Even for more experienced cooks who think nothing of whipping up a jar of birria de res, these straightforward recipes are packed with clever tips and nuggets of kitchen savvy to bookmark. For example: if you press a quesadilla in a pan, you will get some Nikita a “Halo of crispy crunchies” around the edges. Did you know that you can use the fat in a can of coconut milk to bake the vegetables in a vegetable tofu curry?
And do not miss the perfectly simple French toasts, roasted mixed vegetables, cheese -like eggs on toast and roasted salmon with mustard and lemon.
For those who are over the beginner’s phase, here is a prescription without a prescription for fried eggs and peas with garlic that I have made: pick a forest peas or use frozen peas. Gooi ze in een pan met wat boter, gesneden knoflook en eventueel een paar fijngehakte ansjovisjes en laat alles borrelen tot de doperwten heldergroen worden. Stir in a good hand of chopped herbs and serve with fried eggs and a blob of yogurt. Grab a piece of bread and it is food in less than 15 minutes.
And for the occasional chefs who are diners, our critic Pete Wells has returned to awarding stars in restaurant reviews this week, visiting La Piraña Lechonera in the South Bronx for roast pork and revelry. He writes that La Piraña “puts more joy in two days than most restaurants can do in a full week.”
And now for something completely different … Vampire! Not the fanatic, blood -sucking species, but rather the criminal master brains that crawl over Belle Epoque Parisian roofs in Les Vampires, the silent series from 1915 by Louis Feuillade. You can view that on the Criterion Channel.
We couldn’t get enough of this crazy vamp in the house, with the inimitable Musidora as Irma Vep. Director Olivier Assayas was inspired to breathe new life into her not one, but twice: in his film ‘Irma Vep’ from 1996 starring Maggie Cheung (also on Criterion), and in the new HBO series with Alicia Vikander in the lead. Heel emo, zoals mijn tiener zegt, op de best mogelijke manier.
Think it’s easy to breathe new life into a classic mansion? View this piece in The Times about the renewal of Hopwood Hall, an centuries -old historical English estate that had fallen into decline until an American intervened to rebuild his ancestral house, until the medieval rivets.
I would have started the kitchen myself. But as Nikita said, we all have to start somewhere.