Discover more from Dinner: A Love Story
Fish with smoky brown butter, recipes worth memorizing, a podcast about feeding kids
Greetings eaters and readers! I celebrated a birthday over the weekend in the best way I know how: By seeing Are You There God, It’s Me Margaret and now I 100% understand why the reviews are calling it “pitch perfect.” I couldn’t believe how many times I was a sitting there nodding, Yup, that happened to me. Yup, so did that. And the actors, particularly the kids, were phenomenal. I also celebrated with profiteroles and toffee pudding at Cafe Luxembourg. (I know, shocker!) And on that a note, I was pumped to find this story on the NYC restaurants and bars of Succession which will double as my new Lifelong Bucket List. Lastly, subscribers! This Friday is menu plan week (woot woot!) which means you’ll be getting a complete line-up for a spring dinner party, including recipes, game plan, and shopping list, i.e. the next chapter in my Please-Everyone Dinner Party series. The name of the game is EASE. Who will you invite over first?
Reminder: you have to be a paying subscriber to have access to the dinner party game plans. You can do that here:
And now! Your weekly Three Things…
1. Pan-Fried Fish with Smoky Brown Butter
Well, I finally did what I’ve been threatening to do since February’s London visit: I recreated the fish we ate at Noble Rot, that cozy black-wood-paneled restaurant on charming Lambs Conduit street in Bloomsbury, that I still haven't shut up about. We ate some pretty amazing food in London, but I think the fish we ate at Noble Rot is the dish I’m thinking about so many weeks later because of how absurdly simple and elegant it was. The whole thing, as I see it, calls for three main ingredients: A mild white fish (we used flounder; they used a fish called slipsole, slightly more firm), butter, and smoked paprika. In other words, I knew we'd be able to execute something close to it in our own kitchen back home. And we did. Good lord, it tasted amazing. And I'm proud to say the recipe is now on The Official Dinner: A Love Story Rotation. You can find the recipe over on DALS today. Thanks for the inspo, Noble Rot!
2. Five Recipes Worth Memorizing
After a brief hiatus from my Cup of Jo column, I’m back, and last week I wrote about something I touched on briefly here in this newsletter: Recipes worth memorizing. The recipes I wrote about are not, say, your great-grandmother’s 25-ingredient chile rellanos. They are recipes that involve technique and timing, recipes that you can’t really improvise. Take, for example, hard-boiled eggs. There is nothing easier than hard-boiling an egg, right? But at the same time, it’s not the kind of thing you can just chuck in a pot of hot water and then hope for the best. (Which is, truthfully, the way I approach a lot of my cooking!) If you don’t have a very specific technique for hard-boiling eggs, it’s just as easy to mess them up as it is to turn out A+ versions with perfectly tender whites and yellowy (not jammy, not green-rimmed) yolks. Also, I’ve noticed that once you memorize certain techniques, then you’re way more likely to use those techniques, then you’re way more likely to enjoy cooking in general. It’s the happiest of cycles. Head over to Cup of Jo to read about the five I suggest starting with…including that reliably excellent crusty bread shown in the photo.
3. Feeding Kids, Part Three Thousand
I was on a great podcast this week talking through some of the big themes in The Weekday Vegetarians, including: how to shift a family of meat eaters to a plant-based diet and how to make vegetarian food that kids (and parents) actually crave, not just tolerate. The show, Pressure Cooker, is worth a listen. Hosted by two veteran food journalists, it explores history, gender and culture to understand how feeding kids, something that is one of the most basic of human responsibilities, became so complicated and how to make it a lot less stressful. Click below to give it a listen…
Have a great week!
Reminder: I wrote a book and I think you’ll love it ^^^^^^^ :)