Brooding On

Recipe Organization

As I've mentioned before, I must be a tactile person.  I know that there are lots of more technologically advanced ways to keep recipes organized, but I LOVE my Big 'Ole Scrapbook Cookbooks.  Here's what they look like sitting in their place of honor on my "station" (that's what we call Mom's Command Center at our house).
You may be thinking . . .they're just 3-ring binders.  That's exactly right.  Two giant 3-ring-binders.  Volume 1 is basically everything not in Volume 2.  Volume 2 houses the main dishes.

I use cardstock paper so that the pages are more substantial and slide each page into a page protector (to protect it from errant splashes and drips).  Notice the watermelons?  Our town is known for its great watermelons, so we use watermelons rather than stars for our rating system.  (A 5 Watermelon rating is an honor reserved for only the very best recipes -- I think there are only 3 in this whole book!)

Because it's done scrapbook style, anything can be put into this book:  the recipe your friend wrote out for you at her dinner party, the recipe you got in your email because you actually did one of those recipe chain mail things, the clipping from your Real Simple magazine (lots of those in this book), the recipe your Grandma wrote out for you on one of her old-timey recipe cards, the photocopy of your late mother-in-law's pizza sauce recipe, so that you get to read it in her handwriting every time you make it.  Are you starting to get the picture?  It's not just about the keeping the recipes all in one place.  It's about keeping the memory of how that recipe came to you. 

Each binder is divided into categories.

Only recipes that we've tried and liked go into the book.  Ones that I've found and would like to try go in the front pocket until they've had a chance to vie for a prized spot in the book.

I no longer have need of other cookbooks.  And, yes, I've used my Betty Crocker app and several Pinterest recipes, but if we like them, they get printed out and placed in the book.  I know. I know.  I'm just old school like that.