What to Cook This Week

What to Cook This Week

Good morning. The weather’s turning where I stay, the close, soft mornings giving way to a little bite, low-pressure fog lingering longer over the bays. Not for me the morning orange and cold glass of coffee I used to love, not these days. My taste runs to eggs, fried soft on a warm tortilla, a steaming cup of tea beside it. It’s time to bulk up. Autumn’s coming, and winter hard behind it.

Which means stews are what’s happening come afternoons and evenings, the luxurious and comforting joy of Regina Schrambling’s famous Dijon and Cognac beef stew (above) in particular, a recipe she brought to The Times in the awful days that followed the attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. It’s a slow and sensuous process, to make it, and best done when you’re feeling low, as so many are these days in the face of the continuing pandemic, awful fires in the West, a looming election. “Whoever said cooking should be entered into with abandon or not at all had it wrong,” Regina wrote. “Going into it when you have no hope is sometimes just what you need to get to a better place.”

So maybe make her stew today, at least if you’re not somewhere hot and smoggy, sweating under a late-summer sky. (If you are, please avail yourself of Kay Chun’s ace recipe for kongguksu, the Korean cold soy-milk noodle soup, which I like adorned with sliced hard-boiled egg.)

On Monday, wherever you lay your head, you could take a run at Ali Slagle’s crisp gnocchi with brussels sprouts and brown butter, a fast and easy win at the stove.


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