Sunday, March 18, 2012

In a Bind

If you have been reading my posts about The Prep Like a Chef System you might be a little overwhelmed and ready to give up, but wait there's just one more big project (I promise? )!

Recipe binders organize the whole Prep Like a Chef System saving you precious time and space.  No more seraching for recipes from other cookbooks or other people. New recipes, old recipes, favorite recipes and planning and prepping lists will all be stored together in one place.

I use 3 binders for my recipe storage system (okay really about 9 but remember I write recipes for 3 different companies).  I also store everything in my Living Cookbook software.  Why two places?  I like to have my binders out when I cook and prep and I like to write new recipes, make meal plans, and grocery lists in my Living Cookbook software then print them and add them to my binders.

Why I use binders for my recipes instead of a recipe box
  • The number one reason is I am a messy chef ; I need page protectors
  • I like to use tabs to identify sections, that I customize to my own catagories and my own cookbook style
  • Recipes can easily be moved to different parts of the binder and removed to make a copy
  • Recipes can be added from many sources; online printouts, magazines and photo copies from other cookbooks (I make a copy of recipes I use from other cookbooks, the copy goes in my recipe binder and I store the cookboook on a bookself in my office saving me space in my kitchen) 
  • The 8 1/2 x11 format leaves room for notations and is easy to read (my eyes arn't what they used to be)
What you need at a glance, binders, page prtotectors, tabs and a label maker or labels and a marker

Binder 1
Labeled Planing
  • In the pockets of the binder I have blank shopping and prep worksheets that will become my lists to go with my weekly plan. When I like a plan I save the lists and the plan together.  I put all three pages in one page protector with the plan on top.  I store them in their appropriate season.  The next time I want to make the same plan I am ready to go.
  • Page 1-Current plan with shopping and prep lists
Binder 1 Tabs
  • Spring/summer plans (my goal is to have 24 plans for each section; 48 total plans for the year)
  • Fall/winters plans
  • New recipes (recipes I want to try before they become part of my regular rotation)
Binder 2
Labeled Main Dishes
  • Page 1-Express Dinners List and Freezer Fall Backs list; see Dinner 911
Binder 2 Tabs
  • Beef
  • Pork
  • Poultry
  • Seafood
  • Vegetarian
  • Hot side dishes
Binder 3
Labeled Everything Else
  • Page 1-Express Breakfast list and Express Lunch List
Binder tabs
  • Breakfast
  • Appetizers and snacks
  • Salads
  • Soups and stews
  • Pantry and Sauces
  • Sweets
  • Drinks
Use more or less binders to fit your own personal needs. When I started I had one big binder but I found dividing my binder into smaller sections worked best for me.

My actual binders

As always work smarter and not harder and take it on "prep at a time" !
Chef Jackie

My share fair policy-remember when you share alway be fair and refer back Prep Like a Chef and the post you want to share.  Please only print or copy for your own personal use.  It is my goal to make meal times a joy instead of a burden!

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