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 Post subject: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Sun May 03, 2015 8:32 am 
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I'm curious about how everyone deals with new cookbooks. Are you a page marker? A list maker? A database user? Do you flick through recipes willy-nilly and eschew a sorting process altogether?

When I get a new book or books, I tend to have to flip through two or three times before I start marking recipes. Then I go through with sticky tabs and I mark pages that I want to make soonest, usually trying to consider seasonal availability. It doesn't always work out for me and often recipes are marked for a long time. I do find the current monthly challenge or my own personal challenges seem to help.

Where I get tripped up is ebooks. I have used the bookmark function in one of Dreena Burton's but without the book staring me in the face from the shelf, I never revisit them and get inspired.

So, what do you do?

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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Sun May 03, 2015 4:29 pm 
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Great thread idea!

I use ebooks a lot. I bookmark not just the recipes I want to make, but the table of contents pages so I can review the lists of recipes and get ideas. When I have an ingredient I want to use up or a type of food I really want to eat, I search through my entire collection of ebooks for that word and my kindle spits out a list of all the places where it is mentioned. That's another great way to find inspiring recipes. The only complaint I have about the kindle is that it's hard to protect it from kitchen spatters. But now that my husband has retired his basic kindle in favor of his smartphone, I have a spare kindle to bring into the kitchen.

I'm one of those people who hates dog-earing pages, so with print books I usually use a post it note to mark the page, or else I write down the recipe and the page number on another note that goes on the refrigerator.

Lately though I have gotten into a phone app called Our Groceries that allows me to enter all the ingredients in a recipe. Every time I want to make the recipe I can just tell it to add those ingredients to my shopping list. A nice side benefit is that I can peruse the list of recipes later in the week to remind myself what I planned to make. This method has now mostly displaced the sticky note, but I imagine that when I have a lot of recipes entered there I'll go back to the post-its.


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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Sun May 03, 2015 9:07 pm 
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System for cookbooks--Hahah. I stick them on the packed shelf and forget to use them.

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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Sun May 03, 2015 11:50 pm 
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I stopped buying cookbooks in e-book version..I got a bunch, and I was really excited to read through them once, but I just don't pull out the kindle and look for recipes when I cook...I go to my shelf full of physical cookbooks. (all full of post its and bookmarks) It's a great idea and I know a lot of people love using cookbooks on their kindle...I just don't, so I save the money, and buy the print versions.

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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2015 12:51 am 
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I think the majority of people still prefer print cookbooks, but I'm the opposite -- my print cookbooks mostly sit on the shelf and go unused. My kitchen is small and I don't have a place for big cookbooks to sit while I'm cooking. I also have a wrist issue that makes holding heavy cookbooks uncomfortable.


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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2015 1:30 am 
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I need a system. I used to use post-its but stopped because they're meaningless after a certain point. Then I started keeping all of my new books in a separate area because once they go to the bookcases, it's like they've entered a black hole. If I see a post here about a recipe that I want to try, I'll get the book out and add it to the new ones.

I buy a lot of ebooks but if the recipes look good I feel like I should have a hard copy too, and that happens with probably 75% of them. It's to the point now where the idea of looking through my books to find a recipe is so overwhelming (last week it was cinnamon rolls), that more often than not I'll just Google and use a blog recipe.

I either need a system or I need to get rid of 9/10ths of my cookbooks. In which case, I would still have too many.


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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2015 4:42 am 
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I go through a new cookbook first, almost page by page lol, and write down recipes that look interesting, with a few key ingredients noted or if it is gluten free soy free etc. Then I make a list in my notebook under that cookbook name with the recipes. I have a notebook with about twelve cookbooks full of recipes listed in it, plus my own ideas listed in there and lists of my three ring binder recipes I have collected/printed from around the internet. I have three ring binders for "breakfast and blender", "main dishes", "side dishes", "breads, muffins, crackers", "desserts".

