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Merrick "girls'' swap recipes on Facebook

Robin Canarick made this crab-stuffed Chilean sea bass

Robin Canarick made this crab-stuffed Chilean sea bass and then posted the photo on the Merrick Girls Weekday Recipes Facebook group page on April 28, 2014. Credit: Robin Canarick

As Melissa Greenstein tells it, her mahjong group was running out of dinner ideas. “It was about a month ago,” she said. “We were talking about who is making what for dinner, and everybody was just cooking the same old things.” So she went home and created a Facebook Group called Merrick Girls Weekday Recipes. Why specify weekdays? “Nobody cooks on the weekends,” she said. “Everybody’s kitchen closes by Thursday night.”

When Greenstein told her friend Robin Canarick about her idea, Canarick immediately volunteered to be the group’s administrator. The two of them reached out to all their Facebook friends and, before long, hundreds of women (and a few men) were posting photos of their dinners with recipes. Now the group numbers more than 1,000 members (with some as far away as Egypt) and the page has hundreds of posts, each with comments and photos. A search function makes it easy to find specific recipes or ingredients. Two local butchers (A.S. Italian Fine Foods in Merrick and For Goodness Steaks in Bellmore) put up signs welcoming the members.

Greenstein is an accomplished home cook. Canarick, not so much. A few days ago, she posted “Anyone have a really great Chilean Sea Bass recipe? I've never cooked fish. And, as many of you know, I've never really cooked anything before and I'm having a blast! So as long as there are step by step instructions, I’m game! TIA.”

One Gail Peltz Goldman posted a link to a recipe from a site called Group Recipes. Canarick gave it a try and soon had posted a photo of her triumphant dinner of Chilean sea bass with crabmeat stuffing and baby potatoes with parsley and garlic. She smartly garnished the fish with colorful chunks of watermelon.

 “OMG! ” responded Goldman. “Who are you??? LOL yay Robin!!”

Merrick Girls Weekday Recipes is a “closed group” because Greenstein and Canarick screen out anyone who wants to sell products or services. But all you have to do to join is type “Merrick Girls Weekday Recipes” in Facebook’s search bar (or click here), click on “join,” and you’ll be  welcomed into the fold.

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