moments of our days these past two years have been guided by working on this book.

When we first began, I had no idea how to make fresh gluten-free pasta. It seemed impossible. When we turned in the first draft of the cookbook, our pasta looked like this. On the day we had to send the last draft away, I made this batch of pasta early in the morning, to test the last little tweak. (Not only is the pasta much better now, but the recipe is easier to make, too.)

This has been an incredible journey. And now it’s done.

This week we finished the very final edits. (This is where we have been, cooking and writing and tweaking again. Thanks to those of you who wrote, concerned by our silence.) Danny drove a big box with the marked-up pages to the Country Store, here on the island, and sent it away via UPS. It left our hands. We cannot change a single word anymore.

Oh, of course, there is still work to be done. We have to start thinking about a possible book tour (we hope), maybe some television (fingers crossed), and finding the best way to get this book into your hands. The work of offering the book to the world will be just as absorbing as the writing of it has been.

But the book itself is done. It has an ISBN number already! And a publication date: September 21st. Oh! and a title. Have I told you the title?

Gluten-Free Girl and the Chef: A Love Story with 100 Tempting Recipes

Plus, it’s available for pre-order on Amazon now. (It’s all going so fast!)

And that photo up there? That’s a photo we took of the first marketing mailer sent to us by our publishers. That’s the cover of our book.

(The bit in the middle is the cover. “Love conquers all…even food allergies” is the marketing team’s tag line. For those of you who are worried, we know that celiac is an auto-immune disorder, not a food allergy. But the marketing team wanted to include everyone, not just those of us with celiac. This is really a book for anyone who loves food. And besides, “Love conquers all…even autoimmune disorders” really doesn’t have the same ring, does it?)

We think you might enjoy this book.

We wrote it for you, after all. We could not have done this without you. Danny and I adored this process, and we can’t wait to write more cookbooks. But this book belonged to us only as long as we could change recipes and stories. We wrote it to let go of it.

It’s all yours now. We hope you enjoy it.

81 comments on “it’s yours now.

  1. GFree_Miel

    I’m so happy for you that you’ve found someone so special and understanding because you deserve it. I can’t wait to have your new book in my hands so I can try each and every recipe. You have a beautiful story and I’m so grateful that you’ve decided to share it with all of us.

  2. Missy

    Your first book gave me hope and proof that good food can be gluten free. Almost a year later, I can’t wait for this book to expand my horizons. Congratulations on, everything.

  3. Jen

    Shauna, you write so beautifully! This is awesome and amazing and I’m so excited to see the final copy!

    congratulations! there isn’t anyone i can think of who deserves this more than you three! :)

  4. ACD

    I am so excited!! I’ve told every Celiac or GF person I know! I hope that you will get the tour and some TV time. It seems likely Jamie Oliver is drawing so much attention to food and health! The timing feels right.

  5. Tracy Chastain and Kim Malone

    Oh Shauna and Danny, we can’t wait! Congrats to you both and to all of us who can share in the goodness from your kitchen. You both have tirelessly worked on these recipes, all for our benefit. Thank you!

  6. Cate

    Shauna, this is so exciting! I can’t wait to add it to our shelves. You know, Michael looks at your blog and says, they look like good people. I want to know them. I tell him, he’s right.

    Totally, completely thrilled for you, and love to you three.

  7. Maggie

    Congratulations — how incredibly exciting this must be! I have no doubt that all my food-loving friends will love this book, not just the GF ones. Your love of food and life is so contagious. I can’t wait to buy it.

  8. Kathie Sever

    can. not. wait!!!

    yea! i have a feeling this will blow every gluten-free cookbook i’ve got in my kitchen out of the water.

    just a guess…

  9. Cove Girl

    I cannot wait to get my hands on this book:) I loved your first book too, I even teared up a little at the end because how poetic that someone with food intolerances should fall in love with a chef! Love does conquer all…even auto immune disorders!

  10. Cove Girl

    I cannot wait to get my hands on this book:) I loved your first book too, I even teared up a little at the end because how poetic that someone with food intolerances should fall in love with a chef! Love does conquer all…even auto immune disorders!

