Tuesday, May 21, 2024

The Best Dishes Bon Appétit Staffers Cooked May 2024

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It’s no secret that BA editors cook a lot for work. So it should come as no surprise that we cook a lot during our off hours too. Here are the recipes we’re whipping up this month to get dinner on the table, entertain our friends, satisfy a sweet tooth, use up leftovers, and everything in between. For even more staff favorites, click here.

May 3

Weeknight-fancy ravioli

Rather than a rigid formula, I treated this recipe for Weeknight-Fancy Ravioli With Creamy Peas like a bouncy trampoline. Did I use ravioli? No, I used tortellini. Did I toast the nuts in butter? No, I opened a bag of pre-roasted pistachios. Did I measure…anything? No, I eyeballed! That is what “weeknight-fancy” means to me. And the result was wonderful. The vibrant-hued sauce hugged the store-bought pasta, and I put parm and lemon on the table for grating on top, plus a jar of chile flakes to sprinkle as you please. Luckily, I still have half a bag of peas left over, so I can make these beloved fritters from the Bon Appétit 56. —Emma Laperruque, senior cooking editor

Gridded plate of cheese ravioli covered in green pea sauce pistachios and basil atop pale yellow tiles.

Turn store-bought ravioli into the most sophisticated thing you’ll cook this week.

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10-minute asparagus stir-fry

It is finally asparagus season, and I have been acting the fool, buying too many bunches and taking dozens of pictures of the lovely, fern-green stalks. On Sunday, I cooked Ali Slagle’s 10-Minute Lamb and Asparagus Stir-Fry, and in true Ali fashion, it was wildly easy. I had neither ground lamb nor scallions, so I used what I did have: ground beef and ramps. You don’t expect ginger and dill to taste as good together as they do in this dish. The asparagus keeps it from feeling heavy and cutting the stalks into small coins miraculously doubles its volume. Eaten with some rice, it was a great I-don’t-feel-like-cooking cooking that still felt fresh and bright. —Shilpa Uskokovic, senior test kitchen editor

Another asparagus stir-fry!

Like Shilpa, I am basking in asparagus season. I also opted for a swift stir-fry—in my case, Sarah Jampel’s Black Pepper Tofu and Asparagus. Even more than the verdant stalks, it was the full tablespoon of black peppercorns (for two servings!) that lured me in. Though it’s often used as an accent, this humble spice becomes thrilling when it’s pushed to its fiery limits (like in cacio e pepe). I used canola oil instead of olive oil, and inspired by one reader, I lowered the soy sauce slightly and swapped in a boozy splash of mirin. Once asparagus are gone (cry), I’m going to repeat this with bok choy. Maybe broccoli after that! —E.L.

Image may contain Dish Food Meal Plant Lunch and Vegetable

In this 30-minute dish, which is inspired by Yotam Ottolenghi’s recipe in his 2011 book Plenty, black pepper is the star, not the sidekick: When bloomed in oil, the coarsely ground peppercorns become piquant and fragrant enough to flavor the entire sauce, no red pepper flakes, dried chiles, or hot sauce needed. Take care not to burn the peppercorns as you toast them or the flavor could swing from spicy to bitter.

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Flourless chocolate cake

I needed dessert for two dinner parties in a row, and I definitely didn’t have the energy to bake twice. This very chocolaty Flourless Chocolate Cake more than pulled its weight. I bumped it up with salt (chocolate can take a lot of salt), a splash of vanilla, and a few drops of orange bitters, and served it with vanilla gelato plus sort-of-manhattans from an infinity bottle of batched cocktails I’ve been topping off since November. —Maggie Hoffman, contributing editor

Need-now chicken and rice

Do you ever have a craving so specific you’ll make a grocery store trip just to get its main ingredient? That happened to me on Sunday with this Laotian-Style Chicken and Rice Salad. I had a pint-size container of leftover rice glaring at me from the fridge, but no ground chicken. This sour, sweet, and salty dish is the perfect dinner for when it’s starting to get warm enough to leave a jacket at home. Its big flavor comes from red curry paste, fish sauce, and ginger (I left out the red onion and almost doubled the ginger). For dinner, I followed the recipe’s instructions to serve as lettuce wraps, but the best part was having the chicken and rice filling for lunch the next day. —Kate Kassin, editorial operations manager

Platter of rice salad on a white linen with purple napkin.

This Laotian-style rice salad is crunchy, spicy, sour, and bright. Store-bought red curry paste and skillet-crisped rice keep it fast and weeknight friendly.

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