If you give a grouse a cookie February 27, 2010 7:16 AM   Subscribe

In December, OmieWise posted a fantastic link to Gourmet Magazine's Favorite Cookies 1941–2008. Most of the pages for earlier years' recipes are now gone. Gourmet isn't writing back. Anyone have the presence of mind to save some of these?

For example, the first link on the 1940s page, Cajun Macaroons, gives a "Content Not Found" error. Many of these are still available in Google cache form, although managing to find and save all of them would be a bit of a pain.
posted by grouse to MetaFilter-Related at 7:16 AM (44 comments total) 27 users marked this as a favorite

I checked the Wayback Machine, but the last batch of Gourmet pages they have are from 2008, so grabbing as much as you can now from Google may be best if nothing comes up here.
posted by maudlin at 7:47 AM on February 27, 2010


OH NO! I love that cookie recipe compendium...and I think today's new project should be saving them, at least the google cache versions. Do you have any idea of the best way to go about this? I'm totally willing to put in the effort involved (shouldn't be too much, really!) and share the result.
posted by mismatched at 8:17 AM on February 27, 2010


Okay, in a flurry of activity, I was able to get all of the 1940s and 50s, but not all of the 1960s. Will continue after a break, I think.
posted by mismatched at 8:39 AM on February 27, 2010


I have been thinking about this a little. I tried to write a Python script that would get the Google Cache URL for any of these pages. Unfortunately it is too unreliable.

mismatched, how have you been saving the pages? I found that Firefox's File > Save Page As... (Save as type: Web Page, complete) gives fairly nice results. I'm going to see if I can knock off the 1970s. Anyone else want to help? Crowdsourcing this a little will probably be less work than writing a script that actually works.
posted by grouse at 8:48 AM on February 27, 2010


I was able to rescue 5 from the 1970s. The Google Cache bookmarklet from Stephen Ostermiller's Cache Bookmarklets is a big help, but sometimes you still have to just Google for the title of the page. I'm going to do the 1980s.
posted by grouse at 8:56 AM on February 27, 2010


Got 6 from the 1980s. I'm going to take a break now too.
posted by grouse at 9:06 AM on February 27, 2010


Anyone know a good way of converting several directories full of HTML files into a single PDF?
posted by grouse at 9:09 AM on February 27, 2010


grouse: Yeah, I've been doing the google chrome equivalent of that. I'm gonna make a go of the 1990s now.
posted by mismatched at 9:11 AM on February 27, 2010


grouse, not only is this a wonderful MetaTalk post, but the title made me smile. I've been reading that book to my kid EVERY DAY for I don't know how long.

(I just learned yesterday that there have been endless pig, cat, moose, etc. variations. oh boy.)
posted by pinky at 9:14 AM on February 27, 2010


Seems like there's less and less available as we go forward in time -- I was only able to grab 4 of the 1990s, and one of those was the original page, not a cache. Weird.
posted by mismatched at 9:14 AM on February 27, 2010


OH WAIT I missed a few. Now there are seven from that decade (for all of you watching with bated breath).
posted by mismatched at 9:18 AM on February 27, 2010


And the 2000s are done too, now; I figured I'd check and there's only two of those that are down, one of which has been cached.
posted by mismatched at 9:22 AM on February 27, 2010


Go team go!
posted by gomichild at 9:24 AM on February 27, 2010


Oh hurray! Please let those of us tuning in late know how we can benefit from your quick action.
posted by crush-onastick at 10:52 AM on February 27, 2010


Results are here on Scribd! I recommend downloading the PDF using the Download button right underneath the title. I regret that this is a little sloppy around the edges due to the way we retrieved the recipes. If anyone wants to take another crack at this I am happy to send you the HTML files. It's also too bad that we couldn't save all of the recipes, but there are many good ones in there!

Thank you so much to mismatched for finding and downloading more than 70 percent of the HTML pages. This has been fun.
posted by grouse at 11:03 AM on February 27, 2010 [17 favorites]


Oh brilliant. I noticed that they were gone a few weeks ago (when I was planning on making the cajun macaroons), and then never bothered to go hunting. Now I can. Yay!
posted by gaspode at 11:29 AM on February 27, 2010


Thanks, grouse et al.
posted by exogenous at 11:41 AM on February 27, 2010


I cut and pasted all of them into a word document. I've PDF'ized it and posted it to my website, here.

Enjoy!
posted by Confess, Fletch at 12:29 PM on February 27, 2010 [20 favorites]


from "Grarrrrr!" to "Huzzah!" in only one mouse click. Nice work, hivemind.
posted by clockwork at 12:46 PM on February 27, 2010


awesome, thanks grouse!
posted by special-k at 1:07 PM on February 27, 2010


Awesome teamwork. Go Team Mefi!
posted by misha at 1:28 PM on February 27, 2010


Wow, thank you guys!
posted by LobsterMitten at 1:54 PM on February 27, 2010


This is awesome.
posted by shothotbot at 2:06 PM on February 27, 2010


I had a handful bookmarked to save later but they are all gone now. Thanks for making theses available!
posted by Captain_Science at 2:19 PM on February 27, 2010


Wow, thanks for the work. I hadn't downloaded very many of the recipes.
posted by OmieWise at 2:29 PM on February 27, 2010


Holy crap, awesome work, damies! I may have to make the kourambiethes and see how they compare to my mom's recipe!

