Monday, December 27, 2010
After all, these recipes will be simple, call for ingredients that you have readily available in your pantry and will have been tested by a home cook. In fact, you know you can trust the recipe because someone had to sign their name to it before submitting and then it was tested at least three times before it made its way into the book.
Yes, your best bet for success on these sepcial occasions comes from using your friendly community cookbook collection.
Thursday, December 23, 2010
If you are a volunteer who is reading this and you have given of your time, energy or money to participate in a community cookbook project I want to personally thank you and wish you "peace on earth" as you celebrate this Christmas. Merry Christmas!
Thursday, December 16, 2010
In today's world, most community cookbooks are launched in markets that have TV, Radio, Newspaper, Magazines, blogs, etc. Where do these people get their local content? Obviously, they use wire services for national stories but local citizens want to be aware of what is going on locally. This is where you can help them.
The link attached is a demo of FRP's own Sheila Thomas promoting More Recipes Worth Sharing on Nashville's Talk of the Town. Sheila has made similar appearances in Memphis and will be invited to attend other local interest media events as she gets the word out about her new book. Talk of the Town has regularly invited middle Tennessee FRP clients on the air because they need good content.
Are you maximizing these opportunities with your book?
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
"Community cookbooks are a guilty pleasure of mine. I don't think I have ever cooked an actual recipe from them, but they are so much fun to read. Every book seems to have roughly 20 different versions of broccoli casserole (frozen broccoli, Velveeta/Cheese Whiz, etc.) and a variety of desserts made with crumbled cake mix, Cool Whip, and cream cheese. They can be educational as well. I recall reading an old one from the 1950s and asking my mother what oleo and a #2 can were. "
Monday, December 13, 2010
Now the question was, what do we do with the food for 8 people? I suggested to Robin that we invite our neighbor, Susan, who we are good friends with. Robin then said, “Why don’t we see if Jerry and Judy would like to come”? (These are the new neighbors). I saw Jerry out going to his car, so I walked out and told him our situation and asked if they would like to join us. He said they would love to, but were on their way to a church program.
About 30 minutes later, there was a knock at the door; lo and behold, it was our new neighbors asking if they could still join us. They had gotten out of the subdivision only to find the roads too icy to continue and had turned around and come home. The interesting thing about all of this is that as we begin to chat about some of the places they had lived, we began to pull community cookbooks from those cities off of our shelf and talk about the foods and the communities themselves from each different area. Who ever knew that a community cookbook could also serve as a point of conversation?
The evening turned out to be a great success (all of the gluten free recipes were from community cookbooks) and the conversation was moved along through the subject of food and cookbooks.
Friday, December 3, 2010
Thursday, December 2, 2010
On several occasions I have alluded to or discussed how important great content is in a successful cookbook. One aspect of the content is the quality of the edited recipes. We must remember that while many “naturally-gifted” cooks don’t have to follow a recipe to the letter, there is a higher number who do. Therefore the recipes must be written so that anyone will feel confident in following the instructions.
I asked one of our copy editors at Favorite Recipes Press to develop a short bullet list of tasks we perform for our clients to ensure their recipes are written consistently and clearly. Here is what Alison had to say:
“While there are certainly many smaller tasks that go into each of these items, here are the major things FRP editors and the proofer will do for each cookbook."
1. Verify all the ingredients are listed in the order used in the method.
2. Edit and proof the recipes to ensure consistency in wording and style throughout the book.
3. We achieve this by using the same “voice,” which makes the recipes cohesive without being redundant.
4. Make certain the recipes make sense, allowing all levels of home cooks the ability to produce a fabulous dish. You’d be surprised how many submitted pie recipes don’t have a crust listed, or how many chicken dishes don’t list chicken as an ingredient. Because we all enjoy cooking, we are often able to ascertain whether ingredient amounts seem “off,” and we’ll verify with you if it’s correct.
5. Check all grammar and spelling in all recipe and non-recipe text.
It is certainly helpful if the people submitting the recipes have worked to get them in the best shape possible; however, this is a tall task if the recipes have come in from multiple contributors or sources. Even professional chefs are notoriously bad at writing clear and consistent recipe instructions.
If you asked 10 people to give you a recipe, how many different variables in the writing styles would you get back? My guess is 10. Some would list ingredients in order and others would not. Some would abbreviate others not. Some would call it "ketchup" and others would call it "catsup". You get the point. If you're getting ready to develop a community cookbook, do yourself a favor and make sure that you don’t cut corners. Hire a professional food editor or get this as a service from the publishing company.