  11. Cove Girl

    I cannot wait to get my hands on this book:) I loved your first book too, I even teared up a little at the end because how poetic that someone with food intolerances should fall in love with a chef! Love does conquer all…even auto immune disorders!

  12. Lauren

    Shauna darling, I just want to come give you the biggest hug. You can breathe, you can sleep, you can relax. I was admiring the light in your kitchen, so take some peace in that while you, Danny and Lu find a new routine, with a new focus. This book isn’t going to be amazing — it already is.

    I’m thrilled that BlogHer is after the release date, because then I can see you with it and of course give you a big hug!

  13. linda

    aai sure need this book.…we made the worst, i mean THE WORST stir fry with rice noodles thing tonight…how can one ruin rice noodles? well, to me, and admittedly, I am new at this, they taste a bit like rubbery dried glue without the salt, or soy sauce is really what was missing besides a whole lot else…sigh, i miss my pasta, whine whine– so you have now promised me bread and pasta that tastes other than cardboard by september? wow, i would wait practically forever for pasta that tastes good and betting yours does! i’ll let you know if it doesn’t… don’t make me come over there!

    congrats on one damn fine book, i’m sure and cannot wait to get it in my starved little hands and my hubby’s because frankly, HE made this awful dinner more than i did ;)

    my mouth is watering over what is to come!
    ?

  14. Tara

    Thank you, thank you, thank you. Will be receiving it with wide open arms and bellies.

    (And congrats to you and Danny!)

  15. Hannah

    A global book tour, maybe? We in Australia like to read about love and cooking too, you know :D

  16. Anonymous

    Hi! 26 and formerly a serial carb and baked goods maniac, I’ve been recently diagnosed with celiac. Its tough but Im about done going through depression, withdrawal, and all that good stuff as the celiac newbie.  Wandering grocery stores with a long face trying to look for the most tasteless, driest items (food that I have always associated with GF)… I was thinking that Im DOOMED to suffer for the rest of my life. I stumbled on your pages after poring through pages and pages of medical journals. Since, I’ve been a subscriber and have been trying to catch up on reading about this new life that I missed, which as it turns out, has turned for the better. Im inspired day by day by what you write and have started to see the positive effects of this lifestyle, in body and in mind. Thank you and congratulations. I’ll definitely be on the lookout for your book. Can’t wait!    

  17. Gaile

    Hurray! I cannot wait for this book to come out!! For the stories, the recipes, and just to be part of it! Congratulations! and thank you both!!

  18. Kirsty

    I’m so excited. As a newly diagnosed Celiac (who is finding most of the food for Celiac’s slightly, ummm how shoud I say this, yuck) I can’t wait to get my hands on these recipes.

    Congrat’s to you both *hugs*

  19. operagirlcooks

    Wow, how exciting! Shauna, I’m not even gluten free, but I have loved reading your blog for years. Seeing the evolution from just you to your life with the Chef and then your daughter … it’s been so sweet to follow! Looking forward to checking out your cookbook very much.

  20. Barefoot AngieB

    This is so cool!! I don’t comment much but I read all of your blog entries and think its fabulous that you are done with the book!!! (I am GF)
    Do you have any advanced copies to do giveaway contests on your blog with????

  21. Anonymous

    I LOVE the picture you chose for the cover!! Thanks to both of you for your dedication and talent. Looking forward to getting this book into my eager hands!!
    Eileen

  22. Marianne

    Thank you for all the time and work you put in to the recipes and discussions of food to help us all enjoy eating again.

  23. M.Y.

    I’m so excited!!! Thank you for writing it and doing all the R&D (if you want to call it that). I can’t wait to cook from the book with my husband.

  24. Dia

    Yea — what a wonderful ‘birth month’ present!! Loved GF Girl, it has helped me in my dance with being Gluten Free — exciting to see that the book is DONE!! Now enjoy the sun with Danny & Lu!! :)

    Blessings!

  25. Sweet Faery

    I’ve been hanging here on your blog for some time now, and I was looking forward your publishing a real cook book. I’m really happy about it and I can’t wait!

