Eat Your Books

Personal Recipes & Bookmarklet Manual

To ensure that the recipes that you index yourself are consistent with the EYB indexed recipes we have developed these guidelines for you. Personal recipes indexed are only seen by the member who added them, whereas recipes added from other food sites using the Bookmarket are seen by all EYB members. If you categorize your recipes using EYB standard categories you'll be able to find them using the EYB category filters.

See more information on Personal Recipes.

See more information on the EYB Bookmarklet.

For an explanation of each field and how to complete it, just click on the ? next to the field name.

ADMINISTRATION General Help Information (recommended that you have these open while indexing)


Using the Input Form

Some general points about using the data input form:

(Personal recipes form shown, Bookmarklet form is slightly different)

  • Your cursor will be placed in the Recipe Title field. (1)
  • For an explanation on each field click on the ? next to each field. (2)
  • Use Tab to move from one field to the next.
  • In the variable selection fields once you start typing you will see options to match - once you have the correct match, press 'Enter' to make your selection. (3)
  • If you make a mistake the (x) next to each entry will delete it. (4)
  • Most fields are multiple-entry so keep adding all appropriate data.
  • Once you have completed a recipe click on 'Save & New' ('Save' for Bookmarklet) (5)

Editing and deleting recipes

When you're viewing your recipes in your Bookshelf, if you find that you need to edit or delete a recipe - just click on the 'edit' symbol' to go back into the input form. Either:

  • Make your changes and Save the recipe.
  • Click on the Delete button.

Recipe Title

To be consistent with all other EYB recipes - follow these guidelines:

  • ONLY use capitals for
    • The first letter of the first word:
      Grilled fillet steak with the creamiest white beans
    • Proper nouns (country/region/city or personal/brand names)
    • Ingredients that are capitalized in the Ingredients list, even if not capitalized in the book, e.g. Parmesan, Gorgonzola
  • Foreign language titles: If both English and foreign titles are provided, always type the English title first: Tuscan polenta crostini (Crostini di polenta Toscana)
  • Use of accents: If the book uses accents, use them; if it doesn't, don't. See below for more help on accents.
  • For Online Recipes: Only include actual recipe name. Delete any other information such as name of blog.
More information about using accents....
  • PC users have several options, but the easiest way to insert accents is to use the Character Map utility built into Windows (XP, Vista, Windows 7). Find it here:
    Start » Programs » Accessories » System Tools » Character Map
  • Mac users can use Option keys or the KeyCaps desk accessory located under the Apple menu.

WARNING: Beware of misplaced accents -- there is a world of difference between the French words “pâte” (pastry) and “pâté” (meat paste)! 


Recipe Types

This field categorizes the recipe by the type of dish. To ensure your recipes are categorized consistently refer the to the Recipe Types List for a list of commonly encountered dishes and their corresponding Recipe Type.

  • Sometimes multiple recipes fit into more than one category:
    - “Egg salad” - index as Egg dishes and Salads
    - "
    Chicken and rice casserole” - index as Rice dishes and Casseroles, stews & one-pot meals
  • For simple meat, poultry, and fish/seafood main dishes -- baked, poached, sautéed, etc. -- there is often no Recipe Type.


This field indicates the ethnic cuisine of origin or influence/inspiration of the recipe, if any.  You can allocate more than one Ethnicity where appropriate.  A few guidelines:

  • Select the most specific Ethnicity that applies to the recipe in question, e.g. for a recipe entitled “Spicy Szechuan chicken,” index Chinese, not Asian
  • Some recipes/dishes have an associated or “default” Ethnicity: 
    -  for “yakitori” recipes, categorize as Japanese;
    for “gumbo” recipes, categorize as Cajun & Creole, etc.   
    Refer to the Recipe Types List  for a list of common dishes and associated Ethnicities.
  • If a city/region/country is in the recipe name - "Greek lima bean dip” would be Greek.
  • If a recipe’s origin is described as “Latin (American),” index South American and Central American
  • If a US city/state is in the recipe’s name or author’s comments select North American.
  • If a dish is eaten all over the world – omelets, pizza, kebabs, quiche, etc. – do not index an Ethnicity unless the recipe is specifically identified as being from a country/region, such as “Pizza Napoletana” or “Moroccan chicken kebabs”.


