What We're Cooking This Week

French Bread Pizza & Other Recipes to End the Decade Right

December 29, 2019
Photo by Rocky Luten

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).

If your New Year’s resolution is cook more or eat better, I have a few ideas:

  • Plan dinners for the week over the weekend, but make it cozy (say, at a bakery with a croissant, or at home with a martini).
  • Make one of those dinners a no-buy night. Think of it like a Chopped challenge where you always win (not $10,000, but joy).
  • Write your grocery list in a notebook and draw a checkbox by each ingredient. This feels dorky (okay, okay, is dorky), but checking a checkbox makes you feel accomplished, and feeling accomplished leads to great things.
  • Go to a bookstore—yes, a real, live bookstore—spend a few minutes in the cookbook section, and buy whichever one makes you smile or go, “Ooh!” Spend the year together. Whenever you feel uninspired, ask the cookbook what to do.
  • Or ask me. Seriously. Ping me on the Hotline if you’re feeling blah about what to cook, and let’s figure it out together.

My New Year’s resolution is to make more pizza. That, and every time I open a bottle of wine, read about it.

Recipes for the Week Ahead

French Bread Pizza

If you, too, would like to eat more pizza in 2020—but aren’t interested in making dough from scratch—I give you: French bread pizza. All you need to do is track down a trustworthy baguette, then load it up with tomato sauce and cheese. If pepperoni isn’t your thing, try anchovies, capers, and olives, or caramelized peppers and onions.

Any Salad Plus Horseradish Vinaigrette

This is the time of year when I want to put horseradish on everything. Usually, I stir a big spoonful into Greek yogurt and dollop that on whatever I’m having—be it braised brisket, bean soup, or any roasted vegetable. But this year I found something else: horseradish vinaigrette. I can’t wait to pour it over salads, salty-boiled vegetables, roast chicken, and then some.

Eggs, but Make Them Creamy

Our marketing coordinator Danielle Curtis-Williams is “dying to make both of these egg recipes”—creamy baked eggs (a recent contest winner!) and Genius caramelized cream eggs (our December Recipe of the Month!). “Can you see there is a theme?” A very good theme, yes.

Maangchi’s Korean Fried Chicken

“Cooking with Maangchi was easily the highlight of my year,” Senior Editor Eric Kim told me. “This fried chicken is really special—peak party food. I grew up eating dakgangjeong at family gatherings, birthdays, and holiday dinners. The best thing about it? It stays crunchy forever, even cold.” Are you thinking what I’m thinking? New Year’s Eve is in two days.

Family-Famous, Party-Ready Chocolate Cake

If you’ve been around these parts before, you’ve probably heard about our co-founder Amanda Hesser’s family-famous chocolate dump-it cake. But! Have you heard about our other co-founder Merrill Stubbs’s layer cake riff with cranberry buttercream? I hadn’t until our copywriter Maurine Hainsworth mentioned that it’s on her to-bake list. Now mine, too. And yours, too, right?

On the Side

How to enjoy winter, according to Grace Farris on Cup of Jo.

Which got me thinking: Why don’t we devour “beach reads” during winter? Would that trick our brains into thinking it’s summer? And what is a beach read anyway? (The New Yorker answers.)

See you on the other side,

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Emma was the food editor at Food52. She created the award-winning column, Big Little Recipes, and turned it into a cookbook in 2021. These days, she's a senior editor at Bon Appétit, leading digital cooking coverage. Say hello on Instagram at @emmalaperruque.