Hey, quick question for anyone who might've made the stained-glass teardrop cookies: the recipe makes it sound like there's nothing on the back side of the "glass" candy portions. Yet in the included photo, the glass on some of them is a brilliant blue, which I assume could only happen if there was cookie-material behind them (otherwise, they'd be sorta purplish, due to the crimson tabletop on which the cookies sit). So what's the deal there? Did they photoshop the cookies' color or use some other trickery? Or can you make these with a layer of light cookie behind the color?
posted by Greg Nog at 3:19 PM on February 27, 2010


Awesome awesome awesome. Thanks so much for doing this!
posted by Knicke at 4:28 PM on February 27, 2010


I think Gourmet Magazine has made their stance completely clear; they do not want this information to be available any more, and this post violates that spirit by allowing anyone who wants the recipes simple access by googling, rather than having to invent cookie recipes on their own.

Grouse, you should request that this post be deleted, to preserve the wishes of the magazine.
posted by paisley henosis at 4:37 PM on February 27, 2010


(Hamburger cookies, if anyone was puzzled.)
posted by paisley henosis at 4:37 PM on February 27, 2010 [1 favorite]


Cookies are fine, but has anyone preserved the Gourmet's Favorite Cocktails 1941-2009 recipes?

I started, but things got blurry after I realized I shouldn't download and drink at the same time.
posted by webhund at 4:48 PM on February 27, 2010 [1 favorite]


FWIW I have it on good authority that these things will not be lost to time. They're too valuable to just go up in thin air.

Regarding the 'Favorite Cocktails,' the plan was to publish them all in a book, but they never got around to shooting the last decade before the mag folded. I do feel like it will be finished by someone, just not in the near future.
posted by infinitefloatingbrains at 5:03 PM on February 27, 2010


Technically, Gourmet Magazine no longer exists. Conde-Nast ceased publication of Gourmet a few months ago. Still, Conde-Nast does own the copyright on the recipes and would probably not be thrilled with this.
posted by cerebus19 at 6:16 PM on February 27, 2010


This is fantastic. Thanks to everyone involved!
(Now that everyone is armed with a copy, the cookie exchange must happen again)
posted by casarkos at 7:25 PM on February 27, 2010


Mmm, cookies. I look forward to making Sugar Shuttles again -- a bit labor-intensive, but oh so delicious.

Thanks for organizing this, taking down recipes, and putting it all together, grouse. It was fun.
posted by mismatched at 9:27 PM on February 27, 2010


I just learned yesterday that there have been endless pig, cat, moose, etc. variations. oh boy.

I've read a lot of them and they're nearly all charming. "If You Give a Pig a Pancake" contains an illustration of the pig, post-bath, wrapped in a towel, hugging a rubber ducky and clearly missing its days on the farm, that has made me damn near want to cuddle the book to comfort it.

Much better than Sandra Boynton, who started strong out of the gate with me but quickly appeared to be falling in love with her own cleverness and recycling her own tropes. Seriously, how many of your characters can you have "shimmy" or "shimmy shake" or "shimmy shimmy shimmy" before you get tired of that verb?
posted by middleclasstool at 9:28 PM on February 27, 2010


From the bottom of my cookie-loving heart -- thank you!
posted by ottereroticist at 11:01 PM on February 27, 2010


Wow, You are all fantastic people for finding and saving these.

I am seconding thirding and fourthing the call for a cookie exchange!
posted by newpotato at 6:18 AM on February 28, 2010


This would really be worth putting on Projects if anyone wants to put it together.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 8:22 AM on February 28, 2010


Thank you, thank you, thank you!
posted by cooker girl at 10:04 AM on February 28, 2010


This would really be worth putting on Projects if anyone wants to put it together.

Ok, since I'm the one who actually saved every single recipe, I'll make a project of it.

I'm going to make a sub-domain on my site for it, I'll get a mod to update my link above when it all comes together.
posted by Confess, Fletch at 12:25 PM on February 28, 2010 [2 favorites]


Just post it on Projects and then put that link here. It's a lot easier to deal with than referencing a changed link.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 1:57 PM on February 28, 2010


OK, The Project is live

Please fell free to make fun of my mad HTML skilz.
posted by Confess, Fletch at 5:13 PM on February 28, 2010


Okay, this right here is why I love you all.
posted by HotToddy at 8:48 AM on March 1, 2010


Thanks you guys! I would have been so sad to find all those cookies missing.
posted by grapesaresour at 2:17 PM on March 2, 2010


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