  26. Kelly

    So beautiful! You always remind me how romantic food really is, with your photos and your love story. I could just eat you two up ? So happy for you! Love, Kelly

  27. Birdie

    Shauna & Danny,

    congratulations. I need some help in my kitchen with my two “Celiacs” (hubby & son), so I’m looking forward to it :-)

    Lot’s of inspirations for more cookbooks! :-)

  28. http://glutenfreedelightfullydelicious

    Congratulations!!!Yeahhhh!!! can hardly wait, all the best to you both…Ina

  29. Elisabet Figueras

    This is a huge help for everybody, not only for Celiacs.
    Thankyou very much.
    Congratulations!!!!

  30. Amélie

    I’m really happy that everything turend out so well! I’ll DEFINITELY be buying the book next September.

    I have a technical question for you, though it may be too soon for you to have an answer yet. Will this book be translated in French? You see, my godmother is gluten-intolerant, but she is struggling to eat right. She doesn’t really read in English, so a French-language cookbook works better for her… and I’m sure there are speakers of other languages who would benefit from translations! I happen to be a translator myself (English to French), and translating that book sounds like a dream gig, but really, I’m wondering whether it will be done at all.

    Thanks! :)

  31. amy

    hip-hip-hooray! I can’t wait. The last chapter in your first book is one of my favorite collections of words–it was perfect–and I have yet to look at “yes” the same way since.

  32. Sho

    Shauna,

    Congratulations!

    Now when are you writing the screenplay?

    Better yet, why don’t they just make a reality show about your family and life on Vashon!

    Whatever, you have so many options. You are both so talented.

    Take care,

    Shoshannah

  33. Anonymous

    This is great news! I’ve never posted here before but I’ve been visiting off and on for about two years. I was diagnosed with celiac at the age of two because I was dying of malnutrition — that was in the 1960s. I have spent most of my life eating an uninspired diet, with little hope of doing anything else. When it became clear that my three daughters needed to be gluten-free I had to improve my ways, for them if not for me.
    One of my wonderful girls found your site, Shauna. Did we celebrate!!! You have made my girls feel as if being gluten-free is a gift, something special, a gateway to learning about the wisdom of eating differently from mainstream n. american culture.
    Thank you.

  34. Aryn

    How fitting that it arrives on the fall equinox — a time of harvest. I’m marking my calendar!

  35. Anonymous

    To have found someone to share life with and the journey towards healing can not be overstated. My partner is a vegetarian and I am gluten intolerant, so we don’t get asked to people’s homes for dinner very often, but I am finally re-gaining my kitchen sea legs after having to completely change my cooking tricks. Your site has been so helpful, and like a guilty secret to go back and see the lushness of the pictures and the words you use to convey your joy in it all. It is also a good reminder that the tree of life is filled with much more than cakes and pies. I even went out and bought swiss chard and kale, and even ate them with gusto! Thanks Shauna and Danny & Lu. Mozel Tov on all of your good work!

  36. Dusty Whiskers

    When I finish a good book I always grieve the loss of a friend in the character. I felt the same way when I finished your first book. And then I found your blog! Now I can’t wait for your cookbook. Thanks for sharing your recipes and your heart with us.

  37. Stargirl

    I am looking forward to this book so much! Thank you for putting so much into it and making it the best it could be. All of us novice cooks totally appreciate it. The romantic side of me can’t wait, either!

  38. Kim

    Oh I can not wait. I am just giddy with excitement.…especially about the breads! we’re having pulled pork sandwiches tonight and I would give just about anything to actually have mine on bread.

    Congratulations on this fabulous book, I just can’t wait to read it!!!

  39. Grace

    I’m not gluten intolerant, but I’ve read your blog for ages and enjoy it so much! Hopefully I see your book on the shelves over here in New Zealand!

    Congratulations on such an achievement!

  40. Raewyn

    Congratulations to the 3 of you for making your dream a reality. I enjoy your blog (and recipes) and I’m sure I will love your book so I, too, am hoping it will be available here in New Zealand. Best wishes, from another kiwi coeliac.

  41. Heather

    My daughter and I have been recently diagnosed and I was lucky enough to stumble across your blog not that long ago. It has given me so much inspiration and hope! I purchased your first book and intend to buy your most recent book. Will it be available in australia do you know?

