Creamed Spinach Parmesan Cups
Restaurants may need to have some legal assistance and agreements arranged with their employees to not give up any secrets to their signature ways in effort to keep their secrets in-house should an employee decide to leave. There have been some court cases where a cook or chef leaves and starts a new restaurant using the same signature methods but calling it something else and well... more money spent to get it straightened out. Over time there have been many others that have tried to imitate a restaurant recipe from grocery store food suppliers right down to good ole Mom. Ask them all and most would agree that the task may not be so easy to recreate. There are those that come up with recipes that are similar in general yet lack that signature flavor of a specific restaurant.
There are a number of free online websites that make their money not by selling the recipes but actually from the sponsors that come because of the increased traffic. But why would a recipe site have more traffic? Because it has good recipes! The more people love a recipe the more they keep coming back for more. There are also many sites which will provide you a recipe if you will ask for it which is even more interesting. A lot of people go some place for a vacation to a foreign land and they are served some food that they cannot get back at home. Recipe portals are great to find those exotic foreign recipes too and you can easily cook them at home by getting the right ingredients. But in foreign recipes it is important not to make substitutions and take the recipe as it is.
Many sites are recommending the same key original sources (recipe hackers) of the imitation or copycats recipes and in my experience this is usually a good hint as a reasonable place to start. Why? There is always someone who highlights their experience and discovery of things that have had impact on their life with how and why they did it. Many times they get even further into it and begin marketing their efforts to generate some additional income. It may be the result of a friend or family member that cheers them on but if it is done well and the quality is there it often times catches enough attention to make it worth the while.