Here at Five Weeknight Dishes we are always striving to give you delicious and interesting ideas for dinner that won’t take too much time to make — time you may hardly have in the first place. (You’re busy!) I’m talking about the recipes with the brilliant twist, the sharp shortcut, the technique that elevates something from just OK to truly good.
And now my editor, Krysten Chambrot, who filled in for me here last week, has collected some of the best and smartest quick recipes we’ve ever published in “Fast Flavor,” a special section in the Sunday newspaper. Save that link! Buy a print copy! Then dive head first into Hetty McKinnon’s yo po mian, Ali Slagle’s gnocchi with burst tomatoes and mozzarella, Genevieve Ko’s coconut rice with bok choy and fried eggs! These are Weeknight Greatest Hits, and we hope you love them as much as we do.
Speaking of Genevieve, her first cooking column for The Times appeared this week, showcasing her simple, tactile and very soothing approach to baking, no mixer required. There are two superb recipes: an apple crisp and oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. (Why would you ever eat a raisin in a cookie when you could eat a chocolate chip?)
As always, tell me what you’re cooking at [email protected].
This bowl of sunshine comes from Naz Deravian, who tosses shrimp and pasta with simmered, saucy cherry tomatoes, scented with fennel seed. Use frozen shrimp, if you like, but get really ripe, juicy tomatoes if you can.
You can use canned pinto beans in these smoky, spicy enfrijoladas from Jocelyn Ramirez to make it into a quick, vegan weeknight meal. (Making a big batch of the pickled red onions ahead also helps, and you can use them as a condiment on all kinds of things.) I like the physical act of submerging the tortillas in the hot bean sauce, one at a time. It’s an ASMR moment at the stove.
I love a meatball. This recipe is by Ali Slagle, who smartly uses zucchini to add moisture to ground chicken, which dries out easily. One commenter served these meatballs with buttered orzo. Approved!
Simple to make but strikingly flavored with Cajun spice mix and paprika, this salmon dish by Millie Peartree is the recipe you need at the end of the workday. Leftovers would be good on salad greens for lunch.
We now have a few recipes on New York Times Cooking inspired by the restaurant California Pizza Kitchen, with the latest coming from Eric Kim. His fun tortizzas — a mash-up of tortillas and pizza — are cheesy and crisp, topped with a Greek salad-like mix and garlic-yogurt sauce. A drizzle of honey finishes them off, a nod to the way pizza is sometimes eaten in South Korea: with honey for dipping on the side.
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