The perfect gift: passing down your family recipes

The perfect gift: passing down your family recipes

If you share your love of cooking with your children, you can create a bond that lasts a lifetime – and beyond

Cooking with your family is one of life’s simple pleasures – especially when you combine it with sitting down together to eat afterwards.

So passing down your family recipes is a fantastic way of leaving a special legacy, especially when your children have children of their own. Who knows, your family could still be cooking your recipes in generations to come.

But rather than just emailing your kids a bunch of Word documents, you can really turn your recipes into something your family will cherish for years to come with these ideas….

Start building a recipe scrapbook

Collect your recipes together, even the simpler ones, and complete them with handwritten details.

Here are some thoughts you may like to include:

  • Where did you get the recipe? Have you adapted it or personalised it? Does it have any ‘secret’ ingredients?
  • Did you inherit it from a family member you would like to mention? Is there a story behind it?
  • Is this dish associated to memorable times in your family’s past or to a specific occasion?
  • Are there extra tips you can include, such as your remedy on how to stop your eyes watering when chopping onions?
  • What side dishes do you usually serve with this recipe?
  • How do you serve it? Do you have a family plate or cooking dish, or special serving cutlery you like to use?

Your recipe collection could take the shape of a hardbound book – like a photo album – or a scrapbook. You can print the recipes but be sure to add annotations in your handwriting or explanatory sketches to make it feel more personal.

Turn your recipes into gifts

You may want to offer your recipes as a gift to friends and family. If so, here are some ideas:

  • Write or print a selection of your favourite recipes as a housewarming gift. Enhance the collection with a drawing or cut-out photos and write a special dedication to the giftee.
  • Pair a recipe with a gift. For example if you select a pecan pie recipe, give a pretty pie plate to go with it.
  • Personalise a simple cookbook for a child with his or her favourite recipes. It can be a wonderful gift as they leave for college or move out to be on their own for the first time.

Make memories

Along with your book, make sure you get your children and grandchildren in the kitchen to put the recipes into practice. This will nurture their cooking skills and help them to inherit your love of food, plus it will create some wonderful memories.

Show younger children how to prepare their favourite meal by involving them in the process, gradually increasing their tasks as they grow older. First they may just be watching or measuring ingredients, fetching dishes and setting the table. But soon they’ll become more comfortable and they will enjoy recreating the dish on their own.

You can also teach them the best way to clean those dirty pots and pans, using the grease-cutting power of Fairy Liquid. Plus, as Fairy lasts twice as long as the next best-selling brand, you’ll be passing on value-for-money tips, too!

For more advice on bestowing your parental wisdom, see our article Six essential life skills you should teach your children

What’s your favourite family recipe? Let us know in the comments section below.

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