Simanaitis Says

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I LOVE TO COOK and enjoy accumulating books. (The scholarly term “collecting” is something of a boast.)

I have more than four packed shelves devoted to favorite cookbooks, including Woman’s Day Encyclopedia of Cookery, Vols. 1 through 12, Famous Recipes from Mrs. Wilkes Boarding House in Historic Savannah, Joseph Stafford’s The Black Gourmet, and The Mafia Cookbook, by Joseph “Joe Dogs” Iannuzzi, the trio described here at SimanaitisSays. And then there’s The World’s Best Recipes, privately produced by Wife Dottie and added to when I came along.

Below, my evidently much-enjoyed “Lion’s Head.” 

Other treasured recipes include “Aunt Silvia’s Noodle Pigout” and another much-enjoyed “Risotto con Quattro Formaggi,” credited to Il Toucan, Modena.

And then there’s a slim little volume, sans author or editor: Bookmarks for Cooks. 

Bookmarks for Cooks, Starrhill Press, 1991.

My edition, likely earlier than those offered at AbeBooks, has a horizontal format, albeit with a shared ISBN. As its title says, it consists of bookmarks, each adorned with illustration and pithy comment. To cite its proper use: “Locate a favorite recipe in your cookbook. Remove the bookmark at the perforations and write the name of the recipe at the top. Slip the tab over the page so that the name of the recipe is visible when you close the cookbook. Use the back of the bookmark to made additional notes: creative touches of your own; when you served the recipe and to whom; what you served with it, for better or worse.”

Yes, this certainly nails it down, though the description modestly omits mentioning the delight in its 36 pages of accompanying illustrations and comments. My edition repeats six different bookmarks; the later editions noted at AbeBooks specify “12 Designs.”

Christopher Morley was a highly regarded Sherlockian who has appeared here at SimanaitisSays. P.W. Haberman, Jr, was an attorney who had served as a First Lieutenant in the 303rd Bomber Group in World War II. 

Katherine Cebrian was one of the “Grande Dames” of San Francisco society. She sat for a photographic portrait by controversial artist Robert Mapplethorne, who “turned up at her house wearing a black leather outfit and a studded belt…” Nevertheless, apparently the artist “worked his quiet charm on the elderly woman.”

Clifton Fadiman was an American intellectual, author, editor, and radio and tv personality. I remember him from rebroadcasts of the Forties radio program Information Please, which he moderated with Franklin P. Adams, John Kieran, and Oscar Levant. 

James Beard was an American chef, teacher, tv personality, and cookbook author. Miss Piggy needs no introduction, but it’s fun to offer one anyway: “A starring Muppet, Miss Piggy has been notable for her temperamental diva superstar personality, tendency to use French phrases in her speech, and practice of karate. She was also known for her on-again/off-again relationship with Kermit the Frog which never ends permanently.” 

It isn’t like nobodies contributed to Bookmarks for Cooks. ds

© Dennis Simanaitis,, 2023

2 comments on “BOOKMARKS FOR COOKS

  1. sabresoftware
    March 11, 2023

    We have accumulated a few cookbooks over the years. A much smaller set than your collection, but still we have some interesting books. We used to attend an event for several years called Christmas In November at the Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge, where there were several presentations from celebrity chefs, and most had their latest cookbooks at the session.

    But my favorite recipe tool these days is an app (iPhone, iPad and Mac) called Paprika which has several neat features:

    – the ability to quickly add ingredients to a shopping list, sorted by “aisle”
    – quick scaling of ingredients list to adjust for number of servings (I.e scale up a recipe from 4 to 6 servings)
    – ratings and comments feature
    – browser to find new recipes (I’ll be at the grocery store trying to come up with something “new” for supper, so a quick search and voila a new recipe) which can be easily added to the recipe list
    – recipes can be tagged for quick searches by type of recipe or food type (each recipe can have multiple tags)
    – recipes found on various websites are properly credited by source, and each has a picture (or you can add one) showing the completed dish
    – a pantry section where you can inventory items including purchase date and best by dates
    – an Apple Watch app that can put the shopping list on your wrist

    March 13, 2023

    Sorry, for got picture.John

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