Monday, April 16, 2012

Cooking with an iPad

Some time ago ago, my friend Linda asked me to share a recipe for cabbage rolls that I had been taught by my mum.

I decided that I’d try documenting the recipe using Pages on my iPad. I had previously created a few simple documents in Pages, and wanted to explore it some more.

I first confirmed the details for the recipe with my mum, making a few notes during a phone call with her. Next, I documented her secret recipe in Pages on iPad, discovering in the process that Pages includes some easy-to-use and reasonable-looking templates. The recipe was easy to create, and because the template included a photo, I added one that I had taken the during and earlier cooking session when I had made the recipe with my mum and son. The result was quite pleasing, and had taken only a few minutes to create.

I next decided to try the documented recipe before sending it to my friend. My son and I made a batch of cabbage rolls one weekend, and this is where the story took a fun turn. While cooking we did a video call with my mum on the iPad. The surprisingly engaging part was using the rear-facing camera on the iPad to document the creation of the meal live for my mum during the call. The mobility of the iPad made it easy to show our progress, with my son and I periodically swapping roles as cook and videographer. The immediacy of the experience made it feel like the three of us were working on the meal together.

I sent a PDF of the proven recipe to Linda, who later reported that she successfully made and enjoyed a batch of cabbage rolls.

Nothing novel here, but I was still struck by how easy, empowering, and downright fun the whole process was, and by what an amazing product the iPad is.