How To Make A Homemade Cookbook
Collecting recipes from magazines, websites and newspapers is a favorite pastime of most cooks but where do you keep them? I’ll help you find a way to store all of those delicious recipes in a notebook.
The problem with bookmarking is that websites close down or move to a new address and then you can’t find that wonderful meatloaf recipe you saved in your files last year.
Another problem is getting flour and goo on your laptop while cooking. I don’t like a dirty computer so this bothers me not to mention the fact that flour plus water makes glue and glued keys don’t work so well.
Notebooks work great for recipes
This is old school but still my favorite method of keeping recipes. I have some from all the way back in junior high. We won’t discuss how many years but it’s a lot.
If you have hundreds of recipes and your notebook starts to get really full you can buy more than one notebook and organize them by sections. I have one notebook for just desserts, another for bread and a third one for main dishes, drinks, canning and side dishes. Divide yours into whatever you use most frequently.
The beauty of making your own is that you can file them any way you choose and label them to your own specifications.
You can get colors or just the plain office supply store black with the label holder on the spine. This is what I have and it works fine. Right before school starts you can pick up fancy ones with pictures on them at bargain prices. I’ve mostly seen animals, celebrities, the latest popular hero or movie but you might find some with pictures of food.
Make sure your notebook can be wiped with a wet cloth. I’ve seen fancy fabric covered recipe books at craft stores that would be covered in ingredients by the time I got through with them and would look pretty gross after a while, so make sure they can be easily cleaned.
I'm a bit messy when I cook (which is why I don’t allow my computer in the kitchen) so I cover my most used recipes in page protectors. This can be a bit expensive if you have a large collection but if you pick up a few every once in a while when you are out shopping eventually you will have enough to cover all of your pages keeping them muck free.
July and August when school supplies go on sale is the best time to buy office supplies.
Start out covering the pages you use most. Food slopped on a page makes it difficult to read and swiping your hand across it when damp smears the writing. I know, I have had to rewrite a few recipes due to smeared up pages. They say a messy cook is the best so I must be really good.
Printing recipes from the computer
As I mentioned above, cooking websites sometimes move or if your computer crashes and you didn’t save all your bookmarks to a flashdrive then you are in a pickle. Also you can easily take a recipe page with you if you need it away from home.
Most recipe websites will have a print friendly button that helps you keep from printing all the sidebar stuff that you don’t need or want to waste ink on.
You can print in color if you want but I usually print my pages in gray scale to save color ink.
You will need a three hole punch
These make it easy to poke holes evenly without having to measure and you get all three holes punched in one step.
If you haven’t invested in page protectors you can tape down the hole punch side with good transparent tape before punching the holes to reinforce the edge. After years these tend to get stressed and will eventually tear out.
Recipes that are more than one page can be stapled together with the print sides out along the outer edge keeping these pages together. This is important because over time sometimes pages get separated from each other. If you’ve stapled them together this will insure they stay together. Nothing more frustrating then trying to find the second half of a recipe digging through all your pages and pages of recipes. They add up over time.
Handwriting or typing recipes
In the dark ages I hand wrote a lot of recipes on notebook paper, I still do this today, actually. Sometimes I type them out on a Word document and then print them off just depends on what I’m doing and where I am.
I carry plain notebook paper in my purse so I can copy recipes down at the doctor’s office. A couple of times I ran out of time and a receptionist was nice and offered to copy the recipe for me on their copy machine but I wouldn’t ask, they are busy.
You can also write down a recipe when at a family get together where food is served or potluck dinner at work or church. Anywhere there is good food and a potential for getting a new recipe, I take sheets of notebook paper.
Recipes from magazines and newspapers
Here at home I cut out recipes from old periodicals and tape them to sheets of notebook paper and store in my homemade cookbooks. You can use glue or whatever works for you. If you tape them be sure to use good quality tape or after a while it will discolor your pages and come unstuck.
- Healthy Muffins
Muffins are a great way to get your family to eat healthier.