I also have a collection of the recipes used by three generations of home cooks: my mother, her mother, and her mother’s mother. A great treasure, I know. Right now they’re scattered between several index cards, old newspaper and magazine clippings. Wouldn’t it be great if they were included in the family cookbook, along with my own recipes, as well as the modifications I’ve made to some of their recipes? Can you imagine it? Four generations of home cook’s experience in one binder. It boggles my mind.
With that boggled mind, I started compiling these recipes into a book. It’s been slow going. To make it easier I’ve been using some cookbook software, but I’ve got a very old copy that will need to be replaced sometime soon. I settled on a few categories that made sense for me:
- Salads and Dressings
- Soups and Stews
- Rice, Grains and Beans
- Pasta and Pizza
- Eggs and Breakfast
Next, I got a large 3-ring binder and created divider cards for each category.
The next, ongoing, step is going through my blog archives and the recipes from my ancestors, entering them one at a time into my cookbook software. The software allows me to insert pictures, so I’ve been doing that where I could, as well. As I add them, I print them and put them in the notebook. To help get the rest of the family involved, I asked my oldest daughter, a growing talent in graphic arts, to design the cover.
I’m both excited and daunted by the project. It’s a kind of “family food history,” a genealogy of familial food. When I finish it, I’m planning on making a gift of it to my siblings and other relatives. I hope they like it, but it's a long way off.
How do you organize your family’s recipes?