This field lists the course or meal for which the recipe would be served. Follow these guidelines:

  • If the author’s comments indicate the meal or course,
    e.g. “serves 4 as an appetizer,” index Appetizers / starters.
  • Put all meat, poultry, fish, and pasta dishes into Main Course, as well as any other Courses indicated by the author/cookbook.
  • If a recipe would not be served on its own as a course, do not index a Course,
    e.g. sauces, pastry/pizza dough, frostings/fillings, dressings/marinades, etc.

Refer to the Recipe Types List for more information on default Courses for certain recipes/dishes.



This field covers special events and times of the year. Follow these guidelines:

  • If the author's comments mention an occasion such as “I like to make this dish for parties”, index as Dinner parties / entertaining.
  • If a Season, Holiday or Event appears in the recipe name, such as “Spring vegetable soup” or “Halloween cake”, index that Occasion.
  • If a dish serves 10-12+, index as Cooking for a crowd
  • Do not index the category Seasonal, which applies only to Books in the EYB Library.

The idea behind Cooking ahead is to indicate that most or all of a recipe’s preparation can be done in advance to save the cook time on the day of/before the meal/party/event. Most slow-cooker recipes, for example, should be indexed as Cooking ahead



This field covers special dietary or nutritional features. Follow these guidelines:

  • Include a Nutrition category only if:
    - it's in the recipe name such as “Low-fat dressing”
    - the author mentions it in the introduction
    - a chapter/section is for a special diet or nutrition such as Low salt, Diabetic, Dairy-free.
  • Vegetarian/Vegan: Always index a recipe as Vegetarian and/or Vegan where applicable, even if the recipe does not specify - see below for more details.
    NOTE: All Vegan dishes are also Vegetarian, but obviously not vice-versa.
  • Do not index the category General health conditions, which applies only to Books in the EYB Library.

NOTE: EYB does not set nutritional standards for recipes, but instead relies on how the author or cookbook characterizes recipes.

More information about Vegan and Vegetarian recipes...
  • If a recipe contains no meat, fish/seafood, poultry, or products of animal slaughter (including meat/fish/poultry stock or broth, anchovies, bacon bits, lard, fish sauce, oyster sauce, Worcestershire sauce, rennet, and gelatin), then list it as Vegetarian in Nutrition.
  • If the recipe contains no animal products of any kind (including eggs; dairy products such as milk and cheese; and honey), then also list it as Vegan in Nutrition.
  • ONLY index Vegetarian/Vegan for recipes that could have meat/fish/poultry in them: appetizers, canapés, snacks, breakfast items, main courses, side dishes.
  • You don’t need to classify the following as Vegetarian/Vegan: drinks, desserts, sweet breads/buns, savory breads/rolls, dressings, and afternoon tea items.
  • See the Recipe Types List for Recipe Types that do not require indexing of Vegetarian (or Vegan), indicated by an asterisk (*) after the Recipe Type name if the entire category is exempt, or in the Recipe Type description if a portion of the category (usually sweet dishes/recipes) is exempt. 


You can apply your own Bookmarks to your recipes. These need to have been previously set up. Find out more about Bookmarks at How do I bookmark recipes?

For Bookmarklet recipes these bookmarks are not seen by other members, so should not replace the EYB categories. So even if you have your own bookmark for "Soups" you should also assign the EYB Category "Soups" to the recipe.


Accompaniments (Personal Recipes only)

This field lists any recipes that go well as an Accompaniment with the current recipe.

  • You can only select a Personal Recipe as an accompaniment to another Personal Recipe. Use the Notes field to list any other recipes from other sources.
  • The recipe that you require to be an Accompaniment must first have been added as a Personal Recipe.
  • Type any word in the recipe title, such as "chicken" and you will see a list of all your chicken recipes to select the correct one.
More information on Accompaniments

To be consistent with the way EYB uses the Accompaniment field follow these guidelines:


  • The author may put a menu together of a main course with a couple of side dishes or suggest a sauce that goes well with a dessert.
  • The author suggests other recipes that could be served alongside/in the same course as the present recipe.

Not an Accompaniment:

  • The author suggests a recipe that could be served before or after; for example, a dessert would not be listed as an Accompaniment to a main course even if the author has grouped the two dishes in the same dinner menu.

Indexer Notes (Bookmarklet Recipes only)

Add any Notes here about the dish that would be valuable information to other members. Such as:

Type here anything important the user needs to know about the recipe. Some guidelines:

  • A significant advance prep time:
    e.g. Requires marinating overnight.
  • Variations they can make to the recipe:
    e.g. See recipe for vegetarian variation.
  • Ingredient substitutions:
    e.g. Can substitute whole wheat flour for rye flour, and raisins for currants.


