I still remember the day I met you.
I was a fresh-faced girlfriend of 26, visiting my then-fiance in Canada and desperately wanting to impress my future in-laws.
My recipe books were at home, and I was at a loss.
You saved me. It was a simple recipe, comfort food at its finest, salisbury steak, I believe. I had never realized that the “steaks” were supposed to be oval in shape.
Of course, you were not a person. People posted the recipes to you, but, looking back at the recipes that I carefully (and not-so-carefully) placed in one of my many “cookbooks,” you marked various stages of my young married life.
I remember how I tried to be alliterative and cutesy with my cookbook titles, like “Punches with Punch” and “Casserole Crazy.” Yes, I carried it over to Pinterest, but you were my first. And for a bit, my only.
I was one of the crazies that paid to have multiple cookbooks and no ads.
In those days, Recipezaar, you were, as my sixteen-year-old self would have said, the bomb.
And then came the change.
After Scripps (y’know, the Food Network and spelling bee people) bought you, you were diseased…infected. You didn’t look the same…or act the same. To my shame, I began visiting you less and less, using you only to locate old recipe standbys.
They made you change your name…from something so memorable and magical and whimsical as Recipezaar to the much less appetizing (pun intended) Food.com.
You grew less approachable. At times, I forgot your existence. I missed the friends that I had met there, discussing OAMC and budget cooking ideas.
Today, I felt a yen to visit you. I had heard mention (maybe in an e-mail that I had speedily deleted) that you had changed further.
I truthfully couldn’t recognize you. You were nothing like the friend I remembered. Even now, as I sob (yes, I know I cry too much) remembering you as you were and mourning what could have been, I am lost. It took over an hour to find out how to access my recipes that I had spent hours saving over the years. It will take countless hours to PDF them to my computer. Once that happens, and I’m saying this in advance: I am breaking up with you. We are no longer friends.
You’ve lost the essence of you and I fear there is no way to get you back. The essence was not a glut of recipes; your essence was how you made everyone optimistic about cooking. Now, you just seem to be a clone of the Food Network website or AllRecipes (or the especially obnoxious and annoying Yummly).
By the way, I miss the Community Message Boards. That’s what brought me back today…and the loss of them made my goodbye final.
I am one…in case I haven’t hammered it home before…adverse to unnecessary change. Recipezaar wasn’t broken, and what Scripps did to it through its various “improvements” destroyed it. Change is not always good. Not always positive. And, in this case, it certainly wasn’t.
Goodbye, my friend. I will remember you fondly. Waves