A number of years ago I worked on a fundraiser cookbook for a national grief organization. My job was to edit a slew of recipes but my own recipe– my mom's danish puff– was edited and I can still remember when the main editor came back to me and said I needed specific amounts for the icing, a powdered sugar and milk combination.
"You have to remember not everyone is comfortable cooking," I can still remember she wrote.
That was a good lesson for today when I am writing and rewriting recipes. Right now I'm sitting on a number of them that I haven't posted because I have go back and check the amounts. Or many times I have used a recipe I've found online but I made changes to it and I can't post it until I spend a little time getting the ingredients and their amounts right. Then there are the times I combine several recipes (like the recent pumpkin cheesecake) and I need to put them all together.
I rely on Martha Stewart recipes quite a bit because they are usually well written and tested well. I often find that other recipes (Emeril is one example) don't have the quality behind them and they don't work as well. I also recently had a problem with chocolate-covered Katie: while I had tried some of hers in the past, the pumpkin bread both times wouldn't bake. I realized the problem might be that she doesn't live at altitude and when I questioned her about it via Facebook, of course she had no idea about high altitude baking.
While altitude doesn't affect everything, I am always aware when I bake that whatever I'm making might not work out because I live at 5,000 feet. And then she didn't offer to have anything tested. While that cookbook is on my counter right now, it's going to find its way back up to the top shelf of cookbooks soon.
But Martha also disappointed me recently. When I used one of her recipes to make the chocolate cake in the LeCreuset dutch oven (and this is the reason I haven't posted the recipe yet– because I have to do redo it), the ingredients are all out of order. And in the age of anyone posting anything they want on the internet, there is more and more of this. Having everything in order on the list ensures we won't forget something. That's how the sugar got left out the first time (although I added it in before it went to the oven and it worked out okay). However, that can be enough to ruin a recipe and the item created from it.
It's taking me a while to get the recipes online but it's because I'm trying to make sure they are in the best place they can be: edited, tested, and retested. In the long run, you'll thank me.