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Kitchenwise Friends

What is your preferred way to compile and make easily accessible recipes from a wide variety of sources? I have several cookbooks with a small number of recipes I like, recipe cards of widely varying sizes, a few sheets of printer paper, and online bookmarks.

I want to do better at meal planning, but can never remember all of what I have that I like.



( 13 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 9th, 2010 07:33 pm (UTC)
I am pretty old school - I just write every recipe I like out on a 4x6 lined notecard and keep them alphabetically filed in a little box in the kitchen. I sometimes photocopy out of cookbooks or print off the internet, but if I make the recipe once from that and like it, I'll copy it onto a card and put it in the file instead.
Feb. 9th, 2010 08:07 pm (UTC)
This is exactly what I do too, except I use 3x5 cards in order to fit my battered, elderly, much-loved recipe boxes.
Feb. 9th, 2010 07:34 pm (UTC)
I don't really use recipies, but I do keep the shelves over the sink full of all the various cooking writing that I've acccumulated over the years.

Then it's handy if I want to look up something for an idea or need a reminder of cooking times or whatever.
Feb. 9th, 2010 07:35 pm (UTC)
You could try the Control Journal of Fly Lady and use the calendar to meal plan. I followed the advice for Holiday planning this year, which was to take your favorite recipes and put them in your notebook which was just for planning T-day and Yule festivities. It totally rocked, except now I have way too many cookie recipes that I want to try!
Feb. 9th, 2010 07:42 pm (UTC)
We have a mixed system. The most eclectic part of ours is a set of 3-ring binders with clear sleeves. Recipes get copied, cut or printed out and they go into a sleeve.

I've started transcribing recipes into a computer program that databases the recipes, quickly scales the ingredients for different numbers of people, and gives a rough nutritional analysis per serving. It also has a menu planner function.

I have a shelf full of cookbooks, too, used mostly for reference. 90% of my cooking is improvisational based on what's in the cupboards and fresh a tthe market.
Feb. 9th, 2010 07:49 pm (UTC)
When I want a recipe I look it up on the internet, often carrying my laptop into the kitchen to see while I'm cooking. This isn't very efficient to say the least! My kitchen is the size of a closet and counter space is at a premium. Not to mention the danger of getting batter all over ALF's keyboard!

Thing is, I seldom use recipes. I was taught to cook by "feel" -- which drives Allen crazy, lemme tell you! Pinch, handful, finger-length, dollop, dash and drizzle aren't his idea of measurements. But it works for me and nobody, incarnate or otherwise, complains about my cooking.

I'm going to dig out a three-ring binder to keep my favorite recipes, as well as kitchen/household charms and spells.
Feb. 9th, 2010 09:06 pm (UTC)
Yup! The big problem I have is when I get a request to duplicate something - depending upon the time that has passed I can have a very difficult time remembering exactly what went in when and how much of it did...

But nobody complains.
Feb. 9th, 2010 07:54 pm (UTC)
Since these days receipies come to me via emails from friends and family or from websites, I've found a 3 ring binder works really well. You can organize any number of ways, and you can stick a few sheets of clear heavy plastic in the front for a splatter shield when you have the book open on the counter or table.

Of course, I have 2 or 3 'bible' type cookbooks that I find myself going back to again and again for both full receipies and variation ideas or other info [like wine pairings] and the old fashioned card box as well. SOMEDAY I want to get the cards I actually used transcribed to the 3 ring binder...hmmm...maybe if I'm snowed in again Wednesday...
Feb. 9th, 2010 08:08 pm (UTC)
I have no system at all. It's all in my head.

I never took notes in school either...
Feb. 9th, 2010 08:09 pm (UTC)
I have a small collection of cookbooks, plus one with extra blank binder pages for adding recipes I find elsewhere. I use the little sticky tabs on the edge of the pages with the name of the recipes. Then I have a blank book, divided up into sections based on main ingredients, where I write the names of recipes and which book each is in. So if I have an ingredient (say, chicken) and am not sure what to make and don't feel like trying something new, I just look up my list of chicken recipes in the blank book, choose what I want, then hunt down the exact recipe in whatever cookbook it's in.
Feb. 9th, 2010 08:35 pm (UTC)
When I made a decision to keep it digital, things flowed from there.

I cut and paste data into text files and organize by folders, sometimes saving recipes in more than one place (e.g. duplicated into pot luck). If it's a paper recipe (which can be from library books), I take a digital photo and save the image.

I don't worry much about whether my folders make sense, I just over-title things so that I can search filenames for keywords, and failing that, I can search the file contents for the ingredients I remember.

If I feel like a recipe I like is too complicated, it's common for me to do a web search on the recipe title and a few of its essential ingredients, then I can improvise something that's easier or more to my palate by tweaking from the pool of recipes found.
Feb. 9th, 2010 09:25 pm (UTC)
I have a 3-ring binder. Some pages are taken from magazines, some pages are printouts. No recipe gets in without a trial and a YES! from at least two people. I also keep takeout menus in the back.
Feb. 12th, 2010 05:11 am (UTC)
I write them into notebooks that are all the same brand and in the same theme or color family.

For an electronic solution, consult wanderinggrl (er, some variation on wandering girl) and tell her you are a friend of mine.
( 13 comments — Leave a comment )


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