Frequently Asked Questions About
Now You're Cooking! 


Recipe Search


How do I find all recipes in a specific category (e.g., “seafood”) across cookbooks so I can export them to a new cookbook?


In the export window (File... Export Recipes...), select the “seafood” category in the open cookbook. Then do a search across cookbooks, where the search has no keywords. The search results will list all recipes in the “seafood” category in all cookbooks. You can then select all recipes in the search results, and select Apply on the search results window to put the found recipes in the export queue. Then export the recipes to a new cookbook called Seafood.


How do I delete “venison” recipes (for example) across all my cookbooks without having to open each cookbook?


There is no way with NYC to delete recipes across cookbooks from a search across cookbooks.  You can only delete recipes in the cookbook that is currently open. We may add a delete button on the search window someday so you could do this. 


The best you can do for now is to search across cookbooks, tag the resulting recipes, then open each cookbook and delete the tagged recipes.  Obviously you should always untag all recipes across cookbooks before starting.  You can do this easily using Tools… Data Mgt… Cookbooks… Untag Recipes (across cookbooks).


How do I find and use tagged recipes across cookbooks without opening each cookbook?


  1. From any cookbook, open the recipe list and select the "tagged" radio button to establish your "search domain".  
  2. Press Search... button. 
  3. In the search keywords textbox, select "across cookbooks" and enter no keywords. 
  4. (In NYC, entering no keywords is the same as saying “find ALL recipes in the search domain”.)
  5. Press Search and NYC will find all tagged recipes in all your cookbooks and display them in the search list.


As for doing other operations on this list of tagged recipes across cookbooks:


Do the above Search from the Export window, then Apply the search results to the export queue and export them to a file.

Do the Search from the Print Recipes window and you can Apply them to the print queue to print them.

Do the Search from the Categories window and you can Apply them to categorize them.

Do the Search from the Menu Plan window and you can Apply them to menus, etc., etc.          


How do I put the recipes from a search into a text file?


Here are 2 ways to put search results recipes to a text file:


1.  Use File... Export Recipes... and do the search from this window.  Use the Apply button in the search results window to put selected recipes from the search results window into the export queue.  Then export normally to a text file.


2.  Select recipes in the search results window, then press the Editor button on the small toolbar.  Press NYC generic or MM format, and the recipes will appear in the editor window.  Save as a text file.


I reached the limit of 100 items in my “pantry.txt” file, which is used to search for recipes containing only those ingredients I have on hand in my pantry or refridgerator.  Can this limit be expanded?


In NYC v5.58 and higher, the 100 item hard limit on entries in the pantry.txt file has been removed.  Theoretically, there now is no limit except for what the textbox itself can hold.  The textbox can hold around 64K characters, so at 10-15 characters per ingredient, for example, the effective limit now is 4000-6000 items.


Is there a way to just click on a letter and get all recipes that start with “L”, for example?  Your recipe selection list is alphabetized, but in a cookbook with hundreds of recipes, it's a lot of scrolling to get to the bottom.


Click on a recipe in the selection list, then hit L.  NYC will take you to the top of the Ls.


How can I find all tagged recipes in a search across all cookbooks?


To see a list of all tagged recipes across all cookbooks, perform a search as follows:


1.      Open the recipe edit window (press the "R" toolbar button).

2.      In the recipe edit window, click on "tagged recipes" (this defines the search range).

3.      In the recipe edit window, press the Search button.

4.      In the search window that pops up, click on "all cookbooks" -- leave the keywords box blank to force all recipes in the search range to

5.      be found.

6.      Press Search button in the search window.  All tagged recipes from all cookbooks should appear in the list.


How can I clear all tagged recipes across all cookbooks?


To clear all tagged recipes from all cookbooks:


1.      Select Tools… Data Management… Cookbooks…

2.      Click on “all cookbooks” and press Untag Recipes…


How do I search the nutrition database to find a certain item?


