Discover more from the smitten kitchen digest
plus: a perfect sliced egg sandwich
Tuesday, September 26, 2023
How TikTok is reshaping the American cookbook (I’m in this!) [NYT, unlocked]
Why the no-tipping movement fell apart [Baffler]
“Summer really clocked out at the end of its shift” is a meme that made me laugh this week, but it feels fitting in NYC, at least, where we had 3 days of cool rain and it’s hard to remember exactly three weeks ago, when it was unbearably hot. With it, school began and even if you do not attend nor send kids off to school, I’m convinced there’s something in the air perhaps wired from from childhood that gets us back to routines again each fall. And what could be a better routine than not having to spend $17 on a lunch salad or sandwich because you are a smart, beautiful, responsible person who packed your own lunch? Below, a dozen recipes to help you on your way, and no, I didn’t forget treats.
Plus: A new Thanksgiving partnership with Williams-Sonoma (including a favorite cooler-weather mocktail) and a new video demo for what I consider the perfect Sliced Egg Sandwich [Recipe, Reel, TikTok]. Don’t miss it!
The Smitten Kitchen Classroom Wishlist Project 2023 continues! In the US, a tremendous number of teachers don’t get the funding they need to set their classrooms up for success. Most will end up paying out of their own pockets to buy educational materials, which is all wrong. I’ve asked teachers to send me their wishlists in hopes that we can help clear as many as possible. Help out if you feel you’re able — you will unquestionably make a teacher’s (and their students) day! [Project information. Direct link to spreadsheet.]
I’ve written three cookbooks and I’m a tiny bit biased, but I think you’d love them all. I’m excited that this weather means you might be able to cook some of my early fall favorites from my most recent cookbook, Smitten Kitchen Keepers, such as the endive salad with apple matchsticks, double shallot egg salad, winter squash soup with red onion crisp, creamy tomato and chickpea masala, charred brussels sprout toast with ricotta, portobello hoagie, and the turkey meatloaf for skeptics with crushed ranch-y potatoes, and please don’t forget the carrot cake with brown butter and no clutter, butterscotch apple crisp, and apple cider old-fashioned. Were you looking for a list of all the recipes in each of my cookbooks? I’ve added these in a separate page and hope it makes it easier for you to find everything you want to cook.
This is my go-to sandwich bread: whole wheat but unheavy, from scratch but hard to mess up (leave the dough in the fridge for a day -- it doesn't mind at all), and it makes a towering loaf that can make the most basic thrown-together pb&j taste exceptional.
This is my favorite egg salad -- it's fairly classic but two little tweaks (whole-grain mustard for a crackly texture and lightly pickled celery, because it balances everything) make it a forever favorite. I hope you agree.
This salad is a forever site (and Deb lunch) favorite, just lightly crushed chickpeas with minced red onion, parsley, lemon juice and zest, enriched with olive oil. It's great straight from the bowl but possibly even better on a slice of toast atop a layer of tahini dressing. (Instructions for all of the above and then some more ideas in the recipe.)
There is one single tuna salad recipe on Smitten Kitchen. It's hidden below the silky cauliflower soup (like a secret menu item from a restaurant) and it's like no other tuna salad -- no mayo, no celery, no heaviness, just olive oil, almonds, herbs, and a couple other surprise ingredients. It's my husband's absolute favorite; maybe it will be yours too?
A classic chicken salad, my way: perfectly cooked chicken, lots of crunch.
These okonomiyaki are heavy on vegetables, light on batter, charred at the edges and tender in the center. We like them with a tangy barbecue-like sauce and toasted sesame seeds. They're always gone too fast so you should make double.
Hearty greens, grain-like bulk from quinoa, tart dried fruit, deeply toasted almonds, and a scattering of salty crumbly cheese is a forever favorite lunch salad. Depending on my mood, I might throw an extra on top, such as a poached egg or sliced avocado. I always wish I'd made more.
A chopped salad with all of the fixings of a great Italian sub, but tweakable too -- use what you like; skip what you don't If you make no other part of this, don't miss that vinaigrette; it wakes up everything.
Let's totally have the kind of week where we only eat homemade snacks. (So much easier when they taste this good.)
6 ingredients, 1 bowl, no chilling required, and unlike the packaged ones, they taste abundantly like aged cheddar cheese. I only sometimes share with my kids.
Pop tarts are basically breakfast pies, right? This homemade version has a buttery, flaky, no-toaster-required-to-soften-it transcendence the grocery store aisle version can only dream about -- oh, and you can fill them with Nutella, not that we'd be into a thing like that.
Oat and chocolate chip cookies with both whole wheat flour and (optional) wheat germ -- no wait, come back! They're craggier, more nuanced, and flavorful than any oat cookie I've made before and I don't think you'll go back to making them the old way, either.
I unabashedly adore Fig Newtons but this is the first version I've made at home that are as delicious as the original but with a more appetizing ingredient list and a delightfully straightforward technique. They're basically breakfast cookies, right?
Ever wonder where I get my cutting boards, paring knives, offset spatulas and more than you see when I cook? I've created a page on Smitten Kitchen with links to some of my favorite kitchen items, the ones I'm asked about the most. I recently added several new favorites I’ve bought in the last year. For each item, I've attempted to provide a range of shopping links so we're not just focusing on one giant retailer.
See you next week!