Recipe Overload - Heidi's Book of Noms Blog at - 94605

Heidi's Book of Noms

Recipe overload 
May 9, 2009 6:27 am 
Updated: May 13, 2009 10:23 pm
I've started having a problem lately on allrecipes where I get  what I call recipe overload. There are so many recipes, and so many of them have comments that recommend modifications. I don't mind this; to each his own, but it makes it really difficult to choose a recipe.

My biggest problem is when there are more than one good recipe for something I want to make especially if it's something I don't make often, don't eat often, or have never had before.

Last night I made some lemon bars to bring to the weekend outing with my family at our ranch in the middle of nowhere. We used to make these from the box at home and I honestly can't recall the last time I've had them. So I looked over quite a few recipes:

Easy Lemon Bars
The Best Lemon Bars
Bake Sale Lemon Bars
Lemon Square Bars

Like, really? I have to pick from four?

Last night I got back really late from Star Trek (which btw is an amazing movie, and I've never seen one episode of Star Trek but now I want to!) and I was tired, and anxious. The number of recipes I was looking at almost killed my desire to make them.

This happens to me sometimes; its like some kind of overload. For instance, one time I was in the nut aisle of our local grocery store. No one was there. I enjoy shopping at a leisurely pace, investigating the food. It's relaxing. All of sudden somewhere in the realm of a dozen people poured into the aisle and descended on the nuts. It was too much. I had to flee with whatever nuts I was holding! And this happened not long ago at a dinner with a big group of friends who were talking really loudly. I just got a wild hair up my bum and took off without even telling anyone.

So last night I shut down the comp and crawled over to good ol Betty Crocker. Her recipes are pretty middle-of-the road in taste preferences and baking styles and for the most part she's never done me wrong. I still have two lemons so maybe now that I have one toe in the pool I will go pick one of these others to try.

