Make a Family Cookbook
Celebrating Family History Month and National Cookbook Month with One Project
Family History Month
What is Family History Month? It began with a Congressional resolution in 2001, and is still celebrated every October, to promote “the human family” by organizing and learning about our own familial roots. There are numerous ways to celebrate your family – organize your family tree, preserve your photos, visit a family site, or a plethora of other ways, including celebrating your family’s heritage through food.
National Cookbook Month and Eat Better, Eat Together Month
National Cookbook Month is celebrated since so many cookbooks are published in October for the holiday season. In fact, October 12th is Cookbook Launch Day in the publishing world. There are bounties of cookbooks with nods toward families and heritages that may provide you with inspiration.
In addition to National Cookbook Month, October celebrates food and family with Eat Better, Eat Together Month. The EBET campaign began in 1996, when Washington State University started a social marketing campaign to promote family meals. The campaign grew to include making healthy choices around the table, which leads to healthy choices in daily life. An eventual tagline was developed as, “Set the table for the family, set roots for a lifetime.”
Your family can celebrate all three by creating your own family cookbook.
Creating a Family Cookbook
There are multiple ways to create a family cookbook, but the best way is to jump in and get going! There is no right or wrong way to create something your family will appreciate. Start with these steps and watch your project percolate.
- Gather recipes from family members
Call, email, write family members to give you their favorites- they can be multi-generational recipes that have been passed down or new ones the current generation likes to serve.
- Organize the recipes
Find an appropriate organizational pattern and start typing! By decade, by type of food, by region, or another way that works for your family, just get those recipes in writing. Are they verbal recipes? No problem, write the recipe yourself (both formally and how it was told to you).
- Find photos or other family memorabilia to put with recipes
You’ve put Grandma’s Apple Pie recipe in the book; maybe a photo of her serving the pie, or even her handwritten recipe next to it makes it all the more meaningful.
- Produce the cookbook
Whether you have it professionally printed or you just make copies for relatives, share the food and the love.
- Cook the food and enjoy together
Go to the store, get the ingredients, and start cooking! Then gather around the table and enjoy the food and memories.
Read a good book with the theme of family and food
The Crown Point Community Library has numerous books for checkout, and to read in the Indiana Room, about family and food: fictional stories that center around a recipe, for children and adults; cookbooks for any occasion with the call number 641 in both the Adult and Juvenile Nonfiction sections; and even scrapbook and memoir resources to help you create your family cookbook with 745 and 808 call numbers.