If you are a “Foodie” or what is considered a “Food Enthusiast”, one can never have enough cookbooks, right???? Or is it just me?
My cookbook collection takes up two 5-shelf bookcases in my living room. OK, so some of the space is taken up with cooking magazines and binders full of recipes that I’ve printed. But they count, don’t they? I’m ashamed to say I have some books that can’t fit on the shelves, so they are stashed in my room. I even had old Cooking Light (back from the late 80’s to the early 1990’s) and other magazines saved in boxes with my husband’s comic books. The only reason I was able to part with the magazines is because I figured I could still get the recipes online, even though I have no idea what recipes were actually in the magazines. Sad, very very sad. Although, before we moved, I did get up the courage and went through the cookbooks and magazines, I was able to get rid of some that I felt were a little, hmmm, shall we say debatable as far as decent recipes or could be considered outdated, (you know the ones I’m talking about, think aspic)
Truthfully, even if I cooked one recipe a day for the rest of my life, I probably would not be able to finish trying all of them. BUT, will I get rid of them? HECK NO! They are part of me at this point. I can just see it now, me being the “Cookbook Lady” (cat lady but with cookbooks). “Ooh don’t go by that weirdo lady’s house, it’s going to explode from all her cookbooks”. Could you imagine?
Anyway, I really try to restrain myself or I’ll either be competing against Barnes and Noble or need intervention, not quite sure which it’s going to be. I may decide to go off the wagon for Ree Drummond when she releases her new book, The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Dinnertime: Comfort Classics, (ooh, can’t wait). But the collecting recipe part hasn’t stopped; have your ever heard of the internet? This is the Foodie’s dream to be able to get any kind of recipe at any time for free. Yeah!
Now, the question is how to organize all these recipes, books, magazines. Well there are plenty of ways to organize your printed recipes or those you collect on the internet. You can use Pinterest or one of app style organizers such as Cheftap, Paprika or just manually the old fashioned way; need I say, in a binder? Personally I use Mastercook; I’ve been using it for years and have been successful with it. With this program, I’m able to pull recipes from the web and index them right into one of the cookbooks in the program. Do I have all my recipes organized, heck no, but the program helps. This program comes with cookbooks and can add your recipes to create your own cookbook. How great is that? Especially, if you want to print one out to give it to someone as a gift, for Christmas, a bridal shower or just to pass down those secret family recipes. Yeah, now you got it.
Hey but what about all those cookbooks and magazines? Well now we’re getting to the heart of the article. I use Eat Your Books. Get this, you can either manually enter in the ISBN number of the book, use a hand scanner, your smartphone with a bar code app to scan the code into the website or you could search their library and add the book from there. Then it lists all your books and magazines on “My bookshelf”. You can also list all your favorite cooking blogs from their index and enter recipes. Now it’s all in one place. Is it perfect? No. Some books are not in their library index, in that case you have a choice to request the website to index the book for you or you can input all the information about the book manually. What’s really neat, for those books that are in the library they have a picture of the book.
Along with keeping your cooking index on file, they also have really great blog articles and a forum as well. What you do need to know is that it is a pay site, according to their information, it’s a $30 annual membership with $3 monthly fee. It’s just my opinion, I think it’s worth it. But you can check it out for yourself.
So to recap, my favorite website to organize your cookbooks and magazines is www.eatyourbooks.com and to organize on your personal computer is the Mastercook Program, which can be purchased and downloaded at www.mastercook.com