For Better Living

Good time to start organizing those recipes

Maybe you have a drawer or a file full of recipes that you’ve clipped from newspapers, magazines or saved from the internet. It can take forever to sort through them when you want to try something new, so it is usually easier and faster to go back to your old favorites. Here are a few suggestions to help get your recipes organized.

First of all, go through the recipes and get rid of those that you’ve never used and aren’t likely to use. If you just can’t bear to throw them away, put them in a separate envelope or folder.

Decide on your storage system. Some suggestions are:

— Attach them to pages in a notebook.

— Place them in sheet protectors in a notebook.

— Place them in a photo album that has self-adhesive pages

— Glue or copy them on recipe cards and keep them in a recipe box.

— Store in accordion files.

The next step will be to label your recipe categories such as vegetables, desserts, etc. Insert some type of dividers that label the sections. You may want to start with a large category such as “Bread.” Eventually, when the folder or notebook is full, you can separate them into smaller categories such as “Muffins” and “Yeast Rolls.”

Store your recipes near the spot where you’ll review them later. This might be in your kitchen, beside your recliner or in your home office. If you are using file folders, you may choose to store them upright in an expandable file packet or even in the top drawer of a file cabinet.

No matter how many recipes we collect, most of us have 15 – 20 meals that we prepare more frequently. It’s really convenient to keep the frequently used recipes together in a file in a handy location.

I’ve seen a T-shirt that says, “The one who dies with the most recipes wins!” I don’t think I want to be the one to win that award. It’s a good idea to continually cut the clutter by throwing away what you’re not going to use and keep your recipe collection organized and convenient.

Crumb-Coated Chicken Thighs

¼ cup dry bread crumbs

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon paprika

1 teaspoon chili powder

1 teaspoon curry powder

¼ teaspoon pepper

8 chicken thighs, skin removed

In a large resealable plastic bag, combine the first seven ingredients. Add chicken, a few pieces at a time and shake to coat. Place on a baking sheet coated with nonstick spray. Bake, uncovered, at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. Turn chicken pieces over. Bake 15 – 20 minutes longer until a meat thermometer reads 180 degrees.

Sandra R. Cain is the Extension Agent for Family & consumer Sciences in Bladen County.
Good time to start organizing those recipes
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