Over the past few years, I've gradually found myself using an iPad more and more in the kitchen. I love the ease of searching for recipes, and simply prop the iPad up on the counter for easy readability. It can get a little messy at times (say, when I'm in wrist deep in scone batter and suddenly need to scroll) but in general it's a good system.
Now, I'm even happier to use the iPad in the kitchen with the release of The New York Times' Cooking app.
While I purchased an iPad several years ago with lofty dreams of conveniently toting it around in my purse, it's pretty much become the I'm-too-lazy-for-even-a-laptop device or the kitchen computer. You'd expect me to have loads of cooking apps, but while I've tried many apps in the past, almost none have stuck. For the most part, I browse for recipes as I normally would — on the Internet, on my favorite blogs.
Recently though, The New York Times announced the release of an iPad app version of their great NYT Cooking site. I was eager to try this one out, as I am a big fan of Mark Bittman's how-to videos and have long been bookmarking NYT recipes. While initially disappointed that there was no iPhone version of the app, it became apparent upon initial use that the iPad was an ideal format. Beautiful, high resolution images gleam on the clean, uncluttered layout with clear, easy-to-read type. Here are a few of my other favorite features:
The app is free to download and use.
Users must login to a New York Times account to use the recipe box feature, but here's the best news: Even if you don't have a NYT subscription, viewing recipes in app won't count towards those 10 free articles per month!
It gives you recipe recommendations.
Based on the previous browsing history in your NYT account, the app will make recommendations. Plus, with a star rating system, think of this as the Netflix of recipes.
The How-To videos are great.
How many times have you taught yourself to do something using a YouTube video? With the NYT app, all those great how-to videos are at your fingertips in the kitchen. Just be sure they're clean fingertips if you're watching the video on how to cut up a whole chicken.
You can create recipe collections.
Aside from the beautifully created featured collections, like the one on Thanksgiving pies, users have the opportunity to create their own collections within the recipe box feature. I've always been a little hodge-podge about organizing links for recipes, but with such a big library of delicious eats, I'm tempted to start organizing the Thanksgiving menu on here.
The verdict? I give this app four wooden spoons out of five. Bravo NYT! Not only is it elegant and easy to navigate, it comes full to the brim with 16,000+ gorgeous recipes waiting to be made.
What are your favorite cooking apps?