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  • Writer's pictureKelli Wright

What is a recipe, anyhow?

Updated: May 17, 2022

If your family is anything like mine, you can point to at least one person who is THE COOK. This is the person who everyone remembers as the best cook, regardless of what their feelings are on other family squabbles. They take on the mantle of chef at family gatherings, they toil away for hours in the kitchen, and - if you are lucky - they keep up with the family recipes.

In my family, I was lucky enough to have many great cooks on both sides. I didn't give much thought to the importance of cooking as a family tradition until many of those great cooks passed away.

One of those great cooks was my paternal grandmother, affectionately known as Mee-Maw. The story she told me about how she learned to cook is that when she got married, the only thing she knew how to make was divinity candy.

Many years later, when my sister and I were in the picture, she was regularly hosting the Christmas gathering at her home, making meals for us several nights a week, and cooking for others every chance she got. After her passing, I took home a few of the cookbooks I knew she had used over the years, and a small box of recipes she had saved in her 50+ years of marriage.

As life would have it, I was too busy (or maybe too out of touch) to look through those treasures until I myself had gotten married. For all those years, I had assumed she just KNEW how to make things. You know - a pinch of this, a pinch of that, etc. Turns out, she was a collector of great technique and a follower of food trends (before trends were even trending).

In that tiny little box I found years of culinary wisdom tucked away in hand-written notes, recipes kept from magazines and mail-in catalogs, and images she kept for inspiration.

So what is a recipe, really?

I like to think it's an opportunity.

Ready to see what's out there? Let's go!

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