When I went into my backyard to grill the chicken thighs for this recipe from Mark Bittman, I ran into a neighbor who was cooking some steaks at the same time. He took one look at my chicken and started shaking his head. "Chicken is so hard to cook well, I never grill it." And it struck me then that a lot of people probably feel that way.
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Quick weeknight chicken dinner is one of those recipe topics that never gets old. And a recipe that goes from chicken in the fridge to satisfying dinner on the table in under thirty minutes, well even better. This is exactly why these Chicken Cutlets with Quick Pan Sauce from Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything The Basics are such a keeper.
Here's a scenario that we're sure at least a few of you are familiar with. A big, beautiful steak catches your eye at the market, perhaps a dry aged ribeye or a well marbled locally raised T-bone. After a bit of inner dialogue (those things aren't cheap), you take the plug and take the steak home. Then a moment of panic hits. How am I going to cook this thing? What if I overcook it and all of its beefy deliciousness is for naught? To resolve this beef related quandary, we present Mark Bittman's Grilled or Broiled Steak from How to Cook Everything The Basics. Meat plus salt and pepper plus heat equals a great steak, no fancy stuff, no elaborate technique, just a broiler or a grill, and knife to test the steak's doneness, and done.
They don't call Mark Bittman, author of How to Cook Everything The Basics, The Minimalist for nothing. His recipes are simple, straightforward, and often pared down to their bare essential ingredients. Plus, he's not one to add in labor intensive steps. Take this Rice Pudding in the Oven—it's a solid dessert that requires nothing more than tossing rice, milk, and sugar into a gratin dish, and baking for roughly two hours. Sure, you have to stir the pot every now and again, but really, it's nearly effortless. And the pudding? Well, it's a beautiful batch of rice pudding: mild, milky, and entirely comforting.
Bittman's Brownie recipe is a gem, simple and tasty enough to give even the most apprehensive baker that much needed boost of kitchen confidence. Bittman's straight talk advice: "Err on the side of underbaking: An overcooked brownie is dry and cakey, while an undercooked brownie is gooey and delicious" makes for some damned fine brownies.
Leave it to Mark Bittman to show us how to make the best version of this side standard, Green Beans with Crisp Shallots. Bittman's go to method for beans with a little bit of bite involves briefly boiling the green beans, shocking them in ice water, and finishing them with a quick trip to the sauté pan. Tossed with crispy sweet butter and olive oil fried shallots, and almonds, if you'd like, this is the recipe that'll have your green beans moving out of blah territory and into much tastier place.
Simplicity is Mark Bittman's thing. His recipes might not be ground breakingly new, but they work, and they're solid. He doesn't over think it, case in point, his Roasted Salmon with Butter from How to Cook Everything The Basics is exactly what it sounds like: salmon, butter plus salt and pepper, and a sprinkle of parsley, if you're feeling fancy.
"You've made ugliness beautiful" is Mark Bittman's promise for this recipe. And he's right: the gnarly, knobby look of celeriac (a.k.a. celery root) is pretty unconvincing when you first see it at the market. But inside is the smooth white flesh that can become a luxurious soup.
This method for shrimp is inspired by Mark Bittman: cooking the shrimp fast in a hot oven. The flavor is inspired by Amanda Hesser, who zests citrus to flavor the quick-cooking shrimp. The onions are all mine: they're the cheapest accompaniment I could think of, and by flavoring them with pantry basics (mustard, dried herbs, and red pepper), you roast them into the perfect foil for the juicy, lemony shrimp.
Embracing a less-is-more philosophy when it comes to animal products, these New Crab Cakes are made with equal parts lump crab (preferably responsibly caught and American-sourced) and creamy, mild celery root. If it sounds like an odd combination, all I can say is, don't knock it until you try it. There's something about the sweet shredded celery root that mimics the texture of crab beautifully.
My first foray into the world of Bittman's new take on responsible eating was this Spicy Fried Rice with Bean Sprouts, Chicken, and Peanuts, a spin on (not that great for you) pad thai and fried rice. Bittman uses a few simple rules to turn takeout go-tos into an inexpensive, simple to make, easy to enjoy one-plate meal that is far more enjoyable than anything that comes in a styrofoam container.
Maintaining a healthy diet is difficult under any circumstances. When you're moving, it's nearly impossible. Your home is a mess, your cooking gear is packed, and takeout is just so much easier. However, this black bean soup adapted from Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything is excellent under any circumstances, and particularly good for movers.
[Photograph: Nick Kindelsperger] This recipe won't set off fireworks in the kitchen, or wow unsuspecting dinner guests. It's too humble for that. This recipe from Mark Bittman, to me at least, tastes like home. It's a clean-out-the-fridge kind of...
The Thanksgiving Eve dinner. [Photograph: Nick Kindelsperger] Ah, the calm before the storm. Like just about everyone else, I'll be driving somewhere for the big feast, get stuck in traffic, and finally arrive a little worse for the wear, ready...
There are two rather different dishes known as migas—there's a version from Spain, the original, which is made with leftover bread, garlic, and sometimes a little meat such as chorizo or bacon. But there's also the Tex-Mex style which replaces...
My goal with this recipe was to try out the much-championed cold pan method for cooking pork chops, which involves starting with cold chops and a cold pan and cooking them slowly and gently. The advantage of the method is...
I've never used semolina in a dessert, but Mark Bittman's take sounds just light and decadent enough to merit a try. Described as "somewhere between a cake and a pudding," that semolina is exactly where I want to be.
There are only two ounces of meat per person in this recipe, but don't worry—you won't miss a thing. A mix of spicy, sweet, and sour flavors make for a food party in your mouth. I love using flank or...