By Sam Sifton
Good morning. It’s the summer solstice, so you may eat dinner at twilight even if you’re late to get into the kitchen because Mondays are a bear. Let’s make the most of it.
Melissa Clark has a terrific new recipe for grilled yogurt-marinated chicken with za’atar (above) that I think would work really well in the broiler if a grill is not available to you; in a pinch I think you could cook it in a really hot oven. That might be good.
Alternatively, consider Yewande Komolafe’s latest, sazón-spiced shrimp and okra, a quick one-pan dinner with big, bright flavors. The okra gets blistered in a pan, deepening its flavor without getting slimy, and then you add shrimp and shower the whole thing with sazón. That and some coconut rice? Yes, please.
But back to the grill for a second. Steven Raichlen has a cool new recipe for grilled zucchini ribbons that transforms the texture of the vegetable and, with barbecue butter, makes it taste a little like vegetarian burnt ends. He’s also got a fine one for grilled okra with rémoulade. And if it’s early for corn where I stay, there’s plenty in my supermarket, and Steven’s grilled corn on the cob is delicious coated in sesame-soy butter.
Cooking inside, you might think about David Tanis’s recipe for summer pasta with zucchini, ricotta and basil. Or Melissa’s pan-seared asparagus salad with frisée and fried egg. Or Alison Roman’s spring tofu soup.
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Now, it’s a day’s drive from anything to do with all-purpose flour and preserved lemons, but you have to read my colleague Nicholas Casey’s brilliant story for The New York Times Magazine, about his search for his father.
Nick Heil’s article for Outside, about his mad search for a first-generation Toyota Tundra, will be a treat for anyone obsessed with gear and equipment. (“Cursed with titanium taste on a chromoly budget, I was forever hunting for deals.”)
Do you think you might make it to the New York Botanical Garden to see Yayoi Kusama’s “Cosmic Nature”? PBS NewsHour offers a glimpse.
Finally, here’s Gang of Four to play us off, “Natural’s Not in It.” Music to cook chickens by. I’ll see you on Wednesday.
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