Pumpkin Bread Season
Plus aggressively roasted cauliflower, noodles, and lunch ideas
I’m writing to you from the thick of apartment hunting so keeping this intro brief (also yes, this week’s subject line is to the tune of Buzzcut Season). Looking back at the week, the meals were a real highlight, even if I was refreshing StreetEasy while eating many of them. If you’re also in the middle of this process, I’m sending good thoughts and hopefully I’ll have good news to share soon.
Now, let’s dive in.
Something to cook:
It’s pumpkin bread season and I cannot thing of a better thing to bake this time of year. I took down the paywall on my family’s recipe so you can give it a try (if you want to financially support the newsletter, please subscribe below). It’s been so much fun to see many of you make it (tag me if you do) and Chrissy gave it the kindest shoutout (the below picture shows the lovely loaves she baked). Make a double batch, you won’t regret it.
After watching Erica’s latest YouTube video, I was inspired to roast the head of cauliflower that had been chilling in my vegetable drawer for over a week. I went heavy on the spices (cumin, chili powder, smoked paprika, garlic powder, and salt), was generous with the oil and roasted them at 400 for about 30 minutes (I checked them at 15 minutes). My oven is weak so it might be faster in a more powerful machine. I used this cauliflower to make various quesadillas and tacos with leftover hot sauce from our local taco spot.
I made a mushroom pasta on Saturday night loosely following this recipe. I didn’t have lemon, unfortunately, and I subbed scallions for parsley, which worked. Mushrooms are delicious!
I used up some stale bread and shared more tips on that in the paid subscriber newsletter.
Something to order:
Oset and Michael had an absolutely beautiful fall wedding in the Berkshires. To no one’s surprise, the foods and drinks were incredible and prepared by SRV Boston. There was a gorgeous appetizer spread with olives, seasonal vegetables, and cheese, gamay for days, and the wedding cake was olive oil. It was such a joy to celebrate them in such a beautiful setting.
Tori and I grabbed coffee at Guevaras on Grand, which has great outdoor seating and coffee (oat is the default milk). It’s also a plant store which is always extremely tempting.
Leah and I had dinner at Birds of a Feather (there was no wait on a Friday at 7) and split a bunch of stuff. I loved the cold Sichuan noodles and the mustard greens fried rice and they have a great wine selection as well.
Dale and I grabbed lunch at Mesa Coyoacan, a perennial favorite. They’ve added more toppings to my favorite mushroom and huitlacoche tacos and I was thrilled. Also, you can get all the margarita flavors as agua frescas (the grapefruit one is delicious).
Julia and I grabbed a glass of red and a pretzel at Tuffet. I love the backyard there and the inside area is also so cozy.
Something to read:
West Hollywood’s history of progressive public health policies
Anela Malik on leaving DC and her next chapter in Northwest Arkansas
Fall cheese recs from Hannah Howard
The impact of Instagram on teen girls and their mental health
So glad that the Cooper Park and Greenpoint fridges were part of this Desus and Mero campaign to stock the fridges.
How black pepper went from “Black Gold” to an everyday seasoning
Such a beautiful essay on egg sandwiches, coming out, and feeling at home.
On ghostwriting and so much more
Beloved cheese expert Anne Saxelby died at age 40. I loved Christine’s remembrance of her.
Dana Cowin on her post Food & Wine career
Community fridges are not a fad
My friend Hitha’s book, We’re Speaking, comes out tomorrow! Inspired by the life of VP Kamala Harris, WE’RE SPEAKING offers tips and tactical advice on topics like having a unique name, dealing with rejection, finding your stride at work, pushing past distractions and getting sh*t done, balancing the many demands of life, and more. Hitha is beyond impressive and I get so much advice from her Instagram that I’m ready for a book length version.
Now, it’s time for some lunch ideas! Tag me on Instagram if you try any of these!
Stephanie makes the most of her one WFH lunch: Now that I’m back in office 4 days a week, my one WFH lunch needs to be embraced. With the weather finally turning, it’s time for my favorite lunch of all time. Some roasted butternut squash (and red onion if I have it), with farro and a dressing made by whisking tahini, lemon juice, water and salt. It is the very best.
Nandini’s roommate and boyfriend are very lucky to have lunch with her: I used to hate meal prepping until we (my roommate, BF and I) all started working fully from home last March, and quickly realized if there wasn't something ready to reheat for lunch, we would all go hungry. Now, I pick 2 items to cook on Sunday from 5 to 8 recipe hits that I know to reheat really well. The hits are khichdi in the instant pot, chicken meatballs (love Firecracker meatballs, Molly Baz green meatballs, thai curry meatballs), the Jambalaya and Carribean Pelau from Simply Julia, Napa Cabbage Salad from Molly Baz Cook This Book, either the Chicken Tinga or the Salsa Verde Chicken with Mexican Rice , Turmeric Black Pepper Chicken . Sorry these are all behind paywall or in cookbooks, but I also love Caro Chamber's instagram for lunch ideas!
Hillary is firmly on the Emily Mariko train: I'm extra excited about this question because I made the Emily Mariko salmon rice bowl for lunch today and it absolutely lived up to the hype. My tweaks were adding some furikake on top and mixing in the kimchi (I think she eats it on the side?) and it was SO good. I also love your black bean burgers for easy lunches (always on potato rolls), and I've recently been making bowls of pan-fried halloumi/farro/roasted eggplant/israeli salad.
Chrissy is using fresh eggs for her lunch, which is a whole new level: Lunch is the hardest meal for me! When I'm working from home, I usually make something with eggs. (I have pet chickens, so we eat a lot of eggs in this house.) Lately it's two slices of sourdough toast with homemade tomato jam, each topped with a fried egg, with a veggie sausage on the side. SO GOOD. When I go into the office, I'm a big fan of mason jar salads - easy to prep on the weekends, fun to show off in the office fridge, and a delicious way to cram in a bunch of vegetables.
Gabriella’s go to lunch sounds so flavorful: My fave lunch these days is a super simple pasta that I make in big batches with a few spritzes of avocado oil to keep it from sticking, jarred tuna, olives (or something briny), and either some sort of green (parsley is great), and a roasted sweet potato if I have one. I'm putting the recipe up on my blog soon!
This week, I’d love to know your Sunday rituals! With the return of Succession, I was reminded of how nice it is to have a show to end the weekend (The Last Dance was key to some early quarantine months). My other rituals are dropping off compost, which also includes a nice walk.
Reply to this email with your Sunday rituals and routines and I will share the responses next week.
Have a great week!