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How to use the Index to LTHForum Recipes

How to use the Index to LTHForum Recipes
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  • How to use the Index to LTHForum Recipes

    Post #1 - August 17th, 2008, 2:14 am
    Post #1 - August 17th, 2008, 2:14 am Post #1 - August 17th, 2008, 2:14 am
    How to use the Index to LTHForum Recipes

      The short version: If you are looking for a specific recipe, the simplest way to find it is probably to go to the index page and plug a keyword your browser's "find" feature.

    What's indexed

    The index includes links to recipes posted directly on the LTHForum site, with some additional links to variations and photos of dishes prepared from those recipes.

    It does not index links to recipes on other sites, even if photos or descriptions appear on LTHForum. If somebody posts a recipe on his blog and then links to it from LTH, that won't be indexed. Only recipes posted on LTHForum itself are indexed.

    Unless they are accompanied by a recipe, the index also does not cover loose descriptions of how somebody made dinner last night, bragging photos, discussions of cooking techniques, lists of ingredients without directions, or descriptions of cooking processes without measured lists of ingredients.

    The process of deciding just what does and doesn't constitute a "recipe" has, necessarily, been somewhat arbitrary. In general, only fairly complete recipes with measured ingredients and directions are included. My general rule of thumb has been whether, in my opinion, a moderately experienced cook could duplicate the dish without turning to other sources and wind up with something that looked and tasted more or less like the original.

    So if somebody describes how to make a salami sandwich without being specific about just how many slices of meat they put on it, I'll probably index it, but if they describe how to make a salami without detailing how much meat they used, I won't.

    How to search for recipes

    By categories


    If you are browsing for something interesting to make for dinner, scrolling through the categories may be the easiest way to find a likely recipe.

    The index defaults to category order, with the recipes divided into these groups:

      Appetizers and snacks
      Salads, sides and veggies
      Eggs, cheese and breakfast fare
      Soups and stews
      Meat
      Poultry
      Seafood
      Sandwiches and wraps
      Grains and starches
      Dips, sauces and seasonings
      Baked goods and dessert
      Pickles and preserves
      Beverages
      Miscellaneous

    The same recipe may appear in up to two categories. Within categories, the recipes are sorted alphabetically.

    By contributors


    If you are looking for a specific recipe, and you know who posted it, you can search by contributor.

    Use link at the top of the index to re-sort the index into alphabetical order by the screen name of the contributors who posted the recipes.

    By specific recipes

    If you are looking for a specific recipe, the simplest way to find it is probably to go to the index page and plug a keyword your browser's "find" feature.

    You can also use the recipe link at the top of the index to sort the list into alphabetical order by the indexed name of the recipe. Be aware, though, that the "name" of the recipe in the index will not be identical to the title in the post.

    Since not everybody gives his recipe a name, and not all of the names are explicit as to what the dish consists of, I have striven to name them consistently in the index so as to cause similar kinds of recipes to sort together. Therefore, for example, macaroni and cheese recipes are all "Casserole, macaroni and cheese"; most unbaked noodle dishes begin with "Pasta"; sandwiches start with "Sandwich," etc.

    Similarly, meat recipes usually begin with "beef," "pork" or whatever the principal ingredient is. Again, there's been some arbitrariness in deciding that, say, beef stew should be indexed as "Stew, beef," instead of "Beef, stew."

    The recipes are indexed by the names of the dishes in English. Foreign names appear in parentheses after the English name. I have made an effort to use standardized spellings, omitting diacritical marks for the sake of searchability. To search for "marhapörkölt nokedlivel," you can either scroll down through the "Soups and stews" category to " Stew, goulash, beef, Hungarian (marhaporkolt nokedlivel)" or plug "marhaporkolt" into your browser's find feature.

    Ingredients are not cross-indexed, but if you have a surplus of, say, lemons, try plugging "lemon" into your browser's "find" feature to locate "Cabbage, red, Georgian-style with lemon," "Lemons, Moroccan-style preserved," "Pie, whole lemon tart," "Soda, summer lemon," etc. That won't get you all of the recipes with lemon in them, but it should find many of those for which lemon is significant.

    Other tips


    In topics with a lot of photos the links aren't always quite on target and you may have to scroll a bit to find the recipe.

    If you are looking for recipes relevant to a particular holiday, use your browser's "find" feature to search on the month in which the holiday occurs. Months are spelled out in full.

    If all else fails, you can also use the Google box on the index page to search LTHForum directly.

    History

    I started indexing the recipes appearing on LTHForum in 2005 and posted the first version of the index in December of that year, with much help from RheS, who wrote custom software for it and donated hosting. At that point there were around 100 links.

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