Unique Memorial Ideas: A Family Recipe Book
If you recently lost a loved one and are looking for a unique and uplifting way to create a lasting memorial, you may want to consider a family recipe book. This works especially well whether the deceased loved to cook, or was someone who just loved food. By gathering beloved recipes and putting them in a book that can be printed for anybody who wants a copy, you can help their memory—and their favorite dishes—live on.
Ask for Pictures and Recipes
It is fairly common to ask family and friends to unearth photos of the deceased in the days prior to the funeral or memorial service. These are often compiled into a slideshow that is played during the service or put into a photo album that can be passed around among loved ones. (In our age of technology, they are also often put onto USBs to be handed out at the service or posted to a memorial web page for those who cannot be present at the funeral.)
This is where making a recipe book is easy. When asking for pictures, also ask for a recipe. The recipe can be one:
- Made and shared by the deceased
- Beloved by the deceased
- Present at most holidays that included the deceased
- Made using ingredients from the deceased’s garden
- That is a family heirloom passed down through the generations
- That reminds someone of the deceased
- Cherished on an overseas trip or during other travels
If possible, people can include a photo or a short story about the recipe and what makes it meaningful or memorable to them. Your story could include reminiscences of cooking and sharing meals together. This can then be compiled into a book (the kind that is easily printed and bound at a copy shop) to be shared among friends and family members.
Keeping the Recipe Book for Future Generations
The great thing about a recipe book is that it can almost become an organic part of your family. For example, you can expand the book to include sections from different relatives who have passed. You can build on old favorites to come up with more modern equivalents. You can jot your own notes and memories as they arise, and include space in the book for doing so. You can even turn it into a blog or website where others can share their own thoughts on their grief, the deceased, and food.
In this way, the recipe book will live on well past your loved one’s time on this earth—and provide you with inspiration and opportunities to get in the kitchen and deal with your grief in a hands-on, meaningful way.