What to Cook Right Now


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It’s a federal holiday, a day of service, commemorating the birthday of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in 1929. He would have been 92. Before you think of food today, spend a little time reading his sermons and speeches, and our accounting in The New York Times of his assassination in 1968. He was 39.

Later, you can cook. Maybe make a pecan pie? It’s a dessert King was said to love. Then, for dinner: red curry lentils with sweet potatoes and spinach, shrimp scampi with orzo, or this amazing chicken French (above).

Or, have you made our Darun Kwak’s recipe for kimbap? I went rogue on it the other day, first assembling rice rolls with strips of omelet and deli ham, quick kimchi, carrots and cucumber, then making more with smoked salmon candy and topping the nori with salmon roe. As you’ll see if you read the notes below the recipe, this was very much in keeping with kimbap philosophy. As one subscriber wrote: “Endlessly adaptable!”

Today might be good for goulash, or charred cauliflower stew. With the day off work, I could see making pizza dough at lunchtime, and using it tonight: a plain pizza pie, perhaps, or a white pie topped with Taleggio and Parmesan. (My friend Jamie added roasted mushrooms to that one once, a final pizza after a night of cooking them in his outdoor oven in the snow, and it was a great way to end the game.)

You could make Nigerian fish pepper soup. Or Manchurian chicken. Or a very British Guinness pie.

There are thousands more recipes to choose from waiting for you on NYT Cooking. Go take a look and see what jumps out at you, what you find. You can save the recipes you want to make. And rate the ones you’ve made. You can also leave notes on them, if you discover something about a recipe you want to remember or share with your fellow subscribers.

Yes, subscribers. By subscribing, you support the work of dozens of people who work to make the site and apps possible. You allow that work to continue. I hope if you haven’t already, that you will subscribe to NYT Cooking today.

Meanwhile, you can reach out to us directly if something goes sideways along the way, either with your cooking or our technology. We’re at cookingcare@nytimes.com. Someone will get back to you. (I’m at foodeditor@nytimes.com. I read every letter sent.)

Now, it’s a far cry from belly tuna and fried chickpeas, but it’s been 20 years since the publication of Peter Carey’s “True History of the Kelly Gang,” and well time to read it if you haven’t, and re-read it if you have.

Of course you should take a look at Brian Hiatt’s Neil Peart article in Rolling Stone, perhaps especially if you don’t know anything about him or his math-rock legacy. Also, Monte Burke on Nick Saban, in Garden & Gun.

In this stressful time, our Sam Anderson recommends eating chips.

Finally, here’s Bud Powell playing “Get Happy” at the Blue Note in Paris in 1959. Get happy and I’ll see you on Wednesday.