In Heated. More on Medium.

It may also change your mind about tofu

Photo: Burcu Avsar & Zach DeSart

Earlier this year (I believe it was just before quarantine set in) we did a sort of tofu primer, with an eye towards encouraging those of you who are anti-tofu or tofu agnostic to give this polarizing ingredient another chance. In doing so, I neglected to include the recipe that many people have told me was their gateway drug: kimchi-tofu soup.

Now that it’s basically winter, a dish like this — warm, comforting, highly flavorful, and done in 25 minutes — is a lot more than just a friendly vehicle for tofu; it’s borderline essential. The main ingredient is kimchi…

Though your guest list might be smaller this year, it’s no reason to skimp on the spread

Thanksgiving spread
Thanksgiving spread
Photo: Michael Maes/Photodisc/Getty Images

When it comes to the Thanksgiving feast, the sides make the meal. Yes, that grilled turkey or deep-fried version can defy expectations. But for a lot of us, Thanksgiving is a time to trot out favorite family recipes for gratins, breads, greens, squash, and even baked ziti. (I really think the Italian American tradition of starting with baked ziti or lasagne is kind of awesome, though who needs turkey after that?)

This shortlist comprises a handful of favorites, like a stuffing based on a James Beard recipe that’s been a Thanksgiving staple for decades, a gratin I learned from Jean-Georges…

This lowly cruciferous vegetable is versatile in ways that can satisfy and maybe even dazzle you

A large, crisp, dark green head of cabbage.
A large, crisp, dark green head of cabbage.
Photo: Sorin Rechitan/EyeEm/Getty Images

Before we get to cabbage (I know… the anticipation), I wanted to let you know that on Tuesday, November 10, from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. EST I’ll be doing a live (virtual) event all about Thanksgiving 2020. The event is a collaboration with Knowable — the company that just launched my audiocourse, How To Eat Now and will hopefully be both fun and useful. We’ll talk about the unique challenges of Thanksgiving in 2020, how to de-stress the holiday in this unprecedentedly stressful year, how to shop, cook, host, etc. Anyone in the audience can ask me whatever…

Use greens, beans, nuts, and broth to make beyond-satisfying vegan sauces

Scroll on to learn about the kale-almond pesto coating these lumache.
Scroll on to learn about the kale-almond pesto coating these lumache.
Scroll on to learn about the kale-almond pesto coating these lumache. Photos: Sara Cagle

When people ask me about the best thing I learned in Italian culinary school, I’m tempted to hit ’em with a showstopper — like the beef-tongue ravioli with carrot-ginger sauce or the seared scallops with a quintet of vegetable purées. Those were great, but if I’m being honest, the thing I’m most happy to have learned is much more practical for daily cooking: The sheer number of pasta sauces that are astoundingly delicious without meat or even cheese.

The secret? Combining ample extra-virgin olive oil and salt with one of five “bases,” which can be greens, nuts, greens and nuts…

But you also don’t want takeout

Egg in a hole
Egg in a hole
Photo: Aya Brackett

This is not groundbreaking in any way. My goal is to get you through that night when the thought of cooking makes you want to whine your way into oblivion, but takeout just does not appeal. My go-to on these nights (which happen more often now than ever) is usually an egg dish: frittata or fried eggs and toast — plus, I’m finally getting into omelets.

But my Holy Grail is the egg in a hole. Part of its pedestal status is probably due to the nostalgia attached to it: My dad made these for me all the time when…

My seasonal go-to for a vegetable that’s not my favorite

Pasta with winter squash and tomatoes in a Dutch oven.
Pasta with winter squash and tomatoes in a Dutch oven.
Photo: Kate Bittman

For the last few years, every time winter squash appears, I’ve pretty much immediately made Bittman’s Pasta With Winter Squash and Tomatoes recipe. Aside from delicata, which I absolutely love, I’m not the biggest fan of squashes, so I’m always looking for new, inoffensive ways to incorporate them.

This recipe is easy — the peeling and chopping of the squash is the most tedious part, as it tends to be for squash recipes — and super hearty; plus, the pasta-to-vegetable ratio is kinda crazy, and it works. It’s 2 pounds of squash, plus a couple of cups of chopped tomatoes…

Shit! What’s for Dinner?

Soy-marinated flank steak with cherry tomatoes, fast chicken parm, and unstuffed cabbage for the win

Flank steak sliced on a board.
Flank steak sliced on a board.
Photo: 4kodiak via iStock/Getty Images Plus

Paying more attention to how we feed ourselves is one of the good things that can come out of the pandemic. But it’s inevitable that some days you haven’t planned and the day sneaks up on you, which leads to the “Shit! What’s for dinner?” response. So we’ve decided to name our suggestions accordingly, where we’ll offer a few selections of what to cook every week, whether it’s a spin on one of my favorites, something seasonal, something super fast and delicious, or a weeknight project worth the time.

This week’s come from How to Cook Everything Fast and hit…

These bridge the gap between summer and fall

A bounty of fall vegetables like broccoli, parsnips, potatoes, mushrooms, and squash.
A bounty of fall vegetables like broccoli, parsnips, potatoes, mushrooms, and squash.
Photo: Halfdark/Getty Images

A new season is always a good excuse for new ideas, so here are five fast, easy recipes that you can throw together for a mostly hassle-free dinner in the coming days or weeks. I think they bridge the gap between summer and fall pretty well, there’s not too much (if anything) in the way of hard-to-source ingredients, and they’re also all vegetarian (it’s a wonderful time of year for produce; why not?). If you feel like adding meat to any of them, it won’t be hard.

1. Spicy Escarole with Croutons and Eggs

Cut good-quality bread into one-inch cubes; toss the bread with two tablespoons of…

Orange is the color of a fall pantry

Cooked sweet potatoes on a blue plate
Cooked sweet potatoes on a blue plate
Photo: iStock

For me, pantry cooking includes “vegetables that can sit around for weeks without rotting.” So I always have plenty of carrots, butternut squash, and sweet potatoes. Now that I think of it, I guess I always have something orange around. I have no idea why. I know that one of my regulars is a simple salad of shredded carrots tossed in a dressing of peanut oil, fresh lemon juice, dijon mustard, salt, and lots of pepper. I will often have frozen butternut squash in the freezer that I use in risotto. And in the winter, I have so many oranges…


Food from every angle: From Medium x Mark Bittman

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store