Good morning. Samin Nosrat has a great column this week in The Times, about trying to recreate her favorite kimchi pancake (above), the one she’s been eating at Pyeong Chang Tofu House in Oakland, Calif., for the past 20 years. She got the recipe from Young S. Kim, the restaurant’s owner and chef, then made it for neighbors with store-bought kimchi, who loved the result. Still, it didn’t taste right to Samin until she made it with some of the 1,400 pounds of kimchi that Mrs. Kim makes each month for the restaurant.
“This time,” Samin wrote, “it tasted exactly as I remembered. But funnily enough, my neighbors struggled to detect any difference between this pancake and the previous one. Both, they said, were sweet and spicy, tart and crunchy, chewy and delightfully savory. I thought I’d been chasing a precise formula to satisfy my craving. But as it turns out, what I miss most right now can’t quite be captured in a recipe.”
I think that’s so smart. Restaurant food is about so much more than ingredients. And I’m definitely making those pancakes this weekend.
But that’s not all I want to make, nor all I think you should make, as we head into the middle of June. Maybe tonight or tomorrow, for instance, you could join me in cooking the Atlanta chef Todd Richards’s recipe for fried catfish with hot sauce, which Korsha Wilson brought to our pages a couple of years ago. (I’ll probably make it with porgy, though, because that’s my local fish, and with Texas Pete instead of the Tabasco in the picture, because I don’t like Tabasco. I just don’t.)
And I’d love to have a mangonada one afternoon, sitting outside somewhere, a good distance from others. And thanks to Daniela Galarza’s recipe, I can.
I’d like to have these skillet pork chops with blistered grapes. Or maybe these Thai-style sweet-and-salty shrimp. A grilled flank steak with Worcestershire butter? Sweet potatoes with tahini butter? Spiedies? Definitely this salty peanut-pretzel ice cream cake for dessert.
Thousands and thousands more recipes await you on NYT Cooking, along with our best guidance for weekend cooking (here’s how to grill, and how to make sourdough bread, and how to make pancakes, just to start). Because of the coronavirus pandemic, a lot more of them than usual are free to use even if you aren’t a subscriber to our site and apps. I’m going to ask you to think about subscribing all the same. Subscriptions are what allows our work to continue.
And if something goes awry, either with your cooking or our technology, please write for help: email@example.com. We will get back to you, I promise.
Now, it’s nothing to do with cumin or duck breasts, but interesting and important all the same: Amanda Hess on how protests against police brutality and systemic racism are coming now to the fictional police, including the canine ones of “Paw Patrol.”
Hasan Minhaj is on our Modern Love podcast this week, reading Brian Goedde’s essay, “Researching Jenna, Discovering Myself.” Tune in.
Finally, I keep hearing road trips are going to be the story of the summer, people gearing up with van conversions and looking into R.V.s. But as Tariro Mzezewa wrote for The Times this week, if you’re black, it’s a little more complicated. Read that and I’ll see you on Sunday.