Last week, I set out to revive Recipe Matchmaker, a series I used to host on New York Times Cooking’s Instagram in which I matched followers with recipes from our database based on their very specific requests.
So many of you wrote in with cooking queries big and small; below, I’ve tackled just a small slice of them. If I didn’t get to yours, fear not! I’ll do this again, and I’ve pocketed a few requests (like cooking for kids!) for a newsletter to come.
Roasted vegetables with verve
“My roasted vegetables are tired of always being paired with hummus. Vegan matches would be preferable.” — Stephanie
“Broccoli and cauliflower … beyond trees and clouds with cheese sauce.” — Ann
Stephanie and Ann should give Yewande Komolafe’s roasted vegetables with cashew romesco a spin. Smoky red pepper romesco is plenty saucy, great as a dip or for pouring over florets of lightly burnished cauliflower and broccoli. Or pair roasted vegetables — cruciferous or otherwise — with a vegan dressing of nutritional yeast, Dijon mustard, garlic powder, lemon juice and olive oil, and serve it all over your favorite grains à la this hearty bowl from Ali Slagle.
Meat and potatoes, hold the meat
Several of you wrote in to express various cravings for heft and heartiness. For Mattie, who simply wants “meat and potatoes, but in a vegetarian way,” I could think of no better option than Samantha Seneviratne’s vegetarian shepherd’s pie, which swaps in lentils and mushrooms for the meat, keeps the traditional peas and carrots, and tops everything with a beautifully browned layer of creamy mashed potatoes.
For Cora, who’s searching specifically for a main to pair with a potato-y side, look no further than Ali’s portobello “steak” au poivre, which would be delicious with some luxurious, aromatic and make-ahead friendly beans for protein.
A box-checking savory breakfast
Last week’s breakfast newsletter inspired a number of follow-up requests. Meg needs a savory, egg-free breakfast for her partner; Melissa and Kanika need a savory make-ahead option; Anna needs the same, but without oats; and Rene would prefer a savory porridge with plenty of texture.
All five of them should start their days with Hetty McKinnon’s butternut squash congee. It’s eggless (but a soft-boiled egg over top would be lovely), easy to make ahead and reheat (and even tastier a day later), oat-free, and it has nubby rice, soft squash and crunchy bits if you garnish with chile crisp. (Add extra crunch with store-bought fried shallots as a garnish, if you’ve got ’em.)
Make sure to read until the very end for a bit of rapid-fire Recipe Matchmaker!