Wednesday, June 17, 2009

How to Organize a Zillion Recipies Without Going Nuts

Being an admitted Recipe Junkie and not about to reform or repent, the other option is to try to get organized.

You know what I mean.... don't you, you other Recipe Junkies. First we start out with a few cook books, some clippings and a couple of recipes that Grandma or Mom was good enough to let go of, written on 3 x 5 cards. A nice little index box with some tabs. A shelf on the book shelf or maybe even a spot in the kitchen for those few books.

Soon, we are browsing magazines for more good sounding recipes that we will certainly make in the near future. (uh huh...sure) Garage sales have lots of great old recipe books that are well used, cheap and absolutely must be saved. Goodwill, Salvation Army, Antique Stores: all treasure troves of fabulous recipes, cooking history, memorabilia and books. The really bad news is when your inner Recipe Junkie merges with your book collecting mania.

Now, instead of a few books and small recipe box, you have a whole book CASE devoted to cook books, Bon Appetite, Gourmet and a lateral file cabinet full of files containing recipes optimistically torn out of magazines.......even magazines while waiting in the doctor's office. /Embarrassed

So, smartie, how are you going to actually find a recipe that you want to try or that you really would like to make again in this clutter? You have some peaches and you remember (vaguely) that there is a recipe you read (somewhere) for a peach flavored barbeque sauce. Where IS IT and I want to find it before I am completely out of the mood and just eat the damned peaches.

Here is what I have done and I now use the world's best cook book software. Living Cook Book by Radium Technologies. If anyone else has other ideas, I'm all ears.

Clippings: I read the magazine first. Put pencil checks or dog-ear the page where the recipes sound good. THEN....put....the ....magazine.....down. Come back later read again and see if it still sounds interesting. Often a recipe that sounds good at first glance isn't so great or I realize, I already have several just like it. If I still think the recipe (or decorating or gardening idea) is interesting, tear it out of the magazine and throw the magazine away, and get rid of the clutter. Then it either goes into the files that are categorized by type or directly into my software program.

Books: First I read and browse the new or new/old cook book from cover to cover and use post its to mark the most interesting places for later data entry.

Living Cook Book is the best program that I have ever used!!! You can sort and print and more importantly FIND what you want. It can copy from the internet. So many great features. Check it out.

I have several virtual cookbooks

  • My Favorites: recipes that I have made, will make again and really like. Those are printed out on 4 x 6 cards and kept in a file or can be printed out in cookbook form and put into a binder

  • Untested #1: those that sounded good from the clippings or books and that I might want to make soon.

  • Untested #2: sound interesting, might be a bit complicated or unusual but worth consideration if I have some time to really experiment

Once I make an 'untested' it either goes into the virtual trash can or into My Favorites and printed on the card.

SO .....when I want to find my Peach BBQ Sauce recipe, I merely search for the ingredients and ta dah: PEACH BBQ SAUCE

No comments: