Like many home cooks, Deidre Zobrist saved recipes from magazines, newspapers, friends and relatives for years. When she retired in 2006, she had time to deal with all of those recipes. She told her son, Doug, that she would make a cookbook of her favorite recipes so he would always have them. And she has.

Like many home cooks, Deidre Zobrist saved recipes from magazines, newspapers, friends and relatives for years.

“I cut out anything that sounded good to me. I once put the recipes on notebook paper in a three-ring binder, but I hadn’t gone beyond that,” she said.

But then came retirement in 2006. The former teacher and Rochester (Ill.) Junior High principal had time to deal with all of those recipes.

She told her son, Doug, that she would make a cookbook of her favorite recipes so he would always have them. And she has.

“My Favorites: A Cornucopia of New, Old, and Original Recipes from Family and Friends” has 439 recipes, plus cooking terms, graphics and her family history. The 8 ½-by-11-inch book has a plastic spiral binding that lets the book open flat.

“The hardest part was just staying with it. I’d type one or two recipes in. Doug finally got to me by telling me I would never get it done. So, I began in earnest to work on the final product.”

She had 50 printed, but either gave them as gifts or sold them to people who asked. So she ordered more. They can be ordered directly (cost: $17) from Zobrist by calling her at 217-498-9678.

Besides allowing her time to put together the book, retirement has given Zobrist the opportunity to indulge her love of cooking.

“For a couple of years I baked, created, stirred, fed and ate to my heart’s content. The first year I was retired I made 20 different kinds of Christmas cookies and 10 different types of candy. Sharing the goodies was always one of the best parts.”

Here are two of Zobrist’s no-fail favorites from her cookbook.

Crispy Fried Shrimp With Raspberry Jalapeno Dipping Sauce

2 pounds large or extra large raw gulf shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 cups buttermilk
1 ½ cups self-rising white cornmeal
1 cup white flour
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon pepper
3 to 4 cups canola oil, for frying

Raspberry Jalapeno Dipping Sauce:

1 small jar raspberry sauce
2 teaspoons to 2 tablespoons juice from a jar of jalapenos
About 10 jalapeno rings, chopped

Place shrimp in 1-gallon zip-top bag; add buttermilk. Marinate 1 to 8 hours.

Mix cornmeal, flour, salt and pepper in another zip-top bag. Add shrimp, a handful at a time, shaking off the buttermilk a bit and then adding to the flour. Zip the bag and shake to coat.

In electric or black cast-iron skillet, heat oil to 350-375 degrees. Add shrimp; do not crowd skillet. Cook about 4 or 5 minutes until the outside is crispy and the shrimp are pink. Drain well on a paper towel and finish the rest of the shrimp. Place on a paper towel-lined platter for serving.

Mix sauce ingredients. If it needs more jalapeno, add more chopped jalapenos and/or juice. Serve shrimp with dipping sauce.

Makes 2 pounds.

Wonderful Chocolate Mousse

1 (12-ounce) package chocolate chips
2 eggs, separated
1 (12-ounce) carton Cool Whip, thawed
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese
4 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
¼ teaspoon salt

Carefully melt chocolate chips in top of double boiler. Whip egg whites to peaks and add to Cool Whip.

Beat egg yolks and cream cheese. Add sugar, vanilla and salt. Add in chocolate. Fold in Cool Whip and egg whites. Refrigerate.

Note: You can change this to white chocolate mousse by changing the chips to white chips.

Makes about 6 servings.

Kathryn Rem writes for The State Journal-Register in Springfield, Ill. Contact her at kathryn.rem@sj-r.com.