The major ingredients in the recipe are selected from a drop-down list that appears as you enter the ingredient. This field accepts as many Ingredients as you need to enter. Click on Additional Information below for instructions on how to enter data.

This section includes information on adding ingredients. To be consistent with the way EYB indexes recipes, you should read and be familiar with it before starting to index:

You will find it extremely helpful (and we recommend) to have these lists open while you work:

More information on entering Ingredients.....
  • Begin entering an ingredient - you will notice a drop-down list of the first 30 ingredients containing the word/characters you entered.
  • You can either scroll down to the ingredient you want or continue to type until the ingredient comes to the top of the list and press Enter to select that ingredient.
  • If you add an incorrect ingredient, delete it by clicking the (x) next to the ingredient.

Main Ingredients & Store-cupboard Ingredients

EYB defines the major ingredients as the ingredients that a user is likely to list when searching for a recipe. Herbs and spices (but not table salt and pepper) are major ingredients because users are likely to search for these.

EYB does not include items that are common in small-moderate quantities to many recipes and would be expected to be on hand in most pantries/fridges are what EYB calls “store-cupboard” ingredients. They are not ingredients most users would normally consider searching. If you want to follow EYB's indexing guidelines refer to the Store-Cupboard Ingredients List for the list of ingredients and the rule-of-thumb/threshold quantities.

For personal recipes you may want to include all ingredients.

Selecting specific ingredients

There are over 23,000 ingredients in the EYB database, so try to be as specific as possible when choosing which ingredient to select.

You may find that we do not have an exact match for an ingredient in your recipe, so just select the closest match.

Sometimes you need to enter an ingredient in different ways to find the ingredient as many ingredients have several name variations.

More on fruits & vegetables, chocolate, juices, herbs & spices
  • For fruits and vegetables enter the generic name and select from the most suitable listed. There are not separate ingredients for all the different varieties/cultivars that might exist.
  • Bittersweet and semisweet chocolate are indexed as dark chocolate.
  • Fresh (-squeezed) citrus fruit juices are indexed as the respective fruit – lemons, limes, etc.; the same is true for citrus zest/peel.
  • For most herb ingredient names, the “default” format is the fresh herb – basil, cilantro, parsley, dill, etc. The dried version of each herb is usually available as a separate indexable ingredient.
    NOTE: One exception is oregano, which in EYB normally refers to the more common dried herb.
  • For most spice ingredient names, the “default” format is the ground/powdered version of the spice – cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, allspice, nutmeg, etc. The whole version of the spice is usually available as a separate indexable ingredient.
    NOTE: An exception is ginger, which in EYB refers to fresh ginger root, with ground ginger available as a separately indexable ingredient.

Ingredient name variations including regional & spelling

Some ingredient names differ significantly depending on the country/cuisine. In these cases, EYB has created a master ingredient with one or more linked variations.

  • Regional variation: e.g. “eggplants” in the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand are called “aubergines” in the UK.
  • Spelling variation: e.g. the herb mix za’atar can also appear in recipes as zaatar, zahtar, and zathar, among other spellings.

When entering an ingredient that is a name variation , you will see the variation appearing in square brackets after the “master” ingredient it is associated with.
Selecting this ingredient will cause the square-bracketed variation to display in the recipe on the EYB database. e.g. zucchini [courgette]


Photos (Bookmarklet Recipes only)

If a photo exists for an online recipe it will be added to the indexing form. Sometimes several photos are added, select the one that is most suitable to illustrate the final dish.

If no photo has been added, and one exists on the website, it means that the page has been structured in such a way that it can not be copied.  


Author (Bookmarklet only)

If the recipe you're indexing has been attributed to an author, please enter the author name.  If the author name doesn't exist, but you think it should be on our database, please email  It is not necessary to attribute recipes from staff writers on magazines.​

Source (Personal Recipes only)

Use the Source field to help you identify where your recipes are located.  This is a free-form field so you can use names like "Kitchen File 1 - Desserts",  "Pink Recipe Box".   If your pages in your files are numbered then you could use "Kitchen Folder, Page 23".    Use whatever suits your own personal system.

Online URL (Personal Recipes only)

If the recipe you are entering is from a website you can add the URL into this field.  You will be able to link directly to  it from your Bookshelf.  Please consider whether you want to share this recipe with other EYB members, if so please use the Bookmarklet to add the recipe.


Notes (Personal Recipes only)

Notes is a free-form field and can be used for anything you like. You may want to add notes about when you've made the recipe, who gave it to you, cooking notes, whatever you want!




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