The Benefits of a Recipe


It’s another weeknight and I’m still not sure what I’m cooking for dinner. Sound familiar? Each Saturday morning, as I peruse the Waverly Market, I fill my basket with meat and produce and bread vowing that this week I will use one of the many recipes I’ve collected and make some spectacular dish.

By Sunday I’m back to chicken covered in mushroom soup and peas. The recipes remain untouched yet again. Even though I have a box and a drawer…and a binder…filled with cards and recipes clipped from the paper that I’ve not tried.  Yet I continue to grab my scissors and cut out additional ones from magazines. It’s madness!0124191651

Last year I began to downsize my house. I’ve done well and have given away or disposed of many items that I never believed I’d  be able to give up. It was easier than I thought. The recipes, however, continued to be moved from one place to another. Why couldn’t I just toss them away?

One day recently I forced myself to sit down and at least look through them. Nearly three hours later I finally learned why I had such a hard time parting with these slips of paper. They were more than just recipes, they were memories of places and times and people.

In the recipe box I have cards written out by the hands of my grandmother and my mother-in-law, both of whom are no longer in this world. There are cards I’ve collected from friends. Recipes cut from newspapers that are now out of business. There’s even recipes for beef stew from my mom before she became a vegetarian. It’s a treasure box of my history as a wife and a mother.

There were plenty that I found, such as four different recipes for beef stroganoff  which were basically all the same, that I could easily part with. I also discovered I must really like chicken [I mean really, really like chicken!] because I had a total of forty-seven different chicken dishes that ranged from kabobs to stew and kiev to parmesan. Apparently I could eat chicken for a month and have it a different way every day!0124191653

The recipes I’ve collected over the past twenty-eight years have now been wrangled under control and have a place of honor in a drawer of a desk given to me by my mother-in-law. I’m going to do my best this year, and for all those yet to come, to bring some of these recipes to life.  Bon Appetit!

Dear Reader,

First, thanks for taking the time to stop by and read my blog. Now, please share with me and other readers one of your favorite recipes or  what dishes you enjoy cooking.


Published by

Kimberly Kurth Gray

Kimberly Kurth Gray is the 2009 winner of the William F. Deeck/ Malice Domestic grant for unpublished writers and a Hruska Fellowship finalist as well as a Wellstone Emerging Writer Fellowship winner. In addition to blogging, she is the author of several short stories, the latest Love on the Edge can be found in the third Mindful Writers anthology, Love on the Edge.

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