At this point, we’re guessing you have a regular rotation of pantry pastas that you turn to when you’re tired, stressed and need dinner now. Maybe you have already mastered midnight pasta, and pull out sardine puttanesca when you need something a bit more substantial. If so, Ifrah F. Ahmed’s new recipe for baasto iyo suugo tuuna — pasta with spiced tuna sauce, a staple in many Somali households — should be next on your list.
Its savory, warming flavors come from xawaash, a seven-spice mix that includes cumin, coriander and cardamom. (Ifrah includes directions for how to make your own xawaash; double or triple it to have enough for future pastas.) Toasted in oil with garlic and onions, it transforms your go-to jarred marinara into something deeply flavorful and warming. “This is one of the best pastas I’ve made from NYT Cooking,” Nathan, a reader, said. We’re certain it’ll be on repeat in your pantry pasta playlist.
Even quicker — 25-minutes total, to be precise — is Ali Slagle’s green curry glazed tofu. Ali employs a clever trick she learned from Andrea Nguyen, the author of “Asian Tofu,” to ensure crispy tofu, no pressing necessary. Use whatever chopped vegetables you have on hand: Snow peas, broccoli and green beans would all be delicious here.
The autumn equinox marks the start of Cozy Season, meaning it’s time for a big batch of Kay Chun’s comforting chicken chili. Equally cozy (but much lighter) is Özlem Warren’s çilbir, Turkish eggs with yogurt. In this recipe adapted by Alexa Weibel, gently poached eggs are nestled into a swoosh of garlicky yogurt and drizzled with Aleppo pepper bloomed in butter. It’s the sort of spoon food best eaten on the couch in the warm glow of the TV.
(For even more comforting content, check out Cozy Week over at Wirecutter, which has found the best apple peeler for your pies, truly tasty teas and baking sheets that won’t warp. You can also enter the Cozy Week giveaway that includes Wirecutter’s top-rated Dutch oven; you can learn more about the giveaway here.)
You’ve made it to the end! Celebrate with an espresso martini, which you can make with cold brew concentrate if you don’t have an espresso machine. You won’t get that signature layer of foam at the top, but you’ll still have, as one reader put it, “a sweet jolt of fun.”