WINCHESTER — While quarantine and COVID-19 kept folks at home for long periods of time, finding ways to pass the time became a necessity. Many turned to cooking — either trying things for the first time or passing down skills to their children, neighbors and friends.

The Top of Virginia Regional Chamber is hoping to memorialize those quarantine recipes with a resident-centered cookbook “Recipes & Remembrances 2020,” which is expected to be available around Thanksgiving.

“I immediately thought about all of the people that I saw on social media who were sharing their newfound cooking recipes and things they were trying,” said the chamber’s Director of Event Management Danita Roble, who is in charge of the project. “We can kind of memorialize what people are doing through this pandemic.”

Top of Virginia’s CEO Cynthia Schneider got the idea from another chamber and pitched it to Roble, and they decided to run with it.

Many television chefs, YouTube personalities and social media users used quarantine to connect with others through cooking. From Gordon Ramsay to Sam the Cooking Guy and various recipe websites, sharing easy, affordable and fun cooking projects has been normal during a stressful time.

Roble said she hopes to see a multitude of recipes — simple, difficult, ones passed down from generation to generation, new creations, fun projects for the kids, you name it.

“I hope people just have fun with it,” Roble said. “We’ll also have the option to use the inserted pages to write some stories and dedicate some space to what’s happened this year.”

There is no charge to submit a recipe by going to and logging in with the username Tov2020 and the password orange837. Then you just enter your name, click continue and click “Add Recipes.”

When adding your recipe, here are some guidelines to follow:

• Use standard abbreviations.

• Only enter one ingredient per ingredient line.

• List ingredients in order of use in the ingredients list and directions.

• Include container sizes, like 16-ounce package or 24-ounce can.

• Write directions in paragraph form rather than steps.

• Use the names of the ingredients in the steps instead of saying things like “combine the first three ingredients.”

• Include temperatures for cooking and times for chilling, baking and/or freezing.

• Additional comments about the recipe such as history, nutritional data and suggested uses are not allowed unless a “Recipe Note” field is visible. Enter extra recipe content in that field.

Recipes are due by Sept. 30.

The cookbook will be a padded three-ring binder with an EZEL bookstand. The padded cover protects the book from dents and dings and a durable metal binding easily snaps open to allow more pages if you want to add more recipes to the book.

You can purchase a cookbook online on the chamber’s website at by clicking “Register.” Cookbooks will be $17 each with a $1 shipping and handling fee. A portion of the proceeds will go to Blue Ridge Area Food Bank Network-Lord Fairfax Branch.

— Contact Matt Welch at