Sunday, December 23, 2007

Create a Family Heirloom Cookbook

Create a Family Heirloom Cookbook
by: ARA


(ARA) - Almost every family has a treasured recipe, handed down through generations, that is not only beloved because it’s delicious, but because it evokes memories of favorite family get-togethers.

A family heirloom recipe book is a wonderful way to combine favorite dishes and family folklore. According to Cheryl Wolf, a performance artist and graphic design instructor at The New England Institute of Art, "Family recipes are a valuable resource for a family history. I have built an entire performance around my family's recipes and the stories they evoke! "Breaking bread" together is life-affirming. What better way to reach back and bring personal history to the present?"

Wolf adds, “A family recipe is also a family history, and can be a wonderful work of folk art.” For example, she says, take the opportunity to not only write down family recipes for generations to come, but include famous family stories (every family has them), photos and memorabilia as well.

But how to turn family culinary gems into actual recipes? Chef Peter Adams of the Illinois Institute of Art-Chicago has a few tips: “Start with a family letter, asking everyone to send back one or more of their ‘specialties’ by a particular date. Ask those who can to reply by email so you can cut and paste recipes right into your final document.”

If you have a relative who never writes down recipes (it seems like all the best recipes are never written down), but rather cooks by "a dash of this, a little bit of that,” consider having someone in your family be the “helper,” and prepare the dish along with them. Adams suggests the “helper” measure, guesstimate, and generally keep track of how the dish is prepared, including cooking times and temperatures. The “helper” should also be sure to ask about consistency, color, texture and doneness. According to Adams, “This last bit of information is always the most important part of passing along a recipe.” Once you have a written recipe, prepare it again according to the directions, and adjust the recipe as necessary to get as close as possible to the original.

When you’re asking for recipes, provide everyone with a similar format. For example, ask family members to list the ingredients to be used in order, together with the quantities. Lay out the steps that are needed in order to make the item, and always add little comments about what to look for as the dish is prepared, and when it is done. It can be a lot of work, especially with recipes that were never written down. But, says Adams, ultimately it’s worth it because you’ll be saving an important -- and delicious bit of your family’s history.

Once you have the recipes, you’ll want to create a look for your cookbook that reflects your family. A simple way to do this, says Meryl Epstein of The Art Institute of Phoenix, is to include family mementos or old photos, along with the recipes. A simple way to share one-of-a-kind memorabilia is to take them to a local copy center and make color copies.

“You can use the color copies you make as background, and print a recipe over the photo, or have the recipe on one page, and a photo on the facing page. You can also create a collage using items such as blue ribbons (won for a cooking), tickets stubs or airplane tickets from a favorite trip that produced a great recipe,” says Epstein.

For text, use simple fonts like Times Roman or Arial so that they are easy to read for all ages. Save decorative fonts for recipe titles or chapter headings. Consider creating a box -- with shading and borders -- for the recipe itself so that there is enough contrast between the recipe and any background artwork you use.

Epstein suggests writing an introduction about the cookbook, its organization and how family responded to the project. Be sure to date the book and have a table of contents so family and friends can easily find a favorite recipe. Here are a few of her suggestions for organizing recipes:

* by category, for example, appetizers, soups, salads, entrees and desserts

* by family, for example, grandmother, aunt and uncle, or cousin recipes

* by holiday, for example, favorite dishes for the 4th of July, Thanksgiving or Labor Day

To keep recipes easy to read and clean, consider putting them in plastic sleeves (available in craft and office supply stores) and then in 3-ring binders. Says Epstein, “This way, you can add a new recipe every year.”

Courtesy of ARA Content






About the author:
Courtesy of ARA Content

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

After the latest help relating to cooking recipes

After the latest help relating to cooking recipes.
by: Tom

When you are after top-quality advice about cooking recipes, you'll find it easier said than done separating value packed information from ill-equiped cooking recipes submissions and support so it is sensible to know how to moderate the information you are offered.

Find cooking recipes
Your relevant result is a click away!



Here are several guidelines which we sincerely believe you should use when you're searching for information about cooking recipes. Hold in mind the advice we tender is only pertinent to internet help on cooking recipes. We can't give you any guidance or tips for researching in 'real world' situations.

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A good hint to follow when you are presented with help or advice about a cooking recipes web would be to determine who owns the site. This may show you who owns the site cooking recipes credibility The easiest way to reveal who owns the cooking recipes site is to look for the 'about' page.

All reputable sites providing information about cooking recipes, will almost certainly provide an 'about' or 'contact' page which will record the owner's details. The details should disclose some indication about the website owner's expertise. You can then make a judgement about the vendor's insight and appreciation, to give recommendations about cooking recipes.


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About the author:

Tracey Mane is the webmaster for http://www.cooking-recipes.info

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Cookware what you need and what you don’t !

Cookware what you need and what you don’t !
by: mark Brading

Cookware is always a rather contentious subject. I have seen chefs turn up to even the simplest of cooking jobs carrying more than it would take to maintain your average oil tanker (though maybe this is not the best use for your cookware), when all that was really needed was a knife and something to sharpen it with.
So what are the real ”cookware essentials”, the things that you really can’t do without? Well surprisingly you actually need only a very small amount of things to get you going. Probably considerably less than you have already.

