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I am interested in making a cookbook in LaTeX. Each page will contain a recipe, including ingredients, instructions, and a photo of the finished food. Has this been done previously? Where do I start? Should I make my own document class for a cookbook? Does one exist? Any other ideas or pointers?

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I've been looking at the illustrated cookbooks lulu.com (self-publishing agency) lets you set up & been wondering whether it might be feasible to do something like that using a modification of beamer/beamerposter - one slide per page, possibly combined with one of the packages mentioned in the answers. Alas, did not have the time to pursue it. –  prettygully Jun 12 '11 at 22:40
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5 Answers

There are two existing classes/packages for this sort of thing:

  • cuisine Simple, but with good recipe formatting
  • cookybooky Complex, very stylish, requires pstricks
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Another package is xcookybooky.

Here some information given by the author in the documentation:

When I was looking for template for recipes, I found the cookybooky package … It looks very good, but I was unable to compile it correctly (e.g. I haven’t got the Lucida fonts). Also there are some packages which have to be downloaded by hand, because there are not available at CTAN. Other handicaps are the missing possibility to create a PDF-file directly and a recipe cannot be longer than a single page. So decided to take a look at the code. Step by step I replaced all critical parts. … There is no compatibility between xcookybooky and cookybooky, even the name is associating it. The reason for the naming is nearly similar design.

A comparison between xcookybooky and cookybooky (also taken from the documentation):

                Characteristic   xcookybooky      cookybooky
                --------------   -----------      ----------
         Maximum recipe length   unlimited        1 page
      Support missing pictures   yes              no
Transparent background graphic   not part of      yes
                                 package […]
                   Main Layout   wraptable        minipages
        Support twoside option   only changing    full
                                 pictures above
               Generate recipe   environment      macro

An example, also taken from the documentation (though it’s in German, the rest of it is in English):

xcookybooky example

Note: Loading of the (in a strict meaning) non-free font package emerald is optional. Actually all is Freeware (Wikipedia link).

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There is also a third LaTeX class, recipe. This formats recipes with an ingredients list first, followed by the instructions.

The cuisine class typesets the recipe and ingredients list as two columns, ingredients on the left and recipe on the right, with the position of the ingredients in the column aligned with the step in which the ingredient is used.

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For the sake of completeness, take also a look cookingsymbol, which contains some symbols useful for recipes. It is created by the same author as xcookybooky. The symbols are metafont based and has less dependency than other packages. It is useful when you use any style other than xcookybooky and want to use the symbols. Here is a screenshot from documentation of cookingsymbol.

A screenshot from symbols in cookingsymbol

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It’s made by the same author like xcookybooky and used by it. In the posted example (see my answer) one can see three symbols from cookingsymbol. –  Speravir Sep 5 '12 at 23:44
    
@Speravir Oh, ofcourse. Well, the fact is, I haven't used it since some 5-6 years! So, my bad ;) However, it might come handy if you use it with other styles than xcookybooky. –  Hasan Zakeri Sep 6 '12 at 8:46
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You could start by taking a look at the different options available in CTAN: Cooking recipes. The description of cookybooky sounds promising

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