Mark Bittman is a miracle. Cookbook author, food columnist, and just generally food enthusiast, he has a practical and delightful approach to food. Simple, good ingredients, care in how flavors go together, and nothing is overly fussy. I’ve been following his blog for six or eight months now, and slowly adding recipes to my “Must Make” file.
And now this. A list of 101 autumnal recipes intended to ease the pressure on Thanksgiving day. These are dishes that can be made ahead to free up space on the stovetop or in the oven. But they are more than that. They are 101 brilliant and varied ways of combining harvest and winter flavors. This page is, in my humble opinion, an extremely valuable resource for spicing up your side dish repertoire. And, in true Bittman style, he gives suggestions like “Bacon would also be welcome here,” or “chopped fresh parsley would not be amiss.” Clearly this is about learning how flavors fit together, not about constructing firm recipe requirements. As someone learning her way into developing original “recipe” combinations, this too is invaluable.
I’m thinking of working my way through these 101 ideas Julie&Julia style (at least the ones N. and I think look good – we’re not quite as militant as Julie Powell was. Aspic? Blech!). Of course I will report on the results with photographic evidence. What do you think? A good way to spend the encroaching winter?