Some years ago I came up with this low-calorie Applesauce Muffins recipe to replace the very tempting, calorie-laden cupcakes that are available seemingly everywhere.
I was in the mood for vegetarian one day last week, so I peeked into the fridge and found a big bag of fresh spinach. Then I checked my canned goods pantry and found a big can of garbanzo beans in the back. (Probably intended to make hummus with them, but, well, that never happened.)
So, on to the fresh spinach and garbanzos dish I was about to create. What would make that taste good, I thought. How about adding some garlic, onion and tomatoes for some extra flavor, and a little lemon juice for sparkle? This spinach and garbanzos dish was beginning to remind me of some Mediterranean-style foods I’ve enjoyed.Continue reading
Do you have people on your gift list that love items made from sustainable resources?
We at Cookbook People like to help Mother Earth whenever possible. That’s why we carry a range of environment-conscious “green” gifts made from sustainably-sourced bamboo. Continue reading
Springtime is an inspirational time to clean, dust, and renew all the nooks and crannies and other crevices that have been neglected during the winter months. It’s also a good time to weed out those extraneous recipes and notes in your family recipe card box or recipe file box.
Spring cleaning your family recipe card box or recipe file box doesn’t have to be a big chore. It can be done while watching your favorite TV reality show (all you multi-taskers take note), waiting for your hair-color to reach maximum tint, or riding in a car during a lengthy trip. All you really need is a bag for discards, and a small surface for sorting.Continue reading
There are as many reasons to make a cookbook as there are people. The 10 reasons to make a cookbook listed below are some of the top ones our readers and cookbook software users have told us:
1. Everybody loves my food.
Friends tell me I’m a great cook and that they would like to have my recipes. If I type it up once, I can print it a hundred times!
2. I need to get organized.
I’m tired of looking through 10 cookbooks, 5 drawers, a recipe card box, and under the refrigerator for all my recipes.
3. I want my mom’s ginger snaps to be enjoyed by my grandkid’s grandkids one day.
My uncle’s/grandmother’s/grandkid’s recipes need to be saved and enjoyed for future generations.
4. Feed my ego!
I have always wanted to have a cookbook published.
5. I need one more book!
My cookbook collection is too big, but I could pick out the recipes I like from all of them and then give the extra cookbooks away.
6. The handwriting is on the wall (and I can’t read it!)
I would like to take all those handwritten scraps I have in my recipe box and make them easy to find.
7. Reunion coming!
My family is having a reunion /wedding soon, and a cookbook of family recipes would be a fabulous keepsake.
My church / company / club / non-profit does such great potlucks, we should make a cookbook and sell it to make money for projects / supplies / charity / promotions.
9. Who wants to scroll with (literal) butterfingers?
The recipes on my computer are sometimes inconvenient to use, so I want a hard copy to refer to when cooking.
10. I need to save money.
I need inexpensive gifts to give for the holidays, and I can print out 10 cookbook gifts for under $10 each.
If you are reading this page, most likely you are thinking about your own reasons to make a cookbook: fundraising, preservation of family traditions, ego, downsizing, personal-touch presents for others.
No matter what your reason is to make a cookbook, any time is the perfect time to start your cookbook making project. Be sure your choice of cookbook making software offers a variety of options. We are partial to our own Matilda’s Fantastic Cookbook Software, but there are many options available for cookbook makers. Be sure to choose the one you are comfortable using, suits your purpose, and is easy to operate.
There are lots of really good reasons to use Word. Making a family cookbook isn’t one of them. Here’s why:
1. It’s distracting. You will spend more time worrying about formatting your Word document than you will thinking about writing Cousin Dilbert’s Peanut Brittle recipe.
2. You won’t make your cookbook in Word consistently. Sometimes you’ll remember to Bold it. Sometimes you won’t. Sometimes the picture of the recipe is above it. Sometimes below it. With our cookbook software all the consistency is built-in for you.
3. One word: “indent.” If that doesn’t make you scared of Word, how about “bullets and numbering?” At some point, you’ll try to use it in Word and things will get out of alignment, and you’ll go crazy.
4. Adding new recipes in the middle of the cookbook. You’ll want to do it, but scrolling down to find that spot will be a pain in Word. Once you are there, all the pages after it will get re-formatted. Our software lets you easily find any recipe you want, and adding a new recipe is as simple as clicking “Add new recipe.”
5. You will have to re-type the same thing over and over. With our software, you just select an author name from a menu. You can’t mis-spell it. Same thing for recipe categories (Fish, Salad, Breads, etc).
6. You’ll have to manually figure out a Table of Contents section. Unless you can figure out how to do references, creating a TOC in Word is not easy. With our software you hit a button and your Contents section prints out. It’s that easy.
7. How do you add a degree symbol (°F)? A spanish N (±)? How do I add in a Birthday Calendar? An address book? Our software makes it simple to do all these things, and more, with a few clicks.
Check out our family cookbook software. It’s extremely affordable, and it’ll save you a lot of hassles over using Word.
One powerful feature in using my cookbook software to preserve family cooking traditions is the ability to standardize family recipes that have been handed down for generations. Standardize the macaroni casserole so beloved by your grandfather? Sacrilege!
