Fall is just around the corner, and while many people are excited about the flavors of pumpkin, apple picking, and crunchy foliage, I’m just impressed that it’s brewing season once again. See, cook the protein slowly in a delicious sauce, letting it soak up the flavor all the way to a crumble, mushy perfection that’s my idea of culinary heaven. I love roasting so much that when I take a shower, I like to imagine myself a portion of the short rib becoming nice and loose with a generous pour of red wine. (Too personal?)
I like calming down because it’s pretty much foolproof. There’s no piercing chicken breasts with meat thermometers, no stress about whether the veggies will be flavorful enough, and — once you put leftovers in the fridge — there’s usually only one bowl to worry about cleaning up. And braised dishes are the epitome of comfort food – think Tender oxtails, The Possible chicken wings juices, And Coconut carrots with an incredible amount of flavor. It’s pretty much universal: giving the ingredients plenty of time to mix almost guarantees a delicious result.
Of course, this demand for time can be a very serious hindrance to roasting every night. Lots of braised recipes can stretch into hours, and while most of that time is usually spent waiting, I don’t always eat dinner at 10 p.m. on a Wednesday. That’s why, when a new series of ready-made brew recipes for the weekend was dropped in our September issue, my excitement reached an all-time high. This fall, I’m done choosing between impatience and perfectionism. Catch me drinking my nights away with these recipes, and they all take an hour or less.
Tofu cooked with spices
This scum on Korean dubu jorim from Senior Food Editor Christina Chai It is easily the fastest among the group. Fried tofu is given a boost of flavor from a quick simmer in a bath of soy sauce, mirin, sesame oil, and gochugaru, creating something really nice in about half an hour. Make sure to use tofu that is very firm so it doesn’t fall apart and give it a good pressure to get rid of excess moisture before browning. (You can do this with two sheets of paper, but with an extension Squeeze tofu takes the hard work out of the process.) This also means more room to absorb the flavor from the sauce and less pressure on the mess.
Not a nonna’s ragu – as in the kind that spends hours boiling over the range while the family helps her roll out fresh pasta by hand –This sauce takes a short cut to the bottom By using minced meat instead of large lumps. It also makes use of double-concentrated tomato paste to make a thicker sauce in a fraction of the time. Al dente pasta in sauce is often a good thing to finish, and you don’t have to think about recipes like this – two minutes in a ragu and your pasta will be super tasty and ready to serve straight from the pot.
Marinated fish cooked tomato
Cooking white fish such as cod or haddock until tender, flaky perfection is popular quickly, so thin slices are a The perfect candidates to enjoy the weekend. “Because fish cooks relatively quickly, the challenge is packing it in with plenty of flavor without overcooking it,” says Assistant Food Editor Rachel Gorgar. The solution is to fill the pot with a sweet tomato puree, whole spices like cumin seeds and cinnamon sticks, and a healthy scoop of garam masala as a good measure. Rachel recommends serving big wedges of sourdough that’s crispy and fried, but any starch or grain on hand will do a good job of soaking up all that spice.