Continuing from my previous post about microformats, I went googling to see what I could find. Lo and behold, there is a hRecipe plugin for WordPress (in case you hadn’t guessed, this blog sits on the WordPress platform.) As you may know installing plugins in WordPress is ridiculously easy, and there is nothing to configure with hRecipe. After activating the plugin, I was at first not even sure it had done anything at all. But then I spotted it: a little star icon in the blog post editor (circled in red).
This is what you see when you click the star: a popup window with tabs where you can enter various aspects of your recipe.
What does this do for you? A couple of things: You don’t have to learn the hRecipe markup labels because it just does them (well at least some of them) for you. You can attach your own styles to the various classes if you want, and have a consistent look for your recipes. (You could have always done that, but if you follow standard conventions, your work will be more portable.) Software that is able to find and read hRecipe pages will be able to “read” and export your recipe. Meanwhile, it just looks like an ordinary recipe. All the special markup is invisible to people; however, search engines will be able to find your recipe more the way you want it found. And if you want your recipe shared, it makes it easier for that to happen.
hRecipe is relatively new. There is only one application that supports it as I write. A handful of forward looking recipe sites have marked up their recipes in hRecipe. I don’t expect it to take off virally, as most of visitors this blog post have probably left by now, or if you did get this far, you’re saying, “huh?” because you skimmed it too fast.
What I’m saying is: if you install the plugin and start using it, don’t expect to see huge jump in your Google analytics right away. But microformats including hRecipe are catching on, albeit slowly, and the people who wrap their content in microformat will be well positioned when the Google crawlers evolve to be fully aware of them. And anyway, it’s a nice way to organize your content if you have a recipe blog.
My next post will be a recipe in hRecipe. It won’t hurt, I promise!