deployment recipes for what?
Capistrano is a utility and framework for executing commands in parallel on multiple remote machines, via SSH. It uses a simple DSL (borrowed in part from Rake) that allows you to define tasks, which may be applied to machines in certain roles. It also supports tunneling connections via some gateway machine to allow operations to be performed behind VPN’s and firewalls.
Jamis Buck created Capistrano in 2005 to automate deployment of web applications. This was followed by years of refinement that have produced a powerful tool with many uses.
Mike Bailey created a set of tasks for Capistrano in 2006 that automated the installation of a Rails stack. Deprec was a huge success because it turned setting up Ruby on Rails stack from a weekend to a 15 minute task. The next few years saw deprec grow beyond it’s initial focus on Ruby on Rails and became a powerful tool for configuration management.
You don’t need to know much about Capistrano to use deprec but it’s a powerful and flexible tool that’s well worth investigating. If you’re new to Capistrano you might want to read Getting Started with Capistrano.