There's nothing I love more than having a mammoth-sized batch of soup on the stove, whether it's going to serve a room full of people or supply me with a stockpile of meals. This New Mexico pork and green chile stew is the perfect candidate to make on a lazy Sunday and then live off of the rest of the week. It's spicy, savory, and hearty, and just when you think it can't get any better, it does!
Autumn is always a difficult transition for me, as I am the type of person who is happiest under a blaze of sunshine and who considers anything below 73 degrees to be "freezing." But every year it's the pumpkins that rescue me from impending gloom, reminding me just how wonderful and delicious fall can be. This is my first pumpkin dish of the season, made from roasted kabocha, or Japanese pumpkin, whipped into a creamy soup with sweet potatoes and miso. With a pot of this the stove, I am ready to welcome the cooler weather.
Let this one simmer and bubble all afternoon. That gives the beans plenty of time to become soft and creamy while the sweet browned onions melt into the rich bean broth. Your reward is a stew so thick you could stand a spoon in it and so hearty that the dreariest winter day will feel cozy.
When the dimmer seasons turn you inward toward big pots of braising things or simmering batches of slow-cooker meals, match those recipes with a sturdy side dish that won’t cower behind their homey hardiness. Chili, for example, with its robust kick and bulky beany, meaty sauciness would use a “mixed greens salad” as a footrest, stomping out the side’s subtlety. This apple cabbage mélange is made for fall comfort classics, but it’s as vibrant and fresh as any summer predecessors.
This recipe happened because my favorite cooking reference, Google, totally failed me. It was Halloween and I was inspired. Pumpkin chili was on the menu. One of our children was a vegetarian and it seemed like a wonderful, hearty solution. But I had no recipe and Google was no help. I even looked through actual cookbooks. Every version I found contained meat, pumpkin puree, or both. My vision was a meat-free dish with chunks of pumpkin. Goshdarnit, the pumpkin chili was happening, recipe or not. I decided to wing it.
I have so many good memories of soft pretzels: a cold afternoon my first time in New York, Red Sox games at Fenway Park a few years later, a fantastic restaurant in San Francisco that serves them as an appetizer with cheese dip. In fact, it was a recent visit to this restaurant that reminded me of my deep and abiding love for this salty, chewy, soft-centered bread — and how, once upon a time, I'd even made them myself.
Soft pretzels aren't that hard, really. They are made with a simple dough nearly identical to sandwich bread, and the only tricky part — a leap of faith — comes when you drop the pretzels in a vat of simmering water before baking. But that's why I'm here — to show you how. And also because I believe everyone should get to relive their best memories with a piping-hot soft pretzel every once in a while.
Beer cheese soup is a classic Midwestern recipe, but a lot of things can go wrong when making it. (Greasy blobs of cheddar, anyone?) Thankfully I discovered a little trick that will guarantee that your next batch is silky, creamy perfection. Bring on the cold weather, because this recipe will definitely keep you warm.
Some happy hours, like this week's, aren't conducted in a standard bar or kitchen. Here in the northeast, the fall foliage is at its peak. It sounds geeky but truly, the images are of the kind that inspire great artists, poets and philosophers. Seeking an infusion of inspiration and some fresh air, my family packed up our gear — including some suitable fall libations — and hit the trail for a weekend in the wilderness.
Ah, French toast! That iconic, special occasion, breakfast-in-bed treat that so many people long for...only to end up with soggy, burned toast and a big mess in the kitchen. But it isn't that difficult, or that messy, to make golden, crispy-edged, truly delicious French toast. Let us show you how.
I recently spent a few days in northern Michigan, the heart of tart cherry country. I ate the most transcendent piece of cherry pie I'd ever had, and I was reminded of how much I love tart cherries in baking. They are the baker's dream fruit: plump, juicy, bite-sized, and not too sweet at all. I am not a great pie-baker, so I was inspired to bring you instead an adaptation of my favorite crumble recipe: a crisp brown butter topping, like the best cookie you ever ate, spread over a field of tart cherries swimming in their sweet, jammy syrup.