December 7, 2023


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The Best Dishes Bon Appétit Staffers Cooked This Week

6 min read

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.

October 13

Cozy, creamy dal

Every fall, my friends and I escape to New York state to eat cider doughnuts, hike leafy trails, and eat more cider doughnuts. So, by the time dinner rolls around, something simple, cozy, and savory is in order. Nik Sharma’s dal makhani from his beautiful book The Flavor Equation was just right: I could make it ahead, pack it in a cooler, and reheat it at the Airbnb. With some rice, yogurt, and my favorite achar from Brooklyn Delhi, it was comforting as can be. —Emma Laperruque, senior cooking editor

Dulce de leche cake

We were having taco night at a friend’s place, and I was tasked with dessert. This cake caught my eye because it used not one, not two, but three jars of dulce de leche. It’s great for a Sunday baking project because you can take your time making all the components. Though I’m normally nervous about recipes that use volume instead of weight measurements, the cakes were airy and light. Topped with a chocolate ganache and hazelnuts, it was a major hit. Also surprisingly not too sweet. —Urmila Ramakrishnan, associate director of social media

Greener-than-green pesto

A bunch of shiny kale could turn into a cheesy gratin, a sturdy salad, and about a million other things. Yet it is this kale sauce with spaghetti from food director Chris Morocco that I turn to again and again. The color is so vibrant, you want to paint it on a wall, and the dish so packed with roughage, you can skip the effort of a side dish altogether. —E.L.

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Kale Pesto With Whole Wheat Pasta

This kale pesto inspired us to keep spreading the word that there is still no better or more delicious way to eat your greens.

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Bắp cải cuộn thịt

I had a savoy cabbage sitting in the fridge, begging to be cooked. So naturally, I started scrolling TikTok. I came across this version of Vietnamese cabbage rolls, and knew I had to make them. I added some additional seasonings to the pork filling, along with an extra diced shallot, and I skipped the vermicelli noodles because I didn’t have them on hand. Paired with these nuoc chom tomatoes, it was a great weeknight dinner that took almost no time at all. —U.R.

Saucy, buttery greens

I ordered watercress from my grocery delivery service only to read a note upon opening the box that they were out of the delicate, spicy green. They replaced it with kale—not the same vibe. Armed with an unexpected bunch of hearty greens, plus the big bunch of collards I had also ordered, I embarked on the most indulgent preparation I could find. I skipped the bacon, traded the shallots for red onions, and swapped some of the dairy for sour cream. Pooled underneath a steak of pan-roasted tuna, it was a pretty stellar Sunday dinner (and I hardly missed that salad I had planned on making instead). —Joe Sevier, senior SEO editor

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Our best creamy collard greens recipe does contain bacon, whole milk, and heavy cream, but it’s so worth it if you want to splurge. Serve as a hearty side dish.

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October 6

Squash coconut curry

It snowed in the mountains near my home in Salt Lake City this week, so I needed to switch into stew mode. Enter: cookbook author Meera Sodha’s cozy pumpkin curry. I roasted garam-masala-dusted rings of delicata squash until fork-tender in the oven. Meanwhile, on the stove, black mustard seeds popped and danced in oil, followed by a tangle of fragrant onions and tomatoes. To finish, in went the roasted squash, along with some coconut milk for a gentle simmer. With a pot of rice, it’s peak fall. —Ali Francis, staff writer

Fresh India: 130 Quick, Easy, and Delicious Vegetarian Recipes for Every Day

Even more cookie bars

High off the success of my chocolate chip cookie bar adventure last week, I made not one but two other cookie bar recipes from Jesse Szewczyk this weekend: pumpkin and peanut butter. The peanut butter ones, from Jesse’s book Cookies: The New Classic, deliver flawlessly on the “my favorite candy is Reese’s” flavor I needed for a friend’s birthday. The pumpkin ones are eggless (which means I’ll probably make them again for Diwali). The first step is browning butter, which somehow always takes me longer than it’s supposed to—but they’re delightfully one-bowl after that. A fun game is to bring them both to a party, ask people to pick their favorite, and then relish the smug feeling when nobody can choose. —Sonia Chopra, executive editor

Briny, garlicky clams

Like clockwork, I feel lucky every Sunday morning, wandering around my local farmers market, gawking at the seemingly endless bounty New Jersey has to offer: shiny apples, misshapen squash, and just-caught seafood from the shore. This week I treated myself to a bag of clams. Briny, chewy, slurpy clams. I made this recipe from Sohla El-Waylly that I’ve had my eyes on for a while. The clams swim in a miso-enriched broth with a tangle of soba noodles, and honestly I wanted to join them. —Emma Laperruque, senior cooking editor

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Every batch of clams will bring a different level of saltiness to this update on linguine with clams, so be sure to taste the broth and add water as needed in case it’s too salty.

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Roasted white bean pasta

I saw this recipe float across my screen in an email newsletter and it called to me. It’s vegan and relies on canned beans, a pantry staple I have on hand any day of the year, so I was able to act on it immediately. Cannellini beans get crispy-chewy after a short stint in the oven, and a roasted tomato sauce comes together simultaneously, entirely hands-off in the oven too. My shortcut: Instead of using two sheet pans, I crowded the beans and the tomatoes in one, with little consequence. —Antara Sinha, associate cooking editor

Basque burnt cheesecake

I cooked for a 10-person dinner party last weekend that doubled as a wine tasting led by a friend. To pair with the Spanish wines she’d selected, I made an array of tapas (like patatas bravas, tortilla española, and pan con tomate) and two different paellas. Knowing I’d be cooking from dawn till dusk the day of, I opted for a dessert that would be as low lift as humanly possible. Molly Baz’s Basque Burnt Cheesecake fit the bill: It comes together in a stand mixer in a matter of minutes, and it tastes just as great on day two as long as you let it come to room temp before digging in. I served it with some plums I roasted with orange blossom water and vanilla, and their acidity played beautifully with the creamy cheesecake. It was the biggest hit of the night. —Alaina Chou, commerce producer

Burnt Basque Cheesecake recipe from Molly Baz at Bon Apptit

This is the light, fluffy, cloudlike cheesecake that wants to get burnt, cracked, and cooked at high heat. Which also means this is the cheesecake that’s impossible to mess up.

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