November 16, 2008

Starting a new menu and my recipe binder

Well, my current menu ends on Friday so it's time for me to start planning my new menu which will include Thanksgiving. First, I've looked at my calendar to see how long I should make my current menu. Since it includes Thanksgiving, I'm hoping I can make it stretch 2 weeks. After I think about how long the menu should be I start making a list of meals that I've been craving. On my current list is homemade potato soup, pineapple pork chops, homemade chicken pot pie, chicken manicotti, and pumpkin spice muffins. There's no way I'll be able to fit all of those into my menu due to time constraints during the week but it gives me a jumping off point! I also turn to my past menus for ideas and I flip through my recipe binder (see last paragraph of entry). 
Since Thanksgiving is soon, I'm thinking mostly about my long weekend menu. Even though it's just DH and I, I'm making a whole turkey. We'll see how that goes since I've never actually cooked a turkey myself before. I've done a breast in the past, but this year I want a lot of leftovers. I don't want to cook all weekend, so we're just going to be turkey'ed out by that Sunday afternoon. :) As for sides, I know I'll be making some homemade rolls and my potato casserole. Chances are I'll make whiskey glazed carrots, mashed sweet potatoes, and squash casserole too. I'll post recipes soon, as soon as I find them all cause I haven't made the potatoes and squash in a long time so I don't think they've made it into my recipe binder yet.

I guess now is a good time to talk about my recipe obsession. I have three cookbooks. That's all. One I bought. Two were given to me. I bought Better Homes and Garden's cookbook. If you don't own this one, go out and buy it. I've seen it in MANY bookstores on clearance. Usually it's "older" edition, but with cooking you don't need the "newest" edition. I have made several recipes out of this book and I've taken ideas from others. As for the other two, one is a Rachael Ray given to me by my aunt. I've read through it and never made a single thing out of it. Many of her "common ingredients" I don't have in my house. I find many things to not be so common. I'm not about to buy an item or a spice for one recipe. If I'm not going to use it repeatedly in many dishes, I'm not going to buy it. I'm too cheap for that. The other recipe book is a baking book, Joy of Cooking. I have made a few recipes out of here, but nothing sticks out in my mind as GREAT. Personally, I enjoy making recipes that I know others have made and raved about. I'm not about to buy ingredients to make something that's just so-so. My time and money is not worth it. What I've done is make my own recipe binder. I print out recipes from online and I type up other recipes that I've been making from memory or have been told to me verbally. I put each recipe in its own page protector and insert it into the binder. My sections are breakfast, meats/main dishes, pastas, veggies, breads, desserts, and other. Basic and to the point. And now I'm able to easily find my favorite recipes without having to turn on my computer, and with the page protectors I can pull the recipe out and cook without worrying about damage to it. Most of my recipes are saved on my computer along with being in my binder. 

1 comment:

Lindsay said...

I just made chicken pot pie last week and it turned out wonderfully! I posted the recipe at MRE's: not for me. A recipe blog/collection from military spouses (or fiances....).

I use the binder method too. Only I had to seperate into three seperate binders. One for appetizers and sides, one for main dishes, and one for desserts.

If you have any recipes to post on MRE's: not for me, just let me know!