All the cookware you actually need is a good knife, a means of sharpening it, a chopping board and a couple of pans.You may prefer a bit more cookware but you can cook with just that.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m as partial to a kitchen full of mixers, blenders, electrical appliances and assorted useful, and otherwise, gadgets as the next person.
But although good quality cheap cookware ( yes it is possible )like grinders and blenders give you a lot more scope there are plenty of things that you can cook without them, but a good knife, or three, is absolutely essential.

The first and most essential piece of cookware you need is a cooks knife, thats as large as you feel comfortable with, an 8 inch knife with a blade that curves slightly to allow a rocking motion is a good start, then a smaller knife, about 4 inches, for cutting small vegetables and a carving knife.

If you buy one about 10 inches long it can also double as a bread knife. Although there is no point buying extra knifes just to line the pockets of the large kitchen eequipment manufacturers. A set can actually be quite good value and give you more for a similar amount of money. But check carefully what is in the set first.
If you cannot find a set with what you think will be useful to you, don’t buy it. Many sets come with extras like a case or wooden knife block but try to see past the free gifts. Its much better to have a few good knives in your drawer than a fancy polished beech wood block with fifteen designer knives, fourteen of which you never use, and one that is not the right shape for your hand and gives you blisters.
I have a small, not very expensive set of French Sabatiers that are comfortable but not as posh looking as some of the more fashionable makes like the Japanese globals which I find too light which makes chopping a lot of veg for example much harder work.

If you learn how to use them properly then steel or grinding stone is a good way to keep your knives sharp otherwise there are a good choice of proprietary sharpeners that keep the knife at the right angle while you pull it through the sharpener. Pans also need to be good quality, nothing over the top, no need to spend a fortune. Just make sure they are of a good solid construction.

This promotes good even heat distribution and helps to prevent things burning. Stainless steel is a good option. A good wok on the other hand should be made of a thin light steel and cost very little, but always check that it has a good well-fixed wooden handle. The best place to buy this most useful of pans is (perhaps unsurprisingly) usually the local Chinese supermarket. A good chopping board is another necessity though two are better than one as this helps to prevent cross contamination if you designate one for uncooked meats/fish etc.and another for things like fruit and salads.

No matter how much you think you will always be careful and wash them between uses this is the best single way to prevent contamination between foods. Mixers can be useful if you intend doing a lot of baking. But unless you make bread on a regular basis (always a good idea), then buying a simple, good quality hand held mixer rather than a heavy stand alone version could save you a couple of hundred dollars in as well as a lot of space on your worktop.

A blender is always useful for soups and the occasional smoothie, and a grinder will give you a lot more options in your use of nuts etc.and will also provide a constant supply of fresh coffee for the more manic cook. A good way to combine the functions of all three is to buy a food processor.

A good quality machine such as a Moulinex or Robot coupe will save space and allow you to buy a much better processor than if you bought there items separately. There is an almost unending list of kitchen equipment that you could buy (if in doubt walk into your local cookery shop and ask the owner what he thinks you need!), but make sure you get the essential good quality cookware right and it will make your cooking easier and more enjoyable.


About the author:
"http://nearlyhealthy.com" is a new quality easy recipe, cookery tips and information site, for great tasting food that is also easy to cook. Cooking should be a joy not a chore. Using the best ingredients and keeping it simple means your food tastes good with the minimum of fuss. . Cookery book reviews, we choose the best in current and classic recipe books and food travel writers. Also product and good food suppliers.
Need to know the best food processor we take the time to choose so you don't have to. Need to know where to find the best organic pork? We bring you the best suppliers and information.
We have started small but will add more and more content over the coming weeks so do keep checking back. We look forward to seeing you and listening to your comments and feedback.
http://www.nearlyhealthy.com

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Cooking Aprons: An Overview

Cooking Aprons: An Overview -
by: Thomas Morva


We all take notice of the chefs in our favorite restaurant, at one point or another. We recognize them by their signature hats and chef aprons. Chefs have used cooking aprons for a countless number of years. Not only is it the attire-of-choice at many high-end restaurants, chef aprons are a functional accessory to their wardrobe.

Chefs wear cooking aprons for several reasons. One reason is that they are dealing with a variety of food ingredients for many hours each day. They have to have a means of keeping their clothing free from dirt, stains and odors. They also need pockets to carry utensils from one part of the kitchen to another. Chef aprons serve a variety of purposes and most of us will admit that chefs wearing cooking aprons have a more professional look.

Men and women have worn kitchen aprons for centuries. Traditionally, women have been the primary homemakers in a family. Although times have certainly changed and things are not as cut-and-dry as they were before, the same tends to hold true. Kitchen aprons have been an important piece of attire in women's history. The use of cooking aprons likely precedes that of written history with several scholars noting the use of aprons even in the time of Adam and Eve.

Kitchen aprons, or cooking aprons, have been worn to protect clothing from dirt, grime and smelly odors. They serve as a towel to dry freshly scrubbed hands. The pockets of kitchen aprons have been a wonderful tool for carrying utensils, kindling wood or even an occasional treat for a child. It is simply amazing to consider the long and rich history of cooking aprons and how they have changed along with societal standards. Today’s kitchen aprons still serve the same functional purposes but tend to come in a larger variety of styles, colors and with catchy one-liners.

About the author:
Aprons Info provides detailed information about various types of aprons, including humorous, personalized, child, cooking, and lead aprons, as well as apron sinks, and more. Aprons Info is affiliated with Original Content.