Use the Edit… Find… command on the main menu, with the nutrition database open (Nutrition… Database…).


Is there is a way to search for recipes that use ingredients that you happen to have on hand in the fridge or pantry?

Absolutely.  In my mind this is one of the most powerful uses of NYC.  It requires NYC 5.45 or higher due to a bug in previous versions.  And you need NYC v5.58 or higher to avoid a 100-entry limit on the ingredients in your fridge/pantry.

Here is the best way to find recipes that use ONLY ingredients in your pantry:


  1. Create a text file called “pantry.txt” in your NYC \user folder that contains the ingredients in your pantry (one ingredient per line in the file).
  2. Run NYC and open the recipe selection window (Recipes… Recipes…).
  3. Above the recipe selection list, make sure the “All Recipes” radio button is selected, then press the Search... button.
  4. In the search keyword window, select "only", then press the “…” button to the right of the textbox and select your “pantry.txt” file in the file dialog. The “ingredients” box should now be the only one checked in the frame to the right of the keywords textbox and items from your pantry.txt file should appear in the keyword texbox.
  5. Press the Search button.


You should now have a search results list with recipes wherein each recipe ingredient contains a keyword from your pantry.text file. This operation works best if your cookbook has many recipes and your pantry.txt file has lots of ingredients.  We like to do this search across all cookbooks.  It is sheer fun to search 50,000 recipes for only those that include the six weirdest things you have in your fridge, and to find 1 or 2 recipes that actually use only a subset of those six items.  Kinda scary if you think about it.


To widen the search, do the search using "any of" rather than "only", tag the results, and then do a Search on the tagged list for certain combinations of ingredients.

How do I find and list all tagged recipes in all cookbooks?

There is no direct way to do this but here is a workaround.  From the recipe selection window (Recipes... Recipes...), select the "tagged" radio button, then press the Search... button.  In the search dialog, click the "all cookbooks" radio button.  In the search keyword text box, enter all vowels

a e i o u

Press the Search button.

This will find all recipes having any of these letters in the recipe name.  Since every word has a vowel, this will find all recipes in every cookbook's tag list.  Tagged recipes from all cookbooks will be listed in the Search Results window.

The "tagged" list is a search domain, like a category, or the untagged list, or "all recipes".  You can thus use this method to list all recipes in a category across cookbooks, or to list all untagged recipes across your NYC cookbooks, or to list all recipes in all cookbooks.
How do I search through recipes for an exact phrase? For example, how do I find all recipes with "rice pudding" in the name?

In the search keyword list, enter a comma at the end of your phrase, like:

          rice pudding,

When NYC sees a comma in your search string, it assumes commas are delimiting rather than spaces, so it will find all recipes with the string "rice pudding".  To find recipes with multiple phrases, separate them with commas like this:

         rice pudding, orange juice, sourdough bread

Bad example, perhaps, but you get the idea.   You can also enter

         "rice pudding"  "orange juice"  "sourdough bread"

to achieve the same result.

How do I search recipe categories across cookbooks?

In the recipe list, select a category. Then when you do a search, the search range is confined to that category of each cookbook. The search range appears in the title of the search dialog box.

How do I search recipes for "ham" without getting recipes with "hamburger", "graham", and "champagne"?

You need to do a 2-step search within a cookbook. Search all recipes for "ham". Then tag all the recipes in the Search Results list. Then reset the search range in the recipe selection window to "tagged recipes" rather than "all recipes". Then enter "hamburger graham champagne" in the Search dialog box with the "none of" button selected, and search the smaller list.

Why is the Apply button grayed out in the Search Results window?

The button is disabled when you search from a window in which Apply has no meaning (recipe select window is one of these). If you search from the Meal Plan window, Apply puts the selected recipes in the selected meal. If you search from the Print Recipes window, Apply puts the selected recipes into the print queue. If you search from the Export window, Apply puts the selected recipes into the export queue.

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Last Updated:  10/31/2005 9:36 PM

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