Ask The Readers {Cookbook Collection}

Ask The Readers

Over the last few weeks I have been planning out the year and working on some things that I want to do here on my site.

One of the features that I have gone back and forth on is my Cooking Through My Collection series. I have posted on and off in this series for several years now, but last year I turned it into more of a weekly feature.

For this year I have been trying to decide what to do with the series. I love sharing my cookbook collection with you all. It is a really fun series to do. However, I have not been adding very many new cookbooks to my collection. One of my goals for the series was to use the cookbooks that I have and not buy more and it has worked. I have pulled cookbooks off the shelves that I have not used in a really long time.

I have noticed though that I am using my older cookbooks more and more. One reason is that I have already shared most of my favorite newer cookbooks that I own, but I have a lot of vintage type cookbooks that I have not shared yet.

And maybe they are not so much vintage, but ones that are 20+ years old. That is not really vintage, but it is certainly not new either. The recipes in these books are old fashioned type recipes. They tend to be recipes that use everyday ingredients and don’t require a lot of time or effort to cook.


Recipes like the ones from the hamburger cookbook in the picture above.

I have thought about changing up the series some by sharing more vintage and old fashioned type recipes from the books I am using, but at the same time I know that those recipes often don’t photograph well and are not Pinterest perfect.

The problem is that is what I tend to be cooking right now. I seem to be going back to more of the basics. The simple recipes using simple ingredients. That is my kitchen life right now. And it is far from Pinterest and magazine perfect.

Which leads me to why I am thinking about giving up the series. I am really not sure if anyone wants to see those kinds of recipes.

And all of that leads me to my Ask the Readers question for today. I decided to just ask you. I want to hear your thoughts.

Should I keep my Cooking Through My Collection series? Or are you all tired of the series? Should I take a break from it for awhile?  

Or are you all feeling like I am right now? Do you want to focus more on the simple and basic things. If you are, should I change it up a little and share the recipes I am making from my older more simple cookbooks? 


Lynn's Kitchen Adventures


  1. I’m all about simple and basic. If you decide to share those recipes, I would be delighted. Who really cares if they’re Pinterest worthy? Sometimes the things that taste the best, photograph the worst. :-)

    • I am glad to hear that others enjoy the simple and basic. I really want to get back to sharing more of those type of posts. And I totally agree some of the best food photographs the worst! I need to forget getting a good picture sometimes and just share what tastes good. :-)

  2. I agree. Simple and basic is where I’m at right now. Anything complicated is fun one in a while, but is impossible in a busy household. And honestly, I’m not really about all the pictures. I make many things that taste excellent but don’t look wonderful, and I know what you are talking about. Thanks for sharing what you do!

  3. One of the reason I absolute LOVE your blog and recipes is the fact that I can reproduce these at home without a special trip to the store! Please please please please share more of the basic stuff!

    • Thanks! One of the things that I have been feeling the need for is more keeping it real basic type posts and recipes, so I am glad you enjoy those. I hope to share more of them over the next year.

  4. I enjoy your cooking through your collection posts. The only recipes I cook these days are quick and simple using basic ingredients like chicken, pasta, rice, and vegetables. I don’t have time to do anything fancier right now, but I can easily feel guilty or inadequate for not providing my family with “better” meals when I compare my cooking to Pinterest-perfect websites. I enjoy your website because you remind me that many normal people cook normal, simple meals much of the time. So thank you for that reminder, whether or not you continue on with your blog series.

    • Thank you. I am glad you enjoy my site. I have really been feeling the need to get back to the simple and more keeping it real type posts, so I am glad to hear that you enjoy those. I am not sure I will give up this series altogether. I might end up mixing it up with some posts like I have been doing and some from the older vintage type cookbooks with simple recipes. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

  5. I enjoy each post you share. Basic, easy, not picture perfect is what we all need in our lives :-) Keeping it real is what I like to see. Looking forward to what ever it is that you choose to share. I have some “vintage” cookbooks as well and need to get them out for use not just to sit on the shelf.

    • Thanks! I am glad you enjoy my recipes and posts. None of our lives or food is picture perfect, so I am glad you enjoy the keeping it real kind of posts.

  6. I would LOVE it if you shared the recipes from your older cookbooks!! Please do!! Older cookbooks are my favorites, I enjoy the basic, simple recipes. I am weary of Pinterest and how it has made everyone feel the need to have everything perfect and beautiful, most often that is just not the case for real life. I enjoy your blog and recipes so much. Thank you for blogging and sharing with us :)

  7. Deena Caunt says:

    I am a huge fan of old cookbooks, I have three, double wide, floor to ceiling book cases of them. Please do enjoy your interest in them too. Who knows, maybe you have books I don’t!

  8. Debbie the NY Baker says:

    I echo what other folk have said: basic recipes from vintage cookbooks are what I’d enjoy reading. Life is complicated enough – baking/cooking should be a pleasure, not a source of pressure! To create wholesome and delicious food for family and friends and neighbors is a blessing, both in the preparation and the eating. Best wishes to all for a healthy, peaceful, and Happy New Year from snowy Upstate New York!

  9. I add my voice to those before. Simple and easy are my favorite kind of recipes. I love getting new ideas from your blog. Thank you for sharing with us!

  10. The folks and kids I cook for love simple and basic. Please share those types of recipes. I enjoy your site and always read your recipes I receive via email. Thanks for what you do.

  11. I’ve not read the other comments before posting so forgive me if I am echoing what others are saying but I love the “vintage” type recipes. My favorite cookbooks are from my early married life (almost 47 years) and also some inherited from my Mother and Mother in law, from the 30’s and 40’s. The current cookbooks seem to center on beautiful photography and slick paper along with ingredients that I have no interest in acquiring. The older tried and true recipes seem to always be the most popular with most folks. So this is a vote for the basics…thank you for what you do.

