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A Look at GNOME Recipes

By Andrew Powell, published 30/03/2017 in Previews


Now, yours truly isn't much of a cook, but I am trying to improve on that. With that in mind, the new GNOME Recipes application caught my eye and I decided to check it out.

GNOME Recipes is still in development and its included library of recipes is certainly not exactly exhaustive, so I'm looking at this as more of a preview than a review.

NOTE: You'll have to excuse the slightly off colours in the screenshots... it's a bit of a bug in GNOME 3.24/Wayland at the moment.

Simple, but to the point

The first thing one notices about GNOME Recipes is that, like a lot of modern GNOME/GTK3 applications, GNOME Recipes' interface is suitably sparse but meant to be functional. You immediately get a list of recipe categories/cuisines, as well as a random assortment of recipes, complete with pictures, on the main page.

Clicking on a recipe gives you all the ingredients and cooking instructions as you would expect, plus you can dynamically adjust the amount of servings, but GNOME Recipes does have a pretty neat feature up its sleeve - clicking on "Start Cooking" will bring up GNOME Recipes into a fullscreen window with a clean dark background with interactive step-by-step instructions to guide you through the recipe. You tap the arrow keys left or right to go forward or backwards through the steps respectively. It's essentially like a PowerPoint Presentation mode, but for presenting cooking instructions instead of slides. It also includes a stopwatch feature to help keep track of cooking times.

Clicking on "Buy Ingredients" also adds the current recipe's ingredient list to your "Shopping List", which is another built-in feature of GNOME Recipes that does basically what it says on the tin - it keeps track of everything you'll want to buy on your next shopping trip. I'm still not sure how I'd lug my GNOME installation with me to the supermarket, being that it's on my desktop computer, but it's a nice feature nevertheless. I'm sure there will be some sort of export and/or sync feature down the track to make further use of this. Having said that, GNOME Recipes does have a nice handy Print button down in the bottom right corner as well as a Share button, so you can take your shopping list elsewhere that way.

There is also the ability to list recipes by their respective cuisines, such as Chinese, Mediterranean, Italian, American etc, as well as by special occasions such as Christmas and Thanksgiving. There are also even more broad categories available, such as Vegan/Vegetarian, Gluten-free and Nut-free, for example. Unfortunately for this writer there is no existing category catering to low-carb/healthy-fat, almost paleo approaches, but there is nothing stopping one from adding their own recipes, which the app also keeps track of. It's also worth remembering that most of the existing recipes in the GNOME Recipes library are added by the GNOME devs themselves and no doubt more and more recipes and cuisines will be added over time.

Of course, it wouldn't be a complete app if you couldn't add recipes from scratch also. With a simple click of the "Add Recipe" button, you get a quite detailed screen with a bunch of options, ingredients and instructions you can fill out for your particular recipe.

All in all, GNOME Recipes is yet another application by the GNOME team that sets out to be well integrated into the GNOME desktop but also just provide a simple but featureful experience. For some, it may be a bit too simple or perhaps even redundant. If you don't use GNOME and already use a particular recipes application, this may not be of any interest to you. Still, I can't help but admit GNOME Recipes is pretty well presented and it's easy to imagine using it in the kitchen on a laptop or something like that.

Getting GNOME Recipes

Currently, the easiest way to get GNOME Recipes, short of going all out building from source code, is getting it through Flatpak. Most modern distributions should now have Flatpak out of the box, and if not it should be available in the repos for installation.

First add it to Flatpak:

flatpak --install --from https://matthiasclasen.github.io/recipes-release/gnome-recipes.flatpakref

There will be a momentary wait, depending on your internet speed, as Flatpak downloads the required runtimes/dependencies for GNOME Recipes. Fair warning: this could be over 100 MB in size.

Finally, run it from Flatpak:

flatpak run org.gnome.Recipes

Or alternatively, all going well, you'll find GNOME Recipes in the applications menu.


About the author

Andrew Powell is the editor and owner of The Linux Rain who loves all things Linux, gaming and everything in between.

Tags: previews gnome recipes apps linux
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