Cooking: What to Cook This Weekend

Chicken with Coca-Cola and lemons.

Craig Lee for The New York Times
Friday, April 14, 2017

What to Cook This Weekend

Good morning. You may have seen Margaux Laskey’s name atop a few articles and recipes in The Times. She’s a staff editor on Cooking, a scratch cook and a champion of many unusual recipes that turn out to be awesome. It was Margaux, for instance, who first introduced me to the marvels of the Mississippi Roast, a recipe that she found on Pinterest and that I tracked to a small town in the northern part of the state. It became our most popular recipe last year. Now she’s unearthed an old Amanda Hesser recipe that I think could make a fascinating Friday night meal, possibly for Passover if you make it with soda that’s kosher for Passover: chicken with Coke and lemon (above). It is, improbably, a French receipt, a creation of the French cookbook writer Frédérick Grasser-Hermé that Amanda adapted as she faced down a glut of lemons in the fall of 2005. “I was dubious,” Margaux said, “but I needn’t have been.” The dish, she said, “was absolutely delicious and very moist.” I’m game to try it. You in? Not tonight if you’re celebrating Good Friday in advance of Easter on Sunday. For you, maybe Mark Bittman’s recipe for salmon roasted in butter? Or Molly O’Neill’s recipe for pan-fried trout with rosemary, lemon and capers? For Easter itself, we’re here for you. Make sure to read my “How to Cook Ham” guide so you don’t dry out that big, expensive haunch. (Though perhaps you’re cooking lamb this year; we’ve got a nice collection of Easter lamb recipes for you to try.) Serve this roasted carrot salad on the side, or as a vegetarian main course. I learned it from the Los Angeles chef Ludo Lefebvre, and it is fantastic. You could put out a quiche with herbs and goat cheese this weekend as well, or a spinach lasagna, and follow it up with one of our recipes for Easter desserts. (I’d like the double strawberry cheesecake, please. You may prefer Nigella Lawson’s recipe for a Easter egg nest cake – “the acceptable face of culinary cute,” she called it.) Or, for Passover, which runs until Tuesday, you might try Florence Fabricant’s superb recipe for chicken with bitter-herb pesto and, more classically, Melissa Clark’s definitive matzo brei (sweet or savory!). Thousands more recipes for the weekend are on Cooking. Go see what we’ve got on display, and save the recipes you like to your recipe box, so you can find them later and put them to use. Put stars on the recipes you enjoy; I’m eager to see how that chicken with soda and lemons fares. And absolutely leave notes on them if you’ve figured out a way to make them, as we say, more or different. Together we teach one another. Together we all become better cooks. Now, remember: Life’s not just cooking and talking about it. If you didn’t catch “A Whale Hunt” by Robert Sullivan when it was published back in 2002, this could be your weekend: it’s a terrific read about the Makah tribe preparing to return to whaling. Likewise, you might track down a copy of John Gimlette’s “Theatre of Fish,” about traveling in Newfoundland. It’s deliciously absurd. As for “Nevertheless,” Alec Baldwin’s new memoir? Sarah Lyall seemed to like it just fine. That’s enough for me! Sold. Please each out if you need help with anything. We’re at cookingcare@nytimes.com. Have a great weekend.

Andrew Scrivani for The New York Times
1 1/2 hours, plus at least 8 hours’ chilling, 10 to 12 servings
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Melina Hammer for The New York Times
6 1/2 to 8 1/2 hours, 6 to 8 servings
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Jim Wilson/The New York Times
15 minutes, 4 to 6 servings
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At Ludo Lefebvre’s Petit Trois, a roasted carrot salad holds its own among such French classics as steak frites and croque-monsieur.

Grant Cornett for The New York Times. Food stylist: Maggie Ruggiero. Prop stylist: Theo Vamvounakis.
1 hour, 4 servings
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Quiche with herbs and goat cheese.

Evan Sung for The New York Times
About 1 hour, with pre-made dough, 4 to 6 servings
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Jim Wilson/The New York Times
1 hour, 8 servings
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Andrew Scrivani for The New York Times
About 20 minutes, 4 servings
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Craig Lee for The New York Times
15 minutes, 2 servings
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Craig Lee for The New York Times
1 hour 30 minutes, 4 to 6 servings
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Tony Cenicola/The New York Times
2 hours 15 minutes, 6 to 8 servings
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