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What do you call recipes that aren't recipes?

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A friend and I are trying to build a piece of software to manage my outta control recipe collection. Problem is not all my recipes are "recipes" per se. Some of them are just jotted thoughts, like "pasta + hard cooked vegetable + a soft cheese + pasta water = easy lunch." And I pride myself on the ability to cook without a recipe often. So I am trying to figure out the best word to call those things that describe a thing to make, but don't necessarily follow a recipe format. What would you call those? Or do you just use the word "recipe" anyway?

This is seriously keeping us up at night... :) I should get a life and go make some pasta :P

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  1. Call them 'Tinabeans Popular Dishes'.

    1 Reply
    1. re: treb

      Oh you are the best. :)

    2. methods

      1 Reply
      1. re: eLizard

        techniques/processes

      2. I rarely use recipes and cook similarly to you. I've had a hard time coming up with a word for it other than "cooking"

        1. In the Flavor Bible, they called it Flavor Affinities or Flavor Cliques. Personally, I would just call it a recipe template.

          1. 1.) Tips & Techniques

            2.) Hints (tried and true)

            3.) Pointers

            1. Tinabean's Tips & Techniques, or TTT, if you're so inclined:)

              1. Approaches

                1. "Suggestions"? That way you could add/take away anything you want.

                  Or maybe "base preps" or "starter preps"?

                  1. Guessipes?
                    Unfortunately Michael Ruhlman has used Ratio.

                    1. An ingredient list!

                      1. Improv cooking.

                        1. quick food ideas

                          1. When friends ask for something and I don't really have a recipe, I refer to them as "loose guidelines and strong suggestions."

                            1. Combinations

                              1. What we think of as recipes, with standardized measurements and detailed steps only goes back to the 1896 Fannier Farmer cookbook
                                http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boston_C...

                                Simpler narrative recipes were common before that.