Good morning. We’re moving into the slowest of the slow days, deepest summer, everything languid, not much happening at all. Tomatoes are ripening. Corn’s growing tall. I’m getting reports from cookouts and barbecues, clambakes, fish fries, oyster feeds and picnics — all those spirited endeavors we missed last year, sheltering from the pandemic in our pods. I hope your weekend was filled with them, with the joy of gathering with others in the presence of food and drink.
Will you have a Sunday dinner to continue the theme? I’ve written before about how important those meals can be to a person, to a family, to a community. A vat of chili or chowder, some neighbors, plenty of iced tea? It could be the start of something bigger than the dinner itself, a path to shared healing after 14 months of stress. Won’t you give it a try?
On Monday, I like the idea of these mushroom chicharrón tacos (above), the mushrooms seasoned with cumin and pan-fried until crispy, then stuffed into tortillas and topped with pico de gallo.
Tuesday, how about these salt and pepper shrimp rolls? That could be a recipe to make twice a month from now until the first frost.
For Wednesday’s meal, a return to weekend pleasures, but on a smaller scale: griddled diner burgers with crisp smashed potatoes with fried onions and parsley.
Then on Thursday, you could try out this one-pot pasta with zucchini and basil. It takes only 20 minutes to make, which might leave you time to bake a fresh strawberry Bundt cake that you could serve on Friday night, to follow a dinner of freestyle kimbap. (I’ve been having amazing success with cucumber and imitation crab.)
You can find many thousands more delicious recipes to cook this week on New York Times Cooking. Of course, you’ll need a subscription to access them. That’s how this operation works. Subscriptions support our work. If you haven’t already, I hope you will subscribe today.
Come visit us on our YouTube channel while you’re at it, where among other things you can watch this terrific piece of video journalism by CC Allen, about one of the oldest family-run watermelon stands in Philadelphia. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter as well.
And please know that we are standing by to assist, should anything get weird in your cooking or with our technology. Just drop us a line: [email protected] Someone will get back you. (You can also write to me: [email protected] I can’t respond to every letter. But I read each one sent.)
Now, it’s a few football fields away from dining rooms and well-stocked pantries, but Abdi Latif Dahir’s story in The Times, about a flourishing literary magazine scene in Africa, alerted me to this short story by Rémy Ngamije, “The Giver of Nicknames,” which appears in the journal Lolwe. I think you ought to read it, though it’s intense.
I’m very late to it, but Ben Ratliff on Jimmy Giuffre at 100 is pretty great, in Tidal.
Check out Carlo D’Anselmi’s show, “Aren’t We Lucky,” at the Thierry Goldberg Gallery in New York.
Finally, new music to play us off, Girl K, “Girl K Is For the People.” Listen to that and I’ll be back on Monday.