15-Minute Garlic Noodles for the Monday Blues

Good morning. J. Kenji López-Alt is in The Times this week with an excerpt from his latest cookbook, “The Wok: Recipes and Techniques,” out tomorrow. It’s an invaluable guide to using one of the most versatile stovetop implements in the world and, in this particular chapter, provides introduction to a home-cooked version of a Vietnamese American classic. That is: garlic noodles (above), a deeply San Franciscan dish invented in the 1970s by the chef Helene An at the city’s Thanh Long restaurant.

The dish’s origins are fantastic. According to Kenji, “After a trip to a Nob Hill Italian restaurant, where she was served a disappointingly bland bowl of garlic spaghetti, Ms. An created Thanh Long’s famous garlic noodles, a potent concoction flavored with fistfuls of garlic and a number of secret ingredients that my taste buds (and most copycat recipes) suggest are fish sauce, oyster sauce, soy sauce, lots of butter and a smattering of Parmesan cheese.”

Garlic noodles have been served at Thanh Long ever since. And tonight, I hope, they will grace your table as well.

Other recipes to consider cooking tonight or very soon: Thai curry risotto with squash and green beans; fish with toasted almonds; Kerala roadside chicken; spiced chickpea salad with tahini and pita chips.

Or you could see if there are any wild shrimp at the market, and prepare a huge platter of shrimp cocktail, which is an awesome thing to do on a Monday night. It’s a message to the universe that however terrible the world is right now, however difficult the start of the week can be, you can still throw down impressively in the kitchen and wow yourself and those you feed.

Eric Kim’s instructions in for that recipe are top-drawer, but I’ll add a fillip that I enjoyed at the Red Hook Tavern in Brooklyn the other night: a dusting of Old Bay seasoning over the finished chilled shrimp. (Does cocktail sauce count as a vegetable, so to make for a complete meal? In March, 2022, the answer is yes.)

And then maybe you can bake afterward, so you have breakfasts in the coming days? I love these morning glory muffins. But until you’ve had an Irish cream poundcake for breakfast, you’re missing out.

There are thousands and thousands more recipes waiting for you on New York Times Cooking, though you do need a subscription to access them. Subscriptions, as I’ve noted a few times in the space, support our work and allow it to continue. Thank you for yours. (If you haven’t yet taken one out, would you please consider subscribing today? Thanks.)

You can also follow us on Instagram, TikTok and YouTube. (Please do!) And if you find yourself in a jam with your cooking or with our technology, you can reach out to us for assistance. We’re at cookingcare@nytimes.com. Someone will get back to you.

Now, it’s nothing to do with beets or headcheese, but this Tony Perrottet piece in Smithsonian Magazine, about the old Seven Mile Bridge in the Florida Keys and how a piece of it is now a park, a kind of tropical High Line? I learned a lot.

Back on the feed, here’s Rowan Jacobsen on the hunt for Appalachian truffles, in Outside.

Janet Guthrie, the retired professional racecar driver who in 1977 became the first woman to qualify for and race in the Indianapolis 500 and the Daytona 500, was born on this day in 1938. Here’s some footage of her from her prime on the track, very ’70s.

Finally, here’s new Tears for Fears after a long absence from the scene: “My Demons,” demonstrably the band. Listen to that, and I’ll be back on Wednesday.



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