Tuesday, July 7, 2009
I collect cookbooks. I love the old ones I find with someone's notes written on the pages. It feels like such a personal connection to be reading their suggestions, additions and notes on a recipe. I recently bought a church cookbook from a town in New England, originally published in 1964. Tucked inside were nearly thirty pages of notes made by the original owner. From them I learned she was single and keen to find a husband. She marked a number of the recipes with the words MEN LIKE. In caps. I wonder if any of her recipes did the trick. My money's on her recipe for WACKI PORK and not HELENE'S TAHITIAN DELITE.
I cherish the handwritten recipes handed down to me by my family and friends. I simply love looking at the handwriting, some of it scribbled and some transcribed in beautiful longhand. Just seeing my mother's nearly unreadable scribble tugs at my heart.
We recently moved and though I've made some progress unpacking enough cookbooks to fill one bookcase, I still have six or more boxes of cookbooks to unpack.
Here are some images of the recipe collections I've made over the years. I've written out recipes, clipped and pasted many from magazines and adhered recipes written out by family and friends to their pages. I can barely close the covers. They are wild and unruly and contain far too much information. I love them this way. Each book is a history. They connect me to people and memories I love.