Finishing my Favorite Recipes notebook took almost as long as deciding which recipes to include! The finished notebook includes 32 recipes that I have made over the years.
Several recipes were included by special request, like Deviled Eggs…I’ve never had a written recipe so I had to make them first and take pictures before I could write it down. For others, I had not looked at the recipe for many years and had to make sure I remembered who had given it to me. The recipe for Sloppy Joe came directly from my mother-in-law when we first got married!
Years ago, I gave up on a tiny recipe box. The recipes had to be handwritten and any notes I wanted to make just didn’t fit on the cards. My daughter showed me a 3-ring notebook where she saved recipes she had found on the internet. Each recipe was in a plastic sleeve. She could remove the recipe from the notebook while she cooked and the plastic sleeve kept the original safe from splatters. Great idea! I bought the plastic sleeves at Staples:
I now have several notebooks going, some with my own recipes, another with recipes from the internet I want to try. If I make a recipe and don’t like it, I can just remove it from the plastic sleeve and discard it. If I do like it, I retype it in the format I prefer and add it to my notebook.
Over the last month I’ve been collecting and sorting recipes I wanted to include in this notebook…with plans to send a copy to my son and his family in California, and a copy to my daughter and her family at Christmas. I haven’t made some of the recipes for years, so I took the time to make a few to make sure it was still a “favorite.”
Once I decided on the 32 recipes, I made sure I had good instructions for someone else to follow. For example, I have a recipe from my mother that was in her recipe box with just a list of ingredients and an oven temperature. I had to look up a similar recipe in my Joy of Cooking (by Irma S. Rombauer & others) to see what they recommended for instructions.
Organizing the 32 recipes into a coherent list led me back to my Joy of Cooking for ideas. I ended up with 5 categories: Yeast Breads, Quick Breads, Desserts, Cookies and Other Dishes. The recipes are listed in alphabetical order in each section. This became the Table of Contents.
Then I made another list of the 11 recipes that I’ve written about on my blog, with links to those posts. Sometimes seeing the step-by-step process in pictures is helpful. That list became the Table of Contents Tutorials.
After I assembled all the recipes in their plastic sleeves, I realized I needed some Section Dividers. Since the pages are not numbered, you just have to get the recipe back into the appropriate section to make it easy to find it the next time. I will also include a few extra sleeves in each notebook so folks can add their own recipes over time.
Finally, I had not planned to create more than 3 notebooks…one for me, one for my son’s family and one for my daughter’s family. Already, I have interest from a few nieces and nephews who would like the recipes. Rather than try to figure out how to post the whole pile on DropBox, especially since it’s a folder of separate PDF documents, I decided to buy a few 1 GB flash drives. When I need to share, I’ll just burn a flash drive and put it in the mail.
Sounds complicated, I know. I think I’m finally done “editing.” Now I can stop baking so much and get back to the greyhound coats! Enjoy!