If you want to know what real life looks like in my household, take a peek into our fridge. At the moment it's stocked with two gallons of whole milk, a dozen cheese sticks—I have three growing boys—practically every salad kit sold at Trader Joe's, plus their frozen chicken samosas, Mandarin Orange Chicken, gyoza potstickers, and my latest find: Roasted Garlic & Pesto Pizza with Deep Fried Crust. (Yup, the pizza crust is deep fried and as delicious as anything deep fried is.) Basically, I'm not "cooking" much these days. I'm relying on store-bought favorites to get my family through the year-end frenzy.
But we're not here to talk about the contents of my icebox. I'm motivated by you and the amazing recipes you turned to this month to stay warm and sane. Clearly I should have been cooking warm soups, cheesy baked casseroles, and fall vegetables, and you inspire me to! 2022 is almost over—we got this! Here are the 10 most popular recipes you cooked in November.
1. Roasted Root Vegetable Panzanella
Why are we talking about panzanella, a summer salad typically made with tomatoes, cucumbers, and stale bread, for fall? Because contributor Sheela Prakash is brilliant! She tosses the bread with roasted fall root vegetables and a brown butter, apple cider vinegar, and maple syrup dressing—it's a panzanella that suits the season!
2. Mercimek Çorbası (Turkish Lentil Soup)
If creamy, silky soups make you reach for a large spoon, this mercimek çorbasi will blanket you with comfort. Psst! One of these immersion blenders will be helpful.
3. Easy Spinach Dip
A retro party favorite gets a fresh Mediterranean update with feta, Greek yogurt, lots of lemon, and just 15 minutes of your time.
4. Brussels Sprout Slaw
Brussels sprouts, like cabbage, do well when shredded and tossed with a bright and sweet maple dressing to tame their bitterness. You could use a mandoline to create thin ribbons, or store-bought shredded Brussels are even easier.
5. Chipotle Chicken Chowder
A creamy chicken chowder is cold-weather comfort. Add chipotles in adobo and now we've upped the warmth and heat a few degrees. Some of you may find four chipotle peppers too spicy—bring it down to one or two peppers.
6. Chopped Cheese
I lived in New York City for nearly 15 years and my go-to to-go at any bodega was a "bacontwoeggsandnocheeseonahero"—the faster you say it, the faster you'll be on your way. I regret I've never ordered chopped cheese, another bodega classic. I'll try this recipe at home and report back. You should too!
7. Trinidadian Macaroni Pie
Contributor Alicia Ramkirpal-Senhouse says, "Once it’s done baking, it should hold its shape when cut, even right out of the oven. This firmness is a big part of what distinguishes macaroni pie from macaroni and cheese found outside of the Caribbean."
8. Spaghetti Squash Soup with Italian Sausage
Not the biggest fan of spaghetti squash? Try it in this soup—its sweetness balances the spicy Italian sausages.
9. Easy Beef Stew
Contributor, Laura Manzano, makes a case for not browning the beef: "While browned meat might look a lot more appetizing than that pale gray meat color (Benjamin Moore, that name is all yours), the truth is that in the end, all of the liquid and fat from the meat stays in the same pot, and all of the meat beautifully breaks down after two hours of cooking." You heard it here first, folks!
10. Egg Custard Pie
Rich vanilla custard inside a buttery pie crust equals the dessert you must drop everything and make right now.