MoFo #19: Research and organization

The bulletin board and sticky note system is something that works immensely well for me. Organizing with color, shapes, and symbols makes so much sense, so that’s the way I’ve been organizing the physical copy of my recipe inventory. It’s really convenient because it’s in clear view in the kitchen and if I suddenly have an idea while hanging out making coffee or something, I’ll just write it down and stick it on the board. Easy!

The thumbtacks are color-coded by type of dessert: yellow is cookie, blue is cupcake, green is cake, then red and white I’m not too sure about. Donuts, waffles, pancakes, mousse, and pie are somehow split between those two colors. My brain understands it somehow.
Each section of the bulletin board represents the stage in recipe testing: idea, ready to make, needs revision, and test kitchen, which is divided into four recipe categories that are based on the tentative chapter names. I promise they have really cutesy names.
Each sticky note has a recipe on it that travels through the different stages. I also note with a circle if the recipe contains alcohol (due to the drink theme), then make sure to come up with a substitution so the recipe can be made without it as well. There’s also a note if the recipe contains margarine or oil. This is more specific to the nature of cookies. It was a topic of discussion with the cookie book because not every country has readily available vegan margarine, it can be expensive, and oil can sometimes be substituted.

When the recipe has gone through all the stages and is “complete”, the thumbtack moves from the left to the right side of the sticky note. See, I’m totally OCD and no one would understand how to read the board without instructions, but it’s really helpful to organize your thoughts using this kind of method if you’re a visual thinker and learner. I’ve tried similar things in a notebook or sketchbook, but once you’ve written something down, there’s less room for editing, and everything is all shut away in a book. This doesn’t have to be just for recipes either. Any kind of creative (or not!) to-do lists are more fun this way.

The sticky note system is something that I repeatedly go to. This was the sticky note process for the cookie book that was short-lived because I couldn’t hang it up in the kitchen when I was living with my parents and it just sort of disappeared under my bed or something. It works best if it’s hanging in a visible spot in your kitchen without a dog on top of it.

Here’s my stockpile of ingredients again. Buying perishables with the intention of using them for recipes is a little tricky in case plans change or I can’t make everything in such a short timeframe. I’ve definitely had some fruits and vegetables go bad for this reason. Stocking up on recipe ingredients that won’t go bad gives lots of options though!

I just have a normal composition book for recipes/other projects right now. I’m trying to keep the recipe writing digital nowadays because handwriting recipes in a notebook and having to type it up later takes twice as long and twice as much effort as typing it up on a laptop in the kitchen right away. But I do like writing ideas down and planning out writing pieces and recipes by hand, so I like having a physical notebook.
This was my recipe notebook for the cookie book back in the day…of 2007. After remembering the nights of typing up dozens of recipes at a time from this book, I knew I could avoid such a data entry-esque fate by typing up ingredient lists as I go! But looking at this cover makes me smile.

I have one more MoFo post planned for tonight cause I’m a total slacker! Happy Halloween!

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