I know,I know：我们仍处于全球大流行中。现在不是吃派对蛋糕的时候。逾越节还有三天，庆祝逾越节的人不想被禁烤食品诱惑。但我已经很久没有做过一个高大丰满的节日蛋糕了，自从我在厨房里看到这个蜂鸟蛋糕Zoë François’sfantastic — like, just go buy it right now, you are in for a treat —new cookbook,Zoë Bakes Cakes,I couldn’t think about anything else. It feels forward-looking and spring-celebrational. It is deliciously warm and happy, almost defiant, planning for a brighter year ahead, no matter what the one before it looked like. And so I went all in and made a three-layer celebration cake and flung slices off with friends and neighbors and have absolutely no regrets, except for the fact that it’s gone now.
Whether you call themmilanese,schnitzel or “they’re just big chicken tenders and you like chicken tenders, please try them!”, I absolutely love perfectly seasoned, craggy bread-crumbed, deeply golden, crispy chicken cutlets but I absolutely hate making them. Which, as you can imagine, leads to a bit of an impasse. We’ve bought them at our local grocery store, but I disagree with the store on seasoning, in that I believe in it and they do not. Maybe it’s just that my kitchen counter is small, or maybe I’m just kind of lazy, but I find the whole process interminable: pounding the cutlets if you want them thin, dredging them in flour, then egg, then breadcrumbs, then frying them, then draining them on endless paper towels or paper bags, then trying to either reuse or dispose of the oil properly, and somehow, after all of this, dinner isn’t made. We still need salad and/or another vegetable. That is me, throwing my hands in the air, 370 days into a global pandemic, wondering why anyone bothers cooking at home.
本周我们中的许多人在anniversary of all sorts of things we had little idea would define the year ahead. I remember saying things like “these masks are really expensive but they’re all that’s available, should I buy them?” (yes, Deb, and also some flour) and “they can’t cancel school, can they?” and “we can still plan a summer vacation because things should normalize by then, right?” and I’m sure I’m not alone in these one year-ago reminders throwing me for a big emo loop. It’s also been delightfully almost spring-like in NYC after a consistently wintery winter and I haven’t been able to stay inside, inventing as many reasons as I can come up with for taking walks, which is bad for productivity but doing wonders to counteract all of those heavy moods. At the end of one yesterday, I swung by the grocery store to get ingredients forcrisp black bean tacosand because I cannot make this up, you must believe me: a bird pooped on mein the store. 如果你在检查卷心菜，希望能找到一个公寓大小的卷心菜，那还幸运吗？
It’s almost too on-the-nose that I tried to make hamantaschen cookies that look like carrara marble and actually made cookies that evoke cow hides. Is the universe trying to tell me something about my kitchen hopes and dreams? Don’t worry, I’ve chosen to not read into this at all.
如果你需要证据来证明我在这里不回避让自己难堪的事，那就看一个最早的职位on this site, where I tell the story of inviting a guy I’d recently begun dating over for dinner. I’d watched Rachael Ray’s 30-Minute Meals that morning, equally hungered by her making one of my favorite pastas,penne alla vodka,and horrified by the fact that she renamed it the “You Won’t Be Single For Long Vodka Cream Pasta.” I decided to make it, you know, tongue-in-cheek, sarcastically, sure Deb, except it “worked” — we are 15 years married (although everyone agrees the last year counts as two) which works out to about 17 years of repeating this awkwardness as part of our “how it started in the kitchen” story.
Listen, this will surprise nobody at all, but I am not trendy. I am deeply uncool and I prefer it this way. It puts expectations right where they belong — low; no,降低,please. But I am not immune to TikTok. I, um,爱提克托克,it’s my favorite time suck. Through it, I’ve learned so much about even more ways I can be uncool. Side parts! Laugh-cry emojis! It’s a whole thing. So is this baked feta, which is a spin on a baked pasta that’s been going viral the last few weeks. It began with a recipe developed byFinnish food blogger Jenni Häyrinencalled “Uunifetapasta,” which translates to oven-baked feta pasta. It’s an older recipe (2019 is “old” in TikTok) but it caught on again becausetomatoes and feta are timeless.I like that it uses cherry tomatoes, which are obviously not as great in the winter as they are in the summer, but are surprisingly good year-round when roasted. You’ll see.
Nobody needs my dedication to butter, milk, buttermilk, cream, crème fraîche, sour cream, or eggs clarified here; we all know I get a little twitchy when the fridge is low on any. These vegan cupcakes are not an abnegation of anything, but a celebration, as they should be. What has surprised me the most since I happened on the first vegan cake recipe here, theChocolate Olive Oil Cake,a couple years ago is not what it is “missing” — you’d never know — but what it does astoundingly better than cakes with any of my usual crutches: it’s even more moist and plush. Who knew that eggs in cakes were sometimes a …hindrance? Definitely not me.
I’ve always struggled with risotto, the classic Northern Italian rice dish that gets creamy from slow cooking in broth. Even when I’ve accepted the work involved — most recipes tell you to separately have a pot of warm broth and to ladle it in, stirring, for the better part of an hour — the flavor, which often tastes odd to me when I used non-homemade broth, or the texture, which seems perfect for about 5 minutes and then often too gloppy, throws me. And yet it’s one of the coziest things to make in the winter, and can even be used to distract children who believe that pasta is the only acceptable carb. The last year, as I’ve spent much time looking around my kitchen for simpler approaches to our favorite foods as we’ve been home for almost all of our meals [see: thesetacos,thisbolognese,this烤鸡,thesecookies,thisgalette]，我已经意识到，几乎所有我认为是强制性的关于意大利饭不是，你可以做这个金色，舒适，丰富的碗无视每一个“规则”。幸运的是我们。
Last week was a Lot. I ventured into it buzzing with adorably ambitious New Year’s intentions to, like, get things done, and spent most of it glued to a screen, furious and frustrated. As I mentioned in this morning’s新闻稿，我经常觉得一月是一个模糊的月份，而这一个尤其如此。武装叛乱不是我知道该怎么讨论的话题any meaningful way in a recipe headnote.But if you’re feeling like you’re in a fog, do know that you’re not alone.
Despite my deep affection for cheese, to the point that one of my favorite things to do on a New York City weekend is to dip intoMurray’sand treat us to something crumbly or aged or rich and runny, I don’t love cheese plates. It feels really good to get this off my chest. At first, it was just a budget issue; I still feel the sticker shock from the first time I tried to put together one of those cute boards with five or six different wedges on them, plus the crackers, breads, pickles, dried fruit, toasted almonds, olives, cured meats, and all of the other minimum requirements of our latter-day horns of plenty. But I was also put off by the waste. Even though so much went unfinished, the leftovers were unsalvageable, as fingers, forks, knives, and crumbs got into everything (a particularly shuddering thought in the age of Covid). Instead, when people come over, or what I remember of it, I prefer to focus on one or two decadent,attention-grabbing things而不是grabs attention on a cold winter day like warm, runny cheese.