Saturday, October 6, 2012

Tools Rule!

It is very likely that I have an illness.  An addiction illness.  An addiction illness that compels me to get cookbooks every time I am near a place that sells or loans books.

Even THOUGH, I have more than enough cookbooks on my shelves already...and there MORE than enough recipes in those cookbooks to keep me occupied three meals a day/seven days a week/fifty-two weeks of the rest of my life.  When I bought my first cookbook (not received as a wedding gift), a conversation with my husband went like this:

Me (with fervent excitement): Hey, look at this!  I got a new cookbook today!  Whee!

Him (with equal excitement): Great!  You'll make lots of amazing food with that!

But years later...

Me: (with fervent excitement): Hey, I got a neeeeeeeew cookbook today!  Whee!

Him:  Er.  Yes.  Okay.

But I don't let him stomp on my parade.  It makes me happy and it's less expensive and damaging than an addiction to methamphetamines.  So I carry on.

Imagine how happy I am these days with the advent of the Internet, because I now have access to millions more recipes online.  Free!  With pictures!  Somebody catch me whilst I swoon!

I've had success with recipes at www.allrecipes.com and www.recipe.com.  Yesterday, however, I came across two websites that might surpass all recipe websites and cookbooks.


www.punchfork.com is an organizational site that looks very similar to Pinterest, except exclusive to food.  When I reviewed my pantry inventory, the standout ingredient (thanks to Costco) was farfalle pasta.  Seventy-nine recipes turned up when I searched 'farfalle' at Punchfork.  And not a whole lot of cream soup-type casseroles, either.  These recipes come across as a bit more upscale (although, not pretentious, I think), containing items like porcini mushrooms, salmon, spring peas, pistachios, etc.  The only drawback is that many of these recipes are concerned about taste and look, primarily, with nutrition coming in third.  But, you know, everything in moderation...


www.yummly.com is the second neat little site I came across on the Internets.  While the look of Punchfork is much more alluring, initially....Yummly might be the diamond in the rough.  Entering 'farfalle' into the search engine garners 501 recipes, and the variety is nice (Farfalle and Tuna Casserole next to Farfalle with Mascarpone, Asparagus, and Hazelnuts).  Nutritional information is available as well.  But, here's the gem: look at the left-hand side...nearly twelve filters that will pare down the 501, all to the searcher's particular taste.  When I changed the 'Savory' bar to 'Really Like' and the 'Sweet' bar to 'Really Dislike' and clicked the 'Vegetarian' box, the 501 was whittled down to thirteen.  And when I clicked the 'Cholesterol' bar down to less than 16mg per serving and the 'Main Dish' bar - that number dropped to two. 

It may be too early to predict and it certainly pangs me to say it...but maybe the days of buying cookbooks are over.

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