Each week, usually Sunday, I make a plan for the next week. I have a blank template table with columns for breakfast, dinner, lunch etc and days of the week. I actually have a months worth planned out right now but I do leave room for changes. I am EXTREMELY anal about food planning. I use my notebook to plan meals and snacks.

About every five or six months, I go through each cookbook again and find new recipes I overlooked before and write those down. I am very familiar with many of the recipes in each of my cookbooks by now and know where to look when I need to refer to one for a dish. Most of the time I don't follow recipes to the t anyway, but I base stuff off them.

[imgImageMy Cookbooks 2015 by Naturebound2011, on Flickr][/img]

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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2015 8:41 am 
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I've tried numerous systems over the years...sticky tags, handwritten notes, a google doc spreadsheet...nothing seems to work all that well. Mostly I just pick out a few random cookbooks when I'm doing my menu planning for the week - for example, this week I just walked over to the bookshelf and randomly picked out Salad Samurai and Vegan Brunch and said okay, I'll plan my meals out of these two books.

I do have a few ebooks which I have never ever used. I can't figure out a system for those.

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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2015 9:00 am 
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I make a list of all the recipes I want to try and stick it in the book. Then, I never consult my list again and, instead, randomly flip through a few books each week when I make my shopping list.

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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2015 9:02 am 
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I make a list of all the recipes I want to try and stick it in the book. Then, I never consult my list again and, instead, randomly flip through a few books each week when I make my shopping list.

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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2015 10:47 am 
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When I get a new cookbook, I go through it and type out every single recipe title. I put recipes that sound interesting in bold. When I make it, I put a little checkbox next to the recipe name. I do this in Evernote, and each cookbook is its own note. I use the Eat Your Books website frequently to type in ingredients that I want to use to find a recipe in my cookbooks that uses those ingredients; 60 out of 80 of my cookbooks are fully indexed on here. I also clip online blog recipes to Evernote, so I can search by ingredient in my non-indexed cookbooks and online recipes if I can't find something with Eat Your Books. With this system, I've made about 100 cookbook recipes in 2015! It's a little OCD of a system, but once I had the kinks worked out, it's low maintenance and gets me excited about cooking! It also helps me cook equally from e-books and print books, so I've been buying more e-books recently to save bookshelf space; plus, they're cheaper.

Evernote cookbook system using Kathy Patalsky's Happy Healthy Vegan Kitchen as an example:
Image



Finding recipes on Eat Your Books with specific ingredients (mushrooms, tomatoes, and peppers in this case):
Image



Note: I am in no way affiliated with either Evernote or Eat Your Books. I just love their services! Evernote is free, and I opt for the paid version of Eat Your Books ($25/year).

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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2015 11:41 am 
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KIdsdoc, how do you get the recipes from your ebooks into Evernote?


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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2015 11:52 am 
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I love the Evernote idea! Now to find the ambition to go through my books and type out the recipe names.

I use Evernote to clip blog recipes and so if I'm searching for a specific ingredient I tend to use blog recipes more than cookbooks (because it's so easy to search for them in Evernote)...but if I had some kind of system where I listed out the recipe name and key ingredients from each of my books I could search everything at once!

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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2015 11:56 am 
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System?

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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2015 2:01 pm 
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lepelaar wrote:
System?

Ezzackly. I throw all my cookbooks in a pile in the bookcase along with the loose papers that I copy recipes onto when I want to cook. Every few months when people come over, I realize there is a volcano of papers erupting onto the floor, and I tell the kid I will give her 5 bucks if she puts them all in a binder.

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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2015 2:30 pm 
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Haha. I'm a page-througher and drooler. Up until we started the monthly cookbook challenges, I really did not delve into my cookbooks much.

I also do not do well with Kindle cookbooks. I've downloaded some free ones but just never think to look at them. I'm a tactileperson and a physical book is better for me.

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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2015 3:11 pm 
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Baking In The Flavor

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LFL wrote:
KIdsdoc, how do you get the recipes from your ebooks into Evernote?


