I have several tags on WordPress.com which I frequently search through for new blogs and posts. I’m always looking for others who have the same interests as myself and who I can connect with. I found a post titled: How do you keep your recipes? and left a comment for Marianne regarding my method of organizing all of my loose recipes. I read other posts she had written and I now am following her blog and she is participating in my cook-through challenge. Inspired by my comment to that particular post on the Happily Mrs blog I want to share with all of you the method I currently use (and have used for several years) on organizing all of those recipes which my husband calls “it’s a keeper.”
In an earlier post I mentioned that I’ve kept loose recipes for years and mostly in a drawer. I sorted through and have really scaled down what I’m keeping to make and then when I cook through all of the loose recipes we decide whether to keep or discard them. Most times those recipes are given the thumbs up and happy face of my husband and he will say “it’s a keeper.” Translation: “don’t discard that and make sure it’s not lost; we’re eating that again.” That’s always a good feeling when your family really loves the food placed on the table for their nourishment. I had begun scrapbooking several years ago but I don’t do that anymore. I have so much scrapbooking supplies and don’t know what to do with it all. I then went on to papercrafts and mostly made, and continue to at times, homemade cards of all types. I have so much stationery and cards and don’t know what to do with them either, but that’s another story. Anyway, back to the scrapbooking supplies. When shopping with a friend and getting supplies several years ago I came across some sheets regarding recipes, kitchens, etc. and here is one of them:
I thought this was perfect for the font of a 3-ring binder which would then house my recipe collection which I would scrapbook for myself. Don’t you think it’s perfect? It’s got that vintage look and I absolutely love that!!
So off I was to begin scrappin’ my loose recipes which had to never get lost. I had already bought sheet protectors to fit into a 3-ring binder; had the scrapbook paper and old-school type 12×12″ paper cutter (which by the way is so worth the price since I use it for a lot!!) and just needed a binder.
I organize the binder much like a recipe book is organized. I have all of the same types of recipes together in the binder. I don’t use any type of tabs to find a section quicker because I do know where recipes are located in it from all of the years of use. Within the last year I had to begin a new binder and have moved the ‘main course’ recipes into that one while everything else is staying in the one above. I’m sure that will change as I acquire new recipes which must be kept. If the page of the recipe is a full sheet I typically just insert it into a sheet protector; if it is smaller I then attach it to a scrapbook sheet of paper which I cut to 8 1/2 x 11″ to fit into the sheet protector.
I have kept special recipes from family members in here as well so that they don’t get lost and I can look at their handwritten recipes as I wish. Here is sample of one which my late Mother had given to me at my wedding shower. It is in her handwriting and I found the most perfect scrapbook paper to attach it to. You may notice on the side that I have inserted a label which says ‘2010.’ That was the last year which she was able to home-can food and I saved that from one of her jars as a memento as well.
My Mother in law gave me several of her family recipes and I have them together (since they are Autumn dishes) on a cool Autumn sheet with a few brads which I attached (can’t you tell that I love Autumn and everything about it?! Even my scrapbooking supplies can tell you that!). 🙂
Sometimes I attach things using an adhesive when the complete recipes is on the front but if I must flip over the recipe card or sheet I will use photo corners so that I can do that without harm to the recipe (as above).
As I had looked through all of my Grandmother’s loose recipes I came across vintage things which she had and I don’t want to lose them either.
When I make a recipe for the first time I often will write the date and comments, including smiley face if appropriate, so that I know for the future. I do this in my recipe books as well as including my notations concerning substitutions/additions/deletions of ingredients (see below). I tried this recipe only last Thanksgiving for something different and others enjoyed it so I will make this again.
For me this method is working really well. My husband can even go to one of these binders to find a recipe if I’m not home and he will have no problems locating it.
I hope you enjoyed reading about my method of organizing the “keepers” and may even decide to try it out for yourself.