Monday, May 3, 2010

Best of Intentions

I use to have a recipe book that was covered with a black and white asparagus print. The book was optimistically purchased after I moved into my first post-college apartment with one of my oldest friends. I remember when and where I bought it. I was in a bookstore downtown on a Sunday afternoon I spent musing about how our tiny two bedroom in SE Portland would provide a perfect backdrop for brunches, cocktail parties and special roommate dinners.

The book moved with me to Seattle, where I dreamed about buying the ingredients for the recipes I'd started to collect at Pike Place Market. I was certain my new living companion would happily benefit from all the cooking I was going to do. From Queen Anne to South Lake Union (SLU), SLU to Eastlake and back again to Queen Anne, the book bounced from one tiny kitchen counter to the next. I spent years stuffing the thing full of recipes I'd ripped from magazines, printed from the Internet or scribbled down during phone calls with family.

In all honesty, I probably only made a handful of the dozens of recipes that spilled out of the book's pages. It seemed every time I decided to make something special I'd find a different recipe that seemed better. And then I came into a rather large collection of past issues of Bon Appetit, Food and Wine and Gourmet (tear) and got lost in them. The book was admittedly a victim of neglect.

I had the best of intentions though. Still do. But now it's gone, disappearing after the latest move. I've searched the apartment and think it probably got recycled with a box of old InStyles. While I realize I could probably easily pull some of its contents--like the recipe for a maple Dijon glaze (one of the recipes I actually made, a whole three times)--from the Internet, I still feel I'm in need of a way to keep some handwritten replacements. Online recipes for things like my mom's sausage stuffing or my grandma's chocolate chip pumpkin bread won't do, so my darling sister is now going to have to recite and send the details for the versions I grew up loving.

I found these cute vintage-looking recipe cards from Rifle Paper Co. via a Bon Appetit tweet that seem like a pretty perfect start (over):

But I still need something to house them. Tasting Table is pushing Moleskin's recipe journal, but I'm not sure it's for me. So I'm putting it on my list of possible Paris or Provence purchases during my upcoming vacation later this month. Some might call the idea of a recipe book obsolete. But I love the thought of it, especially if it comes from a trip that will in theory yield a story as good as the recipes.

*Photos from Bon Appetit and Rifle Paper Co.

1 comment:

  1. i think this is beautiful.
    i love love love this and you.

    what a wonderful purchase idea for europe.