UPDATE: The lemon bars came out really well! See pics below. I was going to add some pictures Saturday morning but the site was crawling and I wanted to make it out to the ranch at a decent hour.
Crumbly lemon bars
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Stack of Lemon Bars
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Lemon Bars Detail
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May 9, 2009 8:49 am
I know how you feel. I get easily overloaded too! Too many people, too many decisions, too many choices, too much noise - gah! When it's a really basic, common recipe I'm looking for, I often go to my Better Homes and Gardens cookbook. It's great (as is Betty Crocker - I use that one too!) for standard recipes.
May 9, 2009 1:15 pm
This does happen to me at times. Last week I was looking at white cake recipes and I became overloaded and I didn't make any of them. I also like to grocery shop and I don't like to feel rushed either.
May 10, 2009 4:02 pm
The pictures look delicious Heidi! Thanks for sharing!
May 11, 2009 9:37 am
Yours look great! I made the Easy Lemon Bars last night and they came out great! Not like a normal bar but more of a lemon cheesecake bar. Very delicious, just add more lemon than recommended if you want a strong lemon flavor. I also added 4 oz more cream cheese.
May 11, 2009 11:12 am
Funny you mentioned those lemon bar recipes! I did the same thing having never made them before! The ones you made look delicious though!
May 11, 2009 10:58 pm
I, too, run from the grocery store when there are a lot of people around. I have walked in and walked right back out, even seeing things I need to buy, I'll drop them and leave until the store is a bit quieter. I feel your pain! Your lemon bars look good!
May 12, 2009 5:18 am
Heidi, I know exactly how you are feeling. It can be very overwhelming when there is so much out there to look at. It happens to me frequently and I can give myself a headache trying to narrow my choices down. Your lemon bars look great!
May 12, 2009 5:23 am
there is a song by Delbert McClinton called "Too Much Stuff" which describes the overwhelmed feeling quite well. I get that feeling when walking around a big box store sometimes or shopping in the evening when the grocery store is crowded with people. Also when looking at all the extra "stuff" that my kids have making a mess of their rooms and our living room!
May 12, 2009 6:26 am
I'm so glad I'm not the only one who gets overwhelmed like that. Oh, and I'm thinking about making lemon bars again. Now that I've done it once I might actually try one of those other recipes, probably Bake Sale Lemon Bars.
May 12, 2009 1:42 pm
When I'm in that situation, I work from the top down... in other words, I start with the recipe with the highest ratings. If that recipe isn't absolutely wonderful, next time I'll try the one with the second highest. Hope that helps.
May 12, 2009 2:31 pm
Just a heart felt thanks to all the great cooks out there. I've lived full time in Costa Rica for the last 2 years, thank God I was an All Recipes fan before I moved. While you all talk about overload in the grocery store, I can only laugh and remember what it was like back in the good ol' USA! Here there are very few packaged mixes, canned soups, premade microwaveable, or plain old standard chicken canned stock. Don't get me wrong, I love my new live and you'd have a hard time getting my butt out of here, but there are times... Lord how I'd love to walk through a fully stocked super market! What I have learned is to improvise. You can be pretty inventive when necessary. Keep up all the good food news, I truly enjoy the great hints everybody shares. Pura Vida from Arenal, Costa Rica. Sheebs
May 12, 2009 5:45 pm
I agree completely with you. Often that is when I will ask the recipe exchange people for advice in choosing the best recipe. if you read my review for "Bake Sale Lemon Bars" it pretty much sums up all the other 200 reviews "DO NOT READ THE REVIEWS". That recipe is a terrible one for contradicting reviews.
May 13, 2009 12:38 pm
Hey fellow Corpus Christi-an...nut shop at Sun Harvest! HEB is just too packed all the time!
May 13, 2009 12:40 pm
Oooops just saw you live in Austin. You're much better off then, lol.
May 13, 2009 1:35 pm
I have to say, that was a very enjoyable shopping story for me, just because I know it has happened to me at least a few times. All of a sudden there is a stampede and you get swept away in the current. And I get recipe overload here, too, especially when I am trying to cook something relatively common but special. I end up blending about 5 different recipes and coming up with my own. When you have the energy its the reason I love this site!
May 13, 2009 10:23 pm
Heidi - I know exactly what you mean! I have, though, tried the recipe The Best Lemon Bars, and the recipe needs no modifications whatsoever. I've even compared it to Betty's and it came out superior. Best of luck with the overload!
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About Me
I enjoy trying new recipes and unusual ingredients. There are few foods I will turn down without a second thought - sweets is one of them, and fiery hot spicy food is the other. As I'm getting older that is changing, though. I love reading cook books and doing research about food. It fascinates to no end! I usually create a recipe from several different ones. On the non-cooking side of things, I'm a Christian, native Texan and faithful Longhorn with two cats and a great boyfriend! I love the outdoors and spending time with my family and friends. I'm also somewhat obsessed with the nuclear winter and extreme survival situations.
My favorite things to cook
In general I try to cook from scratch. Any kind of bread - rolls, loaves, boules, baguettes, buns, biscuits, quick breads - will catch my eye. Pastas, soups, and cookies. I am absolutely in love with cake batter. Once I had a party in middle school where we just made a bunch of cakes and ate the batter.
My favorite family cooking traditions
The Thanksgiving and Christmas turkey/waldorf salad/mashed potatoes with gravy by my mom, buttermilk biscuits on Sunday morning before church from my Dad, grilling hamburgers in the summer in the backyard, black eyed peas for new years dinner, decorating sugar cookies on Christmas Eve with my sister, coffee any time of the night.
My cooking triumphs
I can rival my dad in his biscuit making ability. I have the perfect dinner roll recipe - my very own. I taught myself how to make jam and jelly. I taught myself how to make bread!
My cooking tragedies
dense as a stone wheat bread, homemade condensed milk tastes weird key lime pie, onions and sugar have no place hanging out together in mashed sweet potato, there's nothing puffy about my lemon meringue, and the bottom of the fish tank poached salmon.
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