  42. Laurel

    This is so exciting! I’m sure September will be here before we know it, but it seems so far away right now! :(
    I have been following you for a long time now and it is so special to see all your successes! Congratulations to all three of you.

  43. mama without instructions

    Congratulations! It looks and sounds so very lovely. I can hardly wait.

  44. gfe--gluten free easily

    Congrats again, Shauna and Danny! I never get tired of reading your words and seeing your recipes come to life. :-) I’m glad this book has turned out to be just the way you want, but I still love your first book, too. ;-)

    All the best and hugs,
    Shirley

  45. Heather D

    So excited for the new book! I popped over to Amazon and pre-ordered as soon as I saw this post. Congratulations!!

  46. molly

    My parsnips are burning, my salad is wilting, all because I cannot stop reading, with joy, and tears in my eyes, about this release. I’m not even remotely gluten-free, but I’ve been here, over and over, for more years than I can count. Just because. I need to get back to the making of my dinner (which, now that I think of it, has no gluten at all), but I wanted to take a moment to say: congratulations. And, way to go. And cheers, to you both. For life, and books, and love, and all that.

  47. Nurit - familyfriendlyfood

    Dear Shauna and Danny, you are such an inspiration! Such a force! Lots of !!! to you!
    The cover looks fantastic! I can’t wait to put my hands on this book!

  48. Erica

    Blue Cheese Cheesecake with Fig Crust?!?! YUM!! Can’t wait for that one. I’m another person who doesn’t have to eat gluten free but I love your blog and recipes. I work at PCC and recommend your website almost on a daily basis. I saw you at my store once but I didn’t catch you in time to say hi and thank you for the inspiration. Can’t wait to see the new book!

  49. Julie

    LOVE IT. And September 21 is my parents’ wedding anniversary — and theirs is a great love story. A good sign. Going to pre-order mine now! Way to go you guys.

  50. h. hart

    I love that this is going to be out in the world–my grandma was diagnosed with celiac in the 80’s so I grew up with an awareness of it, and it is so wonderful that wise, big-hearted people like you are making a life “without gluten” into a life with every possible joy! Can’t wait to see the finished product.

  51. Tracy

    @tlant1cHow perfect — September 21 is my birthday… and I know what I’m asking for! Since your first book my family has come along way too. Gone are the days of sickness and pain, wondering what was wrong and what to eat. Our lives are filled with joy — our little bean is now a two-year old toddler (dairy and gluten free) and baby #2 is on the way… thanks to love of food, and a gluten free diet. Thank you for all the fabulous recipes, I’ll look forward to the new read on my birthday!

  52. eatsimplybehealthy

    The feelings I had when I read that your book was done were amazing…I actually started to cry, tears of happiness for you!! Yours is the only blog site that I really read consistently and I feel like I’ve been with you throughout it all. I am so excited for you, Danny and Lu. I can’t WAIT to see your new book! Thank you!

    Bernadette

  53. Creative Mom

    I am so excited to make pasta again and try all the other recipes I have been reading about.Congratulations!!!

  54. annelies

    Woo hoo! I am so excited to read your chapter on Danny (and try out your recipes. Congrats on wrapping up the book.

  55. Winnie

    Huge congrats Shauna! I really enjoyed the first book and know this one will be even more awesome!

  56. heather @ chiknpastry

    congratulations! i don’t even eat gluten free (unless cooking for those with gluten allergy) and i’m getting it to show support — i think there is far to little knowledge about food allergies/intolerances and you’ve certainly done your part to change that! can’t wait :)

  57. Denise

    Lu has the best parents in the world! Your story is such an inspiration.I read each and every word from line one till the end. It gives amazing hope and faith to everyone. I hope your book will be a great success (:

  58. Anonymous

    Congratulations! I’ve finally gotten the hang of GF cakes, but I miss the homey stuff like pasta, pizza and cinnamon buns :) I know you’ve raved about sorghum & teff, but I’ve never seen those flours in Asia. Just wondering if the recipes in your new book use them a lot?