Welcome to What We’re Cooking This Week, a weekly love letter from our recipe developer Emma Laperruque, all about what the Food52 team is cooking and craving off-hours (with a few snacks for thought, too).
Here’s our week in photos. And, no, I don’t mean the professionally cooked, professionally styled, professionally photographed photos that you see on our recipe pages. And I don’t mean photos of us in the test kitchen or at our desks. I mean the photos we send to each other in Slack, our workplace instant messenger. This is us at our realest, is it not? I give you:
A child dressed up as a half-peeled banana.
A charcuterie-and-crackers skeleton.
A close-up of...hm, can you guess?
Actual footage of me when I get home from work.
But enough with the photos. Let’s go home and cook dinner!
The Cornbread to End All Cornbreads
Our test kitchen's best cornbread recipe would inspire a spirited debate in the American south. With flour, sugar, and eggs, it takes cues from northern-style cornbread—but it borrows a few tricks from the south, too. You fully heat a cast-iron skillet before pouring in the batter (it should sizzle, loudly), to create an extra-crusty crust (did I mention the brown butter? There’s brown butter). And for the liquid, instead of whole milk, you use buttermilk, which lends a sourdough-esque tang to the loaf. It is fluffy, just sweet enough, and exceedingly corny. I wish I had an oversized slice next to an oversized bowl of chicken chili right now.
Coconut Dal With Turmeric Rice
Our Books and Special Projects Editor Brinda Ayer just made Chitra Agrawal's coconut dal with turmeric rice, which, very excitingly, calls for a full can of coconut milk! “It's so rich and flavorful, with a ‘can't put your finger on it’ vibe that comes from the asafetida, tamarind, and coconut milk. It's also completely vegan, which is not something that I look for in recipes these days, but it's not not something that I look for, you know?” I feel that.
Dynamite Chicken Meatballs
I can’t stop cooking from our newest cookbook. Last week, I made chocolate milk–simmered chicken. The week before that, farfalle with chicken, broccoli, and all the herbs. On Friday night, I’m making chicken meatball subs. And the next time you invite me to a party, I’m bringing these wings!
Chickpea Pasta for a Lazy Weeknight
“Victoria Granof’s pasta con ceci is my go-to feel-good recipe,” Associate Buyer Louise de Verteuil says. “It's incredibly flavorful, given the short prep time, and is very budget friendly. I always keeps these pantry items around so I can whip it up on a lazy weeknight.” By the way, those pantry items are: canned chickpeas, macaroni, tomato paste, and garlic (plus olive oil and chile flakes).
Caesar Salad, but Make It Brussels Sprouts
“I recently made this Brussels sprouts Caesar for Canadian Thanksgiving and it was a huge hit,” Executive Editor Joanna Sciarrino told me. “For the boiled Brussels–averse, or Caesar enthusiasts, this is a really delicious, punchy option. Highly recommend.” If you’d like to turn this into the full monty versus a side (cue me raising my hand), why not add some crispy chicken schnitzel on top?
I still don’t understand what TikTok is, but this video spoke to me:
this is the most cat thing ive ever seen pic.twitter.com/EXrVuNfhog— 𝚜𝚎𝚛𝚎𝚗𝚊 🕷🕸 (@disharryland) October 16, 2019
Three stories waiting for me in my Pocket:
- What you should think about the next time you think about buying shrimp—a deep-dive by Melissa Clark in The New York Times.
- Helen Rosner’s write-up on Burn the Place, a memoir by Iliana Regan that I can’t wait to read.
- What does it take for a Justin Bieber stan to break up with her man? Answer by our own Ella Quittner, in Man Repeller.
What are you cooking and reading and cackling about at your desk? Let me know. You rock!