"What one can see out in the sunlight is always less interesting than what is behind a windowpane."

Thursday, January 12, 2012

My Retro Recipe Book - Lots of Pics!

My newest fad - a recipe book filled with some of my all-time favorites!

I started this project by covering 9 pieces of 4x6 chipboard with vintage "Early American" wallpaper samples. Loved the old earthy hues and patterns. Next the fun part - finding retro images!

Most of the pages have pockets storing recipe cards. (I covered each page and recipe with clear packing tape for protection, which may cause some glare on some pictures.)

Behind the woman cooking tag is my mom's funnel cake recipe. Yum!

The pink clips attached to the recipe cards make it easy to slip the card in and out of its pocket. I really like the *pop* of color the pink clips give this book.

OOOOOO!! Too much fun on these pages!! Grab a hot drink and read on!

"Comfort is....the smell of baking bread". Ain't it the truth?!

I don't know how this idea came to mind, but I googled vintage aprons, cut them out, wrote messages on the back of each one, and now they can be used at bookmarkers. I had so much fun with this idea that I plan on making more!

When you remove the aprons, there's a cute image of a woman cooking. I debated whether to color this picture, but decided to leave it. Isn't her polka-dot dress cute? I have a thing for polka-dots and love when Mary wears them.

Sayings printed on the back: "Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without". "Recall it as often as you wish, a happy memory never wears out." "The best things you can give children, next to good habits, are good memories." Amen!

I even found a vintage apron to make as a bookmarker for Ted. Think he'll like it?!

Can't get enough of the cute women in their baking aprons! It's all so homey.

Behind the pocket is a group of tags with the recipe of my favorite chicken soup. The credit goes to my brother Dan's wife, Tina. She gave me the recipe at least 12 years ago and it's still my favorite. The secret ingredient? Paremesan cheese!

This was luck. I found a picture of a girl making what can easily be apple fritters. A great complementary image to the recipe next to her.

It took days to work on this book, but now that I've got some experience making one, I've got more ideas for another. The hardest part was typing out all the recipes and trying to get them to fit on the tag.

My friend Peggy likes to pour syrup on her corn fritters and she knows I cringe at the thought. We were always taught to dip them in tomato soup. They're so incredibly good, but once you're all done, it feels like a 10-pound piece of lead in your belly.

I added 2 cookies to this recipe book, but in the process decided not to put any more sweets inside. Instead, I'll make a separate "Cooky Book". (The wheels are already spinning!)

Some more of my favorite soup recipes. The ingredients are on the front and the directions are on the back of each tag.

"Only the pure in heart can make good soup" and here's a helpful hint: If the soup is too salty, just add a peeled, raw potato and simmer. The potato will absorb excess salt. Who'd a-thunk it?

Apple-Pork Tenderloin and Mom's Beef Stew - scrumptiousness!

I highly recommend anyone to try this apple-pork tenderloin. It's soooo quick and easy and the taste and smells of apples and cinnamon are hypnotic.

My Mom's beef stew. Just throw it all in a slow-cooker in the morning and the beef is falling apart by evening. Dip in some french bread and you're sure to sleep well!

There are more recipes I would have liked to have added to this book, but it was getting too thick to close. My sister's Thanksgiving gravy, and my brother Bill's "pigs-in-a-blanket" are to-die-for. I may need a sequel!

I originally was going to insert a Dolly Parton quote about her memories in the kitchen. Then I said to myself, "Self, you have memories in the kitchen. Write your own."

Though the kitchen is the heart of the home, not all memories of it are so picturesque....like the time I sprayed milk all over the kitchen table (and brand new boyfriend) from laughing so hard at my mom's imitation of Quasi-moto. My sister laughed so hard she flew back in her chair, landed on her back, and all I could see were her feet sticking up in the air. By that time, I was leaning over the kitchen sink trying to stop the milk from spilling out of my nose. Good times!

On the back of the stove, I added measurements for a quick reference page.

Apparently, this is an old Russian proverb. Sounds like good advice to me!

Kale soup and Chicken Marsala. Somehow, my Mom claimed this Chicken Marsala as HER recipe, when she knows very well she got it from me!

A week ago was the first time I ever had kale in my life, let alone try to make it! At the grocery store, I didn't even know what I was looking for. Looked like I had a bush in my cart. Let me tell you, after trying this soup, I believe I've seen the Promised Land!

Despite not being a big bacon fan and despising the taste of coffee, I totally agree with this quote!

I'm guessing some modern women would lynch me for adding this quote, but to me, it just shows a man's appreciation for the work she does in the kitchen. "There is no spectacle on earth more appealing than that of a beautiful woman in the act of cooking dinner for someone she loves." I could say the same thing about a man playing with his children.

And last, but not least, fall-apart pot roast. Again, one of mom's recipes that'll be passed down to Mary.

Using my new handy-dandy "The Cinch" Ted got me for Christmas, I cut out holes and added binder rings to make a book. Although lots of women like to tie bows and ribbons to the binder rings, I preferred to keep mine clean (especially since this will be used in a kitchen) and instead wired on some old aluminum measuring spoons for additional texture.

This is now stored in Mary's trunk of keepsakes. Who knows, maybe someday she'll actually use it!


  1. What a fun idea! I love your memory of the milk incident. One time I caught the microwave on fire when I tried to defrost a carton of orange juice in it. Little did I know it had a metal lining! I will never forget that. I am going to have to try your Kale Soup recipe too-thanks for sharing!


  2. This is soo cute! It's kind of like what we are making for my Grandma, but the recipe is on the same page as the pictures. :P I am going to have to make one like yours someday!

    1. What a fabulous idea. Those graphics are just outstanding. Well done. What a keepsake to pass on someday too!

  3. Oh your vintage recipe book is just perfectly retro. I love it! What a fun idea!

  4. Wow, darling paper crafts! Yes to all the laundry detergent questions! If you go to the recipe post you can read more about it and lots of others comments!

  5. You must have had a blast making this, and lucky Mary being the recipient. This could be your cutest idea yet. I spend every moment on your site wondering where you get all of your ideas. You are so amazingly creative. Of course, now I want to make one of these.

    You must have the best craft room ever. I'm going to come and see it someday. Patsye

  6. Well hello neice! I have been trying for the longest time to comment on this post!! I am on the main computer now my laptop has failed me!!! LOL Anyways WOW is all I can say! This recipe book rocks!! I can tell you made it with so much love for Mary! She will appreciate it so much later on! I would love to make one of those. Your magnet board is so pretty too. I like it with the touch of lace you added. It softened it up. SO thanks for sharing and I am so glad I finally got to say my peace! LOL Thanks for stopping by my blog too. XO Love ya Aunt Frannie

  7. What a beautiful job you did on this project!

  8. You did an awesome job-so much fun to look at with all the special details.
    Here's one I made for my pal when she graduated with here degree. She's an instructor at a Vo-tech school now, but having back surgery soon. :(