the art of recipe organisation

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Ever cooked something amazing and then struggled to find the recipe next time you wanted to make it?

I certainly have.

Actually one of the reasons I decided to start this blog back in 2005, was because I wanted to keep a record of what I’d been cooking. And stop losing my favourite recipes.

I was reminded of this recently when I was contacted by a Stonesoup reader, looking for help with keeping her recipes organised.

So today I thought I’d share my current recipe organisation system. It’s a constantly evolving process – so if you have any suggestions, I’d love to hear them.

the art of recipe organisation – 3 easy steps

1. Moleskine Notebook
Whenever I’m testing recipes or just playing around and come up with something really great – I write it down in my current moleskine notebook. Not exactly searchable but better than forgetting.

2. Stonesoup & The Stonesoup Virtual Cookery School

Having a blog and a cooking school is a great way to makes sure your favourite recipes are safely stored online. I have a recipe index but I find I use the search box in the side bar all the time.

Feel free to adopt Stonesoup as your own free recipe resource or signup to the Virtual Cookery School to get access to ALL my recipes.

3. Evernote account.

Gone are the days of having scraps of recipes torn out from magazines and newspapers and dog-eared cookbooks. And forget about bookmarking recipes on blogs or even worse, copying and pasting them into a separate location.

Get yourself an evernote account and you won’t look back.

Anything I come across online, I clip into my evernote recipe file.

But that’s not all!

I also have the Evernote app for my iphone so when I read a recipe in a cookbook, or magazine or on the back of a packet, I just take a photo and upload it into my Evernote account.

And it gets even better. The evernote is able to search text in images as well as other files so there’s no need to organise your notes. A simple text search will find what you’re looking for, even if the recipe was uploaded as an image.

salted chocolate chip cookies7

salted chocolate chip cookies
makes about 10 huge cookies

Adapted from the talented Molly Wizenberg from Orangette. And I agree with Molly that these cookies are better when they’re cool. Straight from the oven they’re overpoweringly rich.

At the risk of being kicked out of the dark chocolate lovers club, these cookies are actually better with a lower cocoa content chocolate. I used a bittersweet or 58% cocoa chocolate and they were just right.

I’ve made quite a few changes to the original so please feel free to check it out over here. Basically I found it’s fine just using one type of flour and one type of sugar. I did try simplifying the raising agents as well but the results weren’t as good as using both baking powder and bicarb soda.

Be warned. These cookies are dangerously addictive.

After all these years I finally ‘get’ why some people get so excited about cookies. I’m convinced these cookies can pretty much convert anyone.

150g (5oz) unsalted butter, softened
250g (9oz) light brown sugar
1 egg
225g (8oz) plain (all-purpose flour)
225-285g (8-10oz) dark chocolate

1. Whizz butter and sugar in a food processor or stand mixer until light and creamy. Add egg and mix until well combined.

2. Add 3/4 teaspoon baking powder and 3/4 teaspoon bicarb soda to the flour and mix to combine.

3. Fold butter mixture into the flour until only just combined.

4. Chop chocolate into chunks and add to the dough. Cover and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes but no longer than 72 hours.

5. When you’re ready to bake, preheat oven to 180C (350F). Line 2 baking sheets or trays with baking paper.

6. Scoop 1/3cup balls of dough and place on the prepared trays. Allowing room for them to spread. Sprinkle liberally with sea salt flakes.

7. Bake for 15 – 20 minutes or until cookies are golden. The bottom tray may need a little longer. Cool on the tray.

video version of the recipe

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