What to Cook Right Now

Good morning. The other night, I was slurping a taco on Western Avenue in Los Angeles, and that was all I wanted to eat forever: Tacos 1986’s adobado with everything. I live in New York, though, and can’t take the lines at Los Tacos No. 1. So of course I’m designing a trompo for use when summer comes. In my mind, anyway. Tacomanical fantasies crowd out the sketches: sizzling pork; hard-shell picadillo; slab bacon; avocado; BLT.

You on the other hand may be waiting for someone to come into your world with 30 vegetarian dishes you can cook in under a half-hour. Or you could be sitting there hoping that today is the one when you’ll learn about the miracles of the hamburger Holstein.

You might just be hungry, though not up for tacos, and pleased to learn that today’s you-oughta-cook-it recipe is for a wok full of orange beef (above), to serve with greens and oyster sauce alongside a tub of steamed rice. No? You need health soup.

Maybe one-pot turmeric coconut rice with greens? Broccoli salad with Cheddar and warm bacon vinaigrette? Moroccan chickpeas with chard? It’s a Monday night. You can make it with canned chickpeas. Quod permissum fuerit. But you should make salted chocolate chunk shortbread cookies for dessert.

You can find a gajillion other things to cook tonight and in coming days on NYT Cooking. (Frugality watch: Two-ingredient mashed potatoes!) You will need a subscription to do so. In return, we get to keep at this exercise, which all of us here hope is mutually beneficial. You can find us, too, on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. And you can ask us for help directly if you need it: [email protected], for conciergeish service.

Now, let’s not forget that a good life in food is also a good life in a great many other things as well. Check out “Sorrow Is the Price You Pay for Love,” a documentary on the Atlantic website about a 12-year-old Norwegian girl who performs the halling, a solo dance usually performed in Norway by young men. She’s competing in the national championship of the dance, and hoping that winning will help her grandfather stay alive.

I’m no Wirecutter, which has a smartly updated guide to the best high-end ranges out and about, but I have been field-testing one of these vinyl floor mats from Food52 for a while now. I rate the product a BUY.

Finally, today is the birthday of the celebrated French chef Paul Bocuse, who died last year at the age of 91. In 1975, my predecessor Craig Claiborne had Bocuse out to his home in East Hampton, on Long Island in New York, for a weekend of cooking that resulted in an article in The Times. It also yielded a recipe for the truffle soup that Bocuse created in honor of the Legion of Honor award he was given that year by the then French president, Valéry Giscard d’Estaing.

The soup may be delicious. But in the article, Bocuse comes off as an appalling character. If I make the potage, I’ll follow the lead of the Canadian chefs Fred Morin and David McMillan, who make their VGE with canned beef consommé, canned truffles and canned foie gras. They call it “a soul-warming preamble to a main course of cyanide capsules.” Seems about right! See you on Wednesday.

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