Hi LFL! I don't copy/paste the actual full recipes from the e-book into Evernote, though you could do it if you want with the screenshot function (Win key + S key). Usually I just copy and paste the recipe index from the desktop Kindle app into Evernote, which does require a bit of re-formatting but it's not too bad. E-books are so much easier to manage since I can copy and paste the recipe names instead of typing out the whole thing from scratch out of a print cookbook!

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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2015 3:16 pm 
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lobsteriffic wrote:
I love the Evernote idea! Now to find the ambition to go through my books and type out the recipe names.

I use Evernote to clip blog recipes and so if I'm searching for a specific ingredient I tend to use blog recipes more than cookbooks (because it's so easy to search for them in Evernote)...but if I had some kind of system where I listed out the recipe name and key ingredients from each of my books I could search everything at once!


I love how easy it is to search in Evernote too! I think Evernote is perfectly suited to organizing online recipes.

Also, as a general suggestion, if people don't like the labor-intense method of typing out every recipe name, you could also just type out the recipe titles that excite you (the digital version of a post-it note). That way you have a running list of cookbook recipes you want to make in an easily searchable format.

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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2015 4:18 pm 
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Robinwomb wrote:
I go through a new cookbook first, almost page by page lol, and write down recipes that look interesting, with a few key ingredients noted or if it is gluten free soy free etc. Then I make a list in my notebook under that cookbook name with the recipes. I have a notebook with about twelve cookbooks full of recipes listed in it, plus my own ideas listed in there and lists of my three ring binder recipes I have collected/printed from around the internet. I have three ring binders for "breakfast and blender", "main dishes", "side dishes", "breads, muffins, crackers", "desserts".



This is similar to my system. When I get a new book, I write down the recipes I want to make soonest in a big notebook & I find it easy to flip through these pages to look for a recipe that focuses on a particular ingredient. I also break it up by what type of dish so if I'm just looking for breakfast or something I can scan for that. I still look through my books regularly though. It both excites me & kind of drives me crazy. I sometimes get caught up in trying new things and forget that I want to be very speedy in the kitchen. It's a frustration that I'm currently trying to deal with, haha.

I also have several ginormous binders for dishes I've tried & ones I haven't in the exact way you mentioned, broken up by type of dish. Now I'm pinning recipes too, so I've got a lot of consulting I can do at the beginning of making next week's menus.

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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Thu May 07, 2015 5:56 pm 
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Zula wrote:
I sometimes get caught up in trying new things and forget that I want to be very speedy in the kitchen.


Same here!


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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2015 6:22 pm 
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I read new cookbooks from cover to cover, in detail and get excited about all the new recipes I want to try. Then I put the book on the bookshelf and forget about them. Until I vaguely remember something that sounded interesting, but can't remember which book it was in, so end up googling for a similar recipe.


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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2015 6:43 pm 
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HappyBean wrote:
I read new cookbooks from cover to cover, in detail and get excited about all the new recipes I want to try. Then I put the book on the bookshelf and forget about them. Until I vaguely remember something that sounded interesting, but can't remember which book it was in, so end up googling for a similar recipe.


Yeah, that sounds about right.

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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2015 12:25 am 
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I tend to flick through the book, write down the recipes I want to try and the page number (generally on the back of the receipt) and stick it back in the book. I have bought index cards with the idea that I will one day transfer them all over and keep them in one place but it hasn't happened yet. Maybe when we get an 8th day in the week I will find time to sit down and do it

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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Tue May 12, 2015 12:48 am 
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I avidly read through marking pages with many of the bookmarks we have about the place ... then in about a fortnight I go through again, pencil ticks or x marks against recipes I have tried ...

so many cookbooks! or cookery books as they are sometimes called over here ...

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 Post subject: Re: Your cookbook system.
PostPosted: Tue May 12, 2015 8:40 am 
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To pick recipes out of my actual cookbooks, we often play cookbook roulette (choose a number at random to select the book, then choose additional random numbers for the recipe). I usually give myself 3 recipe options and choose one or two of them.

For internet/blog-based recipes I have a Pinterest board.


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