Archive | March, 2012

36 Recipes

3 Mar

Recipe Exchange Email Ok. So have you ever gotten an email like this one? It suggests that you send off one of your favorite recipes into the ether and see what recipes other’s send  back to you. While I love the idea of sharing recipes with friends, I must admit that this has always seemed like a really inconvenient, clunky way to share recipes.

Once you receive the recipes, then what? Print out the individual pages to make some sort of binder to actually be able to use them? Reformat them into a recipe management software? Transcribe the recipes on to index cards and keep them in your recipe box?

Cookbook Create solves this problem. You can request recipes and when your friends or loved ones submit their recipes they will automatically appear in your recipe box where you can easily organize them for easy access in the future.


Making a Family Cookbook

3 Mar


Recipe for Granny Bright's Iced Tea

After extensive research, I couldn’t find a site that would help me collect all of my family recipes and produce a cookbook in an easy way, at least not in the way I had imagined. It was apparent that the online tools for making a cookbook hadn’t really caught up with the advances in Web 2.0 and self-publishing technology.

I wanted to be able to take my the hand written version of Granny Bright’s Iced Tea recipe and get all of the other important family recipes from my relatives to include in one cookbook. I wished there was a place where I could invite my family members to collaborate and share recipes, family photos, and memories in a group setting – place where we all could contribute content to the cookbook. The tool would then allow me to design and edit a sleek, modern cookbook similar to SnapFish or Shutterfly, but designed specifically to manage recipes, photos and memories.

The more I explored, the more I heard other’s visions for producing their own cookbooks. I knew that lots of people were working on making their own cookbook, but without the aid of tools that were well designed to make their job easier. I heard time and time again that people needed a better way to share the recipes that matter to them. Whether its a way to swap recipes with your civic association, book club or a a group of friends or family.

Our mission was born: build a place where anyone can share recipes that matter with the people they choose and publish their collections as cookbooks.

What’s in a Cookbook?

3 Mar
Family Cookbook

Curran Family Cookbook given to Anita Curran in 1969 by her sister Peggy.

In 1969 my Aunt gave my mother a Cookbook with several family recipes hand written in the first pages of the book. The rest of the pages were blank, ready for my mother to add to over the years. She added dozens of recipes but mostly by folding clippings and sheets of paper into the back of the book.

Thanks to that cookbook, I have the famous recipe for my maternal grandmother’s iced tea (it may be all the sugar that makes it so famous), and some other favorites like Gillian’s Tuna Salad. (When’s the last time your tuna salad got raves?)

Having my mother’s cookbook and making the recipes it contained makes think of the people who have shared these recipes. One of the dishes my mother used to make when I was young, Cherry Clafoutis, always brings me back and makes me feel special.

When Nana’s name (my father’s mother) comes up in conversation it’s hard to avoid the subject of her legendary chocolate drop cookies. As it turns out the version of the recipe that were written down didn’t yield the delicious treats that my father fondly remembered from his childhood. I’ve tried to re-create the recipe, but so far no luck. How I wished that I was able to learn the trick from my grandmother while she was able to teach me.

And then there are all of the recipes that friends have shared with me over the years. Every time I make cornbread pudding, I think of my dear friend Karolyn, who makes the most amazingly tasty treats. Her recipe has become one of our family favorites. Kim’s mother is an unbelievable chef– maybe because of her french heritage. She taught me how to make classic Madeleines. It is time for me to get my own Madeleine tin and stop borrowing hers!

So what’s in a cookbook? Every cookbook is a representation of a way of life; Recipes are an expression of how people celebrate, congregate, and console. Each cookbook is a collection of the recipes that matter to the creator. It’s what they want to share with the world. Reminders of loved ones, memories of good times, and holiday traditions that’s what’s in a cookbook.

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