Reader Recipe: Salmon & Spinach Fettuccine

When it came to comfort foods, I was an odd kid. I'd come home from school and dump a can of French-style green beans into a bowl, microwave it, and eat the whole thing (yes, just a bowl of French-style canned green beans. Delish). I'd stop at the deli across the street and buy a whole pickle - you know, the ones that you get from the big jars behind the counter - and then settle down in front of Duck Tales with a bowl of salt, into which I would dip the pickle.

And then there was my favorite dinner: a recipe that I'm going to credit to my mother that involved...wait for it...

Microwaved salmon.


Gnocchi with Simple Marinara Sauce, Fresh Mozzarella and Basil

four ingredient gnocchi with marinara sauce and fresh basil

love it when it's 5pm and I realize that I have to feed my beasts, then poke around in my refrigerator and discover that I have everything I need to whip up a dinner that they'll be thrilled about with just about zero effort.

This sauce - which is thrown over fresh store-bought gnocchi and finished by a quick run through the broiler with some fresh mozzarella on top - is the Platonic ideal of marinara sauce, I swear: it's light, but super flavorful, and 80% of the process of making it involves ignoring it.

(Did I mention my kids love it?)


Garlicky Chicken with Lemon-Anchovy Sauce

Noritake Blue Hammock Dinnerware | HomeGoods Macrame Placemats (similar from World Market)

You guys sent SO MANY RECIPES! My stomach thanks you, as does my wallet - because something I really appreciated was that so many of the ideas you sent - and please keep them coming - use normal-ish ingredients that I already have in my cupboard, as opposed to, say, saffron threads (WHY must saffron be so expensive?).

The first recipe I decided to try was one for Garlicky Chicken with Lemon-Anchovy Sauce. It was sent over by Mimi, who called it "one of the best things I've ever eaten." Sounds good to me.


A Little Life Milestone (Plus Creamy Chicken with Couscous, Bacon and Corn)

Remember when I started this site, and I didn't know how to cook, but pretended I did because I thought I was supposed to know how to do things if I was going to write about them? (I abandoned that ethos pretty quickly, but there was definitely a period when I authoritatively delivered tomato sauce recipes that included actual Prego - which I still enjoy as its own thing, because come on, Prego is delicious, but no longer add to meat to make "homemade bolognese.") My meal repertoire at that point was mostly a rotation of roast chicken from a recipe I'd found in Allure in the '90s and Bertoli four-cheese tortellini with, yes, Prego.

But writing this site inspired me to do many, many (many many many) things I never would have done otherwise, and among them was learning my way around a kitchen. I don't consider myself a "food blogger," obviously - I consider myself a person who likes food, and writes about it, but who still has to solicit advice from Google and my next-door neighbor Alisa whenever I run into something tricky. And while I might make little adjustments to recipes (usually more salt, less pepper, because in my opinion pepper should be illegal) I wouldn't ever really presume to have improved upon an actual recipe written by an actual food person. I always assume, in other words, that everybody who has ever come up with and published a recipe is a better cook than I am, and I should probably sit down and listen.

And then, last night, this cool little thing happened: I found a recipe I wanted to make on The Kitchn, and as I was reading it I thought...hm. Some of this doesn't sound like it'll work quite right. 


It Took A Few Decades, But I (Finally) Tried Falafel

comparison of different meal preparation delivery services

Pictured: Noritake Dinnerware (click here for my curated collection)

I'm not a person who eats falafel. Which is weird, because I'm also a person who grew up in New York City, and falafel is definitely among the most consumed foodstuffs (foodstuffs!) within the five boroughs. I've never eaten falafel mostly because I'm not entirely certain what it is, apart from having a vague notion that it is spicy (do not like) and involves pita bread (which, you know: meh). Also chickpeas, to me, are really just a thing that makes salads look sadder, and my only serious interaction with them involved my ex-boyfriend eating a whole bunch, turning into a chipmunk, and almost dying (true story).

So what I've always understood falafel to be is, in a nutshell, "Pita Filled With Spicy Things That Might Make You Die." My desire to learn more has always sort of stopped at that point.

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