  12. I, too, agree with the others. Simple and basic work best for our family. I have acquired a LOT of cookbooks lately, and like Judy B. says, they use “ingredients that I have no interest in acquiring”. Please keep your “vintage” recipes! My vote is also for the basics. I really enjoy your emails and have tried your recipes. Thank you!

  13. The comments I’ve read on here are just what I suspected…everyone wants simple and basic! I think Pintrest is great, and I go there regularly, but I also think it’s made a lot of people think their meals/clothes/decor/lives aren’t perfect like everyone else’s is. Newsflash: not everyone IS perfect! A lot of things are staged for Pintrest pictures, and many times it takes LOTS of time to get things just right (I’m not saying it’s a bad thing) for the ‘pintrest post’. My point is that while there are lots of people out there that love fancy meals and complicated ingredients..and there’s nothing wrong with that…there are PLENTY of us who love simple, basic meals that use what we have and what we know. Your site has great recipes that can be made easily and quickly without a lot of hassle. That’s why people keep coming back! If they want fancy and complicated, they can head over to Pintrest and search for it :)

  14. I like sites with real food my whole family will eat and enjoy with easily found and not super expensive ingredients so I would love for you to share those recipes. I don’t use my older tried and true cookbooks as often as I should do you will inspire me to do so!

  15. Simple and basic sound perfect! Much prefer those things made with real food that I can make for my family. Perfect pictures aren’t necessary – as long as it is tasty!

  16. I love the old-style stuff too – agree it is not always “pretty” but I miss real food. I would love the posts of that stuff so I vote yes! Thanks for all you do.

    • Well pretty much everyone agrees that they would love the older simple type recipes. I am so glad others feel the same way I do about going back to simple and basic.

  17. Some of my favorite recipes come from my older cookbooks. I would be lost without a hometown collection that has THE perfect broccoli casserole recipe, not likely to be found easily anywhere else. LOL However, I’ve done some adjustments to make those comfort foods into healthier foods at home. So, my thoughts for you would be to perhaps experiment with those tried-and-true-down-home favorites, the same way you come up with GF recipes. Seriously, I don’t care a lot – your choice — I just love your blog. <3

    • Thanks. I agree some of those older community type cookbooks are the best! And yes often need some adjusting. If I change the series up to more vintage older type cookbooks I will definitely share some of the changes I make to make them more modern. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

  18. Yes, keep up the series! I personally *prefer* more old-fashioned recipes that use simpler ingredients. One of the things I love about your site is that you are about REAL food for REAL families, NOT Pinterest-picture-perfect recipes that are unrealistic. Keep up what you’re doing – as a loyal reader for many years, I love what you share!

    • Thank you. I am so glad that so many readers like the keeping it real basic type recipes. I feel like I have gotten away from some of that and am looking forward to getting back to it. Life is not about pinterest perfect and we all need that reminder once in awhile! Thanks for reading and for sharing your thoughts!

  19. I love the series, but you do what you are inspired to do. It’s your blog. We are just blessed enough to get to enjoy it.

  20. I love the series. Back to basics is where it is at! Who cares if it is not “pinterest” friendly, some of us don’t follow pinterest on a regular basis, actually I prefer the actual website because I don’t always have time for both.

  21. I’m adding my vote for continuing your series. Simple and basic, with or without a great photo is what helps me put great food on the table for my family and friends. Thanks for your blog!

  22. I for one love the series and am trying to do more cooking from my existing books as well!

  23. Keeping it simple and basic is my vote! I am not a fan of Pintrest. It always makes me feel like what I do isn’t good enough. I will happily take a not-so-perfect picture on something I can make and we will eat over a pretty picture any day! Happy New Year!

  24. linda greer says:

    keep it going. the oldies really are the goodies.

  25. Simple recipes with basic ingredients are what I crave and want to cook. Taste matters most!

  26. Karin Goodman says:

    I love simple and basic. Life is busy, but we all love home cooked good food.
    I would also love to see more GF crock pot recipes.

  27. Twyla St Louis says:

    Yes I like the older, simpler recipes and even if they don’t photograph well I love to hear that they taste good. It is so frustrating to spend a lot of time on a recipe to have it taste terrible not to mention the waste of money on ingredients and time in the kitchen.

  28. Hi Lynn,
    I like what you are doing with the recipes now, and will like the change to more vintage if you do that. I love seeing how people cook and bake on Pinterest, that stuff catches my eye! But when it comes time for making dinner for my family, simple ingredients, time and yummy rule the day in that order. Thanks for the work you do to bring so many home cooks great recipes that they want to use!! :)

  29. Cheryl Brown says:

    Please keep it and keep up with the simple and classic recipes.

  30. I agree, simple recipes from scratch are great! I stay away from Pinterest (for many of the reasons already mentioned above), so any new recipes I find are from blogs mostly. I always enjoy your blog and really appreciate all the GF recipes too. Happy New Year!

  31. Kathie Bass says:

    I absolutely love the older recipes with less exotic ingredients, made with seasonings you normally have on hand. The less ingredients the better. I also would like to see some Pressure Cooker recipes. Since the newer models came out several years ago, that don’t require standing at the stove to keep them from exploding ( smile), I have personally been using mine often. You can even cook from frozen in them if you forget to take something out of the freezer ahead of time. Love your blog Lynn and hope you will keep going through those older cookbooks!

  32. As I have only recently found you, please keep your Cooking Through My Collection series going. I’ve been enjoying them.

  33. Hi. I just found your site. Please keep doing the older recipes! They’re the best!

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