Good morning. I was out West for a week, staying with friends in Tucson and not cooking at all, and that was a strange feeling after many months of cooking for family and writing about it every day. I kept thinking of things I wanted to make when I got home: shrimp tossed in sweet butter, to eat with toast; ribs cooked forever in a bath of hardwood smoke; clams on the half-shell, naked and salty and cold. It was a kind of reverie, without a recipe in sight.
Try this one yourself, in keeping with our usual Wednesday exercise of no-recipe cooking: hot Italian sausage, with butter and sage, over pasta. I like cooking the sausages twice. First as links, to firm them up; then as coins, which get good and crisp in a melting knob of butter, releasing fat that, with a few leaves of sage and a splash of pasta water, makes for a terrific sauce for orecchiette or shells. Grate a lot of Parmesan over the top of all that, and let me know how it goes. I’m at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kim Severson has a fascinating story for you this week in the Food section of The Times, all about some attempts to bring back the halcyon days of cottage cheese — the stuff needs to be Chobani’d, basically, is what people told her. Of course, there’s a recipe to go with it, for a simple cottage cheese dip from Poland, gzik: the curds smoothed out with sour cream and dressed with finely chopped radishes and chives. Try that with potato chips sometime, why don’t you?
(Speaking of cottage cheese, try this recipe for Liptauer spread that we adapted from the Time-Life “Foods of the World” series, “The Cooking of Vienna’s Empire.”)
Alternatively, you could cook katsudon (above) this evening, a head-scratchingly delicious combination of crisp and not-crisp. Or curried tofu with soy sauce. Or fish tacos. Or a salad of cucumber and mâche.
We have thousands more recipes on NYT Cooking if those don’t happen to be of interest, although you will need a subscription to access them. (Like, for instance, this delicious one for chicken and apricot masala. Like, for instance, this one for cumin-roasted salmon with cilantro sauce.) Go take a look at our recipes for the Fourth of July!
You can always get in touch with us if something goes wrong, either with a recipe or our technology. We’re at email@example.com, or you can find us on social media: Instagram and Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest.
Now, what’s a trip to Arizona without a Jack Reacher novel to read on the flight? I liked “The Midnight Line” quite a bit. (Followed it with Walter Mosley’s “Down the River Unto the Sea.” Also the new issue of Anglers Journal.)
You should read Dave Schilling’s oral history of the “Black Jeopardy” sketches on “Saturday Night Live.”