Sunday Calls for Old-Fashioned Beef Stew


Good morning. Molly O’Neill brought her recipe for old-fashioned beef stew (above) to The New York Times in 1994, and it has since amassed five stars and more than 20,000 ratings on New York Times Cooking, testament not just to its staying power but its excellence.

Molly’s is a delicious stew, one that benefits mostly from patience and time. “The cook can stir and adjust seasoning,” she wrote at the time, “but is basically little more than a witness to the adagio of a low flame nipping the underside of a big pot, working a slow alchemy. Rushing ruins the whole thing.”

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Which makes it the perfect Sunday supper for those who have the day off work, who can pad around the house listening to Paul Cavalconte’s “New Standards” as the beef and the vegetables and the aromatics and the spices meld into soft, velvety excellence.

As for the rest of the week. …

Priya Krishna’s new recipe for coconut saag has a complex richness thanks to the coconut milk base, the coconut-oil chhonk finish and the vibrant grassiness of the spinach. The combination is what you might call beyond, emphasizing the word as if you were at a cocktail party, dressed very well.

Here’s a super easy and satisfying one-pot meal from Ali Slagle: chili mac, with a lot of Cheddar stirred in at the end, and a terrific topping of cilantro and hot sauce.

Gabrielle Hamilton calls her version of a chef’s salad a sous-chef salad, modeled on a classic French salade composée and packed with cooked and raw vegetables, hard-boiled eggs and canned tuna. In Gabrielle’s words, it “presents beautifully and eats like a meal.”

Okonomiyaki, the Japanese cabbage pancake, is a wonderful fridge-cleaner of a meal, and Bryan Washington’s new recipe for a Hiroshima-style okonomiyaki adds noodles to the mix, allowing them to sop up the drenching sauce alongside the cabbage. Top with a fried egg!

And to end the week where we started, here’s another Molly O’Neill jam, an adaptation of Jane and Michael Stern’s recipe for the original chicken Cordon Bleu, a marvelous introduction to the weekend. If you can stuff the chicken and get it into the fridge to set before you start your day, the evening will proceed all the more silkily.

There are thousands and thousands more recipes to cook this week waiting for you on New York Times Cooking. To answer a question I hear from time to time: Yes, you need a subscription to read them. Subscriptions support our work and allow it to continue.

We’re in our lifeguard chairs, should you run into trouble with the technology. Just write and someone will get back to you. Or you can write to me, if you want to vent about something, or praise my colleagues. I’m at and if I can’t respond to every letter, I read every one I get.

Now, it’s nothing to do with pumpkin-spice flavors or the cost of saffron, but of course you’ll want to read Devon Ivie’s interview with Stevie Nicks in New York magazine.

Consider the rat. J. B. MacKinnon did so for Hakai Magazine, and you should read it.

Would you eat Cheerwine chicken wings? I once cooked a bottle of it down to make a tincture to flavor whipped cream, which didn’t work. But I don’t think I’d be mad at the soda in a glaze.

Peter Kaminsky was the “Outdoors” columnist for The New York Times for more than 20 years and is the author of a shelf full of cookbooks and books about fishing. Now he’s tapped his friends and colleagues (including me!) to contribute essays to his latest, “The Catch of a Lifetime: Moments of Flyfishing Glory,” out this week. See what you think.

Finally, here’s a new Sufjan Stevens track for you, “Will Anybody Ever Love Me” (“For good reasons/Without grievance, not for sport”). Listen to that as your stew burbles along, and I’ll return next week.


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