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55 Ways to Have Fun With Google. Go to Table of Contents. Visit Gifcom.

10. Google Cookin’ a Lemon Chicken

Tara Calishain is the author of an online search journal called ResearchBuzz, and she’s also the co-author of the fun book “Google Hacks.” On her website, she shows off a tool (www.55fun.com/10) that helps you cooking with Google. That’s right – all you need to do is enter a couple of ingredients, and you will get fitting recipes. Tara told me she’s not a very good cook and uses this tool to explore new ways to combine the contents of her fridge.

Let’s try this by entering chicken lemon, and hitting the “Grab a recipe” button. You will now be referred to a Google result page with different pages containing recipes. The actual search query that is being used is the following:

chicken lemon (inurl:allrecipes.com | inurl:epicurious | inurl:recipesource | site:cooking.com | inurl:Recipezaar )

To explain, the “inurl” operator means that only pages which have this text in their web address appear in the result, like “AllRecipes.com.” The “|” operator means “or” (either the ingredients will be on AllRecipes.com, or they will be found on Cooking.com, or ...). The words “chicken” and “lemon” must be included, because by default Google uses the “and” operator.

So what do we get to cook then with these two ingredients? Quite a lot actually, as nearly 2 million recipes have been found! I’ll pick the first one, “Roast Chicken With Lemon and Thyme.” This is the full ingredients list, and you can see it indeed contains chicken and lemon:

3 tablespoons minced fresh thyme
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
5 garlic cloves, chopped
2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
1 7-pound roasting chicken
1 lemon, quartered
1/4 cup dry white wine
1 cup (about) canned low-salt chicken broth
2 teaspoons all purpose flour