Prepare for St. Patrick’s Day
Hello. It’s a project, sure, but maybe you should take advantage of the St. Patrick’s Day holiday approaching March 17 to prepare your own beef, then use the meat in whatever way you like best: for the corned beef and cabbage, say, or Irish tacos (above). The process yields incredible flavor far beyond anything you can get from breasts in that tub at the grocery store, and it’s deeply rewarding to boot. Start as soon as you can.
And for those who are too busy to cook at the end of the day, a mini project that can be prepared while you work: slow cooker black bean soup. Simply combine all the ingredients in the morning and let them bubble until dinner time. (Here’s a cool trick: a pinch of baking soda makes the beans even softer.)
You can try the smoked tomato carbonara tonight or the vegan mapo tofu. I love these celery toast before a dinner of French Chicken, that Italian-American delicacy sometimes known as French Chicken. Maybe surf and turf in the form of prawns with hot fennel sausage and polenta? Or a negimaki beef platter? I like this one with roasted broccoli and stovetop rice.
Not that you need a real recipe to eat well midweek. You can customize a meal out of the freezer, fridge, and pantry, for a recipe-free recipe of your own design. This week, I was inspired by Bryan Washington’s anthem to the Jamaican beef patty in The Times. I didn’t do mine. My market sells some excellent Golden Krust ones, and while they were warming in the oven I sautéed sliced cabbage in lots of butter and a generous sip of West Indian chili floral sauce until it softened , but only slightly. Next, I toasted potato buns and loaded them with the patties and coleslaw toppings. The coconut bread might have been better, but it was still an incredibly good meal, easy to prepare.
If none of that sounds good to you, there are thousands and thousands more (real) recipes waiting for you on New York Times Cooking. You need a subscription to access it, yes. Subscriptions support our work and keep it going. Thank you for yours. (If you haven’t already, could you consider subscribing today?)
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Now, this has nothing to do with blackberries or Alaskan king crab, but a friend put me on “The Righteous Gemstones” on HBO, and I’m happy to pay that here.
You should definitely read Abe Streep in The New Yorker, about “The Great American Antler Boom” and the annual hunt for lost elk antlers in the western mountains. He went deep.
Here is an exciting and wonderful “Close Read” of WH Auden’s poem “Museum of Fine Arts”, by Elisa Gabbert in The Times. I invite you to devote some time to it: art history and literary criticism combined.
Finally, my beat pop-music colleagues have published their latest “Playlist” of more than a dozen new songs. Start with Wet Leg, “Angelica,” then go through the entire list, out loud. I will be back on Friday.