Ruminations on #recipesconf

Watching Kierri Price’s brave Facebook Livestream creation of a cake recipe for #recipesconf spawned some thoughts on the purpose of sharing recipes. Janet Theophano in Eat My Words wrote: “Cookbooks, then, besides describing foods, are records of women’s social interactions and exchanges.”[1] She posits that manuscript cookbooks were a way to reinforce community for women. Do we keep our “recipe books” of favorite recipes either digitally or on paper still to reinforce our community? How have our online recipe exchanges (Cooks.com, allrecipes.com, etc) changed the function of recipe acquisition for us in the Internet era? Or do the online sources/exchanges fill a different role, more like the role previously played by published cookbooks?

One of the discussions #recipesconf had on Twitter was about the purpose of celebrity names attached as an endorsement for a recipe. Digital recipe collections have a good share of “celebrity” recipes. They have also allowed cooks to share their recipes, and create a following, becoming themselves a bit of a celebrity.  How has the easy presence of celebrity endorsement changed recipe choice? Do we now look for that kind of endorsement for a recipe we put into our personal “recipe book”? How much has the Internet affected the range or extent of our collection activities?

[1] Janet Theophano, Eat My Words, Kindle (New York: St. Martin Press, 2002), 4%.

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