Not really. Let me explain.
Standardizing family recipes can be the single most important way to preserve the taste of the dishes over time (aside from creating the actual cookbook, of course).
You remember that macaroni from childhood days, but when you make it from the tattered sheet of paper your mother gave you that your grandmother wrote, you say, “It just doesn’t taste the same.” Why? Because ingredients can change as ideas about food (who thought of trans fats 50 years ago?) and new food manufacturing techniques come into play.
Take a look at that original family recipe. Does it tell you enough in detailed terms to really be able to duplicate the taste you remember? Chances are it does not. The specific brand of butter, the type of cheese, the exact cooking time, all make a difference in the final dish.
Being able to clarify both measurements and ingredients serves to improve the quality and integrity of the dish over generations rather than dilute it. (Who wants to preserve a generic family recipe?)
So, be sure to describe a family recipe’s ingredients as specifically as possible. For example, using the term 1 teaspoon of fresh baking soda suggests NOT digging out the open box that has spent several years in the back of the refrigerator as a deodorizer.
Also, add sizes to the vegetables or fruits called for in the family recipe. The juice of 3 medium lemons is better than “juice of 3 lemons.” Better yet is “½ cup of lemon juice, freshly squeezed.”
I think you see what I mean. So, when you are using my cookbook software to make your family recipe book, keep in mind that it is better to name names. Precisely!
Get it for nearly half price on our site (compared to our Amazon price).
Sometimes I wonder who first tried to eat an artichoke (and why). Was it some hungry creature searching for moisture in the artichoke being watched by an equally hungry caveman (no offense intended to the Geico Neanderthals)? Either one must have been pretty desperate to rip off all those prickly artichoke leaves.
Nowadays, most people use a very sharp knife to cut through the fibrous artichoke leaves to remove the thorny leaf tips. Personally, I like to peel off any scruffy outer leaves from the artichoke, and then snip off the remaining artichoke leaf tips with my kitchen shears. (I find that I have better control and won’t slice my fingers in case I have a senior moment.)
Here are two quick, simple, tasty artichoke recipes (most) anyone will like:
1. STEAMED ARTICHOKES & LEAF DIP
My favorite way to eat an artichoke is steamed. Honestly, they aren’t much of a stomach filler. Just a “green” taste, really, and fun for party conversation. Although lots of people eat the steamed artichoke leaves dipped in melted butter, my version of a leaf dip is richer and a good excuse to eat something more satisfying.
Steam trimmed artichokes until the heart is soft (when you can easily stick a fork into the bottom and feel no resistance). The cooking time will vary, depending on the size of the artichoke. Drain and set aside to cool. Serve artichokes on a salad plate (or small bowl) with Leaf Dip, as follows, on the side.
Use about ½ cup of mayonnaise for every artichoke serving. For each serving, add garlic powder, ground oregano (or ground marjoram), lemon juice, and salt to taste. Add enough of the garlic and oregano until you are scared you’ve added too much. Mix well. The dip should have a green tint to it. Let it sit and mellow while the artichokes cook. Serve in small dipping dishes with the artichoke. (Great for other vegetables, too.)
2. ARTICHOKE PASTA SALAD
This artichoke recipe is so easy, I shouldn’t even include it here. But we all need some quick, simple and tasty recipes once in awhile. I like this dish because pasta salad is usually so bland, and this “recipe” has a bright piquant flavor thanks to marinated artichoke hearts.
Make your favorite pasta salad recipe, using bow tie pasta, some capers, black olives and chopped roasted red pepper for color. Take a whole jar of marinated artichoke hearts (any size) and puree them in the blender. Pour over the pasta salad and toss. Instantly better, no matter how much dressing you had in it previously. (This is a great quick, simple, tasty sauce substitute for pesto or red tomato sauces, too.)
Try my artichoke recipe ideas next time you want to do an artichoke dish. If you like them, I wouldn’t mind if you want to add them to your family cookbook using the recipe template provided in our cookbook software. Check out more artichoke recipes via your favorite search engine on the Internet.
I think you’re really going to love our new utensil caddy. It’s the perfect storage box for all your wood spoons, spatulas, whisks and more, and it’s a perfect match for our very popular engraved utensils.
It’s normally $24.99, but we’re offering an introductory special right now for just $8.99!
That’s my hand above!
We’re really proud of our new spice rack. You can adjust it literally over a thousand different ways to get just the combination you want, or just use it to store 30 spices right out of the box!
Check out our lovely new smaller recipe cards here!
People love our organizer boxes
These are so versatile and come in a wide variety of designs. Come see our different Multikeep organizer gift boxes here!
Engraved Recipe Box
We love happy customers sharing their recipe boxes. Order this recipe box here!
We’ve added new recipe boxes!
Check out these gorgeous Made In the USA recipe boxes. They can be personalized with your own name or wedding date on them. See the cherry recipe box selection here.
We now offer custom-printed recipe cards! For just 3 dollars extra you can have all 40 cards arrive with your name pre-printed on them. Click here to see the full personalized recipe card selection!
Debbie won our weekly prize of $75 for her great video of our wood spoons. We love seeing people still happy with Cookbook People goodies long after they buy them!