A nasty bug took up residence in our house recently, felling us all for a miserable few days. Boy were we grateful for the miracle nutrition of Alexa Weibel’s easiest chicken noodle soup!
Lex’s recipe gets maximal flavor out of minimal ingredients, with ground chicken, shallot and thyme adding loads of depth without the need to simmer a broth for hours on end. We like egg noodles in our chicken soup, but you can use any small shape — cavatelli, ditalini or those adorable mini farfalle if they happen to cross your path. Brew up a batch for dinner tonight and freeze the leftovers. In sickness or in health, you’ll always be happy to have it on hand.
What else is in my freezer? There’s a bag of frozen corn that I sliced off surplus ears back in August after going a little nuts at the farmers’ market. However you come by it, though, frozen corn is great to have around for recipes like Ali Slagle’s wonderful one-pan chicken thighs with coconut creamed corn. I particularly love the way the coconut milk tames the serrano chile and fresh ginger in the sauce, while a hit of lime perks it all up at the end. (We have plenty more skillet chicken dinner ideas here.)
Eric Kim’s orzotto alla carbonara is also easily made in one skillet, with orzo, the tiny rice shaped pasta, standing in for the usual spaghetti. He cooks the orzo in chicken stock until it has the glossy look and soupy texture of risotto, and seasons it with guanciale, pecorino and loads of black pepper. Whisked egg yolks add richness and heft to finish.
For a meatless skillet dinner, you can’t do much better than Kay Chun’s saag paneer with its silky mix of spinach, spices and a touch of cream, maybe heaped over a plate of steaming basmati rice. This dish works just as well with tofu if you prefer it or can’t get the paneer.
Speaking of tofu, David Tanis’s five-star vegan mapo tofu recipe has accumulated over 3,000 reviews celebrating its deliciousness. You’ll need some Sichuan peppercorns and doubanjiang (fermented broad bean paste) to make it, but they’re easy to find online and in Asian grocery stores.
Now that I’m over my bug I’m craving something lemony, sweet and tart for dessert tonight. My lemon bars with olive oil and sea salt are the perfect, satisfying bite.
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That’s all for now, I’ll see you Wednesday.