Jean Teller explains how we choose GRIT reader recipes for our Recipe Box column, including responses to reader recipe requests, varieties of recipes and the challenges of choosing recipes for the column.
Learn about the process of choosing GRIT reader recipes for our Recipe Box column.
We love hearing from our readers, and especially when it comes to conversations about food. A variety of recipe requests find their way to Recipe Box, and sometimes it's a challenge to determine which of the many wonderful responses to print.
Our decision might depend on the number of responses: If there are quite a few, it's time to print one or two. If there aren't many, we wait a while longer, hoping more readers respond. And if it's been several months or more since the request was printed, then it's definitely time to go into our archives and let you see a recipe on these pages.
It's not a science, to be sure. We attempt to provide a variety of recipes from our archives, and to be a sort of "recipe broker" among our readers, who collectively form a vast storehouse of culinary knowledge. Some of these recipes go back decades, so if you've ever wished for a recipe for that special coleslaw your Great Aunt Margaret made, or wondered how to create the world's best fried chicken, Recipe Box is the place to be.
Recipe Box depends heavily on our readers: Without you this column wouldn't be here. The requests are yours; the responses are yours. Eventually, all of your responses are sent to the person who made the original request. We always enjoy reading the notes that accompany readers' recipe responses, and we're sure the requester spends a lot of time perusing the packet, reading each recipe and note, chuckling over comments, nodding in agreement when one strikes a chord. Many of those who receive such a packet take the time to send thank-you notes, although many are unable to because of time, money or other limitations. When individual notes are impossible, the lucky recipient of a recipe packet might send a thank-you note to our offices, and they are heartfelt notes.
Some people have suggested that we make Recipe Box solely an interactive feature on our Web site. But we don't want to limit this resource to the Internet because some of our readers don't use computers that much, and they're often the ones with the best old-timey recipes.
So keep those recipes rolling in, folks. We read every letter and recipe we receive, wouldn't miss a single one, and positively salivate over many of them. What a wonderful group of great cooks we have out there!
•Sylvia Bruce, of Billings, Montana, hopes someone has a recipe for rum cake. The one she’s thinking of is very moist, and similar to a dark chocolate cake. She’s also interested in finding a recipe for Spanish rice made with hamburger and tomatoes.
•Mary Lou Hill, of Jefferson, Oregon, is looking for a recipe for breaded tomatoes or scalloped tomatoes. Her mother’s recipe was never written down.
•Muriel Kroening, of Berlin, Wisconsin, asks if anyone has instructions for canning beef or pork, and she’d also like the recipe for green tomato pie. — Mmmmm . . . so would the editors!
•Josette Giacobbi, of Columbia, South Carolina, is searching for a recipe for roasted red pepper spread that was in an edition of the Ball Blue Book.
•Eunice Skelton Grissen, of Beverly Hills, Florida, requests directions to make lye soap.
If you've been looking for a long lost recipe, or can provide one, please email us at RecipeBox@Grit.com or write to Recipe Box, c/o GRIT, Topeka, KS. Please include your name, address and daytime phone.
Recipes cannot be returned as they are eventually sent to the person requesting the recipe. Recipe requests and responses will be printed at our discretion and as space allows.
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