Three Things

Girl talk with an Olympian runner, an addictive sauce you can freeze, a self-care gift for YOU

Good morning! Hope you had a wonderful weekend. We had spaghetti and meatballs on Saturday, and breaking news, Great Grandma Turano was on to something with that combination. Last night I devoured the first half of Suleika Jaouad’s new memoir Between Two Kingdoms and all I want to do is get back to it as quickly as possible, so if there are a bunch of typos in this newsletter that’s why. Here are today’s Three Things…

1. Girl Talk with Olympian Alexi Pappas

Olympian runner Alexi Pappas has earned millions of fans with her indie films, Instagram poetry, mental health advocacy for athletes, and now, her inspiring memoir Bravey, but she won me over last week, when she agreed to answer a few questions from my daughter, Phoebe — a college runner herself who once described Pappas as “a mentor on steroids.” (Not literally, don’t worry!) I loved Alexi’s book, which, among other things, doesn’t shy away from the sometimes complicated relationship between girls and running. Head over to Dinner: A Love Story for Phoebe’s full interview. (P.S. Be patient: It might take a few seconds to load, a problem I’m hoping to have fixed asap.)

2. You Can Freeze That Sauce

Anyone who’s been paying attention to me this past year knows how much I love Priya Krishna’s Indian-ish, a combination cookbook and love letter to her mother. Priya’s stupid-simple khichdi has achieved Default Dinner status in our house, an honor that comes with the very real threat of Overdoing It, so I am trying my hardest to pace myself. Most recently, though, I turned to her book when I had some out-of-season Roma tomatoes that I needed to measure out for some recipe testing. In the book’s introduction, Priya says she prefers “sad fresh winter tomatoes” over canned ones because even the out-of-season kinds bring a necessary brightness to Indian dishes that canned ones don’t. That has absolutely been true of the crowd pleasing Matar Paneer I’ve made a few times this winter — the sauce was so good I could drink it with a straw….

This is a long way of saying that last week, I remembered her note about the sad tomatoes, looked at my own sad tomatoes and spun them as if by magic into her most decidedly un-sad deeply-orange spiced sauce. Then I froze it — a gift to my later-in-the-week dinner making self. Sure enough, a few days later, I pan-fried some tofu (chickpeas for Abby), tossed in Priya’s sauce, and it was the highlight of my culinary week. Check out the recipe here, whether you’re making only the sauce or the entire Matar Paneer as written.

3. Self-Care for Valentine’s Day!

I don’t know about you, but since last March, my day has become a series of self-care touch points — a good cup of coffee in the morning, a fire in the fireplace when the sun goes down, a shrub cocktail while I make dinner, and, lastly, a mini-facial before bed. People who know me well will laugh at reading that last part because I’ve never been a beauty person or had a particular allegiance to any one product or brand in my life, but that changed when a friend gifted me Tatcha’s rice wash and water cream last year. The rice wash has the best meringuey-foamy texture and the water cream is so impossibly light and creamy I understand why it has a cult following among skincare devotees. So here’s something fun: I reached out Tatcha, and in honor of Valentine’s Day, they’re offering Dinner A Love Story newsletter readers 15% off ANY of their products all month long (through February 28, 2020). All you have to do is plug in SELFCARE15 at checkout. How fun is that?

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