To the left of my sink is a slim, awkwardly sized cabinet that can’t hold much. I keep in it small decor items, the cookbooks I use most often, and a loose collection of recipes I found online and in magazines.
To the right of my stove, which is also diagonal to the slim cabinet, is a standard sized cabinet. Inside I store plates, bowls, platters, tea, my recipe box, and a loose collection of recipes I found online and in magazines.
This is a DELUXE RECIPE BINDER my dad bought me for Christmas, bless his heart. I put it in the return pile, and when I couldn’t figure out where he bought it, I put it in the donate pile. At some point I was curious and opened it up. It’s not my style and not anything I would buy, but it wasn’t half bad!
There are plenty of stickers and labels for food gifts and storage, matching loose-leaf paper, organized tabs and dividers (not enough, in my opinion), printer-friendly recipe cards, several at-a-glance cooking guides, and plenty of pockets (about 7) to store loose items. It’s not beautiful, but it sure is useful. I looked online and couldn’t find a DELUXE RECIPE BINDER with a modern aesthetic, but even if I did I wouldn’t buy one. This one is brand new and will do nicely. I would feel wasteful buying the same thing in a different pattern, especially since this one is nonreturnable.
I pulled out the recipe box and all my loose recipes. I thought the project would take me 20 minutes, tops. Fool!
So many of my online recipes were duplicates! And a few of them–the ones I’ve made over and over again–I remember printing out multiple times. My “system” was so unorganized, so nonexistent, that it was easier for me to go to the computer and print out another copy than rifle through a stack of stained, crumpled paper spread across two cabinets for a recipe I wasn’t sure I had.
I then tackled my recipe box, which was equally pathetic. I kept only a handful of recipes, three from my grandmother that I didn’t even know I had. The rest went in the garbage. I will write out the recipes I cut from packages or ripped from papers on the recipe cards provided. They are huge, which I like. My writing is large and sprawling; I can use the room.
I also did what I should have done years ago, and that’s slip the recipes into sheet protectors. That’s what took forever! But it’s done. Yay. I love that the binder tabs account for that and far enough that you can still see them. Fun fact: I blogged that recipe almost two years ago to the day right here.
In the end I was left with a neat, tidy, and easily accessed collection of recipes.
That didn’t fit in the cabinet. Sad trombone. Eventually (like, five minutes ago at 10:55pm as I was showing off my handiwork to the Mister) I figured out I could fit the binder if I stored it in the middle of the cabinet, away from the hinges and frames. And by “I figured out,” I mean the Mister pointed out what should have been obvious.
Before that revelation, I had decided to store it where I used to keep my recipe box. It wasn’t ideal, but I quickly found a silver lining. For starters, now I know what William Morris project I’m going to be tackling next week. Yowza.
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