What to Cook Tonight

Good morning. I mostly traffic in recipes in this space — in no-recipe recipes, too, as you will see below. These are mostly singular events: chicken paprikash, say, or a tofu scramble. What I love about my colleague David Tanis is, he stands for menus, for a full slate of recipes that result in a marvelous meal. Last week, for instance, he brought us instructions for a spring dinner of remarkable elegance and deliciousness, something to delight on all fronts: an herb-filled salad with egg and walnuts (above), with pan-fried breaded pork chops to follow, and baba au rhum for dessert. I hope you’ll give that a try this weekend.

Tonight, though, caught in the midst of the week, I’ll suggest a one-pan situation to bring you dinner on the quick, and you don’t even need a proper recipe to make it: spicy pasta with tomatoes, olives and capers. It’s a breeze. Sauté some tomato paste in olive oil, hit it with Sriracha and a splash of fish sauce, then add a can of tomatoes and a handful each of rinsed capers and pitted olives. You can either cook the pasta in the sauce itself, with a cup or two of water, or separately as I did in this kooky video Becky Hughes and I put together for our Instagram account. Grate some pecorino over the top at the end and dinner is served.

A few more midweek ideas, if that salty umami bomb is not in the cards for you tonight: creamy white-bean soup with spicy paprika oil; mushroom quesadillas; sheet-pan jerk salmon.

I like, as well, this roasted asparagus and scallion salad, and this coronation chicken salad, too. I like a Roman egg-drop soup, and always and forever these middle-school tacos.

I like maybe most of all to browse the aisles of NYT Cooking, looking for inspiration. Won’t you join me? Doing so requires a subscription, it’s true, but we think it’s worth your scratch: thousands and thousands of recipes; a recipe box to store them in; lots of instruction (how to make chili, for instance); the notes and observations of our wise and growing community. Subscriptions are what support our work and allow it to continue. I hope, if you haven’t already, that you will subscribe today.

We will meanwhile be standing by to help, in case something goes wrong while you’re cooking or using our site and apps. Just write cookingcare@nytimes.com. Someone will get back to you, I promise.

Now, it’s nothing whatsoever to do with green peppercorns or coddled eggs, but I stumbled across the space opera “Consider Phlebas,” by Iain M. Banks, and have found myself pulled deep into its complicated world. Come join me.

You should read Marc Wortman in Vanity Fair on the hunt for a daring band of rare-book thieves.

Here’s a new Rosanne Cash single, “The Killing Fields.”

Finally, I’ve been playing some Call of Duty of late and have to say: That game’s a real treat even if I can barely make it down a hallway without banging into the wall. The pure escapism of it is a relief that even a marathon viewing of old episodes of “Bloodline” can’t match. Just a suggestion! I’ll be back on Friday.



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