Ingredient lists were a huge and important innovation to the recipe format in the early-to-mid 1800′s. They solved the problem of ingredients buried in the middle of paragraph descriptions, making shopping and preparation easier and more efficient. In some recipe’s though, that goes too far. Pies are a frequent example since they often have two different processes…making the crust and making the filling. By creating a single ingredient list, shopping is simple. However, it also leads to mistakes like this one:
Some recipes like this one will call for 1.5 cups of sugar, then in the description say “Use 1/4 cup of the sugar…” and later “Use the remaining sugar”. Others may be nice enough to say “1.5 cups of sugar, divided” which is recipe code for “you’re going to need some now and some later” at least to warn you. However, better are the recipes that separate the crust ingredients from the filling ingredients completely, which reduces confusion. We’ve chosen to go a step farther. Only the ingredients you need are shown when you first need them. Of course, you can always opt to see all ingredients or switch back to see only the ingredients